Thursday, September 18, 2008

The Goal

I first picked up The Goal when I was browsing through my company library about 15 years ago or so.
I had never heard of a 'management novel'.
Wasn't sure what to expect but the concept seemed interesting.
When I finished reading I was blown away.
This was it!
The only way to make anything stick was through a story.
I bet all of us remember many stories that we heard in our childhood.
Since then I must have read The Goal - first by borrowing the same book from the library multiple times and then by actually buying the book when I left the company - at least 15 times, if not more. One may not agree with the Theory of Constraints and denounce it as not very practical in all situations, one cannot deny that the books contain some gems. In any case Goldratt claims huge success using TOC. See here. And it all started with The Goal.
It is a story of a manager trying to save his job and marriage and manages to both (what else do you expect!) using the good old Socratic principles.
I followed up this book with The Critical Chain and It's Not Luck(sold in India as Goal II - shows the impact of the original one). The sequel and The Critical Chain do not leave the same kind of impact as The Goal does. But they are still worth a read.

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