Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Book Review: Goal by: Eliyahu M Goldratt: ~~Simply~Amazing~Novel~~


The Writers: Eliyahu M Goldratt, popularly known as Eli Goldratt is a renowned Guru in Western World for revolutionizing Industry World Concepts regarding relating “Costing and Production”. He conceptualized the Theory of Constraints (his another bestseller). His beauty is writing in a very interesting manner but in a crisp and crystal clear way. The way he works and writes has not only got him acclaims for Western World but the Japanese also like his way of thinking. His methods proved the world that the traditional methods adopted in the Production Companies were wrong and thus leading them to losses and closures. He started as a Consultant in 1979 to many big Giants in Western World who were on a downstream and were not able to understand why it was happening even after adopting best established METHODS. Jeff Cox is the co-author.
Hang on Pals, if you feel this book is not for you, just try reading it and “I bet you just can’t eat one”( err it is not Lay’s), let me rectify, “I bet you just can’t leave it without completing it”. And let me tell you this is not a business book or personal improvement book , read it as a novel and rest it will do itself.
The Book: Written as a Novel, it becomes very interesting in such a manner that even a person not belonging to Production/Manufacturing Industry would get engrossed in the book right from beginning and will definitely learn a lesson or two for his/her personal life too. First Edition was out in 1984 and revolutionized all Production Companies especially which were following traditional methods but falling in the pitfalls and gradually closing down. Second Edition was out in 1993. Third Edition is outrecently.
What it gives – my views: The book gives you tounderstand “Common Sense”. Teaches Simple ways of thinking and getting out of Problems, and carrying out life with a “Never Dying Attitude” in all aspects of Life. It tells that the Real Learning is by falling down, analyzing and getting up on your own. Each problem is unique and cannot be handled in a Pre Concluded way. Courage, analysis and “no run away attitude” can bring you out of any disaster.
The Story:
Take 1: Alex Logo on Professional FrontAlex Logo is the Head of a Manufacturing Unit (Uniware Division) in Bearington of a Big Group (Unico). The company is loosing orders because of not able to provide timely delivery of orders, having huge inventories but all mismatch, not able to produce even with full utilization of machines and manpower. The Divisional Head warns Logo that in NEXT 90 DAYS IFHIS COMPANY DOES NOT IMPROVE, IT WILL BE CLOSED DOWN. The Division is not ready to carry on with the losses. Job of 600 direct and indirect staff is at stake,including Logo’s. Logo is not ready to give up easily and decides to fight it out.  By chance Logo meets Jonah at an Airport Lounge on his way to Houston during the change of flights. Jonah is his Study days friend who became a Physicist. But Jonah has turned into a Consultant in US by now and many big companies there are consulting him. Jonah belongs to Israel and is going to US. Both have some time for their respective flights and thus Logo starts telling Jonah that despite FULLY AUTOMATED MACHINES, ADOPTING BEST TECHNIQUES and WITH 100% UTILIZATION OF ALL HIS MACHINES AND MANPOWER , he is loosing his BATTLE and is given 90 days by the MANAGEMENT OF UNICO GROUP. Jonah start intriguing him and suggests him to give answers to very basic questions related to his Unit’s functioning. Jonah refuses to give Logo a concrete solution or answer to the questions he has asked and rather prefers Logo to think about them and find out the solutions on his own.
Take 2: Alex Logo on Family Front
Julie married to Logo many years back and they have two kidswho are quite intelligent, understanding and lovely. Julie has got toodepressed by her married life since Logo has no time for family and kids. Evenafter making up every time with his wife, Logo, because of his Factory Problemsis not able to cope up with his personal life. All of a sudden one day Julieleft the house with a note for Logo that she cannot live with him like this andis going away. Logo tries to find out Julie but all in vain.
Take 3: Alex the HEROAlex does not give up at both the fronts. He continuouslykeeps thinking about Jonah’s queries and eventually starts coming out with somesolutions. But along with this come some more questions in his mind and hestarts SEARCHING FOR JONAH. After making enormous phone calls to all corners ofworld and luckily gets Jonah. His mother shifts to his house to help him andkids. His finds Julie at her parent’s house. Julie is not sure if she wants toDivorce but is sure that she doesn’t want to come back right now with him tohis house.
Take 4: Alex and Julie, Alex and UnicoAlex starts dating his wife Julie. He persuades Julie that it is ok if she doesn’t want to come back but requests her to go out for dinner and outings on weekends. She accepts it after initial resistance. Alex gets Jonah to his factory and Jonah addresses his whole team, suggests them and forces them to think on the tips he is giving time to time. Alex’s unit is improving. Orders are getting ready in shorter time. Rejections are decreasing. Factory is improving. Alex and Julie are regularly meeting. They do for the first time what they never did when they were together - They discuss Alex's problems.
Take 5: Last LeapAlex wins at both the fronts. Factory has not only come out of its pitfalls, it is maintaining and sustaining the improvements.Business is increasing and Alex’s unit becomes the best in the Division and Group. His new measurement methods that he invented with the help of Jonah are accepted at Headquarters. He is promoted as Divisional Head (from one factory he becomes in charge of 3 factories of the division). Julie returns back and also returns the happiness in Alex’s life.

1 comment:

  1. This is a terrible novel and a great business book. That's a little unfair, it's better to think of it as a novel which exists only to illustrate Goldratt's Theory of Constraints which sounds a little dry. So for my third attempt I'll say this is a book about a man fighting to turn a factory around from being overwhelmed with uncompleted orders and quality problems to a successful, thriving business. It's good fun and a great little read.

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