"We're drowned in oceans of data; nevertheless, it seems as if we seldom have sufficient information"
"We have created elaborate, sophisticated systems that waste management attention, and in many cases not just waste it, but divert management attention to do damage rather than create benefits."
“Our fear of complex systems drives us to dissect the complex system into sub-systems, leading to diverting management attention to chase local optima which are not in-line with the global objective”
“Our fear of unknown drives us to finer and finer resolutions – diving into more and more details that divert management attention to optimize within the noise.”
“Tell me how you measure me and I will tell you how I will behave. If you measure me in an illogical way don’t complain about illogical behaviour.״
“There is no point trying to impose certainty on a situation which contains high uncertainty.”
“Productivity is meaningless unless you know what your goal is."
“Focusing on everything is synonymous with not focusing on anything”.
“When different customers have somewhat different undesirable effects, the market is inherently segmented. The only thing that prevents an effective segmentation is your offer.”
"Not every change is an improvement, but certainly every improvement is a change.”
"As long as we think that we already know, we don't bother to rethink the situation.”
“The biggest obstacle to achievements is setting the objective too low.”
“What should you expect from a process of ongoing improvement?
1. Knowledge of what to change; the managerial know-how.
2. Knowledge of what to change to; the operational know-how.
3. Knowledge of how to cause the change; the psychological know-how.”
“If we have produced something, but have not yet sold it, can we really call it throughput?”
“As long as we put people under misalignments between their responsibility and their authority, empowerment deteriorates to lip service.”
“If we don’t bother to verbalise our intuition, we ourselves will do the opposite of what we believe in.”
“We should strive to reveal the fundamental causes, so that root treatment can be applied, rather than just treating the leaves -- the symptoms.”
"Three necessary conditions:
- Make money now as well as in the future.
- Provide a secure and satisfying environment to employees now as well as in the future.
- Provide satisfaction to the market now as well as in the future.
…which one is more important?”
“Putting it precisely activating a resource and utilizing a resource are not synonymous.”
“There is no such thing as product profit or product cost. The key is to realise that prices are determined by the customers perception of value.”
“Punish people for their improvements and the process of ongoing improvement comes to grinding halt.”
“Determination to achieve high local efficiencies everywhere can easily cause the bottleneck to wander.”
“We must ask why with the innocence of a child, otherwise the most vulnerable assumptions, those that we unquestionably accept as facts of life, will not surface.”
“Our fear that conflicts will lead to a tug of war diverts management attention to constantly struggle with unacceptable compromises.”
“The chain analogy:
Cost=Weight (both obey the additive rule). Throughput=Strength (neither obeys the additive rule).”
“When a prototype - a new initiative - does not work, we face two alternatives: one is to bitch about reality and the other is to harvest the gift it just gave us, the knowledge of what has to be corrected.”
“To adjust price is relatively easy for the competition. To change a rooted policy is difficult for the competition.”
“The key to managing people is mutual respect… The key to gain respect is to give respect… giving respect requires work.”
“There is nothing wrong with people’s brainpower; there is something very wrong with people’s perception of reality.”
"1st Engine of Disharmony: Many people don’t really know (cannot clearly verbalise) how what they are doing is essential to their organisation. Would you be motivated if you were in that position?”
”2nd Engine of Disharmony: Most people don’t really know how what many of their colleagues are doing is essential, or at least contributes, to the organisation. Would you be collaborative if you were in that position?”
”3rd Engine of Disharmony: People are operating under conflicts. Putting a person under a conflict doesn’t contribute much to his motivation.”
"4th Engine of Disharmony: Many people are required to also do tasks for which the reason no longer exists. People’s intuition is always strong enough to feel it, but not always is it strong enough to convincingly explain it to their superiors.”
”5th Engine of Disharmony:
Gaps between responsibility and authority. You, like any other manager, know firsthand how frustrating it is to have something you are responsible for accomplishing, but you do not have the authority for some of the actions that must be taken.”
“Bearing in mind the high-level of uncertainty, how come that before the execution of a project begins we find ourselves giving concrete commitments - agreeing on detailed content, budget and due date?"
“When you do things you are bound to make mistakes. The only way to avoid them is not to do anything, which is the biggest mistake.”
“For a person to think clearly, what is needed is to accept the concept of inherent simplicity, not as an interesting speculation, but as the practical way of viewing reality, any reality.”
“In projects, like in production, the key is to understand the interconnection between logistics, human behaviour, policies and measurements. Any attempt to separate between them guarantees that only sophisticated, impressive, useless methods are the results of mammoth efforts.”
“The lead time of a project strongly depends on the number (and work content) of the other projects running simultaneously in the system.”
“The key ingredient is to have the courage to face inconsistencies between what we see and deduce and the way things are done. This challenging of basic assumptions is essential for breakthroughs.”
“As long as the end customer hasn’t bought, no one has sold.”
“Productivity is the act of bringing a company closer to its goal. Every action that brings a company closer to its goal is productive. Every action that does not bring a company closer to its goal is not productive.”
“It’s very easy to come up with a complicated solution. The real difficulty is to come up with a simple solution.”
“When too many projects are executed simultaneously many resources will find themselves under pressure to work on more than one task – bad multi-tasking is unavoidable.
Prolific bad multi-tasking significantly prolongs each project’s lead-time.”
“Throughput does not have any intrinsic limitation; throughput must be the cornerstone of any process of ongoing improvement. It must be first on the scale of importance.”
“When quantities increase by an order of magnitude, it is not enough to increase capacity. New processes (of support, control and measurement) are usually needed.“
“Contrary to the common belief, having detailed visibility (having to detailed a PERT network) almost guarantees that control will be lost.”
“Contrary to the common belief, safety embedded at the task level prolongs the project without providing sufficient safety to the project completion.”
“TOC hammers over and over again: ‘Local optima do not add up to the optimum of the total'. TQM reminds us that: 'It is not enough to do things right. What is more important is to do the right things.’ And JIT puts on its flag: 'Do not do what is not needed'."
“Never let the important become urgent”
“To reach a full life we need to have enough meaningful successes. To have successes we should:
1. Develop stamina to overcome failures.
2. Have enough opportunities.
3. Be able to collaborate with others.”
“When you are good with a hammer everything looks like a nail."
“I smile and start to count on my fingers: One, people are good. Two, every conflict can be removed. Three, every situation, no matter how complex it initially looks, is exceedingly simple. Four, every situation can be substantially improved; even the sky is not the limit. Five, every person can reach a full life. Six, there is always a win-win solution. Shall I continue to count?”