This website covers knowledge management, personal effectiveness, theory of constraints, amongst other topics. Opinions expressed here are strictly those of the owner, Jack Vinson, and those of the commenters.

The truth about ... flow


A lot of the continuous improvement literature makes reference to flow and similar ideas. In talking about projects and Critical Chain lately, I have been using the image of a boat floating downstream: anything that slows the boat or blocks it from moving slows it from getting to the goal. It seems so obvious: of course, you don't want your project to get stuck partway through. Similarly, in production, or the supply chain or the sales process. But the thing is, many organizations let their operations get stuck all the time. They might not even know it. The flow mindset challenges other ways that people think about organizations. How many examples does one need of how the belief that high "efficiency" actually blocks flow.

Patrick Rigoni has a nice piece on The Truth about DDMRP Implementation (Demand-Driven Material Requirements Planning) that describes the challenges of DDMRP.  On the one hand, it is easy and "obvious" at the operational level. But on the other hand, it is hard because it challenges the assumptions built into how the rest of the business operates.  He emphasizes the big challenges in finance and forecasting. I've seen similar challenges in my projects.

Stretch: working with your constraints, instead of beyond them