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Knowledge Jolt with Jack

Theory of Constraints, knowledge management, personal productivity and many more topics

Last Build Date: Mon, 25 Sep 2017 13:17:55 +0000


Be yourself...

Mon, 25 Sep 2017 13:19:50 +0000

Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.
— Oscar Wilde

Oscar Wilde - you have to love a guy that thinks like this.

I came across this thanks to our local middle school principal in her weekly update.

Multiteaming - inducing more multitasking

Thu, 14 Sep 2017 03:00:10 +0000

By now, most people who read this know that multitasking causes a lot of problems in organizations. It creates delays, lowers quality, and creates more and more tension in an organization.A recent HBR Ideacast with Mark Mortensen described a variant that I have talked about but had never named: "multiteaming" - being assigned to multiple (different) projects.

Highlights from Building on Success 2017 Day 2 #UtahGCCon

Sat, 09 Sep 2017 02:30:31 +0000

The second day of Building on Success 2017 conference was also loaded with great hallway conversations and interesting presentations

Breakthrough Results in Healthcare #UtahGCCon

Sat, 09 Sep 2017 01:41:26 +0000

At the Building on Success 2017 conference, Alex Knight spoke on fixing the healthcare system through the Theory of Constraints lens, mostly as described in his book Pride and Joy (my review), which tells the semi-fictional story of a significant turnaround at a hospital in the UK.

Creating World-Class Technology Operations with TOC #UtahGCCon

Fri, 08 Sep 2017 21:59:29 +0000

Gene Kim gave a great plenary at the Building on Success 2017 conference that described how TOC and related thinking can create truly breakthrough operations for technology.

Highlights from Building on Success 2017 Day 1 #UtahGCCon

Fri, 08 Sep 2017 20:06:12 +0000

Some highlights from the first day at Building on Success 2017.  Focus, Full Kit and more.

This stuff works #UtahGCCon

Fri, 08 Sep 2017 16:04:47 +0000

"This stuff works!" from Retired Lt. General Andrew Busch in summarizing his 12 years in leadership positions and using Theory of Constraints to create significant improvements in his work.  His summary included many things that Kris Cox listed in her 7 Essentials

Kris Cox on the 7 Essentials for Breakthrough Results #UtahGCCon

Fri, 08 Sep 2017 15:18:59 +0000

Kris Cox, the Executive Director of Utah Governor’s Office of Management and Budget, gave one of the opening keynotes to the Building on Success 2017 conference. Hers was another great talk on what she sees as the 7 Essentials for Breakthrough Results in any type of organization.

Necessary but not Sufficient, again

Fri, 25 Aug 2017 15:57:11 +0000

Another good, fast read of a "standby" book on Theory of Constraints, technology sales and thinking about real business problems. One of the most lasting elements from this book is a way to think about technology in light of improving an organization: the questions for technology.  

Do nothing for a while

Fri, 25 Aug 2017 14:58:50 +0000

Every time we switch attention, it causes us to burn mental energy.  And that energy lost ends up costing us: I usually focus on the fact that everything takes longer when my focus shifts.  But we also lose creativity, sleep, energy... and more.

Major Account Sales Strategy

Wed, 09 Aug 2017 16:25:21 +0000

Major Account Sales Strategy by Neil Rackham is a follow-on to his classic SPIN Selling, taking that approach and applying to bigger projects that require more and more effort to close the sale. It fits a lot with how I have been seeing the world lately.

TOC in Retail - at liquor stores

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 11:33:12 +0000

The last leg of the supply chain in many systems is the retail store, where the ultimate pull happens: a customer buys the product. Theory of Constraints applied in retail seeks to ensure the right product at the right place at the right time, so that the retailer can continue to stay in business.

Tools are so shiny and pretty

Thu, 27 Jul 2017 01:54:14 +0000

It seems so easy to start with the tools before we think about why and what we are doing. The Agile Manifesto for Software Development provides a suggestion: People and Interactions over Processes and Tools.

The truth about ... flow

Tue, 23 May 2017 00:55:57 +0000

A quick post about flow and the challenge of bringing this idea into organizations - it challenges deeply-held beliefs.

Stretch: working with your constraints, instead of beyond them

Wed, 17 May 2017 20:29:18 +0000

I finished "Stretch: Unlock the Power of Less - and Achieve Than You Ever Imagined" by Scott Sonenshein a few weeks ago, and have had the ideas rolling around in my head since then. I really like the overall premise of the book: lean towards Stretching instead of Chasing. I found that it nicely connects to the ideas of Theory of Constraints and process improvement in general.

Drawing your way to understanding

Mon, 15 May 2017 13:38:44 +0000

A client sent a link to Tom Wujec's TED Scotland 2013 talk, Got a Wicked Problem? First, tell me how you make toast. His idea is to use drawing and visualization to help people bring clarity to their problems. And I pick up on the idea of allowing ourselves to iterate around the visualization as being important to understanding the deeper system.

Physics behind new product development

Wed, 26 Apr 2017 13:48:14 +0000

I came across "Guest Blog: Finding Science and Success with Lean Principles in R&D" by Norbert Majerus of Goodyear on the Factory Physics website, and it describes the Factory Physics ideas as applied in new product development, and I thought it was a pretty good summary. This is also a lot of what we do with Theory of Constraints concepts applied in product development (and project management) arenas too.

More five whys - Cult of root cause

Wed, 19 Apr 2017 21:37:24 +0000

An old post from Donald Reinertsen on "The Cult of the Root Cause" got me thinking about our use of logic and over-reliance on tools. He describes over-reliance on the Five Whys without applying some common sense. And I add some of my own thoughts on top.

The Five Whys - explained

Mon, 10 Apr 2017 12:41:48 +0000

The Manager Tools podcast has a recent entry on The Five Whys which come out of the suite of tools from Toyota / Lean / Toyota Production System. It's a great root cause analysis tool, but the way the Manager Tools team describe it struck a chord with me.

KM only works if we are looking

Wed, 29 Mar 2017 18:21:03 +0000

So, on top of all the other challenges with developing cool technologies and getting people interested, we must consider whether people believe that they have problem you think you are solving.