I recently completed The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement and found it quite fascinating. It was an easy read that was written in a narrative of a fictitious manufacturing company. The primary take away is an introduction to the Theory of Constraints. Organization leaders constantly struggle with the balance between demand and capacity (whether you know it or not). Having a collaborative methodology to evaluation and react to the constant changes on either side of this equation is vital to success. My conclusion is that this book is a good “introduction” to “The Five Focusing Steps”. I’m currently working through how these concepts and steps can be applied in a service based business. I found several YouTube presentations on how it can be used in project based environments.
Traction By Gino Wickman
We believe the path to success for any organization is through an aligned management team.
Every successful leader has their top five list of books that have influenced their philosophy and approach to organizational success. At the top of my list is Elliot Jaques’ Requisite Organization. He answers the question of “why does the CEO earn a higher wage than the front-line employees?” The answer boils down to the ability to manage complexity over longer periods of time. He looks at the organizational structure and the vital roles at each layer (or strata) in the organization. Elliiot was a behavioral psychologist so the content is rooted in data and scientific methodologies . It’s by no means a casual read but the information is priceless if you have an interest in evolving your organization.
If you like to have a boiled down version of Elliot’s work you can follow Tom Fosters Blog at www. http://managementblog.org. Tom has a great way of conveying Elliot’s concepts through real-life experiences.
After completing E-Myth, I was hungry for more. Traction is currently the second most influential book in my library (after The Requisite Organization). It showed me there is a simple but comprehensive organizational blueprint for those of us that didn’t have a formal education in business management. It leads you down the road of “running” your business vs “guessing” your business.
Ask a business owner about EOS and they will likely know what you’re talking about. EOS stands for the Entrepreneur Operating System and includes six components: Vision, People, Data, Issues, Process, and Traction.
For those of you wanting to explore deeper into the importance of organizational structure and aligning your management team your next read after Traction should be “The Requisite Organization” by Elliot Jacques.
The E-Myth By Michael Gerber
The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement
By Eliyahu M. Goldratt and Jeff Cox
E-Myth was my introduction to a “method to the madness” in business. I often recommend this book as a first read to aspiring business owners. As a person who loves process and order, I took to the “franchise model” concepts immediately. It’s an easy read with the concepts set within a narrative fiction. Gerber schools his readers to “work on your business, not in your business.” My second take away was that there are three key people in a business: (1) The Entrepreneur- the visionary, the dreamer; (2) The Manager – without the manager, there would be no planning, no order, no predictability; (3) The Technician – the doer, who always lives in the present.
Although E-Myth was a great introduction to organizational concepts, it did leave me a bit short on the “how”. That’s why the second book I recommend is “Traction” by Geno Wickman.
The Requisite Organization By Elliot Jaques
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