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Publisher's Summary

In this intriguing business novel, which illustrates state-of-the-art economic theory, Alex Rogo is a UniCo plant manager whose factory and marriage are failing. To revitalize the plant, he follows piecemeal advice from an elusive former college professor who teaches, for example, that reduction in the efficiency of some plant operations may make the entire operation more productive. Alex's attempts to find the path to profitability and to engage his employees in the struggle involve the listener; and thankfully the authors' economic models, including a game with matchsticks and bowls, are easy to understand. Although some characters are as anonymous as the goods manufactured in the factory, others ring true. In addition, the tender story of Alex and his wife's separation and reconciliation makes a touching contrast to the rest of the book. Recommended for anyone with an interest in the state of the American economy.

©1984 Original material © 1984, Revised 1986, 1992, 2004, 2014 Goldratt1 Ltd. "Standing on the Shoulders of Giants" © 2008 Eliyahu M. Goldratt. (P)2014 (p) 2014 Goldratt1 Ltd.

What listeners say about The Goal

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    5 out of 5 stars

The Goal - still relevant today

I read this book 20 years ago, and while the story has a lot of remnants from the 1980s that don't translate well to todays modern world, the concepts demonstrated through fixing the broken factory are still true today as they were then. It should be required reading or listening to anyone who works in a leadership position in their careers regardless of the field they work.

26 people found this helpful

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Great lessons packed inside of a well told story

I really enjoyed this book...and I'm not even in the manufacturing industry! I'm working on my own food business right now. I think there's a little something here for everyone who's looking to increase efficiency in a counter intuitive way.

Also, I really enjoyed the way the story was told and I appreciate all of the extra effort that went in this audio production.

18 people found this helpful

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This book changed the way I think

Any additional comments?

What a book. The idea of textbook flipped on its head and turned into a narrative. The ideas for the manufacturing plant I think are transferable to many other endeavors. When you ask the question - what is my goal here, and then go through the thought process outlined, amazing things happen. A great author, thinker and contributor to many businesses bottom line.

10 people found this helpful

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Reinventing Production for Us IT Dummies

I am an IT manager and I am getting into DevOps. This book came up more than once in my research so I gave it a try even though I am not in fabrication and production. At least, that's what I thought until I listened to this book.

What I love about this book is that the fictional narrative allows the protagonist to "blow-up" his manufacturing plant's way of doing business. Of course, he isn't trying to blow it up, he is just trying to make it perform. But Goldratt teaches us that some things, some processes we entered the profession with, some metrics that have served us well for years - need to be blown-up and more importantly, replaced with something useful. Listen to this book and find out not necessarily what the new metrics should be - but how to discover them for yourself.

19 people found this helpful

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Decent concepts, but unnecessarily dramatized

Purchased following all of the positive reviews and the whole "30th anniversary" marketing. Ultimately it has a handful of good thoughts on systems and processes, and viewing things from a new perspective, especially related to American manufacturing concepts, but the dramatization of the narrative got old quickly and stretched what should otherwise have been a book of less than 5 chapters. Plenty of other resources out there will accomplish the same thing unless you really like cheesy business drama in the line of afternoon soap operas.

8 people found this helpful

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Unlistenable

Returning this immediately, multiple voice actors rarely work, and the combination of multiple voices and background music is cacophonous.

8 people found this helpful

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  • E.
  • 07-24-17

Outstanding! One of the best I've ever listened to.

It was like watching a screenplay with different characters and plot lines, and the lessons are crystal clear. Recommended to anyone interested in understanding the science of Process in any business.

8 people found this helpful

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Great education on metrics to make decisions

This is a great book on how to look at things from a different direction and pay attention to value drivers you may not be watching. I wished I read it twenty years ago.

6 people found this helpful

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A business classic

A Must book for executives and business people who want to improve their business acumen.

4 people found this helpful

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the best book for an engineering company

make your company profitable and also enjoy your Family Life after reading this book. enjoy

4 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-20-20

Poor reading by main character

The main character was reading like he was chasing a train. Very monotonous voice as well. Really let the story down

3 people found this helpful

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  • The laughing fox
  • 10-13-18

Exhilarating and insightful - an inspiration

This book is a masterpiece. A work of art. If you have a business with any kind of assembly line it’s a must read. If not it’s a beautifully written story with tension and pace and excitement that will teach you things you didn’t know.

Such as how Toyota overtook theUS car industry in the 80s and how those ideas originated with Henry Ford, whose insights had been forgotten by several generations of managers and accountants who didn’t understand the goal.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Crush 2.0
  • 03-09-21

An Excellent Listen

This is one of those books that will stay with me for the rest of my working life. Whilst the story is based on a manufacturing plant, and how their focus on efficiency was ironically killing their profits, it also has so many overlaps into a whole host of different industries. Since I've read it I always ask myself ' What is the goal here?' whenever I am in a new project or even a business meeting, is it just to complete a project to time and cost? What is the bigger picture, how does this feed into the overall goal of the organisation? One part that really resonated with me was when two workers were idle next to a machine, and their supervisor had them start moving boxes from one side of the factory to the other - for what purpose? Just to they can be 'perceived' to be busy rather than contributing to the goal of the plant. It made me realise that we need to have flex when it comes to capacity, and this is just as true in knowledge work as it is in manufacturing.

The narration is first rate and the voice acting was immersive and sympathetically executed. Is this a must read? Absolutely, few books have had the impact this has on my perspective of management.

1 person found this helpful

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  • LC
  • 05-30-19

How to increase your production throughput by optimising flow

Nice story introducing various concepts around bottlenecks and flow that can be used to increase throughput by multiples. Thought provoking and interesting, but maybe needs some in depth thinking in order to put it to use in a different environment.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mr. Brian Jenkinson
  • 08-01-18

Manfacturing in all sectors

It doesn't matter your sector, the goal is all about improvement. This book brings to life a manufacturing plant and the analysis and changes to make that can be applied to any business. Want to make your business or the business you work for more successful, then understand your goal.

1 person found this helpful

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  • TAMBE
  • 11-24-15

Gripping fantastic book masterfully narrated.

Great novel from am outstanding mentor. I didn't even realise I was giving it a third listening to.

1 person found this helpful

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  • S Marriott
  • 06-30-21

Great intro to lean

works well in audiobook format. Great intro to the fundamentals of LEAN. The case study was more difficult to go through in audio format, would benefit from supporting documentation.

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  • Andrew Russell
  • 06-27-21

Great way to present the ideas

I really loved the way the principles were told vía a story, the narration was good too and made it an enjoyable listen

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  • Mr A.
  • 02-18-21

Very Enlightening!

This book has highlighted so many things to me. Having worked in financial services for 19 years without this knowledge, it has dawned on me that I could have really benefitted from hearing/reading this book 10 years ago when I first wanted to get into management. I'm not much of a reader, so the audiobook, with all it's character voices, sound effects etc was incredibly easy for me to consume. 17 hours in three days! The storyline was very relatable for me as someone who has grown up in a family that is always looking to move forward and improve. Also as part of a mixed class family with expectation to be married, have a family, work hard and move up the ladder. The only let down in the story for me and what I didn't like, was Alex Rogo's perspective of his wife's behaviour in the early stages of the book. It's painful to listen to how he treats her, how he talks to her, but I guess that it might have been more normal behaviour for men back in the 80s. Maybe that is more of a moral issue than a downside to the book. I hope it highlights to many people out there, that our relationships need work, and our families and partners need our time, just as much as our businesses do. There are clear lessons to be learnt throughout this book and they can be applied to any business we might work for or own. You have to take a step or two outside your normal zone to really assess what is going on, but I believe that most people can learn a huge amount from this book and the way it has been structured with the story. I'll probably be recommending this book to everyone I ever speak to.

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  • Karl
  • 01-09-21

Outstanding performance and production

The lessons of the book could have been written on 2 sides of A4, but that would have conferred 1% of the impact and retention that this narrative confers. It is much better to understand a few solid points extremely well and memorably, rather than a list of hundreds which you don't truly understand. The author highlights this inductive approach to learning in the introduction. It's effective and enjoyable. The performance is outstanding. Multiple voice actors and background sound effects. Very well done indeed. I will remember every single salient point made in this book due to the narrative.

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  • Jeremy
  • 10-07-16

Great story and useful information

I really enjoyed this book, story was great, it has sound of machinery when walking through a factory, birds chirping when hiking a trail, to rock music while driving home after a promotion. It has different voices of all the character's too, by far the best audio experience compared to other audio story books.

You get to see how a manufacting plant is run from the managers perspective, seeing the effects of new improvements. As a small business owner myself i have noticed areas that can be improved, based from the methods taught in this book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Rod
  • 05-06-14

Must read for anyone in business

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Anyone in business. I read it 30 years ago, and I have listened to it twice just now and it is still as relevant to anyone in business today. While it is set around a manufacturing plant, don't be fooled into thinking that it is just about manufacturing -- it is really about thinking, and how to think through improvements in any environment.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Jonah

Which scene did you most enjoy?

The scout troup hike, which explained the "drum, rope, buffer" concept without actually saying "drum, rope, buffer".

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Sometimes. The parallel story of Alex's family life was a nice emotional touch the first time reading, but it detracts on the next few readings, if you are like me and want to go back over the concepts and study the book in more detail.

Any additional comments?

A must read for business people.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Tony
  • 08-09-21

A very different style of book

this is much more than a book, it's a production. with different voices for each character done very well. on top of that, the content is brilliant. and applicable to anyone that produces products of any type. I'll be listening to it again soon.

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  • KJ
  • 06-05-21

it's ok. the voice is painful to 🙉 hear

having read a few books on agile , toc, lean this book is not a particularly mind blowing one. the value from the book is great but the voiceover just makes it really hard to get through.
its also a bit old fashioned for 2021!

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  • Michael
  • 09-17-19

A great read

The delivery of this book was the best of any audiobook I've read. They use different voices and background noises to bring you into the story.

The plot becomes a bit thin when the author tries to apply the underlying process of ongoing improvement to the main character's marital problems. I can see where the author was trying to show that these techniques could be used in all aspects of life, but in this example I think that offloading his parenting duties to his mother and winning an epic promotion at work probably had a lot more influence in saving his marriage than directly applying his mentor's techniques of process improvement.

I'm very glad to have read this book, it helped me understand the process of identifying what the goal is in any situation.

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