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Many people ask, "What is the Theory of Constraints?"

The answer is, "Many Things."

One short explaination is, "The Theory of Constraints focuses all your efforts so to effectively use the few limiting factors in your organization to achieve the best possible; yet create ever improving systemic performance."

So, what does that mean?

We, there are two main parts.

  • The Thinking Processes which are the logical, thoughtful causality used to understand and discover the constraint(s).
  • And there are the Proven Solutions; solutions generated from the repeated application of the Thinking Processes on certain types of physical processes.

Still, this doesn't explain well enough. I know. So, I put together these two presentations which you can view as streamingvideo files. They are a bit long, but should give you a broader understanding of portions of the Theory of Constraints. And, who knows you may learn something in the process.

Video:Introduction to the Theory of Constraints in Physical Processes (Slides to accompany the videostream) (1 hour 5 minutes total)

Video: Introduction to the Theory of Constraints Thinking Processes (Slides to accompany the videostream) (55 minutes total)

The videostreams were created in Tegrity should open automatically in your Browser. If not, visit: http://www.tegrity.com/ The Tegrity viewing window allows you to skip through the presentation by selecting the index pages, print the slides or download the presentation. When using this information, please reference the source.

Disclaimer: The Theory of Constraints is much more than these two videostreams. I suggest you reveiw the syllabi for EM 526 Constraints Management, EM 530 Applications in Constraints Management, and EM 534 Contemporary Topics in Constraints Management to see some of the breadth of the Theory of Constraints and the may texts used to teach it. There are also many links on these pages leading to other TOC sources.

Oh, Washington State University's Engineering Management Program offers many courses on the Theory of constraints or some TOC material including a Graduate Certificate in Constraints Management. I hope this helps you in your study of systems.

"There are thousands hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root," Henry David Thoreau

Keep Thinking!

Dr Holt

PS. Youtube overview of the TOC Thinking Process in Japanese with English subtitles.

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