A Guide to Implementing the Theory of Constraints (TOC)

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Layers Of Understanding

One Simple
Rule

Efrat’s Cloud

Advanced Dice Simulators

 

 

One Simple Rule

When I look over what I have presented at New York and at Chicago, I believe that some of the inherent simplicity has been lost.? So here it is in 4 bullet points;

There are only two types of clouds;

·         Local/local clouds

·         Local/global clouds

All other “named” clouds are one of these two types.

Moreover, there is one simple rule.? The assumptions in the cloud, the rationale for each arms as read from that arm, are;

·         Because of positives of that arm

·         Because of the negatives of the other arm

And that is all really that there is to say, it is after all, a simpler way.

However, keeping the above in mind, let’s draw both of these clouds with the assumptions;

The first is a local/local cloud; either one person in two different and conflicting states of mind – indecision in other words, or two or more people putting forward two different and conflicting wants in order to meet a common binding objective.


That the negative occurs as an assumption on the side of the arm opposite to the one that it belongs to may seem counterintuitive at first, and if you try right now to “chase” the negative it will appear to flip flop on you, but as you learn to read it back it will become second nature.? Just hold that thought and exercise restraint for a short period.? In a moment you will see how the change matrix is involved and these relationships between the cloud and the assumptions will become clear.? Before that, however, let’s also show the case for a local/global cloud.


In a local/global cloud; either one person is stuck in the state of mind of the part and does not recognize nor accept the state of the whole, or two or more people, or groups of people, are in different states regarding the part and the whole.? There is a detailed powerpoint further down the page on systemic clouds and their characteristics – rules if you like.

Ultimately all clouds are in the heads of each individual, but many individuals make a group, and that group may, in-part, self-validate the correctness or indeed the error of their “side” or of the state that they are in.? In fact, any new idea is a conflict, or a dilemma, between the inventor of the new idea and any existing idea.? We need to remain cognizant however of the dynamic involved, whether it is; peer to peer, subordinate to superior, or superior to subordinate.? The first is very likely to be local/local and the latter two are very likely to be local/global.

Generally we are initially blind to the positives of the other side but not to their negatives.? But that’s alright, they will tell us the positives if only we will listen.? The skill, of course, is to record and to stress the positives at the time and to record but not comment upon the negatives.? The inventor will offer “trims” to the negatives, or in fact any reservations about the positives too, of their own accord once they are aware of the limitations that they were previously blind to.

Now let me add the change matrix to the view that we are developing.? First with the local/local cloud and I will change the wording so that it reads for the case of two individuals; “my side” and “your side.”? It could equally be “our side” and “their side.”? You can sketch this out and substitute other combinations.


Now is it more clear?

If you read the matrix horizontally the positive/negative pair for each side or state is there.? But that is not how they are logically presented in the cloud.? The matrix diagonal of my positive and your negative is presented on the cloud along “my” arm because the cloud is a device of positive intent.? On my arm, or my side, I want to move towards my positives and away from your negatives.? Both of these actions are positive actions in support of a positive objective.

I am also blind to my own negatives and reluctant to sing the praises of your positives.? For that reason I can easily do the matrix diagonal for my side of cloud but not the matrix diagonal for your side.? I need your help to do that.? This is also why we only need one change matrix, two change matrices each have a blind side to them and they fold or mesh together into one. My blind side covered by you and your blind side covered by me.? This folding into one matrix is explored in more detail in a powerpoint further down the page – two matrices or one.

There is an easier way to remember what is happening here.? If you look for a particular horizontal arm in the cloud, then the corresponding horizontal matrix position of that arm is upside down or inverted.? Just twist one of the things relative to the other.? We are very used to building clouds and we are not so used to building the matrix.? The matrix seems to come first and makes the cloud very much easier to build.

Let’s listen to an example.

Neil Diamond’s song I am I said is an incredible statement of the human condition as two sides or two frames of mind battle each other.? You will find an audio and powerpoint at the bottom of this page – please play it.? But note that what he tells us, and that which is immediate and most accessible, is the sufficiency that would go into the matrix and is presented here as the assumptions in the cloud.? And of the necessity, we first hear of the “wants” before we hear of the “needs” that they satisfy.? He doesn’t reveal his inner thoughts first, only later on as he works down to them.? Maybe this is a special case, but I think that the change matrix is much better at tapping into the sufficiency (which is closer to the surface) and only later does the necessity that supports it become evident.

Let’s have a look then at the case for the change matrix and the local/global cloud or systemic cloud.


Perhaps this is the most important diagram.? As a first approximation the lower row of the matrix is “what to change from,” our current reality, and the upper row is “what to change to,” our future reality.? Human endeavor is systemic and that is why this cloud and matrix is so important.

Our notion of layers of resistance map into this change matrix, they are simply a sequence of positives and negatives for each side. ?In our systemic endeavors the negative of the part is always the current problem and the positive of the whole is the proposed solution.? The negatives of the whole are the reservations and obstacles to implementation, while the positives of the part are, for the most, unverbalized and this of course is a major issue that we must address.? There is a detailed powerpoint further down the page on systemic clouds and the change matrix, please check this out.? You must be able to “work” this cloud to be able to bring about systemic solutions.

At the outset I said that this was a simpler way, and you may not feel that this is the case at this particular instant, but you need to practice until it becomes second nature.?

Let’s reiterate.

There are only two types of clouds;

·         Local/local clouds

·         Local/global clouds

And the assumptions in the cloud, the rationale for each arms existence as read from that arm, are;

·         Because of positives of that arm

·         Because of the negatives of the other arm.

From these two sets of simple rules, a cascade of new perspectives will unfold which I hope that I have sufficiently indicated in the remainder of the page.

 

This Webpage Copyright ? 2013 by Dr K. J. Youngman

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