Other books

Here is a list of the books we referred to in our book, extended by a few other books, which we used as cornerstones of the Five Right method (in alphabetical order by author):

Books about operational leadership

Boyd, John: Presentations on OODA loop

John Boyd did not write books – he taught by giving many lectures and presentations. Here you find Boyd’s major presentations in PDF format

Boyd's other presentation challenges command and control leadership.

Csikszentmihalyi, Mihaly: Good business. Leadership, flow and the making of meaning

(Penguin Books. New York. 2004). A sequel to his well-known book Flow; it extends his principles into the domain of leading businesses.

Drucker, Peter: The practice of management

(Harper Collins, New York. First published 1954). The book in which MbO was presented the first time. In its time a break through to new thinking: away from command-and-control management to company wide goal setting, and some first ideas on participative management.

Mintzberg, Henry: The rise and fall of strategic planning

(Simon and Schuster. 1994). Mintzberg questions the value of strategic planning - and opposes it to what we now call operational leadership. 

Soin, Sarv Singh: Total quality essentials

(Updated edition. McGraw Hill, New York. 1992). Sarv Singh Soin was a key leader of HPs development of their quality culture, which today we would better call a culture of operational excellence. Its key contribution is that it goes far beyond quality methods. It describes operational leadership as a key process, which must be performed as impeccably as all other processes. A „how to“ book for operational leaders.

Soin, Sarv Singh: Winning with operational excellence

(Sarv Singh Soin. 2013). This is not a book about manufacturing theories – it’s written by a practitioner for practitioners. An excellent quick and practical reference of leading practices.

Books about systems

System theory has been a subject under constant development triggered by Ludwig von Bertallanffy in the early 1930ies.

Maturana, Humberto R. and Varela, Francisco J.: The tree of knowledge

(Shambala. Boston & London, 1987). Maturana and Varela, two biologists from Chile, in this book presented their concept of autopoietic (self-organizing and self-creating systems) for participants in courses they gave. Its fun to read and stretches the mind

Von Bertallanffy, Ludwig: General system theory. Foundations, development, applications

(Georg Brazilier Inc. New York. 1969). This is a newer edition of Bertallanffy's ground-breaking thoughts.

Books about Theory of constraints (TOC)

For a start we found these books helpful – many more resources on TOC (books and videos) can be found at Goldratt Group

Cohen, Oded: Ever improve

Leaders of production units find TOC rich with insights, approaches and methods, which result in improving performance. 

Oded has life long experience in transforming production units to leading performance. His book based on that practical experience is a well-written guide to managing production the TOC way.

Dettmer, H. William: The logical thinking process

(ASQ Quality Press, 2007). This is a detailed encyclopedia and reference for the methods to identify constraints and resolve them, rich in examples. This book is a deeply revised version of the previous Breaking the constraints to world-leading performance.

Fedurko, Jelena: Mistakes and difficulties in working with TOC logical tools

After having used TOC tools (CRT, PRT, FRT and others) for some time there is more to learn in how to use these tools. Jelena Fedurko’s book is a helpful guideline. (Also available as CD). 

Most efforts in operational leadership are some kind of projects, so they suffer from the typical problems of not achieving the planned result and running both over time and cost budget. TOC based project management (CCPM or “critical chain”) improves project performance significantly.

Goldratt, Eliyahu: The goal

This classic business novel (more than 1 million sold) lays out the principle of constraint thinking in a story of a manager solving his problems by TOC approach.

Goldratt, Eliyahu: What is this thing called TOC?

In this book Goldratt explains the principles of (and hurdles to) constraint-focused management.

Kendall, Gerry: Advanced project portfolio management

Operational leaders special challenge is to manage many projects in parallel. Gerry Kendall’s books are guides to cope with these challenges: Gerry is a renowned practitioner and coach in this field; his books offer a good description of this approach.

Techt, Uwe: Goldratt und die Theory of constraints (in German)

A concise summary of the principles and applications of TOC.

Techt, Uwe: Projects that flow (in German) 

Excellent introduction to critical chain project management (CCPM).

Books about HP

House, Charles H. and Price, Raymond L.: The HP Phenomenon

(Stanford University Press. 2009). Chuck House was a key person in HP, leading many breakthrough developments, and a vivid proponent of the HP Way. He shares many principles and practices that made HP masters of operational excellence.

Malone, Michael S.: Bill and Dave. How Hewlett and Packard built the world’s greatest company

(Penguin Books. 2007). Malone's book describes many details of the culture, which brought HP to long lasting, consistent business success.

Packard, David: The HP Way, How Bill Hewlett and I built our company

(Harper Business. 1995). A small MUST READ book. Packard lays out the foundations of HP's outstanding performance – technically and culturally.

Books about decision making

Branka Zei-Pollermann, Unified Model of Cognition, Emotion and Action

A presentation at the University of Louvain, 2006. This paper gives a wider overview of how cognition (how we realize what there is), emotions and actions are related.

Kahneman, Daniel: Thinking, fast and slow

(McMillan, 2011.) Kahneman shows our limits as rational decision makers – but also offers ways out of the traps of purely intuitive decision-making. In our book we discuss only two of his key points, more reading recommended. Good to have pencil and paper ready to reflect what his views mean for us business people.

Watzlawik, Paul: How real is real?

(Vintage, 1977). A classic. How can we ever understand what REALLY goes on in our company?

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