The Goal – Chapter 17 – Dependency in the Plant

[Click for a chapter-by-chapter summary of the whole book.] [Click for the video summary.]

We start at the Rogo home, then move to the plant where a subassembly needed by Smyth requires attention.

Page by Page

P124 – “Even I know how to make pancakes.”

Sharon to Davey – it’s hard not to like good sibling rivalry. This statement also illustrates the importance of training!

P125 – “Because I’m not going to have my people do two setups for final assembly on account of your lateness.”

This is poor team behavior based on Goldratt’s definition of team seen in Chapter 15. If multiple setups eases the constraint – do it!

P126 – “But how do you know these things are really going on out there in the plant?”

Fluctuations and dependency – covered in Chapter 11 – are apparent everywhere once the concepts have been explained.


“It’s okay to say that fluctuations in cycle time for a robot would be almost flat while it was working,” I tell him.


“And if we know that Jonah is correct, we’d be pretty stupid to continue running the plant the same way as before—right? So I’m going to let you see for yourselves what’s happening.


“We also have dependent events, because the robot cannot begin its welding until the materials handler has delivered the pieces from Pete’s department.”


I tell his secretary the sub-assemblies will definitely arrive at his plant tomorrow, but that’s the best we can do—unless Hilton wants to pay for a special shipment tonight.


“Let’s go see what’s really going on out there,” I say.


I went around and told them how important this shipment is, and they really put themselves into it.


“But when Pete delivered 28 pieces, the robot could still only do twenty-five.”


“The maximum deviation of a preceding operation will become the starting point of a subsequent operation.”

It didn’t matter that Pete got his hundred pieces done, because we still couldn’t ship,” I say.

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