A Guide to Implementing the Theory of Constraints (TOC)





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Current Reality Tree


3 Cloud Method

Future Reality Tree

Negative Branch

Pre-requisite Tree



How Do We Build A Future Reality Tree?

How can we construct a future reality tree from a current reality tree with a core conflict, and a cloud?

Let’s return to our current reality tree and core conflict first and see if we can see the relationship there with the cloud.  In fact I mentioned that trees are a bit like transformer toys for grown-ups.  Here is a good example.  Let’s draw it.

Ah ha!  Do you see the wants of the cloud coming from the two neutral entities of the current reality tree?  Now we can see why we felt we must have the two entities and why we felt they couldn’t be negative effects.  They are the wants that arise from two different needs that satisfy a common objective.

Let’s draw in the cloud again, jumping ahead to the injection.

Once we have the injection – usually we would work through the cloud separately step by step, then the future reality tree can unfold.

In fact in this example we have two injections, one, the main one, arising from the cloud, and a second, minor one which we need to tweak the solution to ensure all the undesirable effects become desirable outcomes.

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(1) Dettmer, H. W., (1997) Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints: a systems approach to continuous improvement.  ASQC Quality Press, pp 178-235.

(2) Dettmer, H. W., (1998) Breaking the constraints to world class performance.  ASQ Quality Press, pp 131-156.

(3) Scheinkopf, L., (1999) Thinking for a change: putting the TOC thinking processes to use. St Lucie Press/APICS series on constraint management, pp 109-141.

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