After reading The Goal, I could easily relate it to my current job position as a Blank. I have gone through some of the same problems that Alex had to go through throughout his story. Although the operations are somewhat different, managing people to get them to perform at their optimum level is still a difficult task. One of the parts in which I can strongly relate to is when the plant has fallen into a continuous "fire fighter" mode in which jobs get "expedited" based on whichever higher manager screams the most loudly on that particular day. In my position my direct boss and I have to sit in on a conference call every Tuesday and listen to all the different hubs in our district get yelled at by our district and regional managers about how poorly they did in all of their service elements. Luckily our hub has not been on the short end of that stick in awhile but it could happen at any time if we are not careful. Because of Alex's absurdly long work shifts his marriage to his wife, Julie, as well as his relationship with their two young children is now suffering. Now luckily I do not have the same problem as Alex has here but since I go to school during the day and my work schedule causes me to work the night shifts I do not get to see my family and my friends as much as I would like to.
In the book the character of Jonah could be closely compared to my direct boss. She is an older woman who originally got her degree in Liberal Studies but has been working in management for 23 years. We will get into talks about our operations and she will continuously ask me questions and when I answer them she will play the devils advocate and try and get me to think harder use more creativity in the assumptions that I come up with. Ultimately, in the book the conversations between Alex and Jonah cascade into answers that help Alex and his team of managers to transform the plant from the biggest loser in the company to the most profitable one. In relation to what the outcome was in the book, our goal is not to be one of the most profitable hubs in our district; but instead to be the hub that minimizes costs, works productively, works mistake free, and most importantly, work safely. From what I have learned by being in management that injuries in any business are one of the most costly issues a company has to deal with, if you can minimize injuries your company will save money.
By the end of the novel the "Theory of Constraints" becomes very obvious. An operation will become constrained by the smallest of bottlenecks so in order for the plant to become more efficient you have to find a way to get past the bottleneck. When reading about some of the constrains Alex had to go through, I couldn't help but think of some of the constrains that take place in my day to day operations and U.P.S. For instance, we have three belts on which the brown trucks