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TOC – Systems and Systems Thinking
What prevents us from achieving the goal?

CONSTRAINTS – factors or elements that determine how much the system can accomplish.

Main types of constraints of a commercial system:


Capacity Constraint – a resource which cannot provide timely capacity the systems demands for it.

Market Constraint – the amount of customers’ orders is not sufficient to sustain the required growth of the system.

Time Constraint – The response time of the system to the requirement of the market is too long to the extent that it jeopardizes the system’s ability to meet its current commitment to its customers as well as the ability of winning new business.



  1. Identify (choose) the system’s constraint.
  2. Decide how to exploit the system’s constraint.
  3. Subordinate everything else to the above decision.
  4. Elevate the system’s constraint.
  5. If the constraint is broken go back to step one but do not allow Inertia to cause the system’s constraint.

 Written and donated for use by Oded Cohen and Jelena Fedurko.