1st Edition

Theory of Constraints, Lean, and Six Sigma Improvement Methodology Making the Case for Integration

By Bob Sproull Copyright 2019
    306 Pages 75 B/W Illustrations
    by Productivity Press

    306 Pages 75 B/W Illustrations
    by Productivity Press

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    Many leaders and managers have led improvement initiatives in a variety of different industry sectors. Most believe that when they begin these efforts, they already have the tools they need in their improvement "backpack." Using these tools, they make substantial improvements to processes in a wide array of industry segments. As time passes, however, most realize that there is a missing link in their arsenal of tools for improvement. The author of this book faced this same predicament and he discovered what the missing link was in his improvement tool kit: Theory of Constraints (TOC). Once he learned the details of TOC, his ability to make major improvements jettisoned upward to levels he had not seen before. TOC is the common denominator in all the case studies presented in this book. 

    This book opens with a chapter on what Theory of Constraints is and why it works so well in improvement efforts. The second and third chapters cover the important points related to Lean Manufacturing and Six Sigma as well as key points related to variability. Chapter 4 demonstrates how to effectively combine these three components to achieve maximum improvement and the corresponding enhancement to your company’s profitability. The remainder of this book is composed of true case studies from different industry segments, using this integrated improvement methodology. 

    Essentially, this book lays the foundation for what most practitioners are just beginning to understand—this integrated improvement methodology is superior to the three components used in isolation from each other. This book presents a step-by-step method of how to combine the Theory of Constraints, Lean, and Six Sigma, and then demonstrates its effectiveness in a very diverse array of industries.

    1: What is This Thing Called the Theory of Constraints? 2: What is This Thing Called Lean Manufacturing. 3: What is This Thing Called Six Sigma. 4: How to Integrate Lean, Six Sigma, and the Theory of Constraints. 5: Better Way to Measure a System’s Success. 6: TOC’s Distribution and Replenish Model. 7: A Case Study on the Theory of Constraints. 8: A Case Study on Helicopter Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul. 9: Healthcare Case Study. 10: Case Study on a Medical Device Manufacturer. 11: Case Study on Engine Overhaul. 12: A Case Study on Project Management. 13: Mafia Offers and Viable Vision


    Bob Sproull is an Independent Consultant and the owner of Focus and Leverage Consulting. Bob is a certified Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt and a Theory of Constraints Jonah.  Bob has served as a Vice President of Quality, Engineering and Continuous Improvement for two different manufacturing companies, was a GM for a manufacturing company, has an extensive consulting background in Healthcare, Manufacturing and Maintenance and Repair Organizations (MRO) and focuses on teaching companies how to maximize their profitability through an integrated Lean, Six Sigma and Constraints Management improvement methodology.  Bob is an internationally known speaker and author of numerous white papers and articles on continuous improvement.  Bob’s background also includes 9 years with the Presbyterian University Hospital complex in Pittsburgh, PA where he ran the Biochemistry Department at Children’s Hospital, performed extensive research in breakthrough testing methods and assisted with the development of organ transplant procedures.  Bob completed his undergraduate work at the University of Pittsburgh and University of Rochester with a dual Math/Physics major. A results-driven Performance Improvement Professional with a diverse healthcare, manufacturing, MRO and technical background, he has significant experience appraising under-performing companies, developing and executing highly successful improvement strategies based upon the integration of Lean, Six Sigma, and Constraints Management methodology. Bob is the author of four books, including, The Focus and Leverage Improvement Book, CRC Press, Taylor and Francis, 2018; The Problem-Solving, Problem-Prevention, and Decision-Making Guide - Organized and Systematic Roadmaps for Managers, CRC Press, Taylor and Francis, 2018; The Ultimate Improvement Cycle: Maximizing Profits Through the Integration of Lean, Six Sigma and the Theory of Constraints (Productivity Press, 2009) and Process Problem-Solving: A Guide for Maintenance and Operation’s Teams (Productivity Press, 2001), and co-author of Epiphanized: Intergrading Theory of Constraints, Lean and Six Sigma (North River Press, 2012), Epiphanized: A Novel on Unifying Theory of Constraints, Lean and Six Sigma,2nd Edition, and Focus and Leverage: The Critical Methodology for Theory of Constraints, Lean, and Six Sigma (TLS).
    Degrees, Certifications, and Memberships:   
     Bachelor of Science Equivalent in Math and Physics, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY
     Certified Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt, Kent State University
     Certified Six Sigma Black Belt, Sigma Breakthrough Technologies, Inc.
     TOCICO Strategic Thinking Process Program Certificate
     TOC Thinking Processes (Jonah Course) L-3 Communications
     Critical Chain Expert Certificate, Realization Technologies
     Lean MRO Operations Certificate, University of Tennessee