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Origins of the Logical Thinking Processes

The Logical Thinking Process (LTP) was originally developed by Dr. Eliyuahu M. Goldratt, author of bestselling business novel The Goal. The purpose of the Logical Thinking Process is to help people make better use of logic and the methods of the natural sciences to analyze complicated situations and formulate strategy.

Logical Thinking Process

The LTP is a set of five tools that lead you from defining the goal of your organization or project to mapping the way toward the future. What distinguishes the Logical Thinking Process from most strategy formulation methodologies is its focus on a rigid logical and scientific approach at all stages of the analysis. This is where alternatives are usually lacking, probably one of the main reasons over two thirds of strategy projects eventually fail.

But why should someone want to learn how to think logically? We are all able to, are we not? In fact, that is mostly true. We are generally quite able to draw correct conclusions from the facts presented to us, to identify the fallacy in a simple, wrong, if-then statement, and to build a sound deduction from valid assumptions.

However, most of us can do this only to a certain extent, that is, as long as the situation is not too complex. But the fact is that very often it is.

In business, as in chess, the goal is to win. To outperform the competition. In order to get there, we must build a strategy that takes us to the goal. We must decide our actions and predict the actions and reactions of the competitors. And this we must do many moves ahead, just like in a game of chess.

The potential moves are fewer, certainly. But instead we have other complications in business that we don‘t have in chess. In chess it is just the players and their strategies. In business we also have the market, we have government, and we have an external environment we don‘t control and that can change in unpredictable ways.

Moreover, on a chessboard we can move the pieces around as we like. The knight will stay where we put it. But the knights, pawns and rooks in our companies are not this easy to deal with. If a "human knight" puts up passive resistance instead of playing his part in the strategic move, depending on his participation it may come to nothing. If the pawns rebel we may have to find a different way. In other words, corporate strategy must take into account not only a highly unpredictable external environment, but also the internal environment driven by the apparent chaos of politics, hidden agendas and tacit relationships.

So, if clear, logical visualization can enable us to understand the strategy of a chess grandmaster ten moves ahead, what about when it comes to formulating a coherent and logically tight strategy for an organization, dealing with an unpredictable external and internal enviroment? Or analyzing a complex situation to figure out root causes and formulating solutions? In such cases it is a real breakthrough to have a tight framework, based on sound logical and scientific methods to help us build visual, easy-to-understand strategies and analyses.

LTP

The Logical Thinking Process is just such a tool. It leads us from the definition of the goal we wish to achieve to determining the roots of the undesireable effects of underlying problems. It prompts us to find the conflicts behind them and finally formulate the plan towards a solution. All visual and easy to understand. All logically and scientifically watertight when done correctly.

And no less importantly, the Logical Thinking Process not only helps us structure our own thoughts and analyses. By visually displaying the links between causes and effects, in a way everyone can understand, it also becomes much easier for those not involved in building the analysis to understand it, spot any logical flaws, and/or add further important refinements. This way the Logical Thinking Process is actually a very strong tool to enhance collaboration and improve communication.

Implementation with Marris Consulting

 

First of all we advice you to take the LTP training by our expert Bill Dettmer. Then we can discuss how to implement LTP for your company.


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About Marris Consulting

Marris Consulting is an industry consulting and training company specialized in the Theory of Constraints (ToC) and Critical Chain Project Management. We focus on improving the performance of manufacturing and process industries by using Constraints Management combined with Lean and Six Sigma. To boost project performance, we also use Critical Chain Project Management (CCPM), which we sometimes combine with Lean Engineering. Our 2-day performance audits, our performance consulting services and our project management, Lean & ToC training by our industry consultants offer a wide range of solutions to help our clients around the world reach the highest possible levels of performance.

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