T.L.S. : Concentrate on the 1% of the system that determines 99% of its performance

TLS - Theory of Constraints + Lean + Six Sigma : Combining the best of each approach

Theory Of Constraints (TOC )

  • Focus on improving the system constraints that determine overall performance…
  • …and in this way significantly boost the return on investment and success of Lean & Six Sigma programs
  • Increase profits by increasing sales rather than by cutting costs and hence avoid headcount reductions
  • Developed by Eliyahu Goldratt in the 1980s


Lean Manufacturing / Toyota Way

  • By far the most widespread approach in industry throughout the world
  • A focus on eliminating all forms of waste
  • A multi-dimensional approach: management, Just-In-Time, 5S, Lean Engineering, …
  • Developed by the Toyota Motor Company in the 1950s, called “Lean” since 1990

Six Sigma

  • Reduce process variability to 3.4 defects per million occurrences
  • Mostly implemented using certified experts Green Belts, Black Belts, …
  • Includes a powerful tool to be used on important and complex problems (Design Of Experiments / DOE)
  • Promoted by Motorola & General Electric in the 1980s.

TLS: TOC + Lean + Six Sigma

  • Developed in 2006


TLS: a winning combination

Industrial improvement efforts over the past 20 years have been handicapped by quarrels concerning the relative merits of the different approaches and of the supposed incompatibilities or fundamental differences among them.

TLS considers, on the contrary, that we should seek to combine them thereby creating a system that contains the best aspects of each movement.


 Each school of thought – Lean, Six Sigma & TOC – has proven its effectiveness, otherwise they simply wouldn’t exist.

In combination they are formidable.

Focus and Leverage: Concentrate on the 1% of the system that determines 99% of its performance

  • By focusing Lean and Six Sigma activities on the constraints that directly impact global performance, the return on investment for these efforts is necessarily higher.
  • This method avoids the discouragement that arises when non-constraints are improved without significant impact on global performance.
  • TLS provides results that are not only significant, visible in bottom line results, but also very rapidly attained.

 Logo du TLS - TOC + Lean + Six Sigma


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