53 pages 1 hour read

Eliyahu M. Goldratt

The Goal

Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 1984

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Important Quotes

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“Peach explodes. ‘Damnit, the issue is not Burnside’s order! Burnside’s order is just a symptom of the problem around here. Do you think I’d come down here just to expedite a late order? Do you think I don’t have enough to do? […] This isn’t just a matter of customer service. Your plant is losing money.” 

(Chapter 1, Page 5)

This quote illustrates Alex’s problematic and narrow thinking early on in the novel. Alex assumes that Bill is angry because one specific order is late; he cannot see that the plant itself is in trouble, that the late orders are only a symptom of the lack of productivity affecting his plant.

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“Going into the plant is like entering a place where satans and angels have married to make a grey magic.” 

(Chapter 1, Page 7)

Here, Alex beautifully illustrates his investment in his plant and the manufacturing business in general. Rather than finding the field boring or his job a burden, Alex is genuinely interested in his field, calling the work “magic.” 

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“He’s like a general who knows he is losing the battle, but forgets his strategy in his desperation to win.” (

(Chapter 3, Page 22)

Alex is able to correctly diagnose Bill’s bad management style in this quote. Though Alex has not yet learned what makes a good manager, he can see that Bill relies too heavily on dramatic gestures and shouting. He is so desperate to seem strong and commanding that UniCo ultimately suffers.