Eliyahu Goldratt; 1947-2011

The man who created the Theory Of Constraints passed away yesterday.

In 2007 I was lucky enough to briefly meet Eliyahu Goldratt.

“Briefly” here being the operative word. He had just given a guest lecture at Nottingham Trent University, and as I left the building he was in the foyer, rummaging through his luggage to locate his pipe. Rather than walk past, and without a second thought, I stopped momentarily…

…All in all our exchange took about three seconds, amounting to no more than a handshake and my complements on the excellent guest lecture he had just given, and then I left him continuing the hunt for his trusty pipe, and I continued on out of the building into the evening air.

Despite the brevity, I felt fortunate to have in some tiny way had an interaction with one of the big beasts of the business world, made more poignant now considering his death yesterday. In my mind it’s the equivalent of the autograph hunter’s book of signatures; I now have stored in my memory a moment when I met a person who had started something significant. I hope one day I will do something that will make others look at me the same way.

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