- Juillet 12, 2017 Anthony (France)
Très bon livre. Plein de bon sens et de pragmatisme.
Au delà des concepts demand driven bien introduits, le livre décrit le chemin à parcourir managerialement, techniquement, et éthiquement parlant.
- March 3, 2017 Robert (Australia)
Combining the logic and musical passion of SME supply chains in regional France
This is a must read for anyone in the entrepreneurial / Turnaround space.
The Missing links is a Detective novel which leads while its teaches the logic and passion of doing business in regional France. It is a business novel in the Socratic style of “the Goal” by Eli Goldratt. But with the added flavour of a Micheal Lewis (Liars Poker, Big Short, the UnProject. Plus others). In building the story line and desires of the unlikely heroine Heloise.
The setting of the story in Tours, give a uniquely French country side fell to the complexities in today’s complex supply chain and component.
I think Caroline Mondon’s book will appeal to a number of audiences. One group are those who seek to understand the complexities, problems & pressures faced in today’s supply chains and SME, this a great place to start. The problems that Heloise face are all too real. Caroline has provided valuable reference in the form of clues. The corresponding website is useful reference of tools and methods to over come these common business problems. The content of the Demand Driven method, demonstrates the current and in my view the only method that sustainability deals the Supply / Demand Chain complexity.
This book would be a suitable for the business turnaround , family offices and those facing business generational change. The sleepless nights, and gut feels that Heloise had to make on the fly is very typical of the change that all SME business leaders experience.
In summary this book can appeal to logical and emotional side of business.
It took me 4 days to read. I would recommend once, then come back again and look at the toolkit and interdependencies that will help with the Supply / Demand Chain complexity.
There is a whole lot of content in this delightful book.
- March 1, 2017 Bob
A Wonderful Book!
The Missing Links is an excellent business novel, full of mystery and intrigue, but more importantly full of helpful information on continuous improvement. I highly recommend this book to everyone who not only own companies, but that also run companies. This is a story about a business which is just barely staying in business and how it manages to become a highly successful one. I especially like how one idea built on another and then another in the true “continuous improvement” spirit.
- February 1, 2017 Ginnette (Australia)
Reading this for the second time and finding even more depth , it is like peeling an onion, as more and more is revealed. Merci beaucoup. A bientôt.
- December 24, 2016 John
Well written and riveting!
The Missing Links is a powerful story of business improvement, demand driven methodology and international intrigue. Well written and riveting, I could not put it down. Highly recommended to anyone looking to improve a business. For all levels of employees, not just top management.
- December 6, 2016 Simon (UK)
Great book, really enjoyed it. Not only full of excellent demand driven supply chain management and Lean advice and information but also an intriguing “who dunnit” and glimpse into French life – from hunting to music and food
- October 25, 2016 Berit (Norway)
A super introduction to learn more about the secrets of demand driven supply chain management, all in the disguise of a catching detective novel. The detective novel leads you into this exciting world of supply chain management in a very skillful, entertaining and interactive way. Be prepared to learn in a fun and efficient way! Very well done!
- October 25, 2016 Samer (USA)
I am picked my kindle and reading at the plane between flights. Having excessive training schedule between 4 cities and the book is becoming my friend.
- October 13, 2016 Budgie (UK)
- October 9, 2016 Patrick (France)
How to change the thoughtware in your company!
This book describes the levers to change drastically your company, and gives you the tools and the road-map : Being in a bad situation, the management team of a company (in fact, it is very much like every other company…) discovers how to LINK people and departments inside and outside, then transform the supply-chain to boost the people and become profitable.
The style is rather like “The Goal” of E. Goldratt, so that it can be read by everybody, to popularize the supply-chain concepts (Kaizen tools, value-stream-mapping, S&OP, flexibility and multi-skill matrix, business strategy…). The appendix is a rich tool-box to manage the change. I particularly appreciated the competences / competitiveness plan, so powerful and unavoidable.
Get this book read by your teams, you will save time and energy!
- September 7, 2016 Dick (US)
I finished the book!
Congratulations. You have done a very clever job of combining an explanation of a real world need for S&OP with a mystery.
- August 23, 2016 Utkan (Turkey)
I like the concept. It is beyond a book: book + ebook.
There is an affiliated web site which transforms your book to something in between kindle & iphone.
There are notes on the margins to reach the web site and find more details about that point.
Web site is encouraging you to contribute and tends to evolve to be a portal. This is like updating your iphone. You have the paperback but also updated through the web site. A squarecode option could be inserted.
This book is good for SME scaled starters. I believe appendixes in the web site would be enrichened by variety and detail through time.
The book covers TLS (TOC – Lean – SixSigma) approach more than DDMRP hence converging to Epiphanized: A Novel on Unifying Theory of Constraints, Lean, and Six Sigma, Second Edition and Velocity: Combining Lean, Six Sigma and the Theory of Constraints to Achieve Breakthrough Performance – A Business Novel.
Compared to well known Goldratt books I could simply say that this is a business NOVEL rather than BUSİNESS novel. It structured like The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement, there are wise guys explaining issues or thinking by themselves. Another relevant book in terms of supply chain replenishment is Isn’t It Obvious? Revised Edition and it explains the TOC way of replenishment, not DDMRP way.
To my understanding there are two main streams in TOC World: First one is staying with the original concept, represented by Israel, namely TOC. Second one is evolving to cover MRP for conglomerates, represented by USA, namely DDMRP and relying on TLS approach. This book is on the USA side. Since most of the continuous improvement efforts are in lean approach and combined with a goal statement to stay focused reader must be patient to see DDMRP traces for a while. Appendixes are exciting for DDMRP.
I do like several small touches in the book:
NLP : could be utilized to ease thinking process and layers of resistance
Esperanto : could make dealing with global supply chains easier
common rehearsal : excellent demonstraiton to why and how we need to synchronize
proverbs : there are elegant French philosophers’ quotations scattered around the book
civic : hümanist, feminen, environmentalist comments were attractive
- August 21, 2016 Ken (South Africa)
‘The Missing Links’ is an excellent detective novel, with a message of Manufacturing Operational Excellence that, I am sure, will do for Demand Driven Materials Requirements Planning (DDMRP) what ‘The Goal’ did for the Theory of Constraints (TOC). The ‘clues’ leading one to the on-line Appendix of additional information is a brilliant way of giving the reader extra information on many different aspect of Operations and Supply Chain Management. This book is definitely a must for anybody that believes operational excellence and supply chain management is their chosen career.
- August 5, 2016 Malpaso
Charming story – an ideal introduction for students and those new to Supply Chain Management
Firstly, high praise to the author who has undertaken the time and effort to have this translated into this English version from it’s native French, and the maps included helped as my knowledge of the geography of France is not good.
The book was not exactly what I was expecting it to be, whilst it does make the occasional reference to Demand Driven, I would not say that is the core of it by any means. I was expecting it to be to DDMRP what “The Goal” was to Theory of Constraints, or what “The Goldmine” was to Lean. The term Demand Driven first gets mentioned about half way through the book, and it almost 200 pages in before Green/Yellow/Red buffers are mentioned. But some good demand driven info around distribution is mentioned in the final 20% and the Demand Driven way forward as the book concludes is very interesting. As there is a real buzz of interest around DDMRP at the moment, I can see why this book might want to grab onto the shirt tails.
Also, despite being called a Detective Novel, there is only a small thread of that intertwined through – it’s not like the Geoff Relph & Robert Irwin book “Who Murdered MRP?” ….. that one really is a solving a crime approach almost like a Cluedo whodunit, questioning the ‘suspects’ etc. The final ten pages or so of this book do reveal the mystery of Thierry Ambi’s disappearance and the blood stains in the ‘coop’.
But what I did particularly like is how we followed the main character Héloïse on her learning journey of understanding, – the gist of the story is that her father dies and she, a musician, not an industrialist, has to pick up the pieces and make it work. Because she admits lacking any SCM knowledge, the book builds up from ground zero – we have it explained what benchmarking is, what a balance sheet is, what the acronym ERP stands for etc. So I don’t think the book is aimed at execs and existing managers in the field, they would be better off reading the business novels by Bruce Nelson & Bob Sproull (‘Epiphanized: A Novel on Unifying Theory of Constraints, Lean, and Six Sigma, Second Editionand its sequel –Focus and Leverage: The Critical Methodology for Theory of Constraints, Lean, and Six Sigma (TLS)).) However, this one would be an excellent roadmap for any staff who moved into supply chain from other disciplines – especially as there is an accompanying website explaining various terms (numbered ‘links’ in the margins). The websites’ corresponding number is clicked on for any topic you wished to look up (TPM, 5S or whatever) and a detailed explanation is provided. Although the website was still a work-in-progress when I read ‘The Missing Links’ (excuse the pun) because a few definitions were yet to be populated and some were in French.
I’m sure it will prove a good hook for those who later embark upon APICS training, the LearnIt App gets a mention, and I suspect the serious game mentioned is a nod to The Fresh Connection simulation. Just enough for a reader to seek further information on various certifications that are eluded to (CPIM and CDDP).
One final point, hope not too picky, a word of caution before you hand the book to any strict vegetarians in your team, there is a passage contained within describing a Stag hunt with a pack of hounds, some people might find that a little less palatable than an anecdote of hiking boy scouts – but then again, the book is set in the French countryside, so I can see why it was included.
- July, 2016 Cyril (France)
I loved the French edition and I was very happy to write the appendix on Supply Chain Talent Management for the English edition. A must read for SC professionals.
- July 15, 2016 Lindsay
I am currently reading your book “The Missing Links”, and enjoying it too. I had seen it mentioned on the DDMRP LinkedIn group announcements. I am also following the clues on the associated website, I have a few comments here : …. Anyway. Great Work
- July, 2016 Richard (USA)
“Excellence happens when your tools and processes are aligned with a shared vision, when there’s an understanding of the ‘why’ behind the actions….”
Following in the genre of The Goal, the now famous business novel by Eliyahu Goldratt, author Caroline Mondon presents us with The Missing Link – A Demand Driven Supply Chain Detective Novel. Mondon is a past-president ofFapics, the French Association of Supply Chain Management, and is also author of an award-winning and bestselling French business detective novel entitled Le chaînon manquant. This is her first novel in English.
Reading this book was a real treat!
While the mystery surrounds a character named Thierry Ambi, a brilliant and forthright consultant by the name of Lila Fractalle-Cass takes center stage in helping the H. Rami company emerge from the sudden passing of its CEO, a leadership vacuum, and its downward financial spiral.
The H. Rami company is suffering from all of the typical symptoms found in the vast majority of small to midsized business enterprises—and not a few giant conglomerates.
While struggling with the all-too-common “pyromaniac-firefighter” management methods, effective scheduling of production and replenishment becomes all but impossible.
So, just what is the pyromaniac-firefighting management method?
That’s simple: it means having an executive and management team that sets fires(unintentionally, of course) by applying bad policies and ill-informed metrics on the one hand, while taking extreme measures to put the fires out on the other hand.
This book is full of sound how-to advice and gems of wisdom woven into a fascinating story to keep the reader enthralled to the very end.
Here are a few gems and snippets to whet your appetite for this book:
“Scheduling in a company that tolerates ‘firefighting’ is probably one of the most difficult and stressful jobs on earth.”
“[L]ittle islands of excellence in a sea of mediocrity will not move [a] company forward.”
“It is only when you know the source of errors that you can then make improvements.”
“Excellence is the result of having mastered the what, the how, and also the why. Without the why’s you cannot motivate people to learn new things and pass this knowledge on to others.”
On Starting the Journey toward Ongoing Improvement
Author Caroline Mondon, in the midst of her novel, brings forward a compelling argument against those executives and managers of companies or supply chains who are trying to improve without articulating clear goals or developing a clear plan for improvement.
When you know where you are, and you can see where you want to go, you’re sure to get there in the end if you take a small step in that direction every day. And the good news is, the more steps you take, the more you’ll enjoy the journey, even if each step unbalances you a little bit. In fact, it’s precisely these small destabilizations that allow you to adjust your course to adapt to unpredictable external events. This way, you’re always getting closer and closer to your goal, even if your goal shifts somewhat. Remember, continuous improvement is a journey, not a destination.
Like men and women wandering aimlessly in a wilderness, we come across companies where there is no clear trajectory on a path of improvement. Instead, we find them retracing their footsteps over and over again—trying again and again the same tactics that have produced no durable improvements in the past.
If you and your management team are finding yourself wandering over the same ground again and again without lasting improvement, then I would suggest you read this book. This book is for CEOs, CFOs, supply chain managers, and anyone else involved in management of manufacturing, distribution or supply chains.
Read it! You’ll be glad you did.
- July, 2016 Christoph (Germany)
« The missing links is a story of discovery, not unlike Alex Rogo’s journey in Eli Glodratt’s The Goeal. Today, many companies, not just in charming rural France, are plagued by similar problems : poor results, a disillusioned workforce, over-whelming complexity, variability, lost focus, and unclear priorities across all levels of operations and management. Héloïse, Caroline Mondon’s heroine, a passionate musician, sets out to save her family’s business and has the courage to face the inconsistencies and gaps between the way the business should work and reality. The solution to these is not just an operational one, and it is not easily found. In addition to effectively managing complexity and variability in her supply chain with a state-of-the-art Demand Driven Operating Model, she looks beyond planning and control to leadership and personal development.
Making complexity manageable through focused infusion of simplicity, driving out variability through buffering, replacing backward-looking- accounting with relevant information for decision making, eliminating conflicts through win-win solutions, and helping people make a positive contribution through unambiguous and inviting leadership : there are the links that turn an ailing enterprise around to reach a state of harmony and high operational and financial performance. When we leave our heroes at the last page, let’s take these insights to our own workplaces and add the missing links to make our own supply chains strong, for the benefits of our customer, our people, our societies, and our shareholders.
- July, 2016 Tracy (South Africa)
« ..like the clever plot of this detective novel which has clues weaving their way through the story, this book uncovers the mystery of how to implement best practices, and improve business processes and operations – all the while keeping you guessing as to « Who did dit ? » Topical, relevant, and practical advice encompassed in a step-by-step methodology wrapped in a captivating storyline, which starts by turning the first page. »
- July, 2016 Eva (Sweden)
“I wish all textbooks were written like this one! The Missing Links is easy to read and understand, written as a realistic story about the development of a factory, and set up as a detective story. The work is great for remembering supply chain management concepts. as an NLP Master trainer and International Leadership trainer, I especially enjoyed Caroline’s use of metaphors to enhance understanding and to use as memory hooks. This shows how you can ‘walk your talk,’ whether you are a president of a company or a student.”
- July, 2016 Andrea (Germany)
“For more than 15 years, I have been involved with education in the field of sup-ply chain management. The Missing Links has been a real inspiration for showing how to explain both fundamental and advanced concepts of business management, supply chain management, and innovation. The storyline of the book makes it easy to understand the importance and leverage of supply chain management concepts, even for smaller companies. It was a pleasure reading about the development and transformation of a small traditional company into a modern, next-century enterprise. The way innovative concepts and methods have been applied in the book is logical and helps readers quickly get over a steep learning curve. I will definitely recommend this book to my supply chain management students.”
- July, 2016 Keith (USA)
“The Missing Links by Caroline Mondon is similar to The Goal by Dr. Eli Goldratt, probably the best selling business novel ever written. Caroline has written a compelling story about a fictional, privately held manufacturing company that is facing serious challenges when the owner of the company suddenly dies, and his daughter is left to take over the business. It clearly explains the process necessary for a company to adopt the latest thinking about planning and management as the organization struggles to adapt to the changing needs of customers as they become ever more demanding. This book can be read by anyone with an interest in how businesses can be run more efficiently and effectively. ”
- April 21, 2012 Ginnette (Australia)
I REALLY enjoyed reading this book. Why should it be limited in its readership to only Supply Chain and Logistics Chain professionals? It is an interesting story and the subplot that involved the Ambi family makes it even more able to be a general reading novel.