Self-Interest: The Secret Sauce of the TameFlow Approach – The TameFlow Approach

Since a few weeks, Thomas “Tom” Cagley Jr., the host of the Software Process and Measurement Cast also known as the “SPaMCast!” - where he has held over 600 episodes and where I have been interviewed a number of times - has started a new series of his Re-Read Saturdays, this time re-reading my book Tame your Work Flow, How Dr. Goldratt of “The Goal” would apply the Theory of Constraints to rethink knowledge-work management.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

It feels like a brain teaser!

“Allow individuals to put their own self-interest before anything else by means of a system of Mental Models that create Unity of Purpose through coherent and consistent decision making.”

So I use the Herbie, JJJ, or Hospital Patient mental models to go after what I selfishly want? So those mental models are like bumper rails in a bowling alley, allowing me to achieve my selfish objective without compromising the unity of purpose goal? (Am I way off base?)

Could you give an example that would take it from abstract to concrete?

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@mintonbrooks Here’s a simple example.

Do you value time off? So you can go fishing or what else?

Then understanding that applying DBR consistently will necessarily create “idle” time for the non-Herbies - time when (if you are not Herbie) you are required to “do nothing” and “wait for work” - I think you’d favor the adoption of DBR so that you can go fishing during that idle time.

You would find it more interesting for yourself, rather than having another item piling up in your own inbox, just because we pay you a salary and you better keep yourself busy (according to the Cost Accounting/Resource Efficiency mindset).


As you favor DBR - because you want to go fishing - you are helping the system to improve its overall Throughput. Happy fishing!

OK, I GET it! That really helped . . .