Coming from an IT background I am fluent in Techie. I feel right at home talking about NAT, BIOS, ERD, PERL, API, DHCP, IMAP, SMTP, SNMP and so on. With the right audience I can have rapid conversations in what may well sound like utter nonsense. But equally when working with a non-IT person I know I need to slow-down and actively think about how to put points across. Admittedly I still make mistakes.

I am now quite confident in Sigma. I got a feel for the lingo e.g. VOC, DOE, ANOVA, COPQ, and MSA. I may still wonder about some of the depths of statistical analysis but I can bluff my way through a conversation.

However Techie is an arcane language like Medical & Legal. Sigma is a business language. It should be a lingua franca. Take a look at the moniker, Six Sigma, being six standard deviations from the centreline. Take a look at Six Sigma overviews that start with a wonderful diagram of a bell-curve and talk about 3.4 defects per million items. It might make people think it’s a complex statistical something or other?

However, Six Sigma has become a global phenomenon directly focussed on business and achieving business excellence. So something must be going right. I just wish we could be better at conversing in a language that our audience understands and can act on first time without having to have a second explanation.

So as the little green men say, “Greetings Earthlings I am from the planet Sigma take me to your sponsor”.

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