Recently I had the opportunity to attend the IQPC Australasia Six Sigma summit. For me, the highlight of the event was a presentation given by GE. The presentation focused around how the company was taking the voice of the customer to the next level by aligning NPS (Net Promoter Score) methodology with Six Sigma.

NPS is generally incorporated into a satisfaction survey and revolves around one question. End users (customers) are asked how likely they are to refer something, such as a product or service, to a friend or colleague. Generally the question is asked using a 0-10 scale, with 0 meaning very unlikely to recommend and 10 meaning highly likely to recommend, Ratings are classified into three categories:

  • 9-10 (promoters)
  • 7-8 (neutral)
  • 0-6 (detractors)

According to the presentation, promoters are likely to promote your product or service, neutrals will not say anything, and detracts are likely to speak negatively at a rate of three times more than what the promoters will say.

I’m currently incorporating NPS technique into a Six Sigma survey for Black and Green Belts within my organization. I’m doing this because I believe that a successful Six Sigma program is not only about improvements and value added to the company but also sustainability. Ideally, a team of promoters would be great, however, if the current team is primarily made up of neutrals or detractors, then the recruitment and retention of future belts may be in jeopardy. I would encourage all Master Black Belts and deployment leaders to use NPS when determining satisfaction with your Six Sigma program.

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