Soon after announcing the he was forming an exploratory committee for a potential bid for the presidency in 2012, former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty was heard touting the virtues of Six Sigma process improvement for the government reform, according to the Politico blog.

Politico reported that the Republican Pawlenty had a conference call with many of his supporters, saying he “couldn’t be more excited about” a chance to apply Six Sigma principles to improve the way the federal government operates. Six Sigma, he reportedly said in the conference call, has been adopted to aid the Defense Department’s fight against terrorism and to streamline local police departments.

While Pawlenty has not been formally trained in Six Sigma, he was introduced to the methodology in 2003, when the commissioner of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency at the time provided Belt training for her staff. After the training, the agency improved its permit-issuance rate from 9 percent every six months to 70 percent by instituting accelerated processes – all without layoffs or a relaxing of environmental standards.

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