iSixSigma

Management

Teaching Six Sigma

My organization is embarking on a new frontier: teaching our own version of DMAIC to new Green Belts and Black Belts. For our first three waves, we used the material provided by our consultant.Now we’re ready (we think) to customize it with our own organization’s goals and culture. The original training focused on the DMAIC…

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Who’s doing who the favour?

When you help your neighbour to paint his fence, is he doing you the favour? NO When you lend your friend 50 dollars, is he doing youthe favour? NO When you help a colleague fix his process, is he doing youthe favour? NO Make sure your colleagues understand this. If they think they are doing…

From Good to Great Six Sigma

I attended the IQPC Lean Six Sigma West Summit in Las Vegas from September 27-29, along with fellow blogger Michael Marx and the rest of the CTQ Media team. On Wednesday I gave a presentation entitled “From Good to Great Six Sigma: 5 Imperatives for Making the Leap.” Many delegates who attended the presentation asked for…

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Six Sigma Diet or Lifestyle Change?

Nayism 32: We’ve learned the tools, trained folks and made good progress with our projects but somehow Six Sigma hasn’t become the “way we work.” Exactly when, if ever, will the cultural transformation thing happen? Sounds like this organization is having a tough time changing old habits. Much like the latest weight loss fad, short-term…

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The Productivity Paradox

As our organization implements lean, we are running into fears that our employeeswon’t be as productive after a lean project. There’s a theory that we’ll be “paying people to wait around” for patients / customers to show up. I’m pretty fascinated by this fear, since lean concepts of value are supposed to be be employed…

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Part-time Help Wanted

In my opinion, one of the key questions to answer when planning a deployment is whether the Black Belt role should be full-time. While this sounds like a reasonable question to some, many experienced Six Sigma folks find it strange to even ask, because in the majority of programs the Black Belt role is automatically…

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Can you Help the Unwilling?

Can you help the unwilling? My co-worker and I are completely paralyzed by a group of staff members in an implementation that refuse to adopt the principles of Lean because it takes away the “joy” of working and the group cohesion. According to them, now that Lean has been implemented, they don’t have time to…

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Week of a Black Belt Part 8: Lasting Management Commitment

Whatever the organization’s maturity level (go see “week of a black belt part 4-5-6-7”), any improvement initiative needs top management engagement and commitment. Usually, there is enough management attention at the beginning. The CEO or Executive team has announced the initiative and walks the talk for a while. However, there are so many 1000 things…

Six Sigma on Six Sigma. I dare you!

For a year now I have been running a Six Sigma Deployment on a Rail Project in Rugby (UK). My two main problems as deployment manager are; 1. Implementation of actions 2. Proving the projected cash savings. Both problems are as you can imagine at the back end of the DMAIC process. I also run…

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“It’s So Simple!”

  I’ve been in the healthcare field all of my professional life. Whether this is your situation, or you have joined us lately, perhaps you’ve noticed the same thing I have. We all know what to do to make things better in our hospitals and facilities. It’s true… just ask anyone. Solve ER overcrowding? Reduce…

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Upward Management in Healthcare Six Sigma

How manyhealthcare Black Belts thinkthe biggest Six Sigma challenge is notproject management, or coaching your team, butteaching your Project Sponsor/ Executive Sponsor / Process OwneraboutSix Sigma? This is something I’ve encountered in early Six Sigma Project Waves. The scenario I’m thinking about is the one whereyou’re meeting with leadership about your project.In public meetings, they’ve…

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Goblins, Lochs andamp; Hurdling Penguins

Our company has put a recent focus on ‘away days’ for its senior teams. You know the sort of thing. The whole team ups and goes off into the wilds with threats of being left in the middle of nowhere with a tin of soup, a pencil and an elastic band. Living in Scotland we…

Managers of the Leaders of Innovation

Before beginning any implementation of Lean Six Sigma in health care, it is important to get support and buy-in from management. Health care is a very conservative industry filled with professionals that maintain a traditional school of thought. Even though the health care industry has grown accustomed to change, the uneasiness of implementing a process…

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Developing a Thriving Team from Many Skills

Since my staff in my department is entirely composed of students I have many advantages and disadvantages when creating teams and working on projects.The advantages of a student staff include the high turnover rates and those who see their time with us as just another job to kill time and get a paycheck. Some of…

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Motivation – Buy-In vs Write-Ups

After spinning our wheels for the last two months, myself and the other two Continuous Improvement Specialists went out to lunch with the Plant Manager and the Engineering Director, both of whom are very experienced in manufacturing management, and both very well versed in lean manufacturing and continuous improvement methods. What they told us really…

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To Six Sigma or Not – Let’s “Pilot” to Find Out

Benchmarking results consistently identify examples of Six Sigma success. Even so, getting “naysayers” on board is a continuous challenge. What do you tell them? Nayism 22: In lieu of an enterprise-wide Six Sigma deployment, let’s start with a couple of departments and see how it works. On the surface, this may seem like a reasonable…

A Slow Start…

Six Sigma started in our department slowly.There were many factors that played into this, but mostly staffing issues: 1. I only have a staff of student employees (from 8-16 per year).2. This staff is in a constant state of change.3. Students come with various skills, many with no math or business or technical background.4. Knowledge…

Six Sigma Incentives: Yay or Nay?

Benchmarking results consistently identify examples of Six Sigma success. Even so, getting “naysayers” on board is a continuous challenge. What do you tell them? Nayism 20: Why are black belts getting monetary rewards? The rest of us are working just as hard. Why should they be treated “special?” The topic of monetary incentives and rewards…

Six Sigma Salary Reality Check

It’s that time of the year again. The time of year when we all do a reality check on the job market — or more specifically — on the salaries ofSix Sigma Black Belts, Master Black Belts, Champions and Deployment Leaders. With now being the time of year when yearly bonus checks are being distributed…

CPOE: Six Sigma for Healthcare?

Today I learned about a new program that’s being used in healthcare organizations. It gives me great hope that something significant is on the horizon. It’s called Computerized Physician Order Entry (CPOE) and the many healthcare professionals that read this site probably know about it already — but I’ll share what I learned for the…

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Running Out of Projects? Never!

Benchmarking results consistently identify examples of Six Sigma success. Even so, getting “naysayers” on board is a continuous challenge. What do you tell them? Nayism 13: We’ve been working Six Sigma projects for over four years. We’ve run out of project ideas. If your organization is telling you this, then running out of projects is…

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Six Sigma Won’t Work for Me

Benchmarking results consistently identify examples of Six Sigma success. Even so, getting “naysayers” on board is a continuous challenge. What do you tell them? Nayism 9: Six Sigma won’t work for my department because we really don’t have standard ’processes’ and every client, customer or situation is different. Process thinking is a new way of…

Selecting Black Belts

Benchmarking results consistently identify critical factors that are needed to increase the probability of Six Sigma success. Even so, getting “naysayers” on board is a continuous challenge. What do you tell them? Nayism 3: When picking a Black Belt, I can’t afford to let one of my best people go. Open any book about Six…

Time Commitment for Championing Projects

Benchmarking results consistently identify critical factors that are needed to increase the probability of Six Sigma success. Even so, getting “naysayers” on board is a continuous challenge. What do you tell them? Nayism 2: I’m already working 60 hours a week, so how do you expect me to devote anytime to champion a Six Sigma…

Training Senior Leaders as “Belts”

Benchmarking results consistently identify critical factors that are needed to increase the probability of Six Sigma success. Even so, getting “naysayers” on board is a continuous challenge. What do you tell them? Nayism 1: Black Belts and Green Belts are actually doing the work, so why does the senior leadership team need to be “belt”…

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The Six Sigma eLearning-Training Obfuscation

Have you taken an eLearning course in the past? Do you offer eLearning training through your consulting company? Have you researched eLearning options in the past? We want to hear from you. iSixSigma is preparing to research eLearning options available within the Six Sigma industry. For this study, we’re defining eLearning as: “Any learning that…

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Six Sigma Bed and Breakfast

It does not matter how small the business, Six Sigma can help improve any process. Even a niche bed and breakfast business can profit from Six Sigma principles. Case in point: Al O’Donnell, who runs a Six Sigma program for Southern Clay Products in Gonzales, Texas, USA, wrote us this note. “My wife owns the…

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