A day in the life of a blackbelt

Six Sigma – iSixSigma Forums Old Forums General A day in the life of a blackbelt

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    I’m considering a job opportunity where I would get trained to become a blackbelt. My background is in change management and project management. What I want to know is what a typical day might look like if I were to take this blackbelt career path. Any thoughts?  



    It sounds like you have 2 of the three legs needed.   How are your stats?  
    In my experience, if you are effective and have had several successful project wins, your street cred will open doors galore.
    As a “newbie”, be prepared to be looked upon with great suspicion by those entrenched in the status quo.   be prepared to be reviled and thought of as “Dangerous”.   Once you lead teams through change successfully (i.e. high profile, bottom line impact(s)), this will diminish.
    Those who are entrenched and comfy in the status quo have no interest in changing/improving.   There silo is set.   Be prepared to convert them (“what’s in it for them?”) or be prepared to maneouver around them.
    Gauge the insertion point of Six Sigma in your companies culture.   Most companies (in my experience) have tied their 6S efforts in with quality.   This can be a tough sell.   The most successful companies i have worked with had a Director-level Six Sigma exec plugged right in to the CEO’s jugular, seperate from the rest of the chain.   In addition, the functional/Operational Leaders were beholden to the Six Sigma exec and were held to specific metrics developed by said exec and issued by the CEO.
    I’d say, bone up on your stats and fine tune your already-existing soft-skillset.   Take the time to analyze the culture(s) you will be operating in and above all, ensure that each and every project you do:
    1)  is based on VoC
    2) is manageable in scope/authority
    3) results in bottom-line improvements couched in COST/QUALITY/DELIVERY.
    Bottom line, until you are a proven commodity, you will have a big blaze-orange bulls-eye on your forehead.   Even after you get a few wins under your belt, the Status quo “kool-aid drinkers” will be looking for opportunities to trip you up.
    Sorry for the grim assessment, but this is what i’ve seen in my experience with multiple F-500’s and well over 70 initial 6S implementations.


    Fake Stan Alert

    You  have to  understand  statistics



    Wow heebee, you paint a pretty cool picture. To be reviled and thought of as dangerous – sign me up for that job.



    I’m livin’ the dream, buddy…



    Typically you would do the following in a day;
    1. Carry out BB DMAIC/DMADV projects
    2. Mentor GB projects
    3. Conduct Quality tools/Six Sigma trainings
    4. Participate in departmental/organizational work-outs
    5. Carry-out VOC Surveys, analyze results and recommend actions
    6. Map & Measure excercises for identified critical processes.
    ……among others.
    Bottom line is it is an exciting role! – All the Best.

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