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Best Background for quality professionals

Six Sigma – iSixSigma Forums Old Forums General Best Background for quality professionals

  • This topic has 3 replies, 4 voices, and was last updated 17 years ago by McD.
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  • #38088

    Valerie Feuchter
    Member

    Is it necessary to have  engineering  background  for a  career in Quality or is it  “fair-enough” with Business ADM.Background?Thanks.

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    #113585

    Bob J
    Participant

    Valerie,
    Quite the contrary….  A good business professional who understands the concepts and tools of quality can be very effective in driving real sustainable improvement in the business. 
    It’s all a question of “head set”….  Sometimes it’s actually easier to teach business professionals the concepts and tools of quality than it is to help engineering professionals reach a viable understanding of how the overall business works…
    In Malcolm Gladwell’s book The Tipping Point, he discusses the importance of people who function as “connectors” in driving cultural change and acceptance….  These people understand both cultures and are able to bridge between the two by interpreting and communicating how one “fits” into the other.  These are people who (for Six Sigma) can say, “This is how Six Sigma works in our particular part of the business”.   These folks are particulary valuable when you move to the “Big Q” quality that reaches across the entire business as opposed to doing a strictly manufacturing (Little q) quality improvement focus….
    Hope this helps….
    Best Regards,
    Bob J

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    #113589

    Mestre
    Participant

    Valerie,
    Engineering background is not required though preferred by most companies hiring. Does one even need a B.S. degree to do this stuff? It helps but it is not mandatory.
    Other factors weigh in the final decision (influencing skills, change agent, specific experiences, etc).
    Mestre

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    #113614

    McD
    Participant

    While I basically agree with Bob J, I would also point out that in many ways, Six Sigma is engineering common sense.  In some ways, Six Sigma gives engineers the permission to go do what they thought they should have been doing all along.  So there is an advantage to that engineering mentality.
    On the other hand, engineers sometimes tend to be a bit resistant to learning business principles, which are equally important.
    –McD
     

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