Does Every Project Need a Steering Committee?

Six Sigma – iSixSigma Forums General Forums Implementation Does Every Project Need a Steering Committee?

This topic contains 9 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  John 4 months ago.

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    i am starting my first six sigma project, i participate in many projects before under the supervision of MBB , MY Question is that its important to form steering committee in any project or it depends on the size of the project and its importance, and second question its essential to share the committee in the project selection process .



    A project consumes resources. Therefore management needs to know the anticipated return on investment and whether or not the project aligns with business goals and objectives. They need to decide priorities when projects compete for resources. There’s no simple answer. Companies generally adopt rules that make sense for them to select, prioritize, and oversee. Your project might be required to have a steering committed, or not. At minimum you should have a sponsor or champion, which might be your immediate manager, to represent the project in the selection and oversight process.


    Mike Carnell

    @yahiaelfakymustafa Are you refer to a team when you say steering committee? If that is the case then you do not have to have a team but I can’t imagine why you would not. Depending on the project forming a team is the first step in change management. If you run off and do a project by yourself and them emerge from your office with the answer to the problem you now own the answer. It is yours and yours alone which means you are the only one who cares about it. If you have team (even if it is a team of 2-3) that dynamic changes.

    I have exactly the same proclivity as you. I like doing things by myself. I like to move fast. At the end of the day it is less efficient. Besides it is really nice to have a couple people who are working on the same thing as you to have conversations with.

    If you are selecting projects rather than a management team of steering committee I wouldn’t even bother. That is their job and it works better that way.


    Mike Carnell

    @yahialfakymustafa I just hear a comment on a conference call and immediately thought about this post you put up with regard to doing a project without a team. It goes like this “A continuous improvement project without a team is like winking at someone in the dark. You know what you are doing, but nobody else does.”

    Just have a small team but if you chose to do a Rambo project be prepared to fail on the implementation side of it.

    Just a thought.


    Chris Seider

    Steering committee? You need team members with “process participants” and be sure you have a project champion and alignment with business needs and make sure you have measurable success.



    @Straydog thank you for reply , i know that its important for projects to be aligns with business goals and objectives, also in my case because its first attempt in six sigma project in the company , they are not enough aware about it , for that i ask about its important to involve them (the management) or just take it with the process owners (the team members) .



    @mike-carnell, thank you very much for your contribution with me ,
    but i think there is some misunderstanding for my case ,in my project i be confusing a bout the importance of the steering committee beside the six sigma team which we form in the beginning of the project and we are now in the selection phase of the project and to determine our problem , my case is its important to have steering committee in my project to help in supervising the project management or just complete with my six sigma project team and just inform them (the management) about the progress.

    with my best wishes



    chris seider , thank you for your help


    Mike Carnell

    @yahiaelfakymustafa Never heard of a steering committee for a project. That seems like micromanagement.



    I have never had a steering committee for any Six Sigma project.

    Typical roles are the BB lead, the SME’s or project team, a sponsor, sometimes also a champion. We typically use tollgates and a set schedule for reporting results to leadership to keep them in the loop.

    Your sponsor/champion should be at a level to be able to bust barriers and make decisions on the project to keep you moving forward.

    If you use a steering committee you will get churn, delays and possibly even make bad decisions based on experience vs. project findings and data driven solutions.

    Just my .02

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