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  • #31850

    mand
    Member

    My company is looking at implementing a Six Sigma program, we are looking at using a consultant to perform the first phase of training(Green Belt).We are send a couple of folks to Black Belt training.
     My question is concerning the training material, How do we transition from using a consultant to doing in house training, how does the transition of material occur?  Is there material we can purchase or do we need to create our own.
    I have searched every Six Sigma site and all of the sites have pretty much the same information. Who owns the material?

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    #84381

    Cannizzo
    Participant

    Sam:
    The consulting company owns the training material. I suggest you use one of the major consulting companies (like those listed on this site as advertisers), as they own the IP (intellectual property) that they use to train. I have seen smaller companies (“two guys/gals and a pickup truck”) use other company’s IP to do training and it’s against the law.
    Make sure you get the consulting company to indemnify your company if you use/license their materials — consulting companies that own their materials should not have a problem with this request.
    Once a company is done with using a consultant to do training, they typically license the training materials and IP and are allowed to customize it to their needs. It is useful to negotiate this part of the deal when you are negotiating the Six Sigma deployment contract.
    –Carol

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    #84392

    Mike Carnell
    Participant

    Sam,
    You are in the field of intellectual property – one of two fastest growing field for the legal profession at this time. Do not do any of this without an attorney. It may not look like it but it is cheaper in the long run. There is a faction in the SS industry that will file suite in a heartbeat.
    The material belongs to the consulting firm unless you make an agreement otherwise. Buy it, have them give it to you, etc but they do own it.
    The transition plan should be provided by the consulting company during the proposal process. If they do not then they either don’t care about your program beyond their engagement or they don’t understand the importance of ownership. They also may not intend to leave for the next few decades. Read the book “Bad Company” before you start shopping.
    Good luck.

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    #84393

    Jamall
    Participant

    Dear Sam:
    Most company’s especially big ones will allow you to license their materials.  But it is very expensive, for example at my company, we paid $75K to license green belt training materials for only 2 years and the materials were not as good as we like.  
    There is company that I found by a chance that has a great program and it provides funding assistance.   The Company’s name is Transformation Partners Company.  Their website is: http://www.tpcompany.com.  I believe they will be able to help you with the materials you need.
    Good luck.
    Jamal

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    #84394

    Arora
    Participant

    Hai Mike,
    Please let us know the author and year of publication, the book you mentioned “Bad Company”. Thank you very much, bye….

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    #84395

    Heebeegeebee BB
    Participant

    Hey Mike,
    Can you tell us which “Bad Company” book to read?   Who is the Author?   I searched Amazon and came up with 45 hits on that title.
     
    Thanks,
    Heebee

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    #84409

    Saherngu
    Participant

    Several years ago the big thing was a 2,3,or 4 year license –
    Today, many companies are offering perpetual licenses – but even then as Mike said  – beware – some companies write the agreement to even lay claim to any modifications, enhancements, examples, etc that you do…….ie YOU DO THE WORK – THEY OWN IT!
    We got a 4 year license approx 3 years ago…..and at the time were led to believe that by the end of 4 years – we’d have modified it enough – we wouldn’t  want any more updates, etc – we’d really have our own material.  SHAME ON ME  – I didn’t read the fine print……and now the company has basically said if I want to keep using the material – there’s an additional fee.
    After training with a company’s materials for the last 3 years – I feel like my team could probably sit down and write our own material – – but I hesitate because I think my current licensor is part of the faction that Mike indicates “likes to sue” and I am not sure I want the hassle/time/and money to prove to them that I am no longer using their material.  By the way the material I licensed for 4 years wasn’t that great when we got it – but with all of our modifications and corrections it is in pretty good shape now. 
    Due to cost, quality, etc,  I will probably license(perpetual)  with another company – and take the time to put in modifications, examples, etc in the next 9 months before my original license expires. 
    I am also finding out that the original contracts are written all in favor of the licensor…..but if questioned ……..alot of the terms and clauses will be deleted or modified……………ie my modifications, additions, examples will remain mine ……..not the licensor…………..
    BE SURE TO READ THE CONTRACT WELL! 

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    #84410

    Mike Carnell
    Participant

    KRIS,
    I wish I could but I am on the road this week and won’t be back home until Friday night. The two authors were, I believe with the Chicago Tribune. I will run it through Amazon this evening.
    Thanks.

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    #84452

    Murray
    Participant

    Mike,
    I have heard many of the consultants out there are lawsuite happy, do you know who they are?

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    #84454

    anon
    Participant

    Get a Bad Company album or CD instead, It is much more entertaining.

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    #84476

    drew
    Participant

    I can not encourage you enough to have an IP specialist (trademarks & copyrights) attorney (like a patent laywer who must pass an additional patent bar exam to practice) BEFORE you sign any engagement contract.  The use of someone’s copyrighted materials without their written permission exposes you to a potential liability (risk!).   But, in my non-lawyer opinion, you can create your own materials from the 6-sigma body of knowledge without an infringement. 
    Caveat emptor (let the buyer beware),
    drew
     

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    #84481

    Reinaldo Ramirez
    Participant
    #84484

    Gabriel Pinon
    Participant

    There are several excellent books to use to prepare a good training material.. Let’s start with the “Out of the Crisis” by Deming then continue with “The Six Sigma Way” by Pande and so on. The knowledge is universal. After several good materials you can create your own consulting company !.

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    #84486

    mand
    Member

    So are you saying the best thing to do is to train our Black BElts by an out side soruce and then let them create our own Green Belt training material.
     

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    #84487

    R. Ramirez
    Participant

    Dr. Deming in his book ” The new economics for industry, goverment, education” *ISBN 0-911379-05-03 disagree with the Six Sigma concept, as an indicator of achievement. See Chapter 10, page 228.

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    #84511

    Markert
    Participant

    You seem to be receiving a lot of useful, but sometimes naive and rather cynical advice. As several respondents have mentioned, the training materials are the property of the creator(s) and you may not copy and distribute them without their agreement.  However it is possible to obtain license agreements that give you the right to the use the material and to modify them.  I do agree that it is helpful to have an IP lawyer help you with the agreement.
    An area where a number of the respondents are naive is the idea that all you need to do is read someone’s book and you can create professional, effective, and comprehensive materials.  Good training materials require a lot of time and effort and require a good understanding of the pedagogy required for effective student learning.. Thinking that you can read a book and write the materials is a bit like taking a calculus course and immediately deciding that you are qualified to write a calculus textbook.  Understanding materials and knowing how to teach materials are two seperate issues.  I can attest to the fact that many companies decided they would write their own materials and after wasting a lot of time and effort realized that it was not so simple. 
    As to the issue of consultants being litigious, well I think this is mostly hyperbole.  Most consultants and their companies are honest, hardworking people who only survive if their clients are successful.  Yes, bad apples always exist, but you can defend against them by getting solid references and thoroughly interviewing potential consultants.  Actually, I would mildly disagree with some of the advice to use large consultancies.  Often you are better off with smaller, but competent, consultancies that will have your best interests in mind and are more willing to negotiate with you on issues of price, license agreements, and customized training materials.
    I hesitate to mention that I am a partner in a small LLC that supplies Six Sigma training to large and small corporations.  I am not trying to sell you anything — I give no contact information.  I am offering you some advice based upon my experience.  We do negotiate agreements with our clients to license the materials, including the right to make their own modifications, and we develop a transition plan whereby we help their blackbelts (if we don’t personally trainig them) learn how to effectively teach the materials.
    I have worked in industry where I sponsored training and hired consultants and I have worked as a consultant.  There are significant risks on both sides of the issues.  However, good consultants save money and add value to your company.  Bad consultants are really easily identified if you keep an objective mind in dealing with them — are they interested in listening to you and do they express an interest in trying to meet your business needs or are they only interested in closing a deal as fast as possible.  Consultants who don’t care typically don’t listen well, don’t stop talking, and are unwilling to modify their products to meet your needs.
    I guess my advice is to find a consultancy to train your blackbelts, provide greenbelt training materials, and work with you on a transition plan to take over and run the greenbelt training.  I am certain you will find a consultancy that is competent and willing to license training materials at a reasonable price.  Remember, the materials are a product and even consultants should not have to simply give away materials that have taken much effort to develop and perfect.
    Hope my long winded comments are of some help.

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    #84516

    Mike Carnell
    Participant

    Phil.
    I agree on the material issue. Most of us at this point have material that has evolved over time and has been packaged by a professional material designer. It may not seem like a big deal but if you look at the ease a person uses when it has been done by a material designer you will see there is a difference.
    The idea of litigation with regards to SS material is a matter of record. There are some consultancies that have a long record of litigation particularly with regards to IP. I believe you can verify this with Breyfogel, Pyzdec and myself. All with the same company. If you reread my post you will find that I did say the licnese can be purchased or even granted. The law is also a double edged sword. If you don’t defend your copyright (assuming you actually have one) you can also lose your right to protect your material.
    Being protected doesn’t prevent you from being sued. Anyone can file. Winning doesn’t even depend on being in the right. It appears some of this is a war of attrition. Who has the cash to get it to either a trial or a settlement. That can be six figures pretty easy. If you don’t have the cash then you settle and it won’t typically go in your favor.
    Good luck.

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    #84530

    Markert
    Participant

    Mike,
         Thanks so much for the informative and courteous response. Your admonition about a consultancy that is litigious is appreciated.  Since I do not personally know any of the consultants you mentioned who have been victims of lawsuits, I will not trouble them for further information.  My comment about litigious behavior was not really directed to your comments, but to a general theme in a number of the posts that consultants in general are lawsuit happy and I wanted to be clear that this is not my experience.  Although your point is well taken, believe me.
    I also wanted to reiterate the point that professionally done training materials do make a great difference in the effectiveness of the training.  Perhaps a license fee (as you mentioned in your email many consultants will license their materials) may seem a bit much, often those who have not had experience in creating training materials, do not begin to realize the large amount of time that can be consumed in creating good quality materials.  In fact the license fee is often a bargain when you realistically assess the time taken by a company staff to create materials.  I have created training materials both as an employee of large corporations and as a consultant — it always far more work than first preceived.  Also, as you mention, most good consultants have materials that evolve over time — continuous improvement by the consultants..
    Again thanks much for the response.  It is appreciated.
    Phil

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    #84541

    Mike Carnell
    Participant

    Phil,
    Thank you. It does seem that the amount of litigation around SS is higher than some of the associated disciplines. It may be that it is a fairly young industry and it is shaking out some.
    Good input from you first post as well.
    Good luck.

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    #84941

    Bill Woehr
    Participant

    Hi Sam,
    After reading the different responses and types, I thought I would add my own two cents. First, get help from the outside. This means either hiring an outside firm or hiring experienced Six Sigma professionals. This is going to be key in the deployment in your organization. Second, unless you or your group are experienced “teachers”, I would suggest using an outside firm to help with developing and delivering training materials with a plan to transition that responsibility to your organization. Our company hired experienced SS professionals from other firms (myself included) to lead the change throughout the world. However, we have used an outside consultant to help us with material development and delivery in the beginning (GB, BB, DFSS) and now we are taking over the license and training responsibility. We had to do a lot of work on the material the firm provided as it did not fit our transactional environment. We are almost there now after 5 waves and 6 months.
    There have been all kinds of suggestions around the ownership of material and who you should try to get help from. Whoever you chose, it will be necessary that the outside firm engages enthusiastically your team in order to provide you with materials that will benefit your firm. We all have the same problems and tools to address those problems, however, how each company tackles a problem will depend on the culture of the company, an the outside firm you hire will need to understand and incorporate it.
    Bill
     

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    #119414

    vuyomhlakaza
    Member

    Ihave just been appointed training management, i have no experience if possible please e mail me any material that i can use i need all the help i can get am working for a co-operative organisation

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