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Why Lean Six Sigma instead of Six Sigma in forum descriptions?

Six Sigma – iSixSigma Forums General Forums General Why Lean Six Sigma instead of Six Sigma in forum descriptions?

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  • #53366

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    Why do the descriptions for all the forums say “Lean Six Sigma” instead of just “Six Sigma?” I understand why the forum discussion called “New to Lean Six Sigma” says “Lean Six Sigma” in the description, but several other forum descriptions also way “Lean Six Sigma.” I hope iSixSigma.com is not trying to promote the notion that “Lean Six Sigma” and “Six Sigma” are the same thing, i.e., synonymous.

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    #189877

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    I was really hoping someone would reply to this. Anyone?

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    #189884

    Jessica Harper
    Participant

    Hello SixSigmaGuy,

    Thanks for your post. No, iSixSigma is not promoting the notion that “Lean Six Sigma” and “Six Sigma” are the same thing, but rather that many process improvement programs today combine tools from both methodologies.

    An interesting side note: Earlier this year, we did a survey on the most and least used tools, and asked: “If you were starting out a process improvement program at a company and could introduce only three tools (in any order) to the employee population, what three tools would you introduce to bring the most improvement?” The top three were: 5 whys, process mapping and 7 wastes.

    You’ll find content on the iSixSigma site that focuses on tools and ideologies from both Six Sigma and Lean, as well as others. But we don’t position them as the same. I’m curious, are you seeing this in your work? Are people saying “Lean” and thinking “Six Sigma” or vice versa?

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    #189885

    Leighton K
    Participant

    I am a complete neophyte. Just starting to search out this topic to see if I should get “formally” educated. My interest has been piqued by a group of unemployed executives who introduce themselves with a phrase similar to “I am a (possibly adding ‘trained’ or ‘trained in’) Lean Six-Sigma Black Belt” with no qualifier that “Lean” and “Six-Sigma” are unique but leaving those of us who don’t know with the conclusion that this is a descriptor of a skill set, not two skill sets.

    I have not gotten this impression yet as I have begun my search (at 6:00 am this morning, yep I’m THAT new).

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    #189901

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    I feel like you misunderstood my concern. I have not encountered any confusion between Lean and Six Sigma; my issue is calling “Six Sigma” “Lean Six Sigma.” Almost all of your forum descriptions say “Lean Six Sigma.”

    The phrase “Lean Six Sigma” has never made sense to me. People say that Lean Six Sigma is where you combine the Six Sigma tools with the Lean tools; but there isn’t any such thing as Six Sigma tools. Six Sigma is just DMAIC; all the tools we commonly use in DMAIC are standard process improvement tools that are used by many different process improvement methodologies. COPQ and the Control Plan might be unique to Six Sigma, but nothing else is that I know of. So, why is Lean any different than any other process improvement methodology when it comes to using Lean tools in a DMAIC project? It’s still Six Sigma; not Lean Six Sigma. I often use the multivari tool in the Analyze phase of my Six Sigma projects. The multivari tool was invented by Dorian Shainin of Shainin LLC. Should I call what I’m doing “Shainin Six Sigma” because I’m using Shainin tools? I don’t think so.

    I know there are a lot of books published on Lean Six Sigma and I’ve read several of them. But I get pretty frustrated when I read them thinking the author completely misunderstood Six Sigma. I think calling a project a Lean Six Sigma project is a dis-service to Six Sigma.

    Normally, I wouldn’t care or make an issue about it; but when my favorite Six Sigma website in the world starts calling “Six Sigma” “Lean Six Sigma” I get very concerned. Please keep ISixSigma.com pure to Six Sigma. Forum discussions and papers on Lean Six Sigma are fine, but please don’t reference Lean Six Sigma in your site design; this site is about Six Sigma.

    Thanks,

    Rick

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    #189922

    GB
    Participant

    Rick,
    I’ve noticed that as well. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what you call it, as long as you are using tools and methodologies to make bottom-line improvements.
    I don’t even call it 6S, or L6S, or whatever. I call it continuous improvement, or just doing “it” the right way.

    No need to get parochial or religious about what belongs under which umbrella.

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    #189990

    Mike Carnell
    Participant

    What is that a picture of?

    We appreciate you not responding in Haiku format.

    In the description of the journey from the fringe to social convention described by Watts Wacker in “The Deviants Advantage” he talks about the loss of original content. When Barbara, Chuck and I wrote our book it was strictly MAIC and I got a lot of questions about where D went. This is just another step in the migration to Social Convention.

    Regards

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    #189991

    Sherly Lyn Fernandez
    Member

    Hi,

    I think, the confusion is common mostly in the people entering to this improvement program. Six Sigma has 2 methodologies thre DMADV and DMAIC but we are almost particular of DMAIC because of the already existence of process. But do we must argue if that is lean six sigma or just a six sigma?

    What is the concept of improvement? Is it just stagnant or not? For me, the Six Sigma was just evolve. Like the continuous improvement we are making in our businesses.

    Six Sigma is focus on just a certain aspect for improvement but before we know the improvement that we are making what are the things that we must eliminate? This comes with the seven wastes of lean. The Lean program was combined with Six SIgma because not just the quality of our product or faster of our service but also the waste that is not really payig by our customer will be removed.

    I think it is an evolution from old process to a new one.

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    #189992

    Mikel
    Member

    SisSigma Guy’s question is pretty dumb, but your answer is even worse.

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    #191674

    GB
    Participant

    It’s a Hoplite. Hope you are well!

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    #191675

    SixSigmaGuy
    Participant

    How can a question, or an answer, be dumb? It’s the asker or the answerer who is dumb, not the question or answer. So, Stan, why are you saying I’m dumb? :-)

    Some other comments from this thread.

    1) I don’t consider DMADV to be a Six Sigma Methodology; it’s a DFSS Methodology. DFSS is about designing process FOR Six Sigma, but it’s not Six Sigma. Of course, that’s just based on my understanding and I think only Mikel Harry can tell us for sure.

    2) Why is it important to understand the difference between methodologies? I certainly don’t disagree that in the end of the day, improvement is what matters, not what you call it. But Six Sigma, Lean, DFSS, Continuous Improvement, are all tools and each tool has a speciality and place. E.g, I can use a wrench to pound in a nail, but a hammer does a better job. A police department wouldn’t send the forensics team in to reduce the number of traffic accidents. The forensics team is a tool used to solve serious crimes, such as murder, where the culprit is not known (ala Sherlock Holmes). The traffic police is the tool used to make traffic run better and smoother. In the Process Improvement world, Six Sigma is the forensics team, and lean is the traffic police. Six Sigma Process Improvement is a methodology designed to solve perplexing problems that are causing defects. Lean Process Improvement is a methodology for improving efficiency and reducing costs. Of course, Six Sigma also improves efficiency and reduces costs, but it accomplishes it by solving the crime/defect. So, just as with the difference between the forensics team and the traffic police, one methodology is much more costly and time consuming than the other, and coming up with the right solution is much more critical.

    So, the main reason for understanding the differences is so you can choose the right methodology (or tool) for the job.

    That said, how do I fit Lean Six Sigma into the picture? That’s why I’m trying to understand what it means. It’s my job at my company to make the decision as to what methodology is the best to follow and to fund that methodology. On the average, we start 3 – 4 new Six Sigma or Lean process improvement projects each week. I’ve never encountered a case where deciding between Six Sigma or Lean hasn’t been pretty clear cut, but when someone challenges my decision by asking why we don’t do a Lean Six Sigma project, I don’t have a good answer for them, since I don’t really know what it is. Some people say it’s a methodology that uses both Lean and Six Sigma tools, but I’ve never seen a tool that couldn’t be used for either Lean or Six Sigma, so how do tools define the methodolgy? They don’t. When Harry and Shroeder published their landmark book on Six Sigma, they didn’t talk about tools; they talked about methodology. It’s not tools that define Six Sigma or Lean, but rather the approach. The traffic police could use sophisticated scientific equipment to determine who’s blood is on the windshield after a traffic accident, but that doesn’t make them a forensics team, or a Traffic Forensics Team.

    My other issue is simply that the name of this website is iSixSigma and is meant for the discussions and promotion of Six Sigma. Why are we talking about Lean or Lean Six Sigma here? Someone can create other sites for those discussions, but I’d like to see us focus on Six Sigma here and focus on a better understanding of why Six Sigma is so GREAT!; if you use it correctly.

    Thanks everyone, except Stan :-), for your input. Sorry it took me so long to respond.

    SixSigmaGuy

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    #191678

    MBBinWI
    Participant

    You seem way too interested in labels. Call it Continuous Improvement and go fix things. Stan was merely saying this same thing, but in his unique “Stan”ly way.

    As for DfSS – if you don’t think that it’s six sigma (and a whole lot of Lean for that matter as well), then you clearly have no clue. How would you suggest you deliver a new product/process at some state of higher capability without removing waste and making the product/process robust to variation? Sheesh, some people’s children.

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    #191679

    Mikel
    Member

    Wow SixSigmaGuy or should I say SixSigmaDufus?

    I am honored that you are offended by a comment made so long ago. It’s good to know I can have a lasting impact even on a dying platform.

    My friend from WI is right, it’s dumb because you hang your hat on labels. Go fix something and stop worrying about what it’s called.

    If you are truly a professional, you know that Lean and Six Sigma are separate but equally important and complementary tool sets. DfSS is the avoiding of fixing things with Lean or Six Sigma after the fact.

    By the way there is loads of important knowledge beyond the tool sets of Lean, 6S, and DfSS. Go learn them instead of making yet again a really stupid post.

    Peace.

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