Advice for the Implementation of a Lean/Six Sigma Program

#1
Hello Everyone,
I'm new to the cove and I'm not sure how to post a question/thread...

I have been beating my head against the wall trying to define a clear way to implement a Lean/ Six Sigma program at my company.
We currently have a Lean class that covers 5S, The Seven Deadly Sins, Kaizen, Value Stream and Standard Work. I now want to add a Six Sigma portion which would include inside training (classroom, on-line, DVD) and outside training classes (certified trainer). I would then like the employees to take a test or execute a project, depending on the level of training. There should be a clear path to achieving a company certification (i.e. Yellow, Green or Black Belt). The goal is to provide each employee with the skills or enhance their current skill set, while applying these skills to projects that are part of the employee’s job and have been approved by management. I’m looking for a win-win program that satisfies everyone.

Does anyone have a success or failure initiative they would like to share? Anything I can learn would be beneficial. Thank you.

Jaret
 
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Bev D

Heretical Statistician
Staff member
Super Moderator
#2
Re: In need of Advice for the Implementation of a Lean/Six Sigma Program

I moved your post to a new thread and welcome to the cove :bigwave:

here is my short list of most important things that I have learned (from the school of hard knocks)
  1. Content matters: be sure the material being taught is appropriate relevant and useful. Much of what gets passed off as ‘lean’ or ‘six sigma’ training is pabulum. Spend your money on trainers rather than on consultants who want to 'help' you with the deployment.
  2. Become an expert yourself: attend conferences, read journals, read books. For example, there is a lot more to a successful Lean deployment than the tools you mentioned. Hoshin Kanri, True North, Gemba walks, etc. are what make it meaningful and drive it into your organizational DNA.
  3. DON’T make it an elitist group. Your lean and six sigma leaders/experts need to be embedded in the organization. A separate, small group who are experts (based on skills and experience) who act as trainers, mentors and who help guide the deployment strategically and tactically is essential, but he group must remain small to be effective. Its good to have some recognition and reward for acquiring and successfully adopting and using the skills, but keep it reasonable.
  4. DON’T make it a separate program. Embed it as part of the organizational structure and processes. For example, I don’t have separate “Six Sigma” projects or “Six Sigma” project reviews. I integrated the methods and tools into everyday work practices: all physics problem solving projects use “Six Sigma” methods and tools; All people process problem solving uses “Lean” tools and methods.
  5. DON’T, DON’T, DON’T make it about cost savings. One of my mantras is Cost and delivery are not knobs, quality is the knob. People, quality, delivery and cost are inextricably linked together. Touch one and you touch the other three. Touch cost or delivery by itself and you almost always move people and quality in the wrong direction; you also increase cost downstream and slow down deliveries. The best way to move all 4 in the right direction is improve quality (in Lean: reduce defects which are the root of the other 6 wastes) using empowered people
  6. DON’T forget the strategy of change management. People don’t dislike change (if they did, no one would get married, have a child or buy a house). People dislike change that they don’t choose.
  7. There is no such thing as a ‘small win’. While you shouldn’t buy-in to the consultant’s cry that a six sigma project must be $100k or more (see #5) you also shouldn’t buy-in to the opposite admonition to start small and get a few little wins under your belt. Go bold. People will respect that, they will notice that. When I started we took on the problems that had gone un-solved for years. Be careful here (see #3 and 6). It isn’t the ‘fault’ of those who tried to solve problems previously, it was their lack of solid tools and methods. “A bad system will defeat a good person every time” Deming. Remember that.
 
Last edited:
#3
Re: In need of Advice for the Implementation of a Lean/Six Sigma Program

Bev,

I just now saw your response (I still don't know how to navigate this site). Thank you for your advice and help!

Best regards,
Jaret
 
#4
Hello Everyone,
I'm new to the cove and I'm not sure how to post a question/thread...

I have been beating my head against the wall trying to define a clear way to implement a Lean/ Six Sigma program at my company.
We currently have a Lean class that covers 5S, The Seven Deadly Sins, Kaizen, Value Stream and Standard Work. I now want to add a Six Sigma portion which would include inside training (classroom, on-line, DVD) and outside training classes (certified trainer). I would then like the employees to take a test or execute a project, depending on the level of training. There should be a clear path to achieving a company certification (i.e. Yellow, Green or Black Belt). The goal is to provide each employee with the skills or enhance their current skill set, while applying these skills to projects that are part of the employee?s job and have been approved by management. I?m looking for a win-win program that satisfies everyone.

Does anyone have a success or failure initiative they would like to share? Anything I can learn would be beneficial. Thank you.

Jaret
Hello Jaret.

Where is the need for these requirements and how do they add value?
 
#5
With the start of the new year it is time for me to draft out a plan to implement LSS.
  1. Content matters: My company already owns a subscription to the School of Lean from Gemba Academy and I am looking to add their School of Six Sigma to our toolbox. These subscriptions contain a number of videos, quizzes and downloads which will allow us to select which sections would be most relevant for each employee. For example, we may want shop floor employees to have a general knowledge of SPC or DIMAIC and give them annual training that . Last year a group of engineers from various departments within my company were sent to external training and received their Green Belts.
2. Become an expert yourself: My Company?s Lean Engineer organizes monthly Gemba walks for some time and I have been doing a lot of reading on Lean Six Sigma and will be attending an ASQ conference on the subject this year. I will be responsible for driving this initiative at my organization and need to make it part of the company culture. I figure that if I can have a lean six sigma overview incorporated into the employee orientation that will be a good start. I would then like to have each employee go through general lean six sigma training once they have been with the company for 90 days and then review options for further training with possibilities for belt.
  1. DON?T make it an elitist group. There is little chance of this. We want LSS to be part of the way we do business. We currently have a small group of individuals that are Green Belt certified and would like it to be more widespread throughout the organization. I am hoping to inject lean six sigma into the culture with training and sharing success stories from within the company.
  2. DON?T make it a separate program. I would like this program to be embedded into our organizational structure and processes, but my concern is how to properly initiate this culture change and then get it to successfully grow. I would like all projects to be addressed with the use of Lean Six Sigma tools and methods.
  3. DON?T, DON?T, DON?T make it about cost savings. I love the way you put that. I believe that cost savings is likely the reason my company has assigned me this initiative, but the company recently adopted the SQDC methodology so I just have to continue to drive the Quality before Delivery and Cost mindset. I will have to make sure executive management understands that improvements to the manufacturing process will improve both delivery and cost.
  4. DON?T forget the strategy of change management. I plan on putting a considerable amount of time and effort into getting ?buy in? from the employees to increase the chance of success.
  5. There is no such thing as a ?small win?. I definitely see the power of this, but am concerned that the project that?s chosen ends up not being solved and leaves everyone deflated.
I would really like to hear how someone implemented LSS. I would like to map out a program that has the best chance for success.
i.e.: 100% LSS training/review for ALL employees with annual refresher. Implement a company-wide LSS certification program that has options similar to: White Belt ? 4hrs of lean awareness training followed by 4hrs of Six Sigma training for all employees. Yellow Belt ? 8hrs of lean and 24hrs of Six Sigma training offered to Lead Operators and above, as well as any operator with interest in the training/company certification. Green Belt ? 5 days of Lean training, 6 days of Six Sigma training with successful completion of a company approved project. This would be offered to any other person that performs problem solving and data analysis as a part of their job, or would like to make improvements within their job function. Black Belt ? 5 days of Lean training, 16 days of external training and must pass a test. This would only be offered to a person that has a Green belt and would like to become an expert problem solver for the organization.
 

Bev D

Heretical Statistician
Staff member
Super Moderator
#6
Q to the M: if you are going to the Lean Six Sigma conference in Phoenix the first week of March I will be there. I am speaking - my session is: "Power Tools for Six Sigma, Putting it all Together". perhaps we can meet?
 

Miner

Forum Moderator
Staff member
Admin
#7
Q to the M: if you are going to the Lean Six Sigma conference in Phoenix the first week of March I will be there. I am speaking - my session is: "Power Tools for Six Sigma, Putting it all Together". perhaps we can meet?
:topic: BevD,
Any chance that you can post your presentation content after the conference?
 
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