Top Six Sigma Concepts for Beginners

Six Sigma Basics

Six Sigma is a methodology that primarily focuses on eliminating defects in the business process. Motorola was the first company to introduce Six Sigma methods in its manufacturing process. These principles were employed by the company to bring down the defect rate in their production line. After it was implemented by Motorola, these Six Sigma methods were practiced by various other companies. Six Sigma principles caught the eye of various companies located around the globe when the General Electric company earned $300 million because they implemented Six Sigma principles in their manufacturing process. Well, that’s not the end of the story, these principles were also employed by healthcare, telecommunications, education, finance, military and service sectors. These results proved that Six Sigma methods are appropriate for meeting business goals and objectives in an efficient manner. Six Sigma is an organizational structure that concentrates on continuous improvement. The primary objective of this methodology is to achieve goals and objectives set by the organization in an efficient manner keeping costs and defect rate at a minimal point.

Overview of Lean
Lean manufacturing primarily concentrates on speed and inventory in the production process. Lean manufacturing basically focuses on sources of waste such as transportation, inventory, movement, work in progress, and defects.

Lean makes use of five methods that enables an organization to cut down on the waste during their business process. These methods are as follows:

  • Determining customer value

  • Mapping the value stream

  • Creating flow

  • Seeking perfection

  • Pulling based on demand

Six Sigma basically concentrates on the root cause analysis and Lean focuses on speed waste elimination and simplicity of the solution. By combining both Six Sigma and Lean, we get best of two methodologies. These methodologies provide desired results.

What is Lean Six Sigma?
As discussed in the earlier paragraphs Lean Six Sigma is a combination of Six Sigma and Lean methods. By combining these two processes and implementing these methodologies within an organizational structure, results in process improvements, waste reduction, effective monitoring, which would eventually lead to increase in the profit margins. Organizations must follow a set of rules and regulations for obtaining the desired result after implementing Lean Six Sigma methods.

Listed below are the success factors of Lean Six Sigma:

Leadership Responsibility

For the success of any project, the project leader plays a critical role. The project leaders have the responsibility to prioritize all business activities in the right sequence. They have to ensure that all the resources are available to the team to start the production process.

Allocation of Right Resources

It is always advisable that a project manager employs right members in the project team. If the team members are already Six Sigma certified members then the project manager can assign them the task of monitoring the project development process, as they are well versed with all the methods and techniques of Lean Six Sigma.

Training for the Employees

Proper training sessions have to be conducted for the employees of the organization so that they have a complete knowledge about the project and also the tools that are required for completing the project successfully.

Project Approach

The project status must be reviewed at regular time intervals, this can be done by conducting team meetings, stakeholders, and senior management team. The feedback and suggestions must be shared with all the members associated with the project.


It is important that all the procedures must be correctly documented, which will give the organization a complete information about the financial impact that has been created after implementing Lean Six Sigma methodologies. In other words, the financial impact of every Six Sigma project must be properly measured and reported by the project manager.

Benefits Of Lean Six Sigma?

There are many benefits of Lean Six Sigma. Listed below are few:

Customer benefits

Lean Six Sigma benefits are not only confined to the organization, but it is also beneficial for the customers. With the help of Lean Six Sigma methods customers receive the final product according to their specification and quality, and this will lead to customer retention which is beneficial for the organization.

Stakeholder benefits:

Stakeholders are also benefited by Lean Six Sigma methods as these procedures cut down on the waste during the business, resulting in higher profit margins.

Employee benefits

As part of Lean Six Sigma methodology, all the employees will be thoroughly trained. They all will get the information required for successfully completing the project and also good knowledge about the tools that they have to work with.


Lean Six Sigma concepts completely focus on the improving business processes and concentrated on bringing waste to a minimal level. Even start-up companies can implement Six Sigma methods to successfully achieve their goals and targets.


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Suha Emma