Lean Six Sigma: What is it All About?

Lean Six Sigma: What is it All About?

Many companies over the years are pondering over which tool to choose for improving their business processes: Lean or Six Sigma? While some are still debating the matter, others have realized that Lean and Six Sigma can work well together.  They work wonders in improving business processes, increasing quality, and reducing costs.

Read this article to know everything about roots of Lean Six Sigma and the basic principles behind it.

What is Lean Six Sigma?

Six Sigma focuses on reducing processes and improving process control. Lean focuses on removing waste (non-value enhanced processes and processes). It encourages the standardization of work and flow.

There is a distinction between Six Sigma and lean Six Sigma. Both of the methods work to help you achieve positive outcomes.

Lean Six Sigma is a method of data-driven, fact-based improvement. It emphasizes the importance of preventing defects over the detection of defects.

Lean Six Sigma increases customer satisfaction and results by reducing variations and waste. It also encourages the use of standardization in work. Doing this helps you gain an advantage over competitors. You can apply it wherever variations and waste are present. It is mandatory for each employee to involve themselves.

How to Choose the Right Methodology?

Is the customer-centric strategy that is the basis of Six Sigma? Or, the more speed-oriented approach of Lean? No matter what, various organizations across the globe are making breakthroughs in performance, and none of the organizations achieved such huge success. This is for companies that integrate both strategies into Lean Six Sigma.

Companies across the globe want to cut costs to ensure high quality and safety. They need to keep up with the ever-growing demands of customers. As a result, various significant companies are adopting this revolutionary improvement method.

Samsung Electronics, General Electric, and many other smaller companies use it. They consider it one of the most efficient ways to reach their goals.

The Benefits of Lean Six Sigma

Six Sigma relies on using two sub-methodologies. One is DMAIC (Define Measure, Analyze Enhance, and Control). The other is DMADV (Define Measure Analyze Design and Verify).

Lean Six Sigma can discover hidden problems and identify the root causes. It can also help the senior management (leadership) face difficult situations. Lean Six Sigma also offers the right metrics to decrease variability. It generally helps improve the daily business processes.

Here are some specific benefits that Lean Six Sigma provides:

●       High Levels of Customer Satisfaction

Customer satisfaction or loyalty is a significant element determining a business’s success. Customers will be faithful to your company if you provide a high degree of satisfaction. Make sure you provide top-class services or products.

Six Sigma reduces the number of unhappy customers by finding the cause of the problem and addressing them. Training your staff in Six Sigma can resolve issues in business processes, improve service and quality and regain your customers’ trust.

●       Increase Productivity

If you are not an expert in people and time management, it isn’t easy to use people in all situations and in the best way. It becomes more difficult for manufacturing firms. It is because they have a large workforce across different geographical areas.

Six Sigma can break these barriers and allow you to measure the time you spend on various activities. It works wonders in determining the primary factors that contribute to poor productivity. Six Sigma obtains business-critical information from many places. It will help you identify the actual issue rather than aimlessly looking for answers.

●       Shorten Project Duration

Suppose an organization begins with a new project the majority of the time. It will run over the initial deadline. The reason can be the changes in the project scope or an alteration in the management policy. Suppose you have a Six Sigma method in place, you can build an entire team of professionals at all levels to determine the causes of delay and get to the bottom of it. Then it becomes easier for the project manager to solve these problems. This measure can shorten the time it takes to complete a project by as much as 35 per cent.

●       Cut down on Your Operating Costs

In any business or organization, ineffective procedures can be costly. Knowing your business operations to increase efficiency is important. It is one of the most efficient ways to reduce expenses.

In the Six Sigma method, improvement of processes is its primary purpose. It comprises DMAIC (Define the process, Measure, Analyze, Execute and Manage).  

●       Better Time Management

Enterprises employing the Lean Six Sigma methodology will help their employees to manage time, resulting in more business efficiency and productivity. First, employees must set SMART (specific and tangible, achievable, results-focused, and time-bound) goals. Then, one can apply the principles of data of Six Sigma to achieve those objectives. Six Sigma plays a vital role in three main areas. They are training, performance, and fulfilment.

●       Higher Employee Motivation

Six Sigma makes not only your clients happy, but also your employees. Engaging employees with Six Sigma is very important. They come across new methods and tools. It will help them build their careers and create a positive work environment. Moreover, it increases employee motivation.

●       Supports Enterprise Level Strategic Planning

Lean Six Sigma is not only an improved technique for business processes but also a key strategy that charts the direction of an enterprise. Six Sigma helps you pinpoint improvement areas in the best possible ways.

Six Sigma enhances your business processes by eliminating the problems in your products or services and improving the quality a great deal. Six Sigma will help you become competitive and establish yourself as a leading organization.

Career Potential

A career in Six Sigma encompasses roles such as workforce management specialist, lean specialist, IT business analyst team leader, quality head, finance business process expert, director – process excellence, senior project design manager, engineering manager, senior manager quality, project quality leader.

Salary Prospects

A certified Six Sigma Green Belt earns up to Rs 896,386, according to the top ed-tech platform, Embibe.

Six Sigma Belts

These rankings will not only contribute to the operational efficiency of your organization but also help you advance your career.

  • White Belt

Professionals who have not undergone a formal certification program and take part in projects and problem-solving tasks involving quality management and waste reduction.

  • Yellow Belt

Those who have learnt the basics attend training sessions and acquire enough knowledge to contribute as team members to projects.

  • Green Belt

Professionals who have attended the complete course that introduces them to Six Sigma methods for developing and improving products, services and processes. They learn to apply problem-solving frameworks such as DMAIC: Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control.

  • Black Belt

Leaders take their skills to the next level by pursuing advanced training. They learn to drive changes, analyze statistics, deploy Lean principles and supervise projects for a team of Green Belts.

  • Master Black Belt

A professional with strong leadership and problem-solving skills who implements strategies for business operations and team coordination.

  • Champion

A Champion is a top manager who leads LSS strategy and deployment. They ensure that all efforts at cutting waste and defects bear fruit, facilitating a company’s growth.


Companies must respond to their complex requirements in today’s service-oriented business world. Six Sigma is a strategic improvement technique to ensure consistent performance and operational excellence.

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Lean Six Sigma: What is it All About?
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