How to Start a Lean Six Sigma Program

(Republished from my LinkedIn post Jan. 17, 2016.)

When I meet with a new client, I’m asked, "Okay, I'm interested. How do I get started?"

First, I tell them I need to learn as much as I can about them; the people in the work force; the equipment, technology and materials used; policies and processes; and the environment where it is located.  I ask to review the company's business plan, company's history and background, its infrastructure, how the processes flow; what quality control measures are used; and, how customer satisfaction and needs are met. At this time, I'm not interested in digging into the company's financials. Income Statements, Bank Ratios, Capital Depreciation, Budgets and Balance Sheets are set aside for a future date.

What I do ask, however, are what their immediate and future plans for change.  With resources, allocations, and disruptions part of the Lean Sigma change equation, it is important to adapt a strategy to accommodate processes already in motion.