What is Lean Six Sigma in Washington?
When you are making the decision to work with a methodology, you need to take your time to at least understand how it works and what it is overall. Therefore, when you choose LSS, ask yourself what is Lean Six Sigma before doing anything else. But, why is it important to take the time for this if you are a company interested in its implementation only? Naturally, you should know what you are using for your business or in the company you are working with. Otherwise, how can you be sure that it will be the solution or is going to be effective for the results you want to obtain?
Something similar applies to individuals interested in learning LSS. Is it worth your time even when you do not have a clear idea of what it is? Anyone can tell you it is, but this will be based on no information and you should certainly be collecting it. Now, where can you start when it comes to knowing what is Lean Six Sigma? With the question itself. Lean 6 Sigma is a process improvement methodology that was created in the 80s from the combination of two other methods: Six Sigma and Lean. These two methodologies are aiming for the same goal in terms of improving processes but the way they contribute in a company to be able to achieve it is different.
If you want to understand Lean Six Sigma, you will need to at least know what are each one of these methodologies. Therefore, investing time in getting to know the main principles and how they contribute to LSS as the one you are interested in, can be the second step or even the first one if you already knew this.
What is Lean?
Lean is a method that focuses on waste reduction and allows a company to achieve it by providing specific tools and principles. More than principles, we consider them to steps since any organization is able to follow them to start working towards the main goal. Which ones are these principles? There are 5 in total and you can know about them as:
- Identify value.
- Map the value stream.
- Guarantee flow.
- Rely on the pull.
- Seek perfection.
If you are considering going over each step, we suggest you know what is waste in the first place and why Lean focuses on it. The common description would be something that is not useful or unnecessary for the company, and it is indeed an accurate description. However, most companies believe that waste is something material and not other elements that are maybe in another type of presentation. This is why LSS is quite clear when it comes to the types of wastes you should try to find in your company when following the previous principles:
- Un-utilized talent.
What is Six Sigma?
While Lean focuses on waste, Six Sigma has a different goal: variations. A company that manufactures products—and sometimes, those with services—, usually have problems in how hard it is for them to obtain them. To be more specific, as a company, you need to meet your customer requirements, especially when you are making an order that was requested with many specifications and you know it is crucial to follow them. The issue comes when you are trying to obtain the products and how many of them go to waste because you were unable to meet all the standards.
The more defective products you obtain, the more expensive the entire production turns out to be and your customer is very likely to be unsatisfied considering that the delivery time is prolonged. Now, those are indeed defects, which can take us to the previous methodology. However, they are better known as variations since you are not obtaining a necessarily defective product but rather just one that differs from what your customer needs. With this in mind, the goal of 6 Sigma is to reduce these variations by following 5 principles:
- Focus on the customer.
- Find problems and their solutions.
- Eliminate bottlenecks and variations.
- Employee involvement increased.
- Flexibility and change.
But to obtain the specific results, Six Sigma provides the 5-step method DMAIC: Define-Measure-Analyze-Improve-Control. This practice allows companies to go over their processes, understand them, and work towards the improvement that is necessary by eliminating these variations.
How Does This Translate to Lean Six Sigma?
More than being two methodologies in one, you need to consider that LSS also provides specific principles and concepts based on the integration of the other tools. For example, Six Sigma does have a focus on problem-solving, but LSS has a special focus on this and ensures that the company integrating the methodology is aiming for the right goals in this matter. Therefore, when you get LSS for your business, you are not getting a simple combination of Lean and 6 Sigma but rather a methodology that takes the best from them but also provides additional goals and principles to guarantee you obtain more than process improvement.
Although Lean 6 Sigma is in the category of improving processes, the truth is you can achieve much more with it if you have the right experts implementing the methodology, or if you learn how to do it and get started on your own. At Lean Six Sigma Experts of Washington, we can assist you in all the services you might need for your goals with this methodology. From training to consulting and certifications, we make sure you are getting access to what will take you to the next level. LSS is a method any company and organization in the state should consider if it wants to stay competitive and get more out of the investment and time in obtaining products or delivering services. Therefore, we can translate Lean and Six Sigma to LSS in a few words: continual improvement and growth.
There are so many areas or regions where we offer these services with most of them being cities.
However, if you need any of these services, you need to contact us. The list below comprises the areas where we offer these services.