One of the first assignments in our Black Belt course deals with the origins of the continuous improvement approach that we know today as Six Sigma. Many students are surprised to learn that the body of knowledge and the tools and techniques have been evolving for well over 100 years. This article is the first […]

# Category Archives: Six Sigma

Figuring out what tools to use during the course of a Six Sigma project is a challenge. Not all tools will be used on all projects. The analogy I use in the classroom is a mechanic with a toolbox. In the tool box are different types of tools – screwdrivers, wrenches, pliers, and so on. The tool […]

In our Green Belt program we have an exercise where students create a histogram from a set of data. Most students use Excel to create their histogram, and here is the resulting graph: When submitting their work, students quite often include a statement to the effect that the data is “normally distributed” because it appears […]

One of the dilemmas that students face when choosing Six Sigma certification training is whether to attend a live, instructor led course in a traditional classroom setting or an online course. Both types of delivery have pluses and minuses. In the classroom, you will have the benefit of interaction with your instructor and the other […]

I have observed a number of problems and issues with the way that Six Sigma students gather data for, create and interpret control charts. The purpose of this article is to help you avoid these common problems and issues, and to help you understand how to use control charts as part of a Six Sigma […]

The Six Sigma methodology relies on decisions that are made based on facts and data. One of the challenges in the Analyze phase of Six Sigma is being able to identify what is really going on in a process based on the facts and data that were collected in the Measure phase. Another challenge is […]

I am often asked to provide recommendations on how to develop and/or select Six Sigma training programs. An interesting and very useful theory of how people develop and learn is the theory of Multiple Intelligences, developed by Howard Gardner, PhD, Professor of Education at Harvard University. This theory explains that each of us has a […]

One of my Black Belt students recently submitted his final project report. He used the two proportions test in Minitab to compare the proportion of on time performance for completion of employee appraisals, before and after improvement. I sent him the following feedback regarding this test. “Hi. Your null and alternate hypotheses are correctly stated. […]

Although the central limit theorem can seem abstract and devoid of any practical application, this theorem is actually quite important to the practice of statistics. As we will see, this theorem allows us to make some assumptions about a population. In order to understand the basis for the Central Limit Theorem, consider a population of […]

We should constantly strive to provide exactly what the customer wants when working on process improvement. One way to do so is to identify activities that are wasteful and then work to reduce or eliminate those activities. Waste is defined as an activity that consumes resources but does not add any value for the customer. […]