All posts containing six sigma


How to Solve Your Problems With Lean Six Sigma (Free DMAIC Checklist)

lean six sigma

Elisabeth Swan is the co-author of “The Problem-Solver’s Toolkit” and co-host of “The Just-in-Time Cafe Podcast.” She’s been a process improvement consultant, speaker, and innovator for over 30 years. She’s the Chief Learning Experience Officer for GoLeanSixSigma.com, a former cast member of ImprovBoston, and – if asked – may still be able to ride a unicycle.

Surgeon Atul Gawande made headlines when he told the world that a simple checklist could drastically reduce unnecessary deaths in The Checklist Manifesto.

Yet, checklists conjure images of forklift drivers on loading docks with clipboards counting boxes. How could they transform healthcare?

He has… produced a 90-second checklist which reduced deaths and complications by more than one-third in eight hospitals around the world – at virtually no cost and for almost any operation.” – James Clarke, reviewing The Checklist Manifesto, Ulster Med J. 2011 Jan; 80(1): 54.

Aviation was transformed decades earlier when management and engineers at Boeing Corporation created the pre-flight checklist after the 1935 crash of the prototype Boeing B-17 at Wright Field in Dayton, Ohio. Checklists have become so essential to the airline industry that most crashes can be traced to the misuse or failure to complete a checklist.

A New York Times reviewer noted, “no matter how expert you may be, well-designed checklists can improve outcomes”. Since the purpose of process improvement is improving outcomes, Lean Six Sigma and checklists are natural companions.

To prove that, this Process Street blog post will show the relationship between checklists and lean six sigma, and provide you with a free DMAIC Improvement Project Tollgate Checklist that you can use right now.

Use the links below to jump to that section of the post:

Or, if you just want the checklist, check it out below!

Let’s get started.

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The 7 Core Six Sigma Principles to Build Your Business Around

six sigma principles headerFinding ways to improve processes within your organization can be tough.

There always seems to be so many things to measure and so many variables to consider.

Where do you start? How do you determine what’s good? Who takes responsibility for improvement?

Fortunately, you don’t have to go in blind.

There are loads of approaches you can take to process improvement, but one of the key techniques used by some of the world’s top companies is Six Sigma.

The Six Sigma school of thought is all about finding the right focus and tightening up processes around that goal. The end result should be the reduction of defects from a process. This saves resources, time, effort, and most of all money!

In this Process Street article, we’re going to give you an intro into Six Sigma while linking off to resources for you to explore deeper.

We’ll investigate the key Six Sigma principles which can shape and direct process improvement in your business.

The core Six Sigma principles

The 7 key Six Sigma principles we’ll cover are:

  • Always focus on the customer
  • Understand how work really happens
  • Make your processes flow smoothly
  • Reduce waste and concentrate on value
  • Stop defects through removing variation
  • Get buy-in from the team through collaboration
  • Make your efforts systematic and scientific

You could categorize these as lean Six Sigma if you want to as well.

Given the evolving nature of the different schools of business process improvement, there will always likely be some disagreement over what the specific principles are.

For this reason, I feel it’s important to include the various competing principles even if some other lists might look at only 5 or 6 principles.

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DFSS: How Design For Six Sigma can Supercharge Your Business

dfss design for six sigmaAs we build businesses, we strive to make them successful in what they do and efficient in the way they carry that out.

Six Sigma is framework with dual American and Japanese origins which helps companies achieve both of these aims.

We want to take company processes and make them better, smoother, faster, easier – it’s what Process Street does. But having a complex process optimized to the highest degree, as Six Sigma advocates, is tough.

That’s why we’re going to look at Design for Six Sigma.

This will take the Six Sigma lessons and apply them to creating new processes or products. Importantly, it will help us set up these processes or products in a way which makes them ready from the start for further Six Sigma-inspired analysis.

According to Quality-One:

…[U]tilizing Design for Six Sigma methodologies, companies have reduced their time to market by 25 to 40 percent while providing a high quality product that meets the customer’s requirements.

In this article, we’ll look at:

  • What is Six Sigma?
  • What is Design for Six Sigma?
  • What is DMADV?
  • What is the difference between DMAIC and DFSS

We’ll run through the best practices of creating new products and processes in a way that they can be improved and optimized from the very beginning.

Don’t waste your time with poor processes. Start right and continue properly.

Read on to see how it works!

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14 BPM & Six Sigma Courses You Can Take to Become a Systems Expert

Every business needs optimized processes. We’ve proven that again and again on the Process Street blog.

However, since business process management is taught formally in academies, the available material usually consists of dense technical documents and complex case studies.

When you’re just getting started, it’s easier to absorb information in the form of video than it is to pick through a lengthy paper full of cryptic diagrams.

With that in mind, we decided to collect the best video lectures and interactive courses on everything related to the inner workings of business: scaling, improving consistency, lean operations, Six Sigma, BPMN, process management, and more.

This list has both advanced and introductory courses. So, whether you just want to learn how to improve a process, or you want to dive into the statistical models behind business efficiency, it’s all here.

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DMAIC: The Complete Guide to Lean Six Sigma in 5 Key Steps

dmaic headerWe all like to know about the broader philosophies behind process improvements, but sometimes we need to knuckle down and look at some of the more technical details.

One of the core techniques behind any process improvement, particularly in Six Sigma, is DMAIC.

This handy approach, pronounced duh-may-ik, is the key to employing Six Sigma and beginning your journey to being a process hero. We’re going to cover each step in the process and detail how to effectively enact every section.

This guide will lead you through from start to finish and get you ready to start employing lean Six Sigma within your business!

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The Key to Productive Meetings? Cancel Them! 7 Meetings to Scrap

productive meetings

Dave Nevogt is the CEO and co-founder of Hubstaff Have you ever been enjoying a productive streak when — out of nowhere — a meeting invite interrupts your day? He leads a 100% remote team that builds time tracking and productivity tools, including the Agile project management software, Hubstaff Tasks.

Have you ever been enjoying a productive streak when — out of nowhere — a meeting invite interrupts your day?

Or, has someone ever requested a meeting with you, and after some investigation, you realize that this could have been answered in an email?

Let’s face it, meetings are often met with disdain, and for good reason: many are unnecessary.

You can tell by how often meetings are studied, and how much time goes into rethinking them. It turns out that:

  • 73% of people multitask while in meetings. Clearly, most meetings are not worth our full attention.
  • Detailed agendas can decrease the amount of meeting time up to 80%. Yet only 37% percent of companies use them.

It’s time to make a change. And that change is to clear your schedule as much as possible. Fortunately, this Process Street blog post is here to guide you in making these changes.

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How to Optimize Your Landing Page Using Qualitative User Research

How to Optimize Your Landing Page Using Qualitative User ResearchThis is a guest post from Adam Enfroy. He writes about how to blog like a startup to 450,000 monthly readers at www.adamenfroy.com, & teaches his audience of New School Bloggers the tactics he used to scale his blog to $80k/month MRR.

As a product marketer, increasing your landing page conversion rates through optimization has a significant impact on your bottom line.

You spend most of your time running A/B tests and tracking your conversion rates because you’re trying to optimize conversions and prove the ROI of your PPC campaigns.

Nonetheless, you still can’t seem to grasp why your visitors behave the way they do.

So, what’s your solution?

Using qualitative research to understand the reasons behind your visitors’ behavior so that you optimize your landing page and skyrocket your conversion rates.

In this article, I’ll explain the ROI of qualitative research, different methods to conduct it, and how to analyze your research data within your database. I’ll also demonstrate how Process Street’s superpowered checklists can help you perform optimized qualitative user research.

To jump to a specific section of the post click the appropriate link below. Alternatively, just keep scrolling.

Ready? Let’s get started.

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Operational Excellence: 10 Ways to Become World Class

operational excellence

I have a question for you.

What does a Formula 1 racing team, like Ferrari, have in common with a high-flying company, like Apple?

They’re both in highly competitive industries? They’re both focused on improving their performance? They’re both incredibly driven to succeed? They’re both intent on being the best in the world?

Yes, yes, yes, and yes.

In other words, they both strive, in everything they do, to achieve Operational Excellence (Op Ex). However, achieving Operational Excellence is far from easy, and (fortunately for Apple and Ferrari) only 36% of companies manage it.

So, buckle up and join this Process Street post, as we race through the following topics and learn, from the likes of Ferrari, Apple, Disney, and Google, how to become operationally excellent:

Ready to zoom into pole position? 🏎️💨

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Beat Bottlenecks, Remove Redundancies & Cut Costs with Process Analysis

process analysis
Want to lose weight? Shape up? Get fitter? Gain muscle?

If you do, I have one thing to say to you:

If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got” – Henry Ford

To get better, improve, and achieve your goals, something needs to change.

But this concept doesn’t only apply to people who want to lose weight, get fit, or become stronger.

It applies to businesses too; to keep improving, businesses need to keep changing.

Businesses can typically find between 50 to 75 improvement opportunities when they go through process analysis. This can result in anywhere from a 10% to an 80% reduction in costs.

Aha! Thought that might get your attention! Interested in finding out more?

This is what you’ll learn by reading this Process Street post on process analysis:

Ready to take the first step towards new and improved processes?

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Visual Management: How to Communicate Effectively with Your Workforce

visual-management

Click here to visually map and improve your business processes now!

Did you know that visual information is processed 60,000 x faster than text?

This explains why the average person remembers only 20% of what they read but 40% of what they see. This also explains why most companies use a form of visual management to communicate with their employees.

Let’s do a little test to see if people, in general, respond better to visual cues than text.

Look at these two depictions of a traffic light below.

One is a sentence describing a traffic light, and one is an image of a traffic light. Both traffic lights are on different colors:

1. The traffic light is on red.

2.visual-management

At the end of this Process Street post, we’ll see which color traffic light you remember! No cheating mind!

In the meantime, I’ll take you through the following topics to explain what visual management is and how you can use it to effectively communicate with your employees:

Ready?
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