Finding 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.