Center for Competitive Change

Benefits of Lean Six Sigma

Dayton, Ohio

The fundamental objective of Lean Six Sigma is to have employees who enjoy their work, making products and services customers love, for an organization that is thriving in a competitive environment.  These objectives are met through three core concepts. 

Total employee engagement

In Lean Six Sigma, we consistently talk about eliminating waste by reducing rework, delays in inventory, etc. However, as any experienced manager knows, the most wasted resource in an organization is the brainpower of its people and the most powerful energy in the universe is a thought. When thinking happens, ideas follow and minds grow. What is truly remarkable is that an idea can be created by anybody, anywhere, at any time.

The data shows that engaged employees are 25% more productive than their peers. We all have the ability to generate new ideas regardless of educational backgrounds. To make real improvements in the workplace requires that people work together to solve problems that typically cross over departmental boundaries. That is why most improvement projects are team based and engage all team members. The process and tools that employees use require brainpower.  Lean Six Sigma offers organizations a systematic process for employee engagement.

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Data driven continuous improvement

Many of the Lean Six Sigma tools (histograms, Pareto charts, run charts, etc.) are designed to help employees and managers analyze and interpret data. Teams and individuals use this data to solve problems and reduce waste. Individuals with experience alone cannot solve complex problems, but data-driven teams can. Your competition is not standing still. Improving everything that you do, every day, by using the brain power of all your employees must become your culture. Otherwise, your competitors will run right over you. Deming once said, “It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory.”

The five step DMAIC problem solving process (Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control) provides companies a systematic data driven process for continuous improvement.

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Relentless focus on the customer

As Sam Walton once said, “The customer can fire everyone from chairman of the board on down by simply taking their business elsewhere.” Here are the three important facts about customers:

  1. Businesses lose between 10% and 30% of their customers each year.
  2. On average, it takes 18-24 months to achieve customer profit. 
  3. Just a 5% increase in loyalty can equal a 25-125% increase in your bottom line.

In Lean Six Sigma, we don't engage employees to make them feel good or improve the way we do work for improvement's sake. Our energy is focused on meeting the ever changing needs of our customers. Our customers pay our salaries and provide us with meaningful work. As consumers of the world’s products and services, we will only buy those products and services that provide us with the greatest value. Lean Six Sigma is focused on helping companies provide more of what a customer wants at a lower cost. 

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