Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Requirements For Six Sigma Success

Quality Classic:
Lennart Sandholm and Lars Sorqvist present 12 requirements to implement a Six Sigma program.

In the past few years Six Sigma has become one of the most prominent trends in the quality area.

Numerous large and well-known corporations, such as Motorola, General Electric, American Express, Ford Motor Co. and AlliedSignal, have all ambitiously applied the Six Sigma methodology. Because the results have often been extremely good, resulting favorable publicity has stimulated growing interest among other companies.

A serious drawback of the concept’s increasing attention is that some companies choose to be trendy and simply follow the herd without questioning, adapting and designing a Six Sigma program to suit their own specific needs.

This focus on methodology has also been seen in previous quality trends in the Western world—for example in quality circles, kaizen, ISO 9000 and quality award models. The hoped for results fail to be seen because of flawed application and expectations. A similar future scenario for Six Sigma is possible.

Our experience and research conducted at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm lead us to believe there are 12 requirements for a successful Six Sigma program.

By working systematically and ensuring favorable development of each requirement, it is possible to dramatically improve the chances of a company’s Six Sigma activities producing the intended results.

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