System Integration

How to get lean, do Six Sigma

There are concrete ways to achieve breakthrough solutions and sustain a cutting edge in quality leadership, says Joe De Feo, president, Juran Institute.

By Control Engineering Staff June 2, 2005

There are concrete ways to achieve breakthrough solutions and sustain a cutting edge in quality leadership, says Joe De Feo, president, Juran Institute . How? At the recent Quality Expo at Rosemont, IL, he gave some advice, to improve quality, lean, and Six Sigma efforts.

1. Winning: do not get stuck on early results and celebrate;
2. Do not change leadership before the initiative takes hold;
3. Keep the effort fresh so the organization doesn’t tire of it;
4. Maintain the infrastructure to ensure the implementation happen effectively (and continue training);
5. Do not forget the customer during a merger or acquisition;
6. Observe and consider effect of macroeconomic events outside the organization.

The Juran Institute defines “Lean and Six Sigma” as an “overall quality improvement, waste reduction, and cycle time reduction methodology that seeks to minimize resources required for designing, producing, marketing, and delivering a product to customers by eliminating wastes that inflate costs, lead times, and inventory.” Juran offers a “Lean Six Sigma Pocket Reference and Tool Kit” to help improve quality, drive out waste, and reduce quality-related costs.

—Mark T. Hoske, editor-in-chief, Control Engineering, MHoske@cfemedia.com