I’m in Chicago this week, attending a 6 Sigma Business Leadership conference. I really buy into 6 Sigma as a culture changer versus some kind of "new fad". At small companies, the full blown deployment and dedicated black belt are a tough call and often too expensive or challenging to accept. Interestingly enough, today I heard a presentation from a 20 person logistics company that is about to add their SECOND black belt. The owner was a "convert" that 1 year ago poopoo’d 6 Sigma in favor of his seat of the pants style. The thing that pushed him over the edge was succession planning. He accepted that he would never be able to exit the company or have someone else act on his behalf upon retirement, etc. unless he put something in place to help others make decisions. Effectively, 6 Sigma is simply a hard fact data based decision making process for your business. Now, he has a leader in place as the black belt…and this person is transforming into a clear thinking decision maker.
I will start my black belt training in October. Although I wont be a full-time black belt the training and quantitative methods will greatly enhance my skill set I believe. It’s been a LONG time since I had statistics in school (1991 to be exact)…and my critical thinking has largely been softened by "business development" career moves…so I look forward to this.