The Learning Concept at Pyzdek Institute

During the manufacturing process, defects are inevitable and finding a way to minimize or eliminate them is paramount. Six Sigma and lean manufacturing are unique approaches that aid in addressing such errors, with Pyzdek Institute being at the center of training individuals on this one-size-fits-all approach. Here is what the learning concept of the institution entails.

Online resources

Those who enroll at Pyzdek Institute have access to a wide variety of resources to aid in the learning process. That ensures that such individuals gain the exposure they need to understand six sigma and lean manufacturing better. These resources include email support, more than 70 online modules, forums for communication with instructors, online resources for study, among others.

DFSS and Lean Six Sigma courses

The institute combines these courses because both are instrumental for those who work on Lean Six Sigma projects. That is because they experience various challenges from time to time, which require them to change the design of the process or the products. As a result, this training helps experts mitigate the negative impact of such situations, including a waste reduction in the value chain.

Focus on customers

Learners enrolling in the programs that Pyzdek Institute offers have a shift of interest towards what consumers need. That includes specific interest in functioning, service quality and the cost of a product. Also, learners gain insight on how to reduce the capital they require, how to control processes and improve on speed as well. That is what the Institute aims to achieve ultimately through its training programs. Contact us for more information.

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Six Sigma Training: What Kind of Jobs Can You Get?

Perhaps you’re wondering what kind of jobs are available to professionals with Six Sigma training. Here is a real life profile of a job promotion recently received due to a company’s desire to improve the quality of its services to its customers.

According to a January press release, American Portfolios Financial Services, Inc., has promoted Dalchand Lalijit to the position of executive vice president of business processes and organizational development. Company CEO Lon T. Dolber stated that he is committed to integrating Lean Six Sigma methodology into all business processes as soon as possible. He stated that Lalijit brings the experience to make that commitment a reality.

Lalijit was hired in 2015 as vice president of service quality and process excellence. He brought with him to that position the ability to introduct the Lean Six Sigma approach to those parts of the company by implementing policies and procedures to assess the company’s allocation of resources. He has also been able to enroll and lead other employees of the company in Lean Six Sigma training and projects. Prior to joining APFS, he served as senior vice president of the Lean Six Sigma global division and was part of the operations council for Momentive Specialty Chemical. He was responsible for a number of duties including the deployment of Lean Six Sigma, productivity, and manufacturing excellence.

While Six Sigma training isn’t the only factor in obtaining the job you have always dreamed of, it is an important tool to get you there. It provides a unique skill set that makes you stand out from the competition. Are you ready to get started with your training? Contact us.

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How to Integrate Six Sigma and Innovation

Defining quality as only the lack of nonconforming product reflects a limited view of quality. Not doing the wrong things isn’t enough; you must do the right things right.

To make your customers truly happy, you must go beyond six sigma.

Some people, including me, believe that garden variety six sigma doesn’t go far enough. In fact, even zero defects falls short. Defining quality as only the lack of nonconforming product reflects a limited view of quality. Of course, that was never Motorola’s intent when it invented the Six Sigma program. However, the misinterpretation prevails.

Progressive people in the six sigma camp move beyond defining quality in terms of defects and defectives. This group looks for critical-to-quality (CTQ) characteristics in a product or service. CTQ features are those that customers expect and consider explicitly when evaluating product or service quality. A product or service that doesn’t provide the CTQ features that customers expect suffers lower customer satisfaction. But even this definition isn’t enough. The problem is illustrated by the Kano model of customer satisfaction (see Figure).

Garden variety six sigma only addresses two-thirds of the Kano model: Basic Quality features and Expected Quality features. When six sigma addresses nonconformances and defects, it’s focusing on the Basic Quality curve in the Kano model. When these items are handled perfectly, the result is a customer who is not dissatisfied. This is certainly important, but “not dissatisfied” is hardly a rousing endorsement of a product or service.

Six sigma activities that seek to identify CTQ characteristics address the portion of the Kano model on and below the line labeled “Expected Quality.” If all CTQ characteristics are properly produced, the result will be a satisfied customer. Important, of course, but is it enough to simply satisfy the customer?

Even perfection in these areas won’t ensure that the organization remains viable in the long term. The Competitive Pressure curve on the Kano model indicates that market forces will make today’s expected quality features tomorrow’s basic quality features. Long-term success requires the customer to be excited by unexpected innovations provided by a company’s products and services: Continued survival requires that your organization continuously innovate. Innovation is the result of creative activity, not of analysis. Creativity can’t be achieved “by the numbers.” In fact, excessive attention to a rigorous process such as six sigma actually detracts from creativity. The creative organization is one that exhibits variability, resource redundancy, quirky design and slack. It’s vital that the organization keep the Six Sigma Management Paradox in mind: To attain six sigma performance, we must minimize process variability, slack and redundancy by building variability, slack and redundancy into our organizations.

The key is to keep human enterprises and processes separate. You can encourage creativity in your company if you:

  • Celebrate failure. Most innovations fail to produce the hoped-for progress. Management must not only tolerate valiant efforts that fail, but they must also make it clear that such efforts are valued.
  • Create quality time. Set aside a specified block of time each day or each week for creative activity. During this quality time, people aren’t allowed to spend time on routine work; they must focus instead on how they can improve products, processes or service. When I owned Quality America a number of years ago, I designated the last hour of each day “Quality Hour.” I believe that Quality Hour helped us more than double our sales without the need for additional personnel, not a bad return on investment for an investment equal to 12.5 percent of payroll!
  • Reduce procedure protocols . Although process control and quality control bring better products at lower costs, these control systems also inhibit experimentation and innovation. Quality professionals should study existing systems to determine how little control is absolutely necessary to protect the customer and the brand.
  • Mass DOE education. Statistical design of experiments (DOE) is a complex and advanced subject area. But it is possible to develop easy-to-use DOE systems that everyone can use. For example, quality engineers can develop spreadsheets that allow employees to easily evaluate two-level experiments for three or four factors simultaneously. By working with information systems departments, we can help everyone get access to the data they need to determine which areas require improvement and to monitor the results of their experiments.
  • Utilize undesigned experiments. Despite the fact that DOE is the method of choice, we can learn a lot from ad hoc changes to processes. By allowing people to experiment without getting permission, we increase variability and increase the chance that we’ll learn something. We must establish guidelines to protect the customer and to protect the employee from reprisal should things not go as hoped.

These ideas can work in practice. Send me e-mail to let me know what suggestions you have for helping organizations become more innovative. If I get a sufficient number of responses, I will print them in a future column.

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