Choosing a Lean Six Sigma Program

Why undertake a Lean Six Sigma Certification?

In today's workplace, a Lean or Lean Six Sigma Certification, much like a degree, can be a key box to tick when interviewing. Even as a long-term employee in an organization, being Lean Six Sigma certified can open up the opportunity for better promotions, or more lucrative opportunities within the business. Best of all, a Lean Six Sigma certification is a mark that you may be trusted better, or percieved moreso as a leader within your organization.

What is Lean Six Sigma? An Introduction

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Why get Lean Certified?

The main goal of Lean is to streamline processes, maximise efficiency, and reduce waste. Combined with the goal of reducing variation, found in Six Sigma, Lean Six Sigma Certification is designed to give you:

  • The tools and practices to reduce process variation & improve  consistency
  • The principles and techniques to improve existing processes, whilst developing effective new ones
  • Reduced variation in processes, bringing added value for customers, employees and shareholders 
  • An improved understanding of Lean Six Sigma practices
  • The ability to analyse and adapt/refine processes to streamline processes and remove waste 

Ultimately, this allows for better understanding of processes within a business, making for more understanding management, and informed decision making.

What is a 'Belt'?

You will most likely have heard the terms 'Black Belt' and 'Green Belt' flying around in discussions of Six Sigma & Lean. These 'belts', much like in Karate, indicate the level of skill or qualification that a person has achieved, up to Black Belt. A 'Green Belt', for example, will work on Lean Six Sigma projects at a base operational level - Black Belts will design, select and implement projects from the top end.

In theory, a Green Belt certification is not required to embark on a Black Belt program - however, it's important to check internal guidelines in your business before undertaking the certification. If you are relatively new to Lean & Six Sigma, you may find it beneficial to start on a lower ranking regardless. The certification of 'Master Black Belt', however, does require a Black Belt Certification in the first instance.

Which Lean SIx Sigma Certification is right for me?

Outside third-party experts – "Lean Senseis" - will often work with a business to provide companies with unbiased advice and coaching on Lean.

Lean Six Sigma certifications will also vary based on your workplace. Although there will of course be over-arching methods and practises taught across the certification programs, much of the coursework provided will focus on industry-proven methodologies according to your own role and industry.

Ultimately, expectations will vary with each organization - in many cases, what is expected of a Green belt in one business is more than the entire Black Belt certification in another!

Read More; 14 Reasons to do a Six Sigma Certification

Consider your capabilities before taking on a Black Belt Certification without Green Belt.

Who Provides Lean & Six Sigma Certifications?

Below is just a short list of Independent training providers in the US:

Ultimately, you should make sure to carry out research on whatever provider you may use - the important thing to consider is whether or not the Lean / Six Sigma provider you choose reflects the goals of your business/role in the organization. More than anything, you want to take on a certification that enhances the skills you need - after all, a Lean Six Sigma certification is more than just ticking a box.

You can view the full list of Lean Six Sigma training providers, as approved by the Council for Lean Six Sigma Certification, here.

 

Further Reading

 The Top 10 Lean Six Sigma Blogs 

The Top 10 Lean Six Sigma Books

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