Quality Progress - May 2017 - 51

define, measure, analyze, design and verify
(DMADV) approach to design for Six Sigma
(DFSS).3
Several major health networks launched
Six Sigma initiatives, including Commonwealth Health Corp., which reported $1.6
million in savings in its radiology department alone in the first year.4 Among other
innovations to Six Sigma, GE developed an
approach to applying Six Sigma outside
of manufacturing, including to financial
processes at GE Capital. Bank of America
became the first major bank to launch a Six
Sigma initiative in 2001.5
As early as 2003, practitioners were
noticing Six Sigma's limitations. Toyota had
developed generally accepted principles
of manufacturing excellence over several
decades of intense improvement efforts on
the assembly line. These principles, often
referred to as lean manufacturing, were often
overlooked in Six Sigma projects because
they were simply not well known. Michael L.
George suggested integrating lean principles with Six Sigma to create the broader
improvement initiative lean Six Sigma.6 GE
and others quickly transitioned their Six
Sigma initiatives to lean Six Sigma. Results
continued to roll in.

Dramatic change since 1987

While lean Six Sigma has been a tremendous
success, the world has changed considerably
since 1987. Table 1 lists a few of these
macro-societal shifts.
Obviously, there have been massive shifts
in the global economy since 1987. While
Motorola was already facing stiff global
competition, globalization has accelerated
even more dramatically since then. India has
become globally recognized for its IT prowess, China has become a dominant player
in manufacturing, and large numbers of call
centers supporting global customers have
sprung up in developing countries such as
the Philippines.
The world also has recognized the need to

collectively address large, complex and unstructured problems.
A different paradigm-holistic
The issue of global climate change
improvement-is needed to
cannot be addressed by any one
take continuous improvement
organization or even one country.
to a new level in today's world.
It is simply too big of an issue.
Security has always been a concern to societies and to businesses. Prior to the Sept.
11, 2001 terrorist attacks, many in the United States
and some western European counties believed that
terrorism was something that occurred elsewhere, not
in their counties.
Beyond terrorism, individuals and businesses have
serious security concerns over computer hacking.
Protecting against identity theft has become a
billion-dollar industry in the United States alone.
It is clear that we live in a different world-some
would say a much more dangerous world-than
in 1987. How should you think about continuous
improvement in such a world? Is lean Six Sigma the
best approach to take for all problems, including
large, complex and unstructured problems, such as
climate change?

TA B L E   1

Macro-societal shifts since 1987
+ Accelerated globalization.
+ Massive immigration into North America and Europe.
+ Growth of IT and big data analytics.
+ Recognition of uniqueness of large, complex unstructured problems.
+ Modern security concerns (for example, terrorism and computer hacking).

TA B L E   2

Versions of Six Sigma to date
+ 1.0: Original roll-out at Motorola-1987.
+ 1.1: General Electric enhancements-circa 2000.
+ 1.2: Lean Six Sigma-circa 2005.
+ 1.3: Lean Six Sigma and innovation (ambidextrous organizations)-circa 2010.

qualityprogress.com ❘ May 2017

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Quality Progress - May 2017

Seen and Heard
Expert Answers
Progress Report
Mr. Pareto Head
Field Notes
Mind the Gaps
Solid Footing
Are These the Same?
New Tricks for an Old Tool
Innovation Imperative
Experience More
Career Coach
Statistics Spotlight
Standard Issues
Marketplace
Footnotes
Back to Basics
Quality Progress - May 2017 - intro
Quality Progress - May 2017 - cover1
Quality Progress - May 2017 - cover2
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 1
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 2
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 3
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 4
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 5
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Seen and Heard
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Expert Answers
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Progress Report
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Mr. Pareto Head
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 10
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 11
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Field Notes
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 13
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 14
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 15
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Mind the Gaps
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 17
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 18
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 19
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 20
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 21
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 22
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 23
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Solid Footing
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 25
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 26
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 27
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 28
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 29
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Are These the Same?
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 31
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 32
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 33
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 34
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 35
Quality Progress - May 2017 - New Tricks for an Old Tool
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 37
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 38
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 39
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 40
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 41
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 42
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 43
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Innovation Imperative
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 45
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 46
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Career Coach
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 48
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 49
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Statistics Spotlight
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 51
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 52
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 53
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Standard Issues
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 55
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 56
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 57
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Marketplace
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 59
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Footnotes
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 61
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 62
Quality Progress - May 2017 - 63
Quality Progress - May 2017 - Back to Basics
Quality Progress - May 2017 - cover3
Quality Progress - May 2017 - cover4
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