Six Sigma Belts, Executives and Champions – What Does It All Mean?

Six Sigma professionals exist at every level – each with a different role to play. While implementations and roles may vary, here is a basic guide to who does what.

At the project level, there are black belts, master black belts, green belts, yellow belts and white belts. These people conduct projects and implement improvements.

  • Black Belt: Leads problem-solving projects. Trains and coaches project teams.
  • Green Belt: Assists with data collection and analysis for Black Belt projects. Leads Green Belt projects or teams.
  • Master Black Belt: Trains and coaches Black Belts and Green Belts. Functions more at the Six Sigma program level by developing key metrics and the strategic direction. Acts as an organization’s Six Sigma technologist and internal consultant.
  • Yellow Belt: Participates as a project team member. Reviews process improvements that support the project.
  • White Belt: Can work on local problem-solving teams that support overall projects, but may not be part of a Six Sigma project team. Understands basic Six Sigma concepts from an awareness perspective.

Every project needs organizational support. Six Sigma executives and champions set the direction for selecting and deploying projects. They ensure, at a high level, that projects succeed, add value and fit within the organizational plan.

  • Champions: Translate the company’s vision, mission, goals and metrics to create an organizational deployment plan and identify individual projects. Identify resources and remove roadblocks.
  • Executives: Provide overall alignment by establishing the strategic focus of the Six Sigma program within the context of the organization’s culture and vision.

Add One of these ASQ Six Sigma Certification Credentials to Your Name

ASQ certification is a formal recognition that an individual has demonstrated a proficiency within, and comprehension of, a specific body of knowledge. Many job postings ask specifically for ASQ certifications.

The months listed in the table below are for exam locations at ASQ local sections and international sites. In addition, some certification exams are also scheduled to be held at ASQ conferences and events. Follow the “learn more” links for details.



Master Black Belt (MBB)

Trains and coaches Black Belts and Green Belts. Functions more at the Six Sigma program level by developing key metrics and the strategic direction. Acts as an organization’s Six Sigma technologist and internal consultant.

Learn more about MBB 

March & October

Six Sigma Black Belt (CSSBB)

Understands Six Sigma philosophies and principles, including the supporting systems and tools. Demonstrates team leadership and understands all aspects of the DMAIC model in accordance with Six Sigma principles.

Learn more about CSSBB

March & October

Six Sigma Green Belt (CSSGB)

Supports a Six Sigma Black Belt by analyzing and solving quality problems and is involved in quality-improvement projects.

Learn more about CSSGB

June & December

Six Sigma Yellow Belt (CSSYB)

Has a small role, interest, or need to develop foundational knowledge of Six Sigma, whether as an entry level employee or an executive champion.

Learn more about CSSYB

March & October

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See the Difference Certification Makes

Certifiably Valuable
See results of ASQ’s annual Salary Survey. The complete report includes details on salaries by ASQ certification.

Six Sigma Green, Black Belts Help Manufacturer Save Nearly $1.5 Million (PDF)
Within the first years of Crown Equipment Corporation’s Six Sigma initiative, Green Belt efforts resulted in hard savings of $1.2 million. The company has saved a little more than $500 per hour for each hour spent in training.

ASQ Certification: My Competitive Advantage in a Tough Economy (PDF)
Tyler Wallace obtained CQIA and CSSBB certifications to jumpstart his career in healthcare. Within a time period of two years, he received two promotions and tripled his salary.

Read more case studies about the results ASQ certifications have helped organizations and individuals achieve.

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