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.