Lean and Six Sigma -- A One-Two Punch


Smith, Bonnie   (2003, ASQ)   TBM Consulting Group Inc., Durham, NC

Quality Progress    Vol. 36    No. 4
QICID: 18967    April 2003    pp. 37-41

This article is available FREE to all readers.

Article Abstract

[This abstract is based on the authors' abstract.]
Manufacturing companies across the country have discovered that the most effective way to reduce scrap and rework and create a unified concept of continuous improvement is by combining lean/kaizen and Six Sigma. The two initiatives work together, achieving consistently superior results to what either program could achieve alone. Lean brings action and intuition to the table, using kaizen events to address quality and flow issues often referred to as "low hanging fruit." Six Sigma uses statistical tools to uncover the hidden roots of problems. Using the Six Sigma/kaizen team based approach, results are implemented faster with the participation of teams of employees from the shop floor to the executive suite. Case studies illustrate the successful combination of lean and Six Sigma.


Case study, Kaizen, Lean manufacturing, Quality teams, Continuous improvement (CI), Six Sigma

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