Innovation of the Week: Innovation Can Leverage Change

Posted by: meikah | 25 February 2010 | 8:11 pm
sixsig innovation of the week

This week’s edition of innovation update features Bill Gates and how he views innovation. Gates says that innovation can leverage change.

ABC News/Money features:

The needs of the poor are greater than the money available to help them, but that’s not enough to discourage Bill Gates in his work as co-chair of the world’s largest charitable foundation.

In his second annual letter, issued Monday, Gates says investment in science and technology can leverage those dollars and make more of a difference than charity and government aid alone.

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Filed under: Bill Gates, Innovation, Innovation Update, Six Sigma

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SixSig Reference Feature: Building a Sustainable Ford Motor Company

Posted by: meikah | 24 February 2010 | 4:01 am

Here’s a transcript of the interview with Bill Ford, Ford‘s executive chairman.

In October 2009, Ford sat down with McKinsey’s Sheila Bonini, a consultant in the firm’s Silicon Valley office, and Hans-Werner Kaas, a director in Detroit, and discussed his views on sustainability, the new technologies for fuel economy, innovation, and overcoming resistance to change. The interview took place in Ford’s office at the company’s headquarters, in Dearborn, Michigan.

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Filed under: Ford Motors, Six Sigma, Sustainable Business

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On Measurement

Posted by: meikah | 24 February 2010 | 3:41 am

A large part of Six Sigma is dealing with data and making sense of them. That is why statistics plays a major role in any Six Sigma implementation.

As they say, you cannot manage what you cannot measure. But an article on BusinessWeek warns everyone that measuring data should be treated with utmost care. It cites Einstein saying, “Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.” Thus, measurement has its right time and place.

Companies should guard against overmeasuring not only data but using metrics in processes. The article cites four problems with overemphasizing measurement’s role in management.

  1. Degradation by over-measurement
  2. Dehumanization
  3. A false sense of trust
  4. Increased cost and risk

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Filed under: Data, Data Analysis, Data Quality, Metrics, Six Sigma

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NewPage 4th Q and Year-End 2009 Financial Results Attributed to Lean Six Sigma

Posted by: meikah | 22 February 2010 | 10:02 pm

NewPage, the leading producer of coated paper, announced its 4th quarter and year-end 2009 financial results, and attributed its success to Lean Six Sigma.

According to Mark A. Suwyn, NewPage Corporation Chairman:

“We also continued our relentless focus on Lean Six Sigma (LSS), and now have 3,800 people trained in LSS. Our employee efforts have had a significant impact on our costs and productivity is growing every day. In 2009, we realized $60 million in hard savings through 470 completed LSS projects.  Since deployment, LSS has realized $149 million and completed over 900 LSS projects.”

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Well, it’s not new that NewPage is into Lean Six Sigma. In fact, the company has been using Lean Six Sigma principles in its green efforts. In 2008, NewPage is one of the Top 10 Best Places to work for Six Sigma Professionals and won Most Successful Lean Six Sigma Start-up in iSixSigma Live 2009!

Filed under: Lean Six Sigma, NewPage Corp., Six Sigma

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Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company Q4 2009 Earnings Attributed to Six Sigma

Posted by: meikah | 22 February 2010 | 8:33 pm

Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company publishes their Q4 2009 earnings call transcript.

Similar to the last four years, we expect to generate the majority of this savings from continuous improvement actions reflecting Lean and Six Sigma efforts

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Filed under: Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company, Six Sigma

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Estimating ROI for a Process Improvement Program

Posted by: meikah | 22 February 2010 | 7:49 pm

It’s a fact that in every process improvement that you do, the ROI is always an important matter to consider.

Here’s another good resource for you. Anand Paropkari’s article on iSixSigma is a good discussion on how to estimate the return of investment (ROI) for a process improvement program.

ROI Fundamentals

ROI is the ratio of the amount of resources invested in a project to the net benefits reaped from it, often expressed as percentage. It can be used in cases where management needs to know how the business is going to benefit from a project that carries significant costs. The percentage can be calculated with the following formula:

ROI = ((Total benefits – Total cost)/Total cost) x 100%

For example, if an initiative that cost $10 million provides total benefits of $17.5 million, then, according to the formula, the ROI is 75 percent.

It is obvious from the above equation that:

  • ROI less than 0 percent is not economical
  • ROI equal to 0 percent is considered a “no loss, no gain” situation
  • The greater the ROI, the larger the benefit

Essentially there are two factors to take into account when calculating ROI: cost and benefit.

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Filed under: Processes, ROI, Six Sigma

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Innovation of the Week: Russia Plans to Promote Technology Innovations

Posted by: meikah | 18 February 2010 | 8:10 pm
sixsig innovation of the week

This week’s edition of innovation update features Russia and how its government is pushing for technology innovation to get out of the boom-and-bust cycles of the economy.

New York Times Business reports:

The government will order ministries and state companies to use more of their procurement budgets to buy products that qualify as “innovative” and that are made in Russia.

State procurement orders total about $133 billion, he said, and 15 percent now go to Russian technology companies.

Government orders will “support everybody who wants to work in this sphere, everybody who wants to work for the future,” Mr. Kudrin said.

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Filed under: Innovation Update, Six Sigma, Technology

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How IBM Dublin Implements Lean Six Sigma to Go Green

Posted by: meikah | 18 February 2010 | 6:52 pm

IBM has been very vocal about their green initiatives and using Lean Six Sigma for most, if not all, of their processes.

An article on Environmental Leader discusses how IBM goes green by using Lean Six Sigma. IBM initially:

  • Formed a team of about 40 volunteers from around the world and from various groups across the organization to examine areas where improvements could be made – primarily in energy, packaging, solid waste and supplier environmental initiatives. The team members participated in this project in addition to their regular duties. Nearly all the ideas for improvements came from within the group – not from management – and over time we expanded the team to 100 and then 200 employees.
  • The first-year results were impressive. Switching to lightweight, recyclable plastic packing material reduced packaging by 290 metric tons, incidentally lowering GHG emissions for outbound transportation. A variety of energy conservation initiatives in plant and office locations reduced power consumption by 6,300 megawatt-hours.
  • for the second project, a Lean Six Sigma specialist at our Dublin, Ireland, facility learned about a concept developed at IBM Research to apply those principles to energy, water, waste and emissions. With the encouragement of his managers, he worked with the plant’s environmental, operations and process improvement teams to start a pilot project at the plant, using this methodology developed to collect and analyze energy data throughout the plant.

Read more…

Source: iSixSigma News

Filed under: Environment, IBM, Lean Six Sigma, Six Sigma, Sustainable Business

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Six Sigma Webcast: New Lean Six Sigma Belt Certification Standard

Posted by: meikah | 15 February 2010 | 10:34 pm will host the first-ever online conversation on Lean Six Sigma Certification.

When: March 10, 2010

This one-hour program Webcast will feature three speakers:

  • Peg Pennington, Executive Director of The Center for Operational Excellence at Ohio State University
  • Rachel Lane, Associate Vice President, Business Excellence at Nationwide
  • Bill Hathaway, Founder and CEO of

The session will include a discussion on the current state of belt certification practices, the need for an impartial standard, what are the new COE Six Sigma Certification Standards, and how the new standards will better support Lean Six Sigma deployments. The event will conclude with an open forum for participants’ questions, comments, and feedback.Webcast attendees will receive a free PDF of the “iSixSigma Certification Survey.” This survey, referenced in the Webcast, was originally published in the May/June 2008 issue of iSixSigma Magazine.

Register for this free online event!


Filed under: Lean Six Sigma,, Six Sigma, Webinar

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Six Sigma Case Study: Improving Engineering System Reliability in Healthcare

Posted by: meikah | 15 February 2010 | 9:19 pm

Express Healthcare features a case of Dr LH Hiranandani Hospital, Mumbai, a 130 bed multi speciality tertiary and quaternary care hospital.

Through the use of Six Sigma, the hospital is able to improve engineering system reliability. You can say that this is another feather in their cap as the hospital already received the prestigious National Accreditation for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers (NABH).

The other specialties of Dr LH Hiranandani Hospital, Mumbai is: energy efficient structure design to achieve day light harvesting to reduce HVAC load, rain water harvesting system and integrated building management system (IBMS).

The project goals are:

  • utility consumption
  • engineering system reliability
  • flushing water supply

Read how the hospital used Six Sigma to achieve all that.

Filed under: Healthcare, Six Sigma

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