We can’t afford a full time Black Belt. Does ProgressivEdge, Inc. offer part-time Lean Six Sigma help?
Yes. ProgressivEdge, Inc. offers many options from facilitating value stream mapping to full scale kaizen events to ongoing support as needed. Retainers are a great way to have an “on-call” Master Black Belt available to support Process Improvement needs. Contact us here to get started.
In truth, once you catch the Lean Six Sigma bug, you will never be finished with it. Continuous improvement is the way to stay competitive and stay in business for years to come.
Choosing the right people to be trained in Lean Six Sigma (LSS) is a very important and often overlooked step. Those employees who are motivated learners, ready and able to dive in and make improvements happen are your best choice. They should have the authority to make decisions and the resources necessary to drive LSS and create a Continuous Improvement culture.
If you are interested in becoming a Lean Six Sigma (LSS) Green Belt, you would need to take a six-day course which is usually broken up over the course of several months. This includes five days of training, testing, one-on-one coaching through a project and one day of presentations.
If you are interested in becoming a LSS Black Belt, you have two options. If you are already a LSS Green Belt, you could take ProgressivEdge, Inc.’s LSS Black Belt Upgrade by taking eight additional days of training over a period of four months. If you are not a LSS Green Belt yet, the full LSS Black Belt course is thirteen days long broken up over a five to six month period. This course includes twelve days of training, testing, one-on-one coaching through a project and one day of presentations.
This is usually not a problem. Many organizations are willing to take a LSS GB or BB candidate and assign them a project since they know they will reap the benefits of the project. Students who are between jobs could be paired up with other students in the public classes who are employed or ProgressivEdge, Inc. could connect them with a company that would like some help improving their business.
I am already a LSS Green Belt. Do I need to go through the Green Belt material again to become a Black Belt?
If you have been trained by ProgressivEdge, Inc., no. You can simply take the LSS Black Belt Upgrade we offer which is an eight-day course over a period of four months. If you have been trained elsewhere, we will conduct an interview with you, usually by phone, and discuss the content of the training you have received to determine whether you have been given all of the tools you need for the Black Belt Upgrade course. All LSS Green Belt courses are not the same. Some are missing important tools while others do not include a hands-on approach or require the completion of a project. To earn your certificate from ProgressivEdge, Inc., we need to be sure you get the training you really need to implement LSS effectively.
While our Lean Six Sigma (LSS) Black Belt course gives you the training to teach other LSS Green Belts, it does not instantly provide the experience required to be a qualified instructor. The LSS BB training includes Train-the-Trainer in preparation for your future trainer needs. After having worked a few projects, you will develop your ability to effectively teach Green Belts. To accelerate your ability to teach LSS you could work towards your Master Black Belt. Please contact us here to learn more about our unique and cost effective Master Black Belt program.
Not at all. We at ProgressivEdge, Inc. believe in continuing our relationships with our students. We are available by e-mail or phone to help you along whenever you need it even if you took our training years ago.
Yes. In early 2020, due to COVID-19 restrictions on travel and gathering in groups, ProgressivEdge began offering online training to accommodate client needs. Traditionally, we have only offered face-to-face training because it is more engaging and allows for more hands-on simulations and interactions. These things are difficult to do effectively in web-based training, but we have done our best to convert some of our simulations into a virtual-friendly format. The trainings are conducted via video calls so students are able to see and speak with each other and the trainer. Contact us to discuss how we can provide you with virtual/web-based training.
Our preference is to conduct in-person training whenever possible. Our hands-on approach in class helps bring the material to life. Each student, by being present in a classroom setting, learns from the others. In our Black Belt “Train the Trainer” session, each student also learns to teach a roomful of students. Hands-on simulations are practiced.
The terms used to identify the level of training one has received in Six Sigma are the terms used in the martial arts world. Having a Black Belt in karate requires much skill, dedication and discipline as well as real-world experience. The training for this is demanding and rewarding. Green Belts, Yellow Belts, and White Belts are for those who have trained less while a Master Black Belt is the Sensei who trains others to master karate. These concepts are very much applicable to Six Sigma and Lean Six Sigma.
The Belts apply to both Six Sigma and Lean Six Sigma (LSS)
White Belt (standard or for Leaders): Involves one day of training usually provided as general overall knowledge to large groups. It is not project based. This content can also be provided to Leaders with added subjects related to leadership and deployment of the LSS concepts and is called White Belt for Leaders.
Yellow Belt : Consists of two days of training. This is the same as White Belt with additional detail allowing for better application of the concepts. It is not project based. This content is can also be provided to Leaders with added subjects related to leadership and deployment of the LSS concepts and is called Yellow Belt for Leaders
Green Belt : Six days of training are required and are usually spread out over three months. This certification training is based on project application and results. On the job, those trained as Green Belts usually work part-time on projects in conjunction with other responsibilities.
Black Belt : Involves thirteen days of training usually spread out over five months This certification training is based on project application and results. Traditionally those trained as Black Belts worked full-time implementing Process Improvements leading high impact projects. They train and Mentor LSS Green Belts.
Master Black Belt : The Technical Mentor for Black Belts and Green Belts. The process of becoming a Master Black Belt takes anywhere from one to two years after completing the Black Belt course. They act as consultant and trainer and stay involved both strategically and tactically with Process Improvements.
Kaizen is Continuous Improvement. It can be very small actions or very large projects. Kaizen events are a structured approach to achieve kaizen. Kaizen Events can be provided as training or as a workshop focused on improving any aspect of your business.
Please refer to the Glossary for any other terms you can’t wait to know about.
Lean creates a culture to help your business identify and eliminate wasteful activity while Six Sigma focuses on reducing and controlling variation. By combining both of these methods, businesses have been able to reduce costs and increase their profits much faster than by using just Lean or just Six Sigma alone. Lean Six Sigma is the combination of Lean’s Speed and Six Sigma’s Quality for optimum quantifiable improvements.
If you are forced to split Lean Six Sigma apart, Lean should come first. Lean is a tool set and a methodology that creates a culture of change. There is strategic work that must be done to assure sustained improvement of Lean, but Lean basics alone will deliver quick hit results and get the people involved early rather than later.
Yes, yes, and yes! Lean Six Sigma (LSS) principles can be applied to any industry. ProgressivEdge, Inc. has successfully implemented LSS in healthcare, insurance, architecture, construction, distribution, maintenance, transportation, design, data processing, logistics, energy, research and service industries. Anywhere you take steps to accomplish something, you can use LSS.
ProgressivEdge, Inc.’s prices are very reasonable compared to others who do similar work, but if your business needs a little help we will work with you to find a way to set you on your Process Improvement jouney. If your company is based in California, you may qualify to get ETP funding from the state to help cover some of the training costs. In the long run, training your employees in Lean Six Sigma will pay for itself many times over. In fact, we are often asked why we do not charge more for helping businesses save so much.
Often businesses will spend time and money training employees in this or that methodology only to see nothing come of it in the end. Their employees continue to do things the way they have always done it in the past. There can be a few reasons for this, some of which will be addressed here:
First, the management needs to be on board, with at least a basic understanding of the methods and showing enthusiasm for the training. Secondly, the people to be trained need to be motivated learners who are ready and able to dive in and make improvements happen. Thirdly, training needs to be visual, related to something they already know and hands-on where the lessons learned will be applied immediately. And finally, once training is complete, there needs to be a culture of continuous improvement that keeps the ball rolling.
ProgressivEdge, Inc. training is specifically designed to help with all of these aspects to ensure your business gets the Return on Investment it should.
For the past few years the LSS Green Belts have averaged $185,000 annual hard savings and the LSS Black Belts are closer to $300,000 annual hard savings. Lean alone does not always focus on direct ROI, but in the long run the returns are there as the culture develops.
Does applying Lean Six Sigma principles mean some people will get fired? We’ll have to let people go? Downsize our workforce?
Not necessarily. While it is true that applying Lean Six Sigma (LSS) will increase your company’s efficiency, it can also lead to reclaiming time for your existing employees to focus on other opportunities for business growth that they just did not have in the past. LSS can improve your company’s bottom line in many ways without cutting your workforce.
I see why we could benefit from Lean Six Sigma, but my boss isn’t on board. What can ProgressivEdge, Inc. do to change this?
ProgressivEdge, Inc. offers a White Belt for Leaders and Champion development courses to address this problem head on. These one-day trainings will allow leaders to obtain basic knowledge of the most common Lean Six Sigma tools. These courses are designed to provide participants with a good overall knowledge and application of the tools and potential benefits from applying the tools. Once management sees the benefits they often become very motivated to bring Lean Six Sigma in to improve their business.
Let ProgressivEdge, Inc. come to you. With our Turnkey offerings we will jump right in to begin improvements immediately. But be aware, as we go through these exercises, you and your employees will get some training along the way.