Lean Six Sigma

“Measure twice, cut once.”

I am a “Lean Six Sigma” Green Belt.

While I did take karate as a child and won a fair amount of medals, this green belt has nothing to do with ninjas or breaking boards with my fist (although I have been known to do that on occasion) . Lean Six Sigma is the combination of 2 different ideas:


A view that time and resources are either value-add or waste, and set of tools/process to help maximize the value add pieces while eliminating/reducing the wasteful pieces. Wastes are broken into 7 categories:

  1. Transportation – Unnecessary movement of people or parts between processes.
    Why It is Waste: When things are moved without making them more valuable, they are extra steps that cost time and money but do not lead to additional profit.
  2. Inventory – Raw material, work in progress or finished goods which is not making money.
    Why It is Waste: Every dollar tied up in materials, work in progress or finished work has a cost until it is sold or rented.
  3. Motion – Unnecessary movements of people, parts or machine within a process.
    Why It is Waste: The more movements done, the more unnecessary time spent instead of working on value add tasks.
  4. Waiting – Idle time between tasks.
    Why It is Waste: The old adage “Time is money” is true.
  5. Overproduction – Making too much of a product or making the product too fast.
    Why It is Waste: Making more than needed or at a higher level of quality than required will lead to inventory and additional costs without additional profit.
  6. Over-processing – Putting more time in than is valued by the customer.
    Why It …read more