Don’t ‘Ready – Fire – Aim’ your Six Sigma Black Belts!
I have an abiding respect and admiration for 6-Sigma Black Belts. They are the perfect weapon for bagging process improvements, not unlike one of my favorite rifles, the Accuracy International AX series.
6-Sigma Black Belts, like the rifle pictured above, can be a no-substitute need in one situation and over-kill (no pun intended) in another. They’re not cheap to acquire, use or maintain, so you want to aim them at what merits their capabilities.
That’s where Process Triaging comes in. Process Triaging generates high value targets for Black Belts, be it a 6-Sigma focus (to reduce process variation) or LEAN focus (for removing waste and speeding things up without sacrificing quality). The typical triage session generates 20 process improvements, flushed out and prioritized by your own process experts. Of those 20 or so, there will be some fat, Black Belt-worthy opportunities, now mostly business cased because that’s what triaging provides.
If you have Black Belts working for you, triage the processes in the landscape you want them improving.
If you’re thinking about hiring Black Belts, Process Triage first, to focus your job interviews and resume fit checks.
If you have a Black Belt that’s not getting support from the front line experts, for whatever reason — Process Triage to get everyone on the same page.
Bottom line — Aim your Black Belts through Process Triaging (on a napkin here) and a 2-pager on Triaging First (here).