In an organization implementing Six Sigma, the Black Belts are generally supported by the Green Belts. Black Belts do most of the problem-solving and analytical work. The cost of training, hiring and renting new Black Belts is a major factor that eats into the Six Sigma projects savings. This in turn leads to a decline in the returns on investment. An increasing trend for companies employing Six Sigma in order to save more money per year is to use the unconventional approach of training Green Belts at least two to three years before even considering hiring Black Belts. Green Belt projects take up less time and the training is not so extensive. Using the Six Sigma methodologies, organizations deploying Six Sigma can recover a large part of the early waste. This does not require the superior skills and knowledge of a black belt. This approach allows the organization to grow and educates managers on the use of statistical techniques, which in all probability they haven't learnt while going through training or schooling. Using Green Belts can save a lot on time, training, money and effort.
Creating A Road Map
As with any Six Sigma project, a road map is required to proceed. This is especially related to organizations that are new to Six Sigma and don't have any experienced Black Belts to take control. Six Sigma deals with collecting information, statistics and figures related to a certain process and then using this information to improve the process in order to satisfy the customer. Training involves using the DMAIC model or the define-measure-analyze-improve-control model. However, using this model alone does not yield desirable results. Green Belts need to study the organization's culture and then create a road map for constant improvement.
Skills, Tools And Attributes Required The Green Belt must first figure out how a process performs and how stable that process is. The only way to exhibit stability is by learning, creating and using process-behavior charts. These charts can be used to detect process variation and its various causes. A Green Belt must determine how a process runs or functions by using run charts. Understanding customer needs is also another important tool that is required. Create a QFD or a quality function deployment, which converts customer needs into in-depth product requirements. These requirements should then be employed in the design, production, support and marketing departments. Reduction in the variation that exists in the process will result in an increase in customer satisfaction. The Green Belt must be willing to seek out customers and talk to them about their wants and needs.
Most organizations create problem-solving processes. Ensure that everyone concerned with the process knows how to use this method. Six Sigma can be used at the most suitable time to aid in problem solving. The Green Belt must practice these problem-solving measures in order to solve actual problems. Follow the DMAIC model to make improvements. The Green Belt will have to be trained in all the processes that are used in fundamental Six Sigma applications. After the process has been enhanced, monitor it to make sure that no changes take place. Monitoring can be done with the help of control charts. Green Belts should learn the art of control charting by actually making handwritten charts.
About the Author
Tony Jacowski is a quality analyst for The MBA Journal. Aveta Solution's Six Sigma Online offers online six sigma training and certification classes for lean six sigma, black belts, green belts, and yellow belts.