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Six Sigma For Dummies, 2nd Edition

ISBN: 978-1-118-12035-4
408 pages
October 2012
Six Sigma For Dummies, 2nd Edition (1118120353) cover image


The fast and easy way to understand and implement Six Sigma

The world's largest and most profitable companies—including the likes of GE, Bank of America, Honeywell, DuPont, Samsung, Starwood Hotels, Bechtel, and Motorola—have used Six Sigma to achieve breathtaking improvements in business performance, in everything from products to processes to complex systems and even in work environments. Over the past decade, over $100 billion in bottom-line performance has been achieved through corporate Six Sigma programs. Yet, despite its astounding effectiveness, few outside of the community of Six Sigma practitioners know what Six Sigma is all about.

With this book, Six Sigma is revealed to everyone. You might be in a company that's already implemented Six Sigma, or your organization may be considering it. You may be a student who wants to learn how it works, or you might be a seasoned business professional who needs to get up to speed. In any case, this updated edition of Six Sigma For Dummies is the most straightforward, non-intimidating guide on the market.

  • New and updated material, including real-world examples
  • What Six Sigma is all about and how it works
  • The benefits of Six Sigma in organizations and businesses
  • The powerful "DMAIC" problem-solving roadmap
  • Yellow, Green and Black—how the Six Sigma "belt" system works
  • How to select and utilize the right tools and technologies
  • Speaking the language of Six Sigma; knowing the roles and responsibilities; and mastering the statistics skills and analytical methods

Six Sigma For Dummies will become everyone's No. 1 resource for discovering and mastering the world's most famous and powerful improvement tool. Stephen Covey is spot-on when he says, "Six Sigma For Dummies is a book to be read by everyone."

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Table of Contents

Introduction 1

Part I: Getting Acquainted with Six Sigma Basics 7

Chapter 1: Better Business and Better Performance: Defining Six Sigma 9

Chapter 2: Linking Quality and Business 17

Chapter 3: Examining the Principles and Language of Six Sigma 31

Chapter 4: Organizing for Improvement 43

Part II: DMAIC: Defining and Measuring 61

Chapter 5: Identifying and Right-Sizing Projects 63

Chapter 6: Launching a Project 77

Chapter 7: Mapping to Identify Possible Factors 87

Chapter 8: Diagramming to Identify Possible Factors 101

Chapter 9: Describing Performance with Numbers 113

Part III: DMAIC: Analyzing 133

Chapter 10: Depicting and Analyzing Data through Charts and Graphs 135

Chapter 11: Analyzing for Value 155

Chapter 12: What’s Normal? Recognizing Normally-Shaped Variation 165

Chapter 13: Assessing Capability: Comparing the Voices of the Customer and the Process 179

Chapter 14: Gauging Gauges: Measurement System Analysis (MSA) 199

Chapter 15: Mining Data and Processes for Insight 209

Chapter 16: Making Confident Decisions 227

Part IV: DMAIC: Improving and Controlling 241

Chapter 17: Forecasting Future Performance 243

Chapter 18: Designing, Conducting, and Analyzing Experiments (DOE) 259

Chapter 19: Standardizing on Improvement 281

Chapter 20: Maintaining Gains through Statistical Process Control 291

Part V: Looking at the Six Sigma Technology Tool Landscape 309

Chapter 21: Eyeing Process Characterization and Optimization Technologies 311

Chapter 22: Tools for Performing Six Sigma Analysis 323

Chapter 23: Managing Six Sigma 331

Part VI: The Part of Tens 343

Chapter 24: Ten Top Do's and Don’ts of Six Sigma 345

Chapter 25: Ten Ways to Gain Synergies with Lean and Six Sigma 349

Chapter 26: Ten Places to Go for Help 353

Index 357

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Author Information

Craig Gygi is Executive VP of Operations at MasterControl, a leading company providing software and services for best practices in automating and connecting every stage of quality/regulatory compliance, through the entire product life cycle. He is an operations executive and internationally recognized Lean Six Sigma thought leader and practitioner. Bruce Williams is Vice President of Pegasystems, the world leader in business process management. He is a leading speaker and presenter on business and technology trends, and is co-author of Six Sigma Workbook for Dummies, Process Intelligence for Dummies, BPM Basics for Dummies and The Intelligent Guide to Enterprise BPM. Neil DeCarlo was President of DeCarlo Communications.

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Press Release

October 03, 2012
Take a Quantum Leap with Six Sigma For Dummies

Excerpted from the Introduction:

Six Sigma is the single most effective problem-solving methodology for improving business and organizational performance. There's not a business, technical, or process challenge that Six Sigma can't improve. The world's top corporations have used it to increase their profits collectively by more than $100 billion over the past ten years. In certain corporations, indicating Six Sigma proficiency on your resume is now a prerequisite to moving into a position in management.

If you're part of a Fortune 500 company -- particularly a manufacturing company -- you've heard about Six Sigma. You may even have been through a training regimen and been part of a corporate initiative or an improvement project. If so, you know the capabilities of Six Sigma; you've witnessed its achievements firsthand.

But if, like many people, you're outside of the upper echelons of big business, you may know Six Sigma by name only. It has been too expensive and complicated for small- and medium-sized businesses, public institutions, not-for-profit organizations, educational environments, and even aspiring individuals. Its potential has remained out of reach for the vast majority of professionals and organizations worldwide.

All this is changing. As the methods and tools of Six Sigma have spread, it has become easier to understand and more straightforward to implement. The mysteries of Six Sigma have been revealed.

Simply stated, Six Sigma is about applying a structured, scientific method to improve any aspect of a business, organization, process, and person. It's about engaging in disciplined data collection and analysis to determine the best possible ways of meeting your customers' needs while satisfying yours and minimizing wasted resources and maximizing profit in the process. Six Sigma For Dummies, 2nd Edition, helps you to do just that.



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