Ready to unlock unprecedented efficiency, cost savings, and customer satisfaction within your team? How do you equip your team with the skills and knowledge to harness the potential of lean six sigma training? This article dives into the essential steps you need to take, from choosing the right training options to fostering a culture of continuous improvement, to successfully guide your team on their Lean Six Sigma journey.

Should I hire a consultant or hire an employee?

Whether to hire a consultant or an employee for Lean Six Sigma training depends on several factors specific to your company and goals. Here’s a breakdown of the pros related to each option.

Hiring a Consultant – Pros:

  • Fast access to expertise: Consultants bring proven experience and can jumpstart your training program quickly.
  • Customization: They can tailor the training to your specific needs and industry.
  • Objectivity: They can offer an unbiased perspective and challenge existing assumptions.
  • Flexibility: You only pay for their services during the training period.

Hiring an Employee – Pros:

  • Long-term investment: An employee becomes a permanent asset with ongoing expertise and support.
  • Cultural fit: They’ll understand your company culture and integrate seamlessly into your team.
  • Cost-effective in the long run: After initial training costs, their salary may be less than ongoing consultant fees.

Determining your first continuous improvement (CI) hire

This task depends heavily on your organization’s specific needs and context. Here are some key factors to consider:

Current State:

  • Level of CI maturity: Are you just starting or already have some initiatives in place?
  • Areas for improvement: Have you identified specific bottlenecks or pain points you want to address?
  • Team structure: Do you have dedicated resources for CI, or will this be a new function?

Future Goals:

  • Scope of CI program: Will it be company-wide or focused on specific departments/projects?
  • Desired impact: Are you aiming for cost reduction, quality improvement, or something else?
  • Budget and resources: How much are you willing to invest in this hire?

How can I justify adding more Directors of Continuous Improvement?

The first thing you want to ask yourself when wanting to justify adding more Directors of Continuous Improvement to your organization is:

Justifying additional Directors of Continuous Improvement (DoCIs) requires presenting a compelling case that demonstrates the value they’ll bring to your organization. Here’s how you can approach it with the help of KPI Fire.

Quantify the current impact of CI:

  • Gather data in the KPI Fire app: Showcase the measurable improvements achieved through existing CI initiatives (e.g., cost savings, productivity gains, quality improvement).
  • Highlight successes: Share concrete examples of successful projects led by current DoCIs.
  • Calculate ROI: Estimate the return on investment (ROI) of your current CI program.

Project future needs and challenges:

  • Identify growth areas: Outline new departments, projects, or initiatives requiring dedicated CI focus.
  • Forecast expansion: Analyze anticipated business growth and its impact on CI demands.
  • Address capacity limitations: Demonstrate how current DoCIs are reaching their capacity and struggling to meet growing needs.

Connect additional DoCIs to strategic goals:

  • Align with objectives: Show how adding DoCIs directly supports key organizational goals (e.g., increasing efficiency, enhancing customer satisfaction).
  • Strategically deploy: Propose specific areas where additional DoCIs will have the most significant impact.
  • Demonstrate long-term value: Explain how DoCIs contribute to building a culture of continuous improvement for sustainable success.

Present well-structured arguments:

  • To present your argument well, develop a project-benefits report with KPI Fire as shown below: Consider salary, training, and potential ROI to create a clear financial picture in the KPI Fire app. Easily manage project savings as shown in the video below.

By thoroughly presenting the potential benefits, addressing potential concerns, and aligning additional DoCIs with strategic goals, you can build a strong justification for their value and increase your chances of obtaining approval.

Convincing your CFO to invest more in Lean Six Sigma training

This requires presenting a compelling case that demonstrates the positive financial impact and return on investment (ROI) it will bring to the company. Here are some steps you can take:

1. Align training with business goals:

  • Identify specific business goals: What are the key challenges the company is facing? What are the strategic objectives you want to achieve?
  • Connect training to goals with the X Matrix tool: Show how the proposed training directly addresses these goals and objectives. For example, if you want to increase sales, training your sales team on new communication and negotiation skills could directly improve their performance.

KPI Fire’s X Matrix Tool allows you to align your business objectives in a multi-dimensional and dynamic way, far surpassing other methods. Be sure to use this comprehensive training resource for the KPI Fire Dynamic X Matrix feature. Configure goal durations as shown below in the KPI Fire app:

2. Quantify the impact of CI efforts: Estimate the potential financial benefits of achieving these goals. For example, a 10% increase in sales could translate to X amount of additional revenue. Continue to conduct a cost-benefits analysis as described below.

3. Conduct a thorough cost-benefit analysis with KPI Fire:

  • Calculate all training costs with KPI Fire: Include instructor fees, materials, travel, and employee time away from work.
  • Estimate the ROI: Use the potential financial benefits identified in the previous step to calculate the expected return on investment.
  • Focus on long-term ROI: Don’t just focus on immediate cost savings. Show how the training will have a positive impact on the company’s long-term financial health.

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