Article Revised: March 26, 2019
As a Quality Digest columnist I tend to be a reader of their other authors, too. This month’s Inside Six Sigma article from Steven Ouellette, The Six Sigma Heretic, provides a pretty good overview of important things to consider when choosing a Six Sigma project. But there’s one big oversight that I noticed. Steven fails to include as a criteria that the project should address a problem or opportunity where the connection between the desired outcome and the causes driving it are unclear. Projects can have every other attribute mentioned in the article and still not be good Six Sigma projects if they’re missing this vital attribute. The reason is simple: if the causes of the outcome are known, you don’t need the Six Sigma skill set to successfully complete the project. It is, essentially, a “Just Do” project. The training provided to Six Sigma Black Belts or Six Sigma Green Belts will be wasted. There are probably better projects for them to undertake.