Multiple Authors
By: Kyle Pheland, Belinda Jones

Change is inevitable in every organization. Planned or not, forces inside and outside the enterprise can sometimes encumber a workforce and lead to nonvalue-added processes. Growing spurts, major technology implementations, or even small supply-chain organizational projects can present more issues than expected. However, when a company has a proactive improvement program in place, one that uses lean manufacturing and Six Sigma principles and tools, potential roadblocks can be identified and eliminated.

Joel Bradbury’s picture

By: Joel Bradbury

Healthcare professionals have a long history of caring for their patients and improving the quality of their services. During the Crimean War (1853–1856), British nurse Florence Nightingale realized that the mortality rate of soldiers was far too high. A visionary statistician as well as a talented nurse, she spent months analyzing data to identify what caused the high rate of mortality. She found that hygiene and sanitization were neglected in the triage and care of the soldiers.

GBMP’s picture

By: GBMP

Ellis Medicine is a 438-bed community and teaching healthcare system serving New York’s capital region. With four main campuses, five additional service locations, more than 3,300 employees, and more than 700 medical staff, Ellis Medicine offers an extensive array of inpatient and outpatient services. In 2013 Ellis made a commitment to change the way things get done at the century-old institution.

Ryan E. Day @ Quality Digest’s picture

By: Ryan E. Day @ Quality Digest

You might say what Henry Ford did for the automobile, GE, Siemens, and Mitsubishi have done for the gas and steam turbine industry. Naturally, the tools and technicians of both sectors have had to evolve right along with the challenges of new technology and the ever-increasing demands for improved accuracy and efficiency.

If you work in a facility that looks something like this:

Peter J. Sherman’s picture

By: Peter J. Sherman

As organizations become successful and grow, uncertainty is generally the enemy. Thriving organizations seek to eliminate variation and increase efficiency. They identify best practices and policies, and design standard operating procedures. Such efforts can make a business wildly efficient at what it does, but they can have a serious downside as well: a dearth of variation, creativity, and innovation.

Multiple Authors
By: Afaq Ahmed, Yves Van Nuland

New technologies have empowered customers to seek out the best products and services at the lowest cost and shortest delivery times. Customers can compare price and delivery information as well as reviews about product quality. Thus, the importance of sustaining outstanding quality in order to stand out from competitors and be profitable is critical. It requires a sustainable quality culture with intrinsically motivated employees who view quality not as a chore but as a source of satisfaction.

Ken Levine’s picture

By: Ken Levine

How do you determine the “worst case” scenario for a process? Is it by assuming the worst case for each process task or step? No. The reason is that the probability of every step having its worst case at the same time is practically zero. What we’re looking for is a value that will occur a very small percentage of the time, but still be a possibility.

Jim Benson’s picture

By: Jim Benson

We are all cursed with “surprises” at work. We come in, sit down, get ready for the day. We select a task to start on, and about halfway through, it explodes on us. The seemingly simple task now has 30 subtasks all lined up, ready to destroy our day.

This is stressful. Since we’re likely already overloaded, this new surprise just adds more work to the day and delay to our backlog.

Fred Schenkelberg’s picture

By: Fred Schenkelberg

What if all failures occurred truly randomly? Well, for one thing the math would be easier.

The exponential distribution would be the only time to failure distribution—we wouldn’t need Weibull or other complex multi-parameter models. Knowing the failure rate for an hour would be all we would need to know, over any time frame.

Multiple Authors
By: Kimberly Watson-Hemphill, Kristine Nissen Bradley

Editor’s note: This is an excerpt from the new book, Innovating Lean Six Sigma, by Kimberly Watson-Hemphill and Kristine Nissen Bradley.

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