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October 29, 2004

News & Opinion: Six Sigma for All

By: Dylan Schleicher @ 2:44 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

I am a big fan of Six Sigma. When I worked at GE, I spent three years working in the quality program. So, understand that I am going to be a little partial to books on Six Sigma. The most recent title to cross my desk is Six Sigma Beyond the Factory Floor: Deployment Strategies for Financial Services, Health Care, and the Rest of the the Economy by Ronald Snee and Roger Hoerl. The book is meant for managers and leaders in non-manufacturing companies. The authors lay out their case for why Six Sigma can be used by anyone. You will find definitions, process explanations, and plenty of case studies. The book is meant to convince you that you can do it too. I think they do a pretty good job of it. Hardcore Six Sigma folks might be left disappointed, because most of it your already know. There is a section at the end of the book that does discuss some of the challenges in the non-manufacturing environment. These include the heavily reliance on discrete data and difficulty of verify your measurement systems. This book is the third in a series for the authors. Their other books include Statistical Thinking: Improving Business Performance and Leading Six Sigma: A Step by Step Guide Based on Experience With GE and Other Six Sigma Companies.

About Dylan Schleicher


Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.