The Benefits of Getting a Lean Six Sigma Consultant

The Benefits of Getting a Lean Six Sigma Consultant - lean six sigma consultant

“The Benefits of Getting a Lean Six Sigma Consultant” written by Mike Marko.

It seems like a lot of people are only now learning about Lean Six Sigma. In fact, I received 4 queries about what a Lean Six Sigma consultant does in the past week alone.

What a Lean Six Sigma consultant does is no real mystery. He’s an expert who can be hired to better your business processes.

He does this by applying Lean Six Sigma, of course. This an improvement methodology that makes processes more efficient as well as consistent (especially results-wise).

The question many are asking is if Lean Six Sigma actually works. Are there truly appreciable benefits to hiring a Lean Six Sigma consultant?

As a matter of fact, there are — and that’s what I’ll talk about here. I’ll also help you understand Lean Six Sigma a little better, to show what it can do for your business.

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What a Lean Six Sigma Consultant Can Offer

In order to understand what a Lean Six Sigma consultant can offer, we need to discuss Lean Six Sigma first.

I already gave you a short description of it earlier. There’s more to be said about it relative to our conversation, though.

For instance, Lean Six Sigma is actually a combination of 2 other improvement methodologies. That’s important because you’ll run into consultants who offer only one of those methodologies.

One might say Lean Six Sigma puts together the best parts of its component methodologies. That’s why it arguably reaps better rewards than the two taken individually.

To see how this is possible, let’s clear up what “Lean Six Sigma” is. We can do that by breaking it down into the methodologies that compose it, starting with “Lean”.

What Is Lean?

“Lean” is the first systematic approach that a Lean Six Sigma consultant learns about. The main goal of Lean is to improve process performance through waste elimination and cycle time reduction.

The “waste” referred to here is any action that isn’t required in the entirety of the process to create a product or provide a service. Call these things a “waste of time”, if you must.

However, making the process shorter doesn’t mean that Lean wants to eliminate variables like employees. Lean wants to eliminate waste and not employees.

Lean is all about making the flow of business faster, more efficient, and more economical. Variables like employees can remain the same while Lean focuses on assessing how the entire process can have less “waste”.

Now, the foundation of Lean is called “Lean Culture”. This “Lean Culture” is something a Lean Six Sigma consultant will initially have and work with.

With “Lean Culture”, employees have improvement and waste elimination as a permanent mindset. And that’s definitely what you want from a Lean Six Sigma consultant.

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What Is Six Sigma?

Now we can talk about “Six Sigma” — which isn’t too far off from Lean. That’s why they work alongside each other so well.

You see, Six Sigma also focuses on efficiently solving problems. By now, you should have guessed that a Lean Six Sigma consultant is trained to strive for efficiency.

However, Six Sigma in particular is also mainly concerned with greater customer satisfaction.

With Six Sigma, causes of problems are identified in order to reduce variation. This in turn makes it possible for products and services to be efficiently delivered to the customer.

Without variation, results can always be predicted. Therefore, good customer service can be guaranteed.

Now think of it this way—you can always expect the same result when you hire a Lean Six Sigma consultant.

Once they’ve assessed what changes your business needs and find a solution, you’ll always have the same satisfactory result.

Importance of “Lean Six Sigma”

Now that we’ve talked about Lean and Six Sigma separately, let’s talk about them working together. After all, that’s what a Lean Six Sigma consultant brings to the table.

Nowadays, both Lean and Six Sigma must be used together. This is because today’s environment is highly demanding as well as dynamic.

In light of this, a business owner’s objective must be to reduce variation and eliminate waste. Being able to do both significantly enhances a business process for utmost efficiency.

Combining the two methods also helps develop a streamlined process with high-quality results. Doing so improves bottom-line profits and assists in meeting business goals.

With Lean and Six Sigma working together, a business owner’s success will rely on three things. Those are management support, employee engagement, and customer satisfaction improvement.

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Benefits of Lean Six Sigma

Hiring a Lean Six Sigma consultant and integrating Lean Six Sigma into your business can offer so much. This is because Lean Six Sigma is versatile and can fit into any business process.

This makes a Lean Six Sigma consultant incredibly flexible. No matter what kind of business is involved, a Lean Six Sigma consultant can benefit it in 7 areas:

  • Finance,
  • Strategy,
  • People development,
  • Customer satisfaction, and
  • Competitive advantage.

1) Financial Benefit

There are many documented cases wherein Lean Six Sigma has helped businesses become more cost-efficient:

  • “Allied Signal” has been saving more than $800 million since 1995.
  • “General Electric” established itself as one of the most admired companies for three years while saving more than $2 billion.
  • The US ARMY is anticipating over $2 billion worth of savings.

Employees who have undergone Lean Six Sigma training will even be able to complete around 2 projects in a year while doing their day jobs. This is an estimate that many businesses have proven to be true.

That’s important because completed projects can save money for a business (through efficiency). More results can mean more profits too.

A Lean Six Sigma consultant can bring about such outcomes. Many of them specialize in trimming down business expenses while bringing up productivity.

2) Strategic Benefit

Next, it’s been established that Lean Six Sigma trains people to be strategic when approaching projects. This strategic attitude will be useful in business.

Employees become more efficient as a result. Your average Lean Six Sigma consultant can thus improve the quality of your current manpower at your company.

With Lean Six Sigma, employees will know better how to analyze problems and find solutions. This can help them deal better with myriad processes and situations.

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3) People Development Benefit

Lean Six Sigma training makes employees more confident as individuals and towards their work. After all, it gives them added skills like strategic thinking and efficiency.

This then leads employees to be more open to suggest new ideas and solutions. They become likelier to speak their minds when they know they have something to contribute.

Gone will be the days when you’d have a meeting where every employee stays silent and passive. That enhanced communication is just another benefit of having a Lean Six Sigma consultant around.

In this way, Lean Six Sigma can also eliminate development barriers that come with a lack of employee self-confidence. That can only be good for your business’s growth.

4) Customer Satisfaction Benefit

This is yet another way a Lean Six Sigma consultant can promote growth in your business. Customer satisfaction is intimately tied to business development, after all.

If you recall, I mentioned before that Six Sigma centers on customer satisfaction. Therefore Lean Six Sigma can help your business deliver higher customer satisfaction.

Some customers today even ask first if a business uses Lean Six Sigma or if has a Lean Six Sigma consultant. This is because they deem it a standard that businesses should have for customer care.

5) Competitive Advantage Benefit

Lastly, having a Lean Six Sigma consultant can give a business a competitive edge. If someone asks what differentiates your business from others, this is a card you can play.

Lean Six Sigma can give you the leverage that you need to get ahead of your rivals. You’ll have the edge when it comes to your business process, as well as bragging rights.

With the strategy training that comes with Lean Six Sigma, your business will be able to plan better marketing and sales pitches too. A Lean Six Sigma consultant can even make this process go faster.

Think about it this way — if your competitor doesn’t use Lean Six Sigma, you already have the upper hand. And if he does use it, then your own consultant can ensure you won’t fall behind!

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Final Thoughts on Lean Six Sigma Consultant Benefits

A Lean Six Sigma consultant can be of immense help to a business.

With the waste elimination that Lean teaches and the customer satisfaction that Six Sigma aims for, your business will blossom. Thus a Lean Six Sigma consultant can show you a better way to run your business.

A Lean Six Sigma consultant can keep you from falling behind your competitors. He can refine your business’s workings in ways that lead to optimal efficiency.

And just to reiterate, Lean Six Sigma brings so much more to the table than “efficiency”. Improved finance, strategy, people development, customer satisfaction, and competitive advantage are all part of the Lean Six Sigma recipe to make your business shine.

So if you want to give your business the edge that it deserves, consider hiring a Lean Six Sigma consultant. It might be just what your business needs.

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