Team Building with Six Sigma

In a podcast, I had Jeffrey M. Koff, the Director of Lean Six Sigma Learning on from Xerox we broke off on some of the discussion on Lean and Six Sigma and focused briefly on team building. You can read or listen to the entire podcast here Design for Six Sigma or the podcast with Aqua Porter, Lean Six Sigma Advocacy at Xerox.

Excerpt from Koff’s Podcast:

Joe Dager: I think you heard the previous podcast I had with Aqua. She had mentioned the team-building and the process that is used at Xerox. I can see that everybody is on the board at Xerox because you even bring it up its importance. You use Lean and Six Sigma in Design. I believe it is the natural extension for it since most of the process problems and other problems you have in a product are built into it and designed in it to begin with. How do you start with that process?

Jeffrey Koff: We work within our outlying community to help them to be more efficient, more effectively gather requirements from customer, help them segment the market, understand the market forces and demystify the whole market research process so that they can work quicker, respond in the market and work with the hardware and software development teams. I think this link is one that we’re not quite as advanced as other areas, but the impact is just enormous. When you see people embracing the message and using more and reaching for the program development teams, we are getting some really, really good stretch, through the whole value chain up to the whole delivery process.

I think it is essential to for the hardware and software folks to get this information. There is sort of a diagram such as a Venn diagram that overlaps the Voice of the Customer, Software development, and the Mechanical Hardware development pieces. They all need to interact, and the marketing piece basically takes the lead, grab the VOCPs and put them on steroids. The software development basically takes the main piece and put it on steroids, and the Hardware piece takes the actualization and puts that in steroids.

I mean it is hard to separate one from the other and when I draw a diagram, filling in the big loop of that thing and that loop to me is lean because of the basic principles apply throughout the activities and so we talk about why we’re doing this and how we’re doing this. I think it really comes down to, if we get the thing firing on all cylinders, then we’re delivering the right customer value to the right customer. And we’re getting products out there that should have great reliability and great cost model attached to them. I think it’s sort of our Holy Grail here.

CAP-Do (More Info): What makes CAP-Do so attractive is that it assumes we do not have the answers. It allows us to create a systematic way to address the problems (pain) or opportunities (gain) from the use of our products and services.

Lean Marketing eBooks (More Info): Excerpt from the Lean Marketing House