Lean Six Sigma
What is it that you sell? For many, this question will lead to a list or description of the products or services their organization provides. The reality is that your customers can get similar products or services from any number of other suppliers. When we reduce what we sell to products or services, we reduce our selves to being little more than a commodity. And when we do this, we compete largely based on price.
Competing on price is a losing proposition. There will always be a competitor who will supply a similar product or service for less; perhaps they are willing to accept a reduced margin or they want to gain market share, but there will always be someone willing to do it for less.
Leveraging Lean Six Sigma to Create a Competitive Advantage
Warren Buffet once said, the one thing every great organization does is they build a moat around
themselves. They create a barrier that protects them from their competitors by differentiating themselves
from their competitors. The most effective way to accomplish this is to understand what your customers are
really buying from you and ensure your organization provides it every time, without fail. Your customers can depend on you to do what you say you will do – every time.
In order to achieve this level of consistency, an organization must install a process that is robust enough and has the management capital (leaderships time, budget and enthusiasm) to ensure continuous improvement becomes part of the culture. This is not easy work. It is a cultural transformation that transcends every level of the organization and engages employees in the execution of this critical work. But the return on this commitment far exceeds the investment: capable and engaged employees will ultimately delight your customers. Customers who will buy more, cost less to serve, be less price sensitive and will serve as ambassadors for your organization…an organization that successfully differentiates itself from its competitors.
Improvements in an organizations performance requires deliberate and active intervention through attention to a combination of transactional and transformational intervention activities. Measurement by itself is never enough to improve performance. Creating organizational change is hard work and requires active and disciplined intervention. Lean Six Sigma is a disciplined and data driven approach designed to improve business processes by eliminating defects and non-value added work. It enables organizations to focus their efforts on addressing the issues that prevent them from achieving better results: reduced costs, increased sales and bottom line profitability.