Archive for the ‘Six Sigma Concepts’ Category

Problem Solving via 21st Century Thinking

June 15, 2010

 http://www.bnet.com/2403-13502_23-389551.html?tag=PayScale_startModule;startModule_stateDropDown_dropDown

I stumbled across this great article via bnet.com called Using Knowledge Brokering to Improve Business Processes.  In essence, this article speaks to how open-source communication works not only for software developers, but also to resolve management and/or product issues within the 21st Century.  I am very passionate about using the phrase “21st Century” because, I feel, the more I emphasize it the more my colleagues and friends will believe they are no longer in the industrial age.  Therefore, my subliminal motivation is to prod them to think and live innovatively, in addition to creatively.

This article closely aligns itself with my training and experience in Lean Six Sigma.  There is a concept of “TRIZ” (pronounced – ‘treez) where every business problem has its solution within another business process currently, or previously was, in effect.  Lean Six Sigma uses a systematic methodology to identify such resources and lead a strategic team to a solution.  I hope you find this article as interesting and applicable to business innovation as I did.

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Six Sigma Methodology Applied to Operational Safety Innovation

November 11, 2009

http://www.portfolioweekly.com/ME2/dirmod.asp?sid=&nm=&type=MultiPublishing&mod=PublishingTitles&mid=6EECC0FE471F4CA995CE2A3E9A8E4207&tier=4&id=018E32A35BCE46E1AE8614D9A16868C1

The link above takes one to a site with web video of the horrifying, near fatal accident on a Boston, Mass. subway track/platform during the second week in November 2009.  As a Lean Six Sigma Black Belt practitioner, and a US Air Force Security Police veteran, I began thinking whether any practices could be used to avert another such tragedy occurring anywhere in the US, or the world.  Next, I thought of the concepts of TRIZ, Poka Yoke and Kaizen.  Then I developed a mental Fishbone chart which brought me to an idea with many operationally practical uses.  Finally, I submitted my ideas to the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) and to other major, US metropolitan transit authorities.

The TRIZ concept states, essentially, that any challenge, question, process, etc. has already been resolved via another implemented process.  I submitted to the MBTA the idea of a “Station Emergency” switch/device that, in the Boston case, someone on the platform could activate to warn the train operator.  This application has practical Homeland Security use, too.  If a terrorist attack such as a bomb or toxic gas incident occurs the switch/device is activated to warn and prevent the operator from entering the affected station.  This will prevent a casualty increase from the next rider-filled train.  Simultaneously, the switch/device will activate warnings to summon first responders such as police and other emergency personnel.

Private and public entities should develop options their personnel can use to express ideas and concepts that will save money, or lives, via their input.  Other thoughts?

Use of “Dashboard” Tool

August 27, 2009

  As a practitioner of Lean Six Sigma, I am always looking for innovative ways to use “dashboards” or “Balanced Score Cards” in relaying, conveying objective information.  Many companies, organizations and websites are following this type of reporting that was led by General Electric (GE) under the leadership of former CEO Jack Welch.  I refer specifically to my experience with GE Power Systems located in Alpharetta, Georgia.

  I visited their new-age campus back in 2003 while I was the Program Coordinator for a College Bound Program.  I was given the opportunity to see their “control room” that tracks and monitors engines, turbines, etc. throughout the entire world.  On each power system turbine there were three lights; red, yellow, green.  This reported to GE Power System controllers the engine’s operating efficiency.  This type of metric is easily understood as most motorists are familiar with the traffic light.

 Well, I saw how the “dashboard” is being adapted to more corners of everyday life.  I watched the NBC Nightly News broadcast on 31AUG09 as anchor-man Brian Williams featured such a “tool” being used to guide new students attending Purdue University.  Here is the link to that broadcast found on the MSNBC website:  

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/32634348#32634348

 I am interested in learning other points-of-view as to how/if this will become the norm for everyone when trying to make critical decisions.