Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance, Volume I

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Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance, Volume I

SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND Foundations of Excellent Performance SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND A series by D.H. Stamatis Volume I Fou

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SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND Foundations of Excellent Performance

SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND A series by D.H. Stamatis Volume I

Foundations of Excellent Performance

Volume II

Problem Solving and Basic Mathematics

Volume III

Statistics and Probability

Volume IV

Statistical Process Control

Volume V

Design of Experiments

Volume VI

Design for Six Sigma

Volume VII

The Implementing Process

D. H. Stamatis

SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND Foundations of Excellent Performance

ST. LUCIE PRES S A CRC Press Company Boca Raton London New York Washington, D.C.

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Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Stamatis, D.H., 1947Six sigma and beyond: foundations of excellent performance / Dean H. Stamatis. p. cm.—(Six Sigma and beyond series) Includes bibliographical references. ISBN 1-57444-311-9 (v. 1 : alk. paper) 1. Quality control—Statistical methods. 2. Production management—Statistical methods. 3. Industrial management. I. Title. II. Series. TS156 .S73 2001 658.5′62—dc21


This book contains information obtained from authentic and highly regarded sources. Reprinted material is quoted with permission, and sources are indicated. A wide variety of references are listed. Reasonable efforts have been made to publish reliable data and information, but the author and the publisher cannot assume responsibility for the validity of all materials or for the consequences of their use. Neither this book nor any part may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, microfilming, and recording, or by any information storage or retrieval system, without prior permission in writing from the publisher. The consent of CRC Press LLC does not extend to copying for general distribution, for promotion, for creating new works, or for resale. Specific permission must be obtained in writing from CRC Press LLC for such copying. Direct all inquiries to CRC Press LLC, 2000 N.W. Corporate Blvd., Boca Raton, Florida 33431. Trademark Notice: Product or corporate names may be trademarks or registered trademarks, and are used only for identification and explanation, without intent to infringe.

Visit the CRC Press Web site at © 2002 by CRC Press LLC St. Lucie Press is an imprint of CRC Press LLC No claim to original U.S. Government works International Standard Book Number 1-57444-311-9 Library of Congress Card Number 2001041635 Printed in the United States of America 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 Printed on acid-free paper

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Dedication This volume is dedicated to the new engineer in the family, Cary

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Preface Whether one agrees or not with the methodology of six sigma, at this juncture, it is an academic argument. The fact of the matter is that major corporations all over the world are following this particular methodology with the hopes that customer satisfaction will increase and the financial position of the organization will strengthen. So, what is this six sigma phenomenon? Basically, it is a statistical measure that defines variation. Specifically, if a company is operating under the six sigma philosophy, then it would produce 3.4 nonconformances per million opportunities. (We prefer the term nonconformance for legal reasons. The traditional verbiage has been defective.) A nonconformance is a deviation from the requirement. Whereas the six sigma methodology is nothing new, it does provide a structured approach to improving the process and that in itself may prove to be worthwhile. On the other hand, we believe that the return of an organization’s effort will be much more favorable to the “bottom line” if the six sigma methodology was focused on the design and not the product. More about this will be found in Volume VI of this series. This work will attempt to focus on six sigma and beyond for both manufacturing and transactional organizations. Specifically, we will discuss the foundations of quality, and progressively, we will move into what is called the six sigma methodology from a design perspective. We will discuss some of the tools used in the methodology and close this series with an implementation scheme that, if followed, will help any organization improve both their processes and financial status. Moreover, in this work, we are going to address the issue of quality from a fundamental point of view and continue in an advanced path to demonstrate the results of planning for quality rather than appraising quality. Our focus is to show the tools one needs for improvement, but also to demonstrate how these tools can be used to optimize the process for six sigma (99.99966%) and beyond. To do this we have separated the work into seven volumes. Each one is independent of one another and may be read or followed in any order that the reader needs the appropriate and applicable information. Each volume’s content is summarized below.

SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND: FOUNDATIONS OF EXCELLENT PERFORMANCE, VOLUME I In this volume, we focus on the very fundamental issues of all quality systems and we give an overview of the six sigma concept. This is the volume in which we define quality and recognize some of the elements that both management and nonmanagement personnel must understand for success.

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In addition, this volume addresses the issues of team and the mechanics of teams as they relate to quality. Quality is the result of everyone, which is the premise of this work, and as such the topic of teams is a fundamental one, especially when one tries to go beyond six sigma constraints. We believe that quality depends on the team effort of everyone and it is through synergy that process optimization occurs. However, since the topic of teams has been written about extensively, in this volume we focus on teams, their behaviors, their assumptions, and their benefits as they relate to quality, and we do that by question and answer rather than full text discussion. An extensive bibliography is given for the reader to pursue each topic on his own. In this volume we also include what we think is the body of knowledge for an effective six sigma program. As of now, the body of knowledge has not been officially designated.

SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND: PROBLEM SOLVING AND BASIC MATHEMATICS, VOLUME II In this volume, we focus on the problem solving methodology which is very fundamental to any quality initiative. We begin by addressing what is a problem and then systematically we define the process of resolving the problem. The second part of this volume addresses basic mathematics that are used in all phases of quality. The approach we have taken is to introduce the mathematical concept, give an example, and then proceed with several exercises for the reader.

SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND: STATISTICS AND PROBABILITY, VOLUME III In this volume, we address the essential topics of statistics and probability as they are used in the field of quality. We address topics for both measurable and attribute characteristics. In addition we make the connection between statistics, probability, and reliability.

SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND: STATISTICAL PROCESS CONTROL, VOLUME IV Statistical Process Control (SPC) has been covered in the literature quite extensively. However, in this volume we take a simplistic approach to the topic by emphasizing the “why we do” and “how to do” SPC in all kinds of environments. In addition, we address issues that concern measurement, service SPC, as well as issues that concern short runs and capability.

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SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND: DESIGN OF EXPERIMENTS, VOLUME V In this volume, we attempt to demystify the topic of Design of Experiments (DOE). We begin by explaining the concept of variation and the need for experimentation and we follow through with applications. The strength of this volume is in the fact that it also addresses “robust designs” by including the Taguchi methodology of experimentation.

SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND: DESIGN FOR SIX SIGMA, VOLUME VI This volume addresses improvement from a preventive perspective by introducing the reader into a sequence of disciplines, so that a six sigma design may be reached. The minimum required disciplines are identified as: • • • • • • • • • • •

Customer satisfaction Quality function deployment Benchmarking Systems engineering Value engineering Reliability and maintainability Design for manufacturability Mistake proofing Failure mode and effect analysis Project management Financial concepts

SIX SIGMA AND BEYOND: THE IMPLEMENTING PROCESS, VOLUME VII This final volume of the series is a summary of the curriculum that a typical six sigma program should follow. It also provides what we believe are the objectives for a successful and rewarding implementation of each phase in training for the six sigma methodology. It begins by summarizing some key objectives for a six sigma professional and then it addresses the specific requirements and training schedule for each of the categories. The categories are: 1. 2. 3. 4.

Champions Green belts Black belts Shogun six sigma master

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TARGET AUDIENCE Our target audience, by design, is everyone, i.e., academics and practitioners, who desire to know about quality systems, the six sigma concept, or to review specific topics within the six sigma quality body of knowledge in a timely manner and with specificity. The primary users will be the ones who actually are about to embark in the six sigma methodology and this work is going to help them understand the concepts and the constraints of implementation as well as the benefits of attaining the six sigma status. The secondary users will be the individuals who want to know specific tools, concepts, definitions, and generally educate themselves about the six sigma methodology.

HOW TO USE THESE VOLUMES By design these volumes may be used independently of each other or sequentially. Each volume obviously builds on the previous volume in the content domain, but some readers may not need that information. Our intent for this series is to discuss the issue of six sigma from a very elementary level to an advanced level. As such some volumes, for example, Volumes III, V, and VI, are very technical and demand that the reader spend some time studying the issues and content of these volumes. For the casual reader, the series may be used as a reference to the six sigma methodology.

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Acknowledgments In a typical book, the author has several, if not many, individuals who have helped in the process of completion. In this mammoth work, I have so many individuals that have helped that I am concerned that I may forget someone. To write a book is a collective undertaking by many people. To write a book that conveys hundreds of thoughts, principles, and ways of doing things is truly a Herculean task for one individual. Since I am definitely not a Hercules or a Superman, I have depended on many people over the years to guide me and help me formulate my thoughts and opinions about many things, including this work. For me to thank everyone by name who has contributed to this work is impossible, although I am indebted to all of them for their contribution. However, there are some organizations and individuals who do stand beyond the rest and who, without them, this series would not be possible. In any case, there are some individuals who pushed me to actually write this series of books and have reviewed and commented on several of the drafts. There are also individuals who have helped me in solidifying some of the items covered in this work, through lengthy discussions. The individuals who fall in these categories are M. Heaffy, H. Bajaria, J. Spencer, V. Lowe, L. Lemberson, R. Roy, R. Munro, E. Rice, and G. Tomlison. Their encouragement and thought-provoking discussions helped me tremendously in formalizing not only the content but also the flow of the material, as well as the depth. I would like to thank the Six Sigma Academy, for granting me permission to use some of their material in comparing the classical approach to the new approach of defects as well as the chart in significance of differences between the 3σ, 4σ, 5σ, and 6σ. I would like to thank the American Marketing Association for granting me permission to summarize the fake and mining data articles from the Marketing News. (Reprinted with permission from “Data mining: Race for mission-critical information” and “Improve your research through fake data,” from the “January 3, 2000 issue of Marketing News,” published by the American Marketing Association, Vol. 34.) I would like to thank the Tennessee Associates U.S.A., Inc., for granting me permission to use some of their material on team development and team roles and responsibilities. I would also like to thank the TRACOM Co. for granting me permission to use the material on the four social styles model. In addition, I would like to thank the American Society for Quality (ASQ) for granting me permission to summarize: (1) some key issues about teams from “making perfect harmony with teams” published in their ONQ magazine (reprinted with permission from On Q, ASQ’s journal of record, November 1995), and (2) summa-

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rize some definitions and the characteristics of quality from The Certified Quality Manager Handbook (1999) (reprinted with permission of ASQ Quality Press). I would like to thank Mr. C. H. Wong for his persistence over the last 4 years to write this book. His faith in me and encouragement will never be forgotten. I would like to thank Dr. J. Farr for his thoughtful suggestions throughout the writing process and his insight on teams. I would like to thank Dr. W. Landrum for teaching me what teams are all about and why we must pursue the concept in the future. His futuristic insight has been an inspiration. His practice of teams has been a model for me to follow. Thanks, Bill! I would like to thank my colleagues, Dr. R. Rosa, Mr. H. Jamal, Dr. A. Crocker, and Dr. D. Demis as well as Mr. J. Stewart and Mr. R. Start for their countless hours of discussions in formulating the content of these volumes in its final format. In addition, I want to thank J. Malicki, C. Robinson, and S. Stamatis for their computer work in making some of the earlier drafts and final figures in the text. I would like to thank as always my personal inspiration, bouncing board, navigator, and editor, Carla, for her continual enthusiastic attitude in my most trying times. Especially with this work, she has demonstrated her extraordinary patience, encouragement, and understanding in putting up with me even during the time we moved into our new home. What can I say, Carla Jeanne? You are the greatest! You have been tremendous in every sense of the word. Thanks, Carla Jeanne! Special thanks goes to the editors of the series for their suggestions and improvements of both the text and its presentation in the final format. Finally, my greatest appreciation is reserved for my seminar participants and the students of Central Michigan University, who through their input, concerns, and discussions, I was able to formulate these volumes, so that they could become a reality. Without their active participation and comments, these volumes would never have been finished. I really appreciate their efforts.

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About the Author D. H. Stamatis, Ph.D., ASQC-Fellow, CQE, CMfgE is currently president of Contemporary Consultants, in Southgate, Michigan. He received his B.S. and B.A. degrees in marketing from Wayne State University, his Master’s degree from Central Michigan University, and his Ph.D. degree in instructional technology and business/statistics from Wayne State University. Dr. Stamatis is a certified quality engineer for the American Society of Quality Control, a certified manufacturing engineer with the Society of Manufacturing Engineers, and a graduate of BSI’s ISO 9000 lead assessor training program. He is a specialist in management consulting, organizational development, and quality science and has taught these subjects at Central Michigan University, University of Michigan, and Florida Institute of Technology. With more than 30 years of experience in management, quality training, and consulting, Dr. Stamatis has served and consulted for numerous industries in the private and public sectors. His consulting extends across the United States, Southeast Asia, Japan, China, India, and Europe. Dr. Stamatis has written more than 60 articles and presented many speeches at national and international conferences on quality. He is a contributing author in several books and the sole author of 12 books. In addition, he has performed more than 100 automotive-related audits and 25 preassessment ISO 9000 audits, and he has helped several companies attain certification. He is an active member of the Detroit Engineering Society, the American Society for Training and Development, the American Marketing Association, and the American Research Association, and a fellow of the American Society for Quality Control.

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Figures Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure

1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13

Figure 1.14 Figure 1.15 Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure

1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 2.1 2.2 2.3 3.1 3.2 5.1 5.2 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 7.7 8.1 8.2 8.3

Plan phase. A typical flowchart structure. Do phase. A typical cause-and-effect diagram. A structural example of a cause-and-effect diagram. A typical structure of a Pareto chart. Study phase. A typical structure of a histogram. A typical structure of a scatter diagram. A typical run chart. A typical control chart. Act phase. The process of continual improvement with focus on the system/ process. The process of getting started (steps up the ladder to a quality system). The feedback loops and relationship of supplier–organization– customer. The relationship of improved performance and goals. The process of selecting projects and action plans. The basic performance improvement cycle. Loss function. The relationship between the PDSA and the seven-step model. The DMAIC model with its detail. A model of six sigma strategy. The SIPOC model. Understanding customer’s needs. Collection method interrelationship matrix. Leadership as a continuum. Forces interacting to suggest an appropriate style of leadership. The strategic architecture of teams. Teams and expectations. The human relationship in the organization. A learning model. The process of developing interrelationships. Factors influencing the team. Team relationships. Action plan. Elements of team dynamics and their relationships. The model of SDWT.

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Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure Figure

8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 8.8 9.1 9.2 9.3 10.1 10.2 11.1

The path of personal change. The bullseye model. The GRPI model. The team goal-setting process model. Facilitator’s duties — a visual perspective. Improvement team evolution. Process management structure (PMS). Organizational quality improvement cycle. Levels of participation. The leadership continuum. Outline format of a storyboard.

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Tables Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table

I.1 I.2 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 1.10 2.1 2.2 2.3 3.1 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4

Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table Table

6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 7.1 7.2 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 10.5

Six Sigma Goal with a ±1.5σ Shift Comparison of Standards Typical Waste Items Typical Time-Consuming Cultural Changes Benchmarking Matrix Stages of People Involvement Typical Approach to Analyze Customer Requirements A Typical Flow of Measurability A Guide for Process Evaluation A Guide to Identify Improvement Opportunity A Guide for Prioritization A Typical Sequence for Process Improvement A Typical Example of a Six Sigma Deployment Time Line The Relationship of Complexity, Effort, and Return on Investment 14 Keys to Service Quality Sampling Guidelines Examples of Different Interdependencies Steps in Team Building Team Development Process Maturity Level of Group and Related Level of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Guidelines for Communication Distances Gender Theme — Power Gender Theme — Support Gender Theme — Intimacy and Sexuality Gender Theme — Accountability Some Symptoms of Potential Worker Obsolescence Potential Causes of Worker Obsolescence Attributes for Success SDWT Issues Challenges during the Five Stages of Development The Team Roles Six Levels of Freedom Implementation Examples The Consequences of Power Base Four Types of Strategies and Change Factors The Four Behavior Styles and Their Behavior in a Team Types of Questions Guidelines for Phrasing Questions

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Table Table Table Table Table

10.6 10.7 10.8 10.9 10.10

Questioning Techniques The Decision-Making Styles, Best Applications, and Primary Dangers Communicating with Four Types of Individuals Characteristics of Individuals Individual Stereotypical Characteristics

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Table of Contents PART I Quality Introduction................................................................................................................3 Chapter 1

The Foundations of Any Quality System ............................................9

Set True Customer Requirements............................................................................11 Concentrate on Prevention, Not Correction ............................................................11 Reduce Chronic Waste.............................................................................................11 Reduce Variation......................................................................................................12 Measurement............................................................................................................13 Data Mining ...................................................................................................14 Fake Data .......................................................................................................16 Empowerment ..........................................................................................................17 Have Patience.................................................................................................17 Exercise Hope ................................................................................................18 Be a Watchful Monitor ..................................................................................18 Do What You Say...........................................................................................18 Leadership................................................................................................................18 Leadership in the Quality Domain..........................................................................20 The Role of the Quality Professional .....................................................................23 What the Dialogue Session Is Not ................................................................27 Use Structured Methodology for Process Improvement ...............................29 Quality Control ..............................................................................................29 Quality Assurance ..........................................................................................31 Common Misconceptions in Quality ......................................................................32 Total Quality Management ............................................................................33 Plan Phase (Management Responsibility)...............................................................33 State Goal.......................................................................................................34 Relevant .............................................................................................34 Measurable .........................................................................................34 Describe Process Flow...................................................................................34 Define Desired Changes in Outcomes...........................................................36 Do Phase (Process Action Team Responsibility)....................................................37 Identify Potential Causes of Quality .............................................................37 Develop Baseline for Process Outputs ..........................................................37 Develop an “As Is” Flowchart .......................................................................38

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Perform Cause and Effect Analysis...............................................................38 Identify Process Measures .............................................................................40 Establish Data Collection Procedures............................................................41 Collect Baseline Process Information................................................41 Perform Pareto Analysis ....................................................................42 Check Phase (PAT/Management Responsibility)....................................................43 Collect and Analyze Data ..............................................................................43 Histograms .........................................................................................44 Scatter Diagrams ................................................................................44 Run Charts..........................................................................................44 Control Charts ....................................................................................44 Determine Types of Process Causes..............................................................46 Act Phase (Management/PAT Responsibility) ........................................................46 Select “Causes” to Change ............................................................................46 Take Action on “Special Causes” ..................................................................47 Develop Changes for “Common Causes” .....................................................47 Implement Common Cause Change on a Trial Basis ...................................48 Evaluate Effects of Changes ..........................................................................48 Successful Recommendations on Quality Initiatives ....................................50 Step 1 — Establish the Quality System, Management, and Cultural Environment.....................................................................................50 Long-Term Commitment ...............................................................................51 People Involvement........................................................................................54 Disciplined Methodology...............................................................................55 Support Systems.............................................................................................56 Training ..........................................................................................................57 Step 2 — Define Mission of Each Component of the Organization .....................58 Step 3 — Set Performance Improvement Opportunities, Goals, and Priorities ..................................................................................................59 Step 4 — Establish Improvement Projects and Action Plans ................................60 Step 5 — Implement Projects Using Improvement Methodologies ......................61 Define Process, Identify Customer and Supplier Requirements...................61 Develop and Establish Measures ...................................................................61 Assess Conformance to Customer Needs......................................................61 Analyze Improvement Opportunities.............................................................63 Identify and Rank Improvement Opportunities.............................................63 Improve Process Quality................................................................................64 Step 6 — Evaluate Improved Performance ............................................................64 Step 7 — Review and Recycle................................................................................66 References................................................................................................................67 Selected Bibliography..............................................................................................67 Chapter 2

Six Sigma Overview ..........................................................................69

The Model of Six Sigma .........................................................................................75 Essential Elements of the Six Sigma Methodology ...............................................75

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Commit to Self-Development ........................................................................77 Develop and Maintain Technical Knowledge................................................77 Adopt an Orientation to Action and Results .................................................78 Expect Top Performance................................................................................78 Commit to Quality and Continual Improvement ..........................................79 Be Customer Driven ......................................................................................81 Make Timely and Value-Driven Decisions....................................................81 Solve Problems Effectively............................................................................82 Be Flexible .....................................................................................................83 Support Risk Taking ......................................................................................84 Provide Recognition.......................................................................................84 Coaching.........................................................................................................85 Perform with Integrity ...................................................................................89 Organizational Values.....................................................................................90 Accept and Meet Responsibilities .................................................................90 Frequent Questions about Six Sigma Methodologies.............................................91 Organizations Love New Initiatives. Isn’t Six Sigma Another Flavor of the Month? .........................................................................91 Does Senior Management Have the Patience to See This Through? Is There a True Commitment?...........................................................92 Isn’t Six Sigma Really Just Another Cost-Reduction Initiative?..................92 How Soon Does an Organization Begin to See Results? .............................92 How Can Six Sigma Work with Ongoing Technical Training Plans?..........92 What Can Individual Employees Do Proactively to Embrace Six Sigma? .........................................................................................92 What are Black Belts and How Do They Fit into the Current Structure of an Organization?............................................................93 Are There Special Compensation Incentives for Black Belts?.....................93 Does an Organization Committed to the Six Sigma Methodology Have to Add More Resources to Start the Program, i.e., Replacing the Black Belts with New People?...................................93 Does Six Sigma Compete or Conflict with Other Internal Programs? ........94 Isn’t Six Sigma the Same as TQM or Other Quality Initiatives?.................94 How Does It Affect Me and the Way I Do My Job?....................................94 Can Six Sigma Be Applied to Nonproduction or Nontechnical Functions, Such as Human Resources, Purchasing, Marketing, and the Like?......................................................................................94 What Is the Deployment Time Line? When Does It Get to My Group? .........................................................................................95 What Is the Difference between Six Sigma and Consumer Six Sigma? .........................................................................................95 What Is the Difference between Sigma (σ) and Standard Deviation? .........95 What Is the 1.5 Sigma Shift? ........................................................................95 What Is Defects per Opportunity?.................................................................96 What Is the Defect per Million Opportunity (DPMO)? ...............................96 What Is the Hidden Factory?.........................................................................96

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What Is the CTX (Process) Tree? .................................................................96 What Is the SIPOC Model? ...........................................................................97 What Is the DMAIC Model...........................................................................97 How Did Six Sigma Originate?.....................................................................98 A Critical Perspective of the Six Sigma .................................................................99 Beyond the Six Sigma Phenomenon.....................................................................101 Typical Implementation of the Six Sigma Strategy..............................................104 Candidate Qualifications and Training..................................................................105 Six Sigma Champion Training ....................................................................107 Six Sigma Executive Overview ...................................................................107 Project Selection ....................................................................................................107 External Sources ..........................................................................................109 Internal Sources............................................................................................109 Understanding the Improvement Project Itself ...........................................109 Criteria for Proper Project Selection ...........................................................110 References..............................................................................................................111 Chapter 3

Gearing Up and Adapting Six Sigma in Your Organization...........113

Recognition ............................................................................................................113 Define.....................................................................................................................114 Team Charting..............................................................................................115 The Business Case for the Project Selection ..................................115 Preliminary Problem Statement .......................................................115 Project Scope....................................................................................115 Goals and Milestones.......................................................................115 Roles.................................................................................................115 Customer Focus............................................................................................116 Definition of Quality........................................................................116 Types of Customers..........................................................................116 Voice of the Customer Sources .......................................................117 Methods of Collecting Customer Requirements .............................117 Voice of the Customer Analysis ......................................................117 Process Mapping ..........................................................................................118 Process Definition ............................................................................119 Business Process Map......................................................................119 Mapping Guidelines.........................................................................119 Measure..................................................................................................................120 Measurement ................................................................................................120 Input/Output Process Measures .......................................................120 Effectiveness and Efficiency Measures ...........................................121 Variation .......................................................................................................121 Process Variation ..............................................................................121 Types of Variation ............................................................................121 Data Collection ............................................................................................122 5 Step Data Collection Process .......................................................122

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Types of Data ...................................................................................123 Sampling...........................................................................................123 Process Capability............................................................................123 Analyze.........................................................................................................124 Data Analysis ...................................................................................124 Process Analysis...............................................................................125 Root Cause Analysis ........................................................................125 Quantify Opportunity.......................................................................125 Improve ........................................................................................................126 Generate Solutions ...........................................................................126 Select Solutions................................................................................127 Implementation Planning .................................................................127 Control..........................................................................................................128 Document and Institutionalize .........................................................128 Monitor the Process .........................................................................129 References..............................................................................................................129 Selected Bibliography............................................................................................129

PART II Teams Chapter 4

A General Overview ........................................................................135

Make Great Products and Profits Will Follow; Never Vice Versa ..............136 The Job of Management Is to Serve the People under It, Not to Rule Them ............................................................................137 Train Right or Not at All .............................................................................137 Put Creative People at the Top of the Organization ...................................138 Encourage Positive Nonconformity .............................................................138 Big Is “Okay,” but Small Is “Beautiful” .....................................................139 Allow People to Show Their Individuality in Their Jobs Once Their Jobs Have Been Clearly Defined ...........................................140 Open and Honest Communication...............................................................141 References..............................................................................................................142 Chapter 5

The Changing Workplace.................................................................143

Antecedent and Consequent Conditions ...............................................................144 Antecedent....................................................................................................145 Consequent ...................................................................................................145 Implications of the Theory ..........................................................................145 Employee Development.........................................................................................146 Strategy for Change...............................................................................................148 Leadership Styles and Effectiveness............................................................148 Forces in the Manager .....................................................................153

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Forces in the Subordinate ................................................................154 Forces in the Situation .....................................................................155 Leadership Style Outputs.................................................................155 Short Run vs. Long Run..................................................................157 Effectiveness of Style: The Third Dimension .................................157 Job Maturity Scales..........................................................................157 Team Overview ............................................................................................158 Stages in Team Building..................................................................159 When May Team Building Be Needed?..........................................159 When May Team Building Not Be Appropriate? ...........................159 Characteristics of Productive Teams................................................161 Characteristics of Unproductive Teams ...........................................161 Factors Influencing Team Functioning ............................................162 The Team Effectiveness Critique.....................................................163 How to Build Trust in a Team.........................................................166 Pick Team Players............................................................................168 Define a Single Purpose...................................................................168 Use of the Team Effectiveness Critique ..........................................169 Team Effectiveness Questionnaire...................................................169 Stages of Group Development.........................................................170 The Role of the Consultant or Trainer ............................................171 A Summary Thought .............................................................................................173 Conclusion .............................................................................................................173 References..............................................................................................................174 Selected Bibliography............................................................................................175 Chapter 6

Communicating Communication .....................................................177

Factors Affecting the Sender .................................................................................177 Self-Feelings.................................................................................................177 Belief in Assertive Rights ............................................................................178 The Sender’s Perception of the Message ....................................................178 The Sender’s Feelings about the Receiver ..................................................178 Suggestions for Effective Expression ..........................................................178 Points for the Listener ...........................................................................................179 Responses That Can Block Effective Communication .........................................180 Awareness of One’s Own Feelings .......................................................................181 Change through Training and Interpersonal Skills ...............................................182 How Operators and Quality Personnel Communicate..........................................184 Changing Your Messages ......................................................................................186 Communication Issues in Work Environment ......................................................187 Nonverbal Language ....................................................................................187 Spatial Relationship .........................................................................188 Body Language ................................................................................188 Vocal Dimensions.............................................................................189 Environment .....................................................................................190

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Gender Themes ............................................................................................190 Diversity .......................................................................................................194 Communication and Cultural Diversity ................................................................195 Conclusion .............................................................................................................195 References..............................................................................................................196 Selected Bibliography............................................................................................196 Chapter 7

Team Development ..........................................................................199

The Concept of Teams Is Based on Participation Philosophy. What Is Participation Philosophy?.................................................................199 What Is a Team? ..........................................................................................199 Is There a Real Proof That the Team Concept Really Works?...................200 What Is the Strategic Architecture of a Team? ...........................................200 What Are Some of the Predominant Indicators in Forming Teams?..........201 What Is the Recipe for a Successful Team?................................................202 Clarity in Team Goals......................................................................202 An Improvement Plan ......................................................................203 Clearly Defined Roles......................................................................203 Clear Communication ......................................................................204 Beneficial Team Behaviors ..............................................................204 Well-Defined Decision Procedures ..................................................205 Balanced Participation .....................................................................205 Established Ground Rules................................................................205 Awareness of the Team Process.......................................................206 Use the Scientific Approach ............................................................206 How Does a Group Develop into a Team? .................................................206 Orientation........................................................................................207 Power and Influence.........................................................................207 Team Production and Feedback (Most Cohesive Phase) ................208 What Are the Prerequisite Conditions for Normal Team Development? ...209 What Is the Development Sequence of the Team Process?........................209 What Are Some Concerns in the Preparation Phase? .................................210 What Are Some Concerns in the Start-Up Phase?......................................210 What Are Some Concerns in the Transition Phase? ...................................211 What Are Some Concerns in the Continuous Improvement Phase? ..........211 What Are the Expectations of a Team?.......................................................212 What Are the Characteristics of “Best” and “Worst” Teams? ....................212 What Are the Common Elements of Successful Teams?............................214 Considering Human Behavior, What Kinds of Behaviors Will Help Attain the Goals and Objectives of a Team?...................................215 Considering Human Behavior, What Kinds of Behaviors Will Hinder the Goals and Objectives of a Team?..............................................215 What is a Guidance Team? ..........................................................................216 What Are the Primary Obligations of a Guidance Team? ..........................216 What Can the Guidance Team Do to Improve the Process? ......................216

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What What What What

Is a Process Action Team (PAT)? ......................................................217 Is a Quality Circle (QC)?...................................................................217 Is a Self-Directed Work Team (SDWT)? ..........................................217 Is the Traditional Relationship between the Individual and That of the Organization? ................................................................218 What Is the “New” Relationship between the Individual and That of the Organization? ................................................................218 Chapter 8


When Do We Use a Team?..........................................................................221 What Is the Eight-Step Model? ...................................................................222 What Is the Purpose for the Use of Criteria When Selecting an Opportunity?................................................................................224 What Are the Components of the Opportunity Statement? ........................225 What Is an Action Plan? ..............................................................................225 What Are the Elements of Team Dynamics? ..............................................226 What Are the Three Most Anti-Team Behaviors?.......................................226 Does Management Play a Role in the Success of a Team?........................226 How Can Management Show Commitment? ..............................................227 What Is the Right Environment for a Self-Directed Work Team (SDWT)? ..........................................................................................229 What Are the Requirements for SDWT Success?.......................................229 What Are the Preparation Concerns for Self-Managed Teams?.................230 What Are the Steps to Implement SDWT? .................................................231 What Is the Path to SDWT? ........................................................................231 What Are the Challenges during the Five Stages of Team Development?...................................................................................232 Teams Provide an Efficient Way of Operating Many Organizations Due to Synergy. As a Result, Many Organizations Find Themselves with a Flat Structure. What Are the Steps to Flatten the Organization?.................................................................233 Why Is the Understanding of “Change” a Mandatory Requirement When Teams are Involved?..............................................................233 How Do We Change the Culture to Support Teams? .................................234 What Is the Process for Change? ................................................................234 What Makes Cultural Change Difficult? .....................................................235 What Is the Path of Personal Change?........................................................235 What Is the Bullseye Model? ......................................................................236 What Is the GRPI Model? ...........................................................................236 What Is the Team Goal-Setting Process Model? ........................................237 How Can We Facilitate the Implementation of Teams in the Organization? .............................................................................237 What Are Some of the Effective Behaviors for Process Facilitation?........238

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What Are Some of the Generic Facilitative Behaviors to Be Used by the Leader, Facilitator, and Every Member in a Team Environment? .........................................................................239 What Is Process Facilitation? ......................................................................240 What Are the Most Important Skills of Facilitation? .................................240 What Does the Facilitator Focus on in the Phases of Team Development?...................................................................................240 What Are the Typical Roles in a Team? .....................................................241 What Are the Leader’s Duties?....................................................................241 What Are the Facilitator’s Duties? ..............................................................242 What Are the Recorder’s Duties? ................................................................243 What Are the Timekeeper’s Duties?............................................................244 What Are the Team Member’s Duties? .......................................................244 What Are the Management’s Duties?..........................................................245 What Are the Most Common Problems in a Team Environment? .............245 Is There a Way to Prevent These Problems?...............................................245 How Do You Empower Your Team Members? ...........................................246 What Skills Are Needed for Empowerment? ..............................................246 How Does Authority Differ in the Team Environment from the Traditional One?...............................................................................246 What Is the Future of the Supervisor in the Team Environment?..............246 What Is a Typical Schedule for Implementing Teams in the Work Environment? .........................................................................247 Chapter 9

Team Improvement ..........................................................................251

What Is the Improvement Evolution of Teams? .........................................251 How Does Process Team Management Relate to the Process Management Structure? ...................................................................251 How Is the Traditional Approach Changed into Team Performance? ........253 What Makes Teams Most Effective? ...........................................................253 Your Team Has Been Formed. Now the Question Becomes: “What Is the Road to High Performance?”.....................................253 What Makes Teams Least Effective? ..........................................................254 What Are the Steps of Solving “Easy” Problems in a Team Environment? ...................................................................................254 What Are the Characteristics of a “Major” Problem in a Team Environment? ...................................................................................254 Is There a Way to Identify the Employee Involvement in a Team Environment? ...................................................................................255 How Do We Continually Improve (Kaizen Approach or a “Little” at a Time) Given the Team Environment? ......................................255 How Can the Team Continue to Improve Performance? ............................256 What Is “the” Quality Improvement Process? ............................................256

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What Are the Responsibilities of a Guidance Team during the Process Improvement Cycle?...........................................................257 Can the Effectiveness of the Team Be Measured?......................................258 Chapter 10 General Issues ..................................................................................259 Meetings Are an Integral Part of Any Team Environment. What Are the Elements of a Successful Meeting?...........................................259 What Are the Ingredients of an Effective Meeting? ...................................260 What Are Ground Rules?.............................................................................260 What Is the Role of the Meeting Facilitator? .............................................260 What Are the Characteristics of a Good Team Member?...........................261 What Are the Most Common Problems in a Team Environment? .............261 How Is Conflict Being Resolved in the Team Environment?.....................262 Who Are the Main (Focal) Participants in a Quality Team Environment? ...................................................................................262 What Is Total Involvement (Commitment)?................................................265 What Is Empowerment?...............................................................................266 What Is the 5S Approach? ...........................................................................266 What Types of Strategies Can We Use for Change? What Are the Factors for Change? .........................................................................267 What Is the Benefit of a Team?...................................................................267 What Is the Payoff of the SDWT? ..............................................................267 What Are the Criteria for Installing a Team in the Work Environment? ...................................................................................268 What Are the Pay Considerations for the SDWT? .....................................268 How Can Management Motivate the Team after the Objectives of the Team Have Been Attained? .......................................................269 What Are the Four Typical Behavior Styles in a Team? ............................269 What Constitutes an “Effective” Team Member? .......................................269 What Constitutes an “Effective” Team Facilitator? ....................................270 As a Facilitator You Must Ask Probing Questions. What Are Some of the Questioning Skills? .....................................................270 What Are the Typical Decision-Making Styles in Teams? .........................271 What Is Consensus Decision Making?........................................................271 How Do We Reach Consensus? ..................................................................273 How Can We Recognize Consensus? ..........................................................273 If the Consensus Method to Decision Making Is Not Workable, How Does the Team Proceed to Make a Decision?........................274 What Is Listening? .......................................................................................275 What Is Active Listening? ...........................................................................276 What Are Some Active Listening Skills?....................................................276 Listening Is Very Difficult for Many of Us. Is There a Way to Improve? ......................................................................................277

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What Is Paraphrasing? .................................................................................278 What Is a Meeting Process Check?.............................................................278 What Is Commitment? .................................................................................279 What Are the Levels of Involvement?.........................................................279 What Is Feedback?.......................................................................................279 How Do You Manage Feedback? ................................................................279 How Are People Handled in the Team Environment? ................................280 Even in Team Environments, We Still Have to Deal with Individuals. What Are Some of the Different Work Situations That a Team May Be Faced with? ..............................................................280 Recognizing That Individuals Are Unique, What Are Some of the Stereotypical Observation Clues That May Help Us in the Team Process?..................................................................................280 What Are Team Operating Procedures (Mechanics)? .................................280 What Is a Team Mission? ............................................................................284 What Are the Characteristics of a Team Mission Statement? ....................284 What Is the Team Chartering Process? .......................................................284 How Do You Deal with Dysfunctional Activity in the Team Environment? ...................................................................................287 Floundering ......................................................................................287 Unquestioned Acceptance of Opinions as Facts .............................288 Rush to Accomplishment .................................................................288 Discounts and Plops.........................................................................289 Digression and Targets.....................................................................289 Feuding Members ............................................................................290 How Do You Deal with Problem Individuals?............................................290 Overbearing Members......................................................................290 Dominating Members ......................................................................291 Reluctant Members ..........................................................................292 Attribution ........................................................................................292 How Can a Team Be Led?...........................................................................292 How Can the Team Avoid “Group-Think?” ................................................295 Chapter 11 An Introduction to Problem Solving: Selected Tools and Methodologies as Used in a Team Environment ............................297 What Is Problem Solving?...........................................................................297 How Do We Go about Identifying the Problem?........................................297 What Is the People Problem Solving Process? ...........................................298 How Can Planning be Utilized in a Team Problem-Solving Environment? ...................................................................................299 What Are the Principles of Team Problem Solving? ..................................299 How Do We Zero-In on the Problem Definition?.......................................300 How Do We Use the Problem-Solving Process? ........................................301

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How Do We Identify Problems in a Specific Work Area, for the Team to Work On?...........................................................................302 What Are the Basic Tools That Teams Use in Their Work Environment for Problem Solving? .................................................303 What Are the Basic Management Tools That Management Must Be Aware of in Facilitating Teams? ................................................303 What Are Some of the Advanced Tools That Teams May Use in Their Work Environment?................................................................304 What Is Concern Analysis? .........................................................................304 How Do We Use Concern Analysis?...........................................................304 Quality Function Deployment (QFD) Is One of the Most Frequent Tools to Identify the Voice of the Customer. How Does the Team Scope the Project, Using the QFD Method?.........................305 Using the QFD, How Does the Team Approach the Analysis of the Problem? ....................................................................................305 Using QFD, How Does the Team Gather Customer Wants?......................306 Using QFD, How Is the Voice of the Customer Analyzed? .......................306 Using QFD, How Does the Team Plan for the Matrix for the Priorities? ...................................................................................306 Using QFD, How Does the Team Generate and Evaluate Concepts?........307 Another Frequent Technique Used in Identifying Process Improvement Is the Survey. How Is the Survey Instrument Constructed? ..................................................................307 One of the Latest Techniques Used in Team Environments Is Storyboarding. What Is It and How Is It Used? .............................308 Epilogue .................................................................................................................311 Appendix A: A Cursory View of the Six Sigma Methodology............................313 Appendix B: The Core Competencies of the Six Sigma Methodology...............317 Appendix C: Cross-Reference List of Terms Used in the Team Environment....333 Appendix D: Problem Solving/Decision Making .................................................335 Glossary .................................................................................................................343 Selected Bibliography............................................................................................361 Index ......................................................................................................................369

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Part I Quality

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Introduction Acting in accord with our beliefs and values, or as some would say, walk the talk, is one of the greatest challenges each of us faces every day. It is true for individuals in all aspects of life… and equally true for organizations of every kind and size. Most organizations talk good management through their stated mission, vision, and values. These displays of good intentions are excellent reminders of what we stand for. But the real worth of our values comes from what is practiced rather than merely professed. It is how we actually behave that ultimately defines our success and determines how we will be judged. Since the early ’80s most people have come to understand that previously acceptable norms of goods and services are no longer acceptable. Customer satisfaction, reliability, productivity, costs, market share, profitability, and even survival are directly affected by the quality of an organization’s products and performance. Quality is indeed in the forefront of every discussion that pertains to any organization’s products and or performance. We have, as a society, indeed been inundated with concepts, theories, and approaches to improve, change, and modify past practices of quality because we have found that the “old” is not as good as we thought, even though it was very useful a time long ago. Whereas these theories, concepts, and approaches do provide a different approach to looking at things from a quality perspective, all of them have advantages and disadvantages. All of them can provide a positive result if only they are adhered to. All of them will improve quality if the strategy of the organization is to improve — for real — the product and or performance. So the question is: if all these theories, methodologies, concepts, and approaches are good enough, why in the world do we need one more? Why do we need a six sigma methodology? Better yet, what is so different about the six sigma that a previous methodology could not provide? The answer is simple and yet complicated. First, let us admit that variation is indeed the archenemy of all productivity in all organizations. So far, all methodologies invented, thought of, and implemented in all organizations have indeed a common thread in their approach of eliminating variation. So does the six sigma methodology. However, that is where the similarity stops. The focus of this new approach is the definition of improved quality, which is redefined to the limit of plus or minus 6σ or 99.99966%. That means that an organization has to focus on decreasing its variability and be able to produce 3.4 nonconformances per million opportunities. Sigma is a Greek letter used in statistics as a unit of measure to identify dispersion in a distribution. In essence, this sigma reflects capability. It turns out that the sigma scale of measure is perfectly correlated to such characteristics as defects per unit, parts per million defective, and the probability of failure or error. Therefore, the six sigma has become a goal of many organizations, because it provides a uniform metric for measuring performance in any organization. A simple comparison of the six sigma goal can be seen in Table I.1. 3

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Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance

TABLE I.1 Six Sigma Goal with a ±1.5σ Shift Process Capability(ies) 6 5 4 3 2

Nonconformances per Million Opportunities (ppm) 3.4 233 6,210 66,807 308,537

From The Vision of Six Sigma: A Roadmap for Breakthrough, 5th ed., 1997, vol. 1, pp. 2.12, Six Sigma Academy. With permission.

Another way to see and understand the effect of the progression in quality thinking is in Table I.2. In this table we depict the historical standard of 3σ, the current standard for most organizations which is 4σ, and the new standard of 6σ.

TABLE I.2 Comparison of Standards Sigma



3.5 months per 100 years

New York to California trip

2.5 days per 100 years

30 minutes per 100 years

45 minutes of freeway driving in any direction A trip to the local gas station

6 seconds per 100 years

4 steps in any direction



Approximately For every $1 the floor space of billion in assets, a small hardware there is $2.7 store million indebtedness Approximately For every $1 the average floor billion in assets, space of a living there is $63,000 room indebtedness Approximately For every $1 the size of the billion in assets, bottom of an there is $570 average indebtedness telephone unit Approximately For every $1 the size of a billion in assets, typical diamond there is $2 indebtedness

Spelling 1.5 misspelled words per page in an 8 × 11 book 1 misspelled word per 30 pages in an 8 × 11 book 1 misspelled word in a typical set of an encyclopedia 1 misspelled word in all of the books found in a small library

From The Vision of Six Sigma: A Roadmap for Breakthrough, 5th ed., 1997, vol. 2, pp. 21.33, 22.6, Six Sigma Academy. With permission.

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Second, the six sigma methodology asks the organization to have a paradigm change in everything it does. This change is essential and it demands not only flowery words, slogans, and exhortations, but real actions all the way from senior management to the lowest level of employee. It demands commitment from the leadership and demands accountability and acceptance of ownership from those individuals who will partake in the change process. The goal of all this? Six sigma is the methodology that will harvest and uncover potential improvements in the organization, by (1) focusing on specific items and (2) bringing all the resources together to identify, measure, analyze, improve, and control the process. This is indeed revolutionary if it can be done. At least in theory it is possible and some organizations have claimed success using this methodology. Examples are General Electric, Motorola, and others. In our opinion, to implement such a megamethodology demanding so much from everything and everyone it becomes essential to develop attitudes and systems — at all levels of an organization — that promote and implement continual improvement of procedures, processes, products, and services. The implementation, however, of these attitudes and systems in any organization must take into consideration such factors as the organization’s unique product or service, culture, customers, employees, level of both corporate and employee knowledge, and experience. As a consequence, in the process of implementing a quality system in any organization, innovative approaches are encouraged. To be sure, the six sigma methodology is not a novice idea for improvement. However, this idea needs an innovative approach for implementation; otherwise, it will end as other methodologies of the past. One of those innovative approaches has been the introduction of teams. Increasingly, organizations of all types are using teams in the workplace to pursue the power of collective wisdom and effort. Organizing workers, from assembly line to boardroom, into teams seems to be part of the natural order of business in the ’90s, and the new millenium. Teams are indeed an integral part of the human experience and the more we understand their dynamics the more effective we can make them. From the beginning of time, humans have recognized the power of collective wisdom and effort. However, in the last 10 to 15 years, the effort of understanding the makeup, behavior, and the general dynamics of teams has been accelerating beyond everyone’s expectations. Often, teams don’t realize their full potential and in some cases they do not work at all. The reason for such failure is that what organizations expect from teams is fundamentally different from what individuals expect. Recognizing the difference and learning to integrate them is the key to building and perpetuating successful teams in any organization. Strictly speaking, the notion of team is an abstraction. There is no team that does the work however defined. There are only individuals working together as a team. The concept of team and teamwork in the workplace can elicit strong emotional responses that have their origin in early experiences with teams. It is not unusual, when teams are introduced in the organization, to have potential members exhibit fear of the unknown, anxiety, and an attitude of wait and see.

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Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance

Another innovative approach to the six sigma methodology is the focus on the customer from a quality system criteria perspective. The six sigma methodology is unique in this respect for it focuses on: Driver. Senior executive leadership guides the sustained pursuit of customer value and improvement of organizational performance via the six sigma methodology. System. Processes are well-defined and well-designed to meet organization’s customer requirements as well as quality and performance requirements for the profitability of the organization. Measures of Progress. These are established on a results-oriented basis for channeling actions and delivering verifiable improvements not only to the customer value but also to the organizational performance. This performance is based on specific goals from the organization with the intent to ever improve value to customers. To pull this together the following four items are necessary. 1. Senior executive leadership. 2. Customer focus. 3. Human resource development and management quality and operational results. 4. Customer satisfaction. • Customer satisfaction relative to other organizations. • Customer retention. • Product and service quality. • Productivity improvement. • Waste reduction and elimination. • Supplier quality. This organizational quality performance is further enhanced by a strong: Information analysis. The drive here is to become a data-driven company for all decisions. Information analysis is a push to effectively manage and use data and information for an optimum decision. With the proper and appropriate information we can examine the scope, validity, and analysis of data used to improve operational performance. How do the data and information systems support improvement efforts toward customer focus? What about products or services? What’s the impact on internal operations? These questions help you learn more about the organization’s ability to improve operational and competitive performance. Of course, to do this, statistical tools are necessary. Strategic quality planning. What planning process do you use in your organization? What long- and short-term plans are produced by a process within your organization? How are all the key quality requirements integrated into the overall plan? These questions help guide the initial steps of the strategic

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quality planning process. Make sure your plans include mission performance goals. You should include, too, improvement plans for enhancing performance in all key areas for both short and long term. We hope that in this volume the reader will be able to understand the foundations of quality and find the critical elements, as well as the issues affecting the team process, for an effective implementation of the six sigma methodology. In the other volumes we will address specific issues and concerns for optimizing performance using the six sigma methodology and its tools.

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The Foundations of Any Quality System

This chapter addresses the definition and characteristics of any quality system. Progressively, it introduces and discusses some of the essential items that are imperative in the success of pursuing excellence.

Attempting to write a series on the six sigma phenomenon reminds me of a saying that is credited to Abraham Herscel. He said that, “Faith is not the clinging to a shrine but an endless pilgrimage of the heart. Audacious longing, burning songs, daring thoughts, an impulse overwhelming the heart, usurping the mind — these are all a drive toward….” Quality is no different. One must have a passion for it. One must have a drive for it. One must never rest with conspicuous results, rather one must pursue excellence all the time. Quality, after all, is a pilgrimage to perfection. Unless one understands that pilgrimage, unless one has a burning desire for perfection, unless one has an audacious longing for delighting the customer, all will be for naught. There are many ways you may attempt to cultivate and maintain quality. One is to talk about quality as though you know something about it. In fact, the sheer conviction and the tone of the discussion will be the proof of quality efforts, rather than the results that were expected. A second attempt to cultivate and maintain quality is to talk in contradictions and every so often change direction in the name of continual improvement. With this excuse, many quality initiatives have come and gone with no specific results nor substantial benefits. In fact, one may say that the self-fulfilling prophecy of “continual change” perpetuates contradictions in both old programs and new ones. It reminds us of a passage in the Bible in Psalm 137(138), verse 9, which states: “O daughter of Babylon… Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.” It is obvious that the verse not only does not make sense, but it is also offensive to our modern minds — never mind that it comes from the Bible. It is similar with quality initiatives. As long we are doing something, even though we do not understand it, it is okay, because we are dealing with quality. Yet a third attempt to cultivate and maintain quality is to follow the path of continual improvement. It is a difficult path and the rewards do not come easily. However, the rewards are worth the effort. Learning about the organization, and the specific process, will indeed take time and effort. After all, all achievements require hard work. We persevere because we believe rewards will come. Quality perseverance is no different. The more we persevere, the more we understand; the more we understand, the more capable we become of offering solutions and suggestions to organizational and/or process improvement.


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Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance

So, how do we focus on this continual improvement path? We suggest 10 steps. They are 1. How you think is everything. Always be positive. Think success, not failure. Be aware of a negative environment and do not look for any opportunity to blame anyone in particular. 2. Decide upon your true dreams and goals. Write down your specific goals and develop a plan to reach them. This is where the mission statement and values of the organization come in. 3. Take action. Goals are nothing without action. Do not be afraid to get started now. Just do it. We learn by doing and we become better by practicing. Learn to prioritize. Not everything is important at the same time. Learn to choose between alternatives. 4. Never stop learning. Upgrade your knowledge and skills on a continual basis. Recognize that things change, and that everything changes. It is up to the organization and the individual to be responsible for new knowledge and the introduction of new skills in the work environment. 5. Be persistent and work hard. Success is a marathon race, not a sprint. Never give up. Rather, reposition your organization and/or yourself for the next time. I remember reading some time ago about Lance Armstrong and his 1996 win in the Tour de France. Reporters wrote that he was flying in the hills and mountains of France during the race. When he was asked about it, he replied, “But you do not fly up a hill. You struggle slowly and painfully up a hill, and maybe, if you work hard, you get to the top ahead of everybody else.” 6. Learn to analyze details. Get all the facts, all the input from all possible sources. Learn from your mistakes and replicate your successes. Analysis sometimes means to recognize patterns that repeat. 7. Focus your time and money. Everything has limitations. Constraints must be identified as early as possible. However, never allow others to distract you from your goals. Focus will keep you going when things get tough. 8. Do not be afraid to innovate; be different. Following the herd is a sure way to mediocrity. Be careful when benchmarking is conducted. Always ask the question: “Is this the best practice or is this the best that the competitor is doing?” If the answer is “yes” to the second question, then your organization is in trouble. The best it can hope for is to continue to be second best. 9. Deal and communicate with people effectively. No person is an island, no matter what the position and/or title. Learn to understand and motivate others. 10. Be honest and dependable; take responsibility. Otherwise, all the above points are meaningless. Let us then begin to understand quality and its foundations by addressing the components that must be satisfied, so that quality is indeed a way of life and not a mere word of the everyday language. To begin our journey let us focus on the

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The Foundations of Any Quality System


customer and progressively examine the issues and concerns that people who deal with quality are asked to come to grips with daily.

SET TRUE CUSTOMER REQUIREMENTS For a long time “quality” meant some type of conformance based on a set of customer requirements that, if met, resulted in a product that was fit for its intended use. The trick, however, was to have knowledge of the user’s needs, wants, and expectations — from both the internal and external perspective. It is critical that these requirements be understood and reflected accurately in specifications for products, services, and processes. One of the fundamental principles is that “conformance to requirements” only leads to user satisfaction when there is alignment between user expectations and user requirements. On the other hand, one of the most practical definitions of quality is that quality is defined by the customer. To understand this definition, which is quite broad, it means that not only quality professionals, but everyone in the organization must understand the implications of the Kano Model (needs, wants, expectations, and performance). Successful organizations consistently meet or exceed customers’ needs. This category addresses the interface between each organization and those outside organizations (or individuals) it supports.

CONCENTRATE ON PREVENTION, NOT CORRECTION There is no doubt that prevention has more leverage when improving quality than correction does. Therefore, the efforts of quality should be focused on prevention, because the quality payoff is maximized when considered during early phases of developing a product or service. It is then that many problems can be prevented. Thereafter, the leverage of prevention is reduced as correction of problems — a more costly procedure — becomes the dominant mode. A key aspect of this concept is designing products and services that can be produced with high yield within the capability of the manufacturing or service process. Designs that are immune to manufacturing and operational use variability are said to be robust.

REDUCE CHRONIC WASTE Everyone involved with quality has figured out that the cost of waste in all sizes of organizations is significant. Whatever the exact numbers are, they illustrate the extraordinary opportunity for reducing costs through improvement of quality. Much of the high cost of poor quality comes from processes that are allowed to be wasteful. This waste is often chronic and is accepted as the normal cost of doing business. The conventional approach to quality is not to get rid of chronic waste but to prevent things from getting worse by “putting out the fires.” Chronic waste of time, material, and other resources can be driven down by implementing continual process improvement. Typical waste items are shown in Table 1.1.

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Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance

TABLE 1.1 Typical Waste Items Material

People’s Time

Lost Sales


Scrap Excess inventory Inspection equipment Test equipment Poor machine utilization Energy Lost or misplaced material Over or under specifications Excessive equipment

Rework Inspection Checking Clarifying Producing waste or poor quality Inefficient meetings

Poor quality products/ services Not responsive to customers’ needs Poor customer service Poor engineering

Investments Warranty cost Liability cost Idle equipment Depreciation

REDUCE VARIATION Statistical tools are valuable for applying the continual improvement philosophy. One of the primary goals of continual improvement is to reduce variation. Ideally, all products should be built to nominal dimensions. Unfortunately, this is not realistic. Therefore, tolerances come within each dimension. However, variations in parameters do contribute to higher costs of quality and lower reliability. The latter is often due to the effect of the “stacking of tolerances.” While the variation cannot be eliminated, it can be significantly reduced by identifying and removing the cause(s) of variation, whether they come from the design of the product or service or the production process. For example, the effects of manufacturing variation can be minimized by an appropriate design choice. Such a design is said to be a robust design because it has been desensitized to manufacturing variation. People often think that 99% quality is good enough. However, at this level, there would be 5000 incorrect surgical operations per week and 2 short or long landings at most major airports each day — not an encouraging prospect for anyone who flies or requires surgery. On the other hand, if all individual components of a car with 10,000 individual parts had 99% reliability for each of its components, the entire car’s reliability would be less than 0.001%. Some think that the often-used criterion of 3 sigma variation (99.97%) is good enough. Even at this level, one would only expect 1 good unit out of every 15 units for a product composed of 1000 parts. In the example with the car of 10,000 parts and a reliability of 99.99 per item, the total reliability is still unacceptable by today’s standards, 36.786%. That is why the traditional use of setting quality at the “percent defective” level is now changed to measuring quality as parts-per-million. This is being achieved in progressive companies by: • Setting parts-per-million tolerances on all critical product and process parameters to improve process capability. • Using stable technologies in new designs.

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• Minimizing the total number of parts in the product and the number of steps in all processes. • Standardizing the parts and processes. • Using statistical process control (SPC) and computer-assisted design and manufacturing process, such as CAD/CAE/CAM. • Using design of experiments (DOE) for optimizing the process and noise. • Involving suppliers in all of the above activities. • Using the six sigma methodology.

MEASUREMENT When the question focuses on the “how,” generally speaking, one talks about measurement. Measurement is an issue of having appropriate and applicable data for what we are measuring. It is the measurement of some data — whether quantitative or qualitative or a combination — that allows anyone to make a decision. In essence, we look for items that crystallize the quality characteristic through at least the following attributes: Reliability of data. The ability to provide what was promised. Responsiveness. The ability to collect data in a speedy recovery method. Assurance. The ability to have confidence and trust in the data used. Analysis. The ability to use the data in the most efficient, appropriate, and applicable way to find an answer and make a decision. Perhaps one of the most important questions of measurement is the issue of “sample.” What is a sample and what is an accurate sample? To answer the question of “what is a sample” is quite easy. It is an unbiased, totally random representation of the population. On the other hand, “an accurate sample” is very difficult to define. It depends on the significance you are seeking, it depends on the confidence of the results, and it depends on the error of measurement you are willing to accept as part of the results. It is strongly recommended that once at this juncture of experimentation, the experimenter should consult with a statistician or look at a statistics book to find a sampling formula. Like anything else, when you are ready to do an experiment, you must develop “the” measurement plan. This plan should measure the items of interest. For example, in a Customer Satisfaction Study, you must be cognizant of the following: Identify key personnel. Identify the key players in the customer satisfaction study. Generally, the key personnel are those who will be impacted by the results of a customer-satisfaction or service-quality study. Identify the focus of the study. You must know the level of the customer and the specific items you are about to analyze. Develop the measurement plan. As part of the planning, make sure that the people involved with the study are aware of the things that can go wrong, the sampling flow, and the appropriate sample selection. Some of the things that can go wrong are.

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• Nonresponse error. This may be a clue that this sector of customers is the least satisfied. Look at the design of the instrument and review for problem areas. In addition, follow up with a random sample of nonrespondents and use data to adjust estimates. • Measurement error. In this category, you may find that the respondents deliberately lied, misunderstood the question, were careless, and so on. Review the design of the instrument and evaluate it appropriately. • Frame error. In this category, you may discover that your list of questions is incomplete, biased, etc. Again, review and evaluate the questionnaire and take the appropriate corrective action for improvement. • Selection (sampling) error. In this category, you may find that the sampling plan is not correct, the sample is not random, names are repeated several times, and so on. To make sure that the appropriate sample is drawn, you may want to consult a statistics book. Freund and Williams (1972) have developed a simple formula for sample selection: N = p(1 – p) (Zα/e)2 where N = sample size, Z = standard score corresponding to a given confidence level (common levels are 1.64, 1.96, and 2.58 for α = 0.10, α = 0.05, and α = 0.01, respectively), e = the proportion of sampling error in a given situation (quite often the value used is 0.10), and p = the proportion of cases in the population (quite often the value used is 0.50, since this amount provides the maximum sample size). Yet another common sample formula is N = [log(1 – C)/logR] – 1 where N = sample size, C = confidence, and R = reliability. In the last several years statisticians have developed new ways to collect and analyze data. Two of the most interesting ways are (1) data mining and (2) fake data.

DATA MINING Data mining stands at the intersection of statistics, database technology, and important business concerns. Data mining as a concept is not new; in fact, dredging data and fishing in large data sets are well-known concepts to statisticians long involved in complex data analysis. What is new and clear is that extracting useful (read: profitable) information from large databases quickly is becoming the next major quality project. The basic difficulty is that at this stage, data mining is not a clearly defined entity. In addition, avoiding overselling this “new” approach’s promises is difficult. Adding to the mix, objective research concerning data mining tools is either hidden in academic circles or limited, unlike hype, which is paramount.

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Remember that IT and data-warehouse directors, as well as quality professionals, are in a special position to shape the integration of the next “wave.” Decision-makers should also be led to consider the following points: • • • •

What is the purpose and objective of the data-mining project? What implementation and integration problems are evident? What data-mining tools are available? Which can be customized? What form will the output take? How flexible are the tools? How easy are they to use? Is the system’s training and support staff credible? • What’s the specific plan for merging data mining into everyday business operations? A three-fold collaboration can be the most vital connection for successful datamining efforts. If we envision the three parts as the business executive for vision and leadership, the database administrator to provide the structure, and the quality professional/data miner to analyze and make recommendations, it becomes evident that collaboration produces the best results. While data mining is old, the extremely large data sets intractable to traditional analysis are new. A business has to have people who are knowledgable to make sense of data results. Along the same lines a paradox emerges: with enormous records and potentially useful information, miniscule errors (common to marketing, survey, and transactional data, for example) can involve millions of cases. Thus, data integrity, storage, and cleaning issues become primary. In this part of the picture, the data-warehouse managers’ and technicians’ efforts are paramount. The third piece to the data-mining puzzle involves the actual analysis tools. Data-mining tools are poised at the junction of the business expert and the database administrator, ready to go to work. Realistically, the tools may require modification and adjustment; training, education, or specialty consulting; and the ability to be translated to business executives or decision makers. Short of spending a lot of time familiarizing yourself with neural network algorithms and other esoteric issues, it is useful to know that — mathematically, at least — many of the methods, algorithms, and processes form a coherent set of tools that do not vary quite as much as you may think. Thus, other data-mining issues may (and often do) become more important. A large and important part of any data mining effort is getting the data in the warehouse ready; so, beware the consultant or data-mining product that does not address (or downplays) how to get the data ready for analysis. Other practical issues revolve around current and long-term business objectives, “people” concerns (the software tools’ ease of use, additional training and tech support that will be needed, software integration with your platform, and how analysis results will be displayed), and concerns over the results (return on investment, ROI, usually). As with any important business decision, risk is evident. Do your homework. If you don’t have a person capable of evaluating a data-mining direction in your organization, bring in someone who can objectively help you; most serious researchers and consultants are aware that overselling data mining’s potential benefits is too risky a proposition.

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It is odd in this day of instantaneous communication and technology-driven business models that we should be concerned about “snake oil dealers” in the area of large-scale database analysis. While we all secretly, to some extent, enjoy the hype and glitz surrounding current conference and trade shows, we also realize that the race is on to extract mission-critical information from large enterprise-wide databases. Indeed, the data-mining wave is upon us, and as quality professionals we have to become pretty good surfers to ride this one out.

FAKE DATA Every researcher has dealt with a study fraught with expensive data that was timeconsuming to collect, yet yielded no results. The inevitable questions come up: would the results have been different with more data? What if much more data would lead to a statistically significant, but meaningless, conclusion? In short, how much data is enough? The axiom that the most expensive research involves collecting almost — but not quite — enough data certainly applies. However, power, or the effect of an error that research doesn’t catch, can help answer the question of how much data to collect. Many quality professionals don’t pay more attention to these Type Two errors because the computation is a mess, and the researcher has to make assumptions about what the effect size will be to make the computation. Since the whole point of power is to know how big an effect needs to be, there’s a temptation to skip the calculation and hope for the best. Fortunately, there’s a better way: fake, or dummy, data. Note that I am not in any way using fake data as real research, for on that way lies not only madness, but bankruptcy and career suicide. However, I do believe using dummy data can sometimes be incredibly smart. For example, suppose a quality professional is helping a development engineer to see the relationship between a new product and liking the product. The engineer decides a priori that for the product to be worth designing, it must make customers, on average, 10% more satisfied than those who will not be able to have the new product. In this situation, using dummy data may be useful. For example: the researcher sets up the data analysis program indicating that out of ten people exposed to the new product, two were favorably inclined to the product, versus one in a control group (there’s always one). Is the difference statistically significant? Not at any reasonable level of acceptance. The researcher then puts in more data, as if another ten people in each group were surveyed, then reruns the analysis with the extra data. The results are better, but still uninspiring. The researcher adds more data, keeping the same level (indicating the minimum acceptable findings) until the desired significance level is reached. Note also that some statistical tools don’t work properly if there are perfect patterns in the data; so, some editing may be needed. (It is strongly advised here to ask your resident statistician.) This technique also gives engineers and quality professionals the advantage of knowing how their statistical program will accept data and report results, which is especially helpful for new software. Dummy data cannot determine how many people need to be contacted to get the desired significance level, but it can tell engineers

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what the minimum effect size a certain number of data points can pick up. Note also that smaller effects will require more data. The good news is that for any survey where the results were statistically significant, this is an obvious “yes” to the question, “Was the sample big enough to get results?” Power cannot tell how big a result to get excited about, and this technique can only show the smallest possible effect a sample can find. Negative results can come from many sources, but dummy data can tell you whether a researcher has any chance of finding a statistically significant result. Finally, remember that no sample, no matter how small an effect it can pick up, can make up for a poor design any more than using a bigger magnet will make it easier to pick up an oak log. Power can only reveal what could happen, not what happened.

EMPOWERMENT Empowerment is one of the most misunderstood concepts in the modern organizational culture, especially in the quality field. Some leaders think empowerment means they must surrender their power to subordinates. Not true. This isn’t about power, it’s about giving folks the tools they need to do their jobs. Empowerment at the point of contact gives people the opportunity, authority, responsibility, and resources they need. Leaders who have learned to use empowerment find their role enhanced, not weakened. The goal is to create an environment in which properly trained subordinates can continually improve the organization. That encourages innovation and risk taking — important factors in the cultural change process. For empowerment to be at its best and most effective, one of the basic ingredients is “trust.” The importance of trust in the workplace is just as prevalent today as it was 50 years ago. However, questions still remain about how best to gain and practice trust. Trust is one of the characteristics used to describe effective leaders and managers. Because it is associated with effective leadership, many organizations emphasize the importance of trust within their organization. Often, however, employees see this emphasis as lip service because many companies speak of trust while doing the very opposite. In order to avoid the appearance of lip service and to bring trust into the workplace, careful preparation and examination must be done. In addition, one must behave in the following ways:

HAVE PATIENCE Patience is a rarity today. Patience requires waiting and watching with calmness and without complaint. There can be pain associated with waiting. For example, if you have assigned work to someone or another person is supposed to provide something to you, it can be difficult to wait for the expected work. Try to develop your patience level. Waiting for someone else’s work to be completed is easier the second time around because, based on previous experience, you know the task will be finished on time.

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EXERCISE HOPE While you wait for someone else’s work, believe in the person performing the work. Recognize the benefit of patience and let that override any murmuring, disgruntlement, or forcefulness you want to show.




If you constantly want something “now,” employee attitudes and morale deteriorate. Observe from afar and monitor as needed. Keep in mind that others may progress on a work task at a different pace than you. It isn’t necessary to breathe down a person’s neck or to keep someone under your thumb. Followup can be done with both tact and ease.

DO WHAT YOU SAY Employees recognize lip service. Plan what you say, always considering the consequences and how information is conveyed. Be careful at all times of what comes out of “thy” mouth. In many situations, what is said is not what was intended.

LEADERSHIP Leadership has been around for a long time. Different individuals display different leadership styles for different situations. In quality, there is no difference. Just as expected, a quality-focused leadership style can be found all the way back to Pericles in Ancient Greece. Quality isn’t a newfangled management tool, you know. It’s just the perception of quality that’s new. Today, leaders perceive quality as a fundamental responsibility that can’t be delegated. Leaders communicate their operating style through actions, attitudes, and behavior. They must clearly define and communicate what they’re doing now and what the organization wants to be — that’s the mission and vision. Leaders must provide continued growth opportunities, as well as the tools and training needed to accomplish the mission. The most important attributes of leadership, however, are the values that a particular leader has. These values and principles, as well as the style, define who you are, what you stand for, and the best ways to operate the organization. In combination, these describe an operating environment management that strives to create. Leaders at all levels help make sure everyone contributes. So, what are these values? Let us examine some of the most typical and important ones: • Integrity — provides the foundation of trust; standing by your word and a commitment to honesty. Your demonstrated integrity helps in building an organization that recognizes the worth of every person’s contribution to the team effort. • Courage — gives a leader the moral strength to do the right thing in a situation where the outcome is uncertain. Long-term improvement calls for courage. Fight the temptation to apply a quick fix that gives fast results

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but offers only short-term gains. Courage is particularly important when you empower others. Empowerment places accountability, authority, and responsibility at the lowest possible level. Courage is perhaps the most essential element of leadership, since quite often a leader must make hard and difficult decisions. Competence — is the watchword of a master craftsman. Competent members build their skills, knowledge, and experience in the classic tradition of experts who know competency is an ongoing experience. Whether you flip burgers, turn wrenches, or write software, strive to be the best. Become the expert. Tenacity — drives individuals and teams to exercise determination and persistence. As you incorporate a cultural change, watch out for obstacles that threaten to slow your progress. Tenacity carries you over those barriers — it’s the corporate value that allows you to stay the course. Service — leads to customer satisfaction. Whether we like to admit it or not, the organizational culture creates an environment in which you anticipate, meet, and exceed the customers’ needs. Always remember, your customers’ needs come first. Loyalty — allows you to recognize the importance of accomplishing mission goals. It’s often a sacrifice for the greater good. Do what’s best for your most important customer, the organization.

In addition to the core values, leadership demands a set of principles that supports the core values. This set is similar to a creed and provides a roadmap to help you reach your goals. Here’s a look at some principles that fit a quality professional, regardless of what organization he or she is associated with: • Leadership involvement — sets the pace for your journey. That means setting the vision, policies, priorities, and strategies. Next, leaders communicate these actions; they create an environment that supports trust, teamwork, risk taking, initiative, reward, and continual improvement. Leaders help design quality into the culture. • Dedication to mission — is reflected in all you do as a team. No matter what the role is, every person is critical to the team that achieves global power and reach for the organization. • Respect for the individual — happens when you recognize everyone’s skill and contribution. Value everyone as a professional. Don’t let rank and level of responsibility be your only guides for respect. Success comes when you understand how each person contributes to your team. When you tear down functional walls and eliminate layers of bureaucracy, you’ll have decentralized organizations. The best way to organize? Align your organization to support critical processes; you’ll discover that both customer and stakeholder prosper. Decentralized organizations help return decision-making authority to the lowest levels of the organizations.

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• Management by fact — uses realistic measures to help indicate when, where, and how to improve your most important processes. Don’t guess! Data-driven decisions can help you break through to a smarter, more productive way of doing business. • Operating style — Now that you know the basics about the typical values and principles of leadership, make them part of your everyday work environment. That’s an important step in changing the culture. Your behaviors help create a distinctive, easily recognized style. Here’s a look at the elements of an operating style that will result in a true quality professional: • Create a working environment that inspires trust, teamwork, and pride. Trust and teamwork instill pride and a sense of mission ownership. That creates quality professionals. • Delegate responsibility and authority to teams. That’s the key to quality and innovation. Give people the training and resources they need and you’ll see them accept accountability for results. This is the essence of empowerment. • Set goals, measure progress, and reward performance. Develop and communicate goals that support the organization’s vision. You need to align your objectives — and your organization’s — from top to bottom. Evaluate progress and celebrate successes. Always remember that performance is an issue of measurement. “What gets measured gets done.” • Give everyone a stake in the outcome. Empower people who own the processes and products. • Strive for continual improvement. Challenge the concept of “business as usual.” You need to understand your customers’ needs and requirements. Learn new ways to do your job smarter and better. After all, “if you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always got,” and that is not good enough. Customers, just like anything else, are always dynamic, never static.

LEADERSHIP IN THE QUALITY DOMAIN To appreciate the role of leadership within the quality domain of any organization, we must realize and examine the levels of responsibility in a given organization. What must a leader possess so that he or she may be effective? We believe that the leader must possess at least the following characteristics: Communication. A leader must be able to communicate both difficult and easy concepts to everyone regardless of education, experience, and/or background. A leader must believe in what he says, and must practice what he says. Charisma. Instills faith, respect, and trust. Conveys a strong sense of mission. It communicates success. Individual consideration. Coaches, advises, and teaches people who need it. Intellectual stimulation. Gets others to use reasoning and evidence rather than unsupported opinion.

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Courage. Willing to stand up for ideas even if they are unpopular; willing to tell the truth. Dependability. Follows through and keeps commitments. Flexibility. Functions effectively in changing environments. Changes course when the situation warrants it. Integrity. Does what is morally and ethically right — always. Judgment. Reaches sound and objective evaluations of alternative courses of action through logic, analysis, and comparison. Respect for others. Honors and does not belittle the opinions or work of other people, regardless of their status or position. So, how do these characteristics translate into the functions of a leader in a given organization? To answer this question, we must first identify the level of leader and his or her responsibility. We believe that there are three main levels of leaders, each with a distinct and unique function. They are senior leaders, midlevel leaders, and the individual. Let us examine each one of them. Senior leaders. When it’s time to set the pace, look to the most experienced in your ranks. For senior leaders, identifying organizational values is a critical first step. Those values will lead to a view of the organization’s future needs. They’ll work hard in strategic planning; some experts say this could initially take as much as 70% of the leaders’ time. It’s time well spent! Besides planning for the future, senior leaders will talk with customers, focus on work to complement the organization’s vision, and measure significant objectives necessary to accomplish the goals. Leaders know the benefit of creating a short-term plan (12 to 24 months) as well as a long-term plan (over 3 years). These plans help keep the organization on track for the long haul. Changes in leadership shouldn’t affect these plans, but it’s wise to expect the inevitable midcourse corrections. Leaders focus on the future, listen to feedback from their employees, and address individual and group needs. Why? Because they must assess the deployment of mission, values, and goals. Feedback can also increase comprehension; strong, positive communication helps leaders and workers better understand processes. The key? Senior leaders must create a cooperative environment. They can do that by building policies and procedures that enable and empower the work force. Senior leaders demonstrate their commitment to quality principles through personal education and training. They also prove their commitment by being directly involved in quality efforts. That’s what it takes to help create and sustain a quality organizational culture. You can measure top leadership involvement by observing several things. How is quality integrated throughout the organization? Are daily operations oriented toward the customer? Has the practice extended throughout the entire organization? Exploring these questions will help you discover your senior leaders’ level of commitment.

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Midlevel leaders. What do coaching, mentoring, and teaching have in common? They’re all primary roles of midlevel leaders. Midlevel leaders have their work cut out for them! They provide training and resources, facilitate process improvement, and encourage continual improvement. That’s just for starters; everything they do is designed to support the organizational goals and objectives. From measuring work processes to reviewing objectives, these people literally put theories to the test in the everyday workplace. Communication is a big responsibility for midlevel leaders, too. They make sure information on key issues moves smoothly along the chain. Key issues include the organizational mission, values, goals, and objectives. When workers trust the midlevel leaders, communication improves. The more the workers know, the better job they’ll do. Be open to feedback and keep that information flowing! Individuals. In this culture, individuals are the process experts — they’re vital to the continual improvement process. That means everyone must first learn strategic goals and critical processes which best support customer requirements, and then work to understand each person’s contribution to those processes. Look at your organization. Who deals with your customers? Front-line workers probably know better than anyone else what’s required to satisfy the customer. These people can’t help you meet mission goals if they don’t understand the process. So teach them the basics, and include them in discussions and the teams that affect processes. Get them involved in estimating process capability and developing metrics. Share with them your knowledge of the customers, and listen to what they have to say. It’s important to remember process workers are the key to identifying what you need to execute the strategic plan. Get the individual workers involved — they can help senior leadership evolve the vision, mission, and strategic plan into living documents tied directly to customer and process requirements. Treat every individual with honor. It’s a simple concept, really. Appreciate them for their worth, and watch them grow. When the topic of leadership is discussed, one must not overlook the notion of change. Change is inevitable in everything. As a consequence, how it is recognized, planned for, and implemented is an issue of leadership. The forces that shape and reshape any organization under the rubric of change are • People. Not wanting to change is normal. However, if change is presented appropriately and fairly, it becomes an asset. When change is looked upon as one more way to grow, it becomes a true breakthrough rather than a breakdown. For a successful change in any organization people must be told what is being changed, why it is being changed, and what are the consequences. • Technology. Technology is a part of the human race. As a consequence, it will always follow the human trends of demographics. Leadership must recognize this and must plan for innovation in the organization.

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• Information. There is more information now than at any other time in human history. As a consequence, true leadership must filter the appropriate and applicable information that will benefit the organization. When a leader addresses change, the bottom line is to be cognizant of what change is all about. The following categories may serve a leader in optimizing his or her decision making, by either avoiding the situation completely and/or controlling their assumptions: • Expect someone else will take the baton and will be responsible for the change. • Decide not to change. • Act like a victim. • Try to reinvent new rules to play an old game. • Recognize that some processes will need reengineering at some point. • Try to control the uncontrollable. • Do not be intimidated by a change. Make the change in your own terms. • Fail to abandon a sure failure. • Slow down and reevaluate. • Assume that the future does not hold a favorable trend. • Choose the wrong items for change.

THE ROLE OF THE QUALITY PROFESSIONAL To be sure, a quality professional has many tasks in both planning and evaluating quality in a given organization. Perhaps, the most important role of a quality professional in any organization is to facilitate a dialogue between departments and individuals, and between customer and supplier relations, regarding the status of quality, that is, a facilitation about issues, concerns, and problems relating to quality, as well as implementing the customer’s needs, wants, and expectations through appropriate and applicable requirements. To be sure, it is an issue of communication. However, we all must realize that when a quality professional gets involved with a problem, many people already know about it, and many have already have made up their minds who to blame. As a consequence, the more the push for understanding through open and honest communication, the more the resistance. It is obvious that a dialogue needs to take place, and when it materializes everyone can be happier. Trust must be restored in the workplace, and fear of any kind must be eradicated. One effective way is through a dialogue, and the person who can plan and execute such an activity is the quality professional. (We must emphasize that some consultants in the six sigma methodology emphatically oppose the notion of using quality professionals as the key players in the six sigma methodology. They believe that quality professionals are outdated and very much set in their ways. We vehemently disagree with that concept and believe that those consultants are actually doing a great disservice to their clients.) What does it mean to have a dialogue? Dialogue comes from the Hellenic word Dialogos: a free flowing of thought. Dialogue is at the heart of a process called

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organizational learning. How well we learn from each other is becoming the final source of competitive advantage in business today and, more importantly, in our personal interactions with others. Gone are the Byzantine bureaucratic approaches to problem resolution. In modern profitable organizations we let the genie, called participation, out of the bottle long ago and it is very difficult, if at all possible, to put it back. Participation in the work environment through open communication has become a way of life and, certainly in the last several years, has been practiced in all sorts of businesses. Now we are able to recognize that our ability to learn and acquire new knowledge is limited by the way we think and the way we ask questions. In dialogue, each person is asked to help create a safe environment to share what’s really on their minds. When we can share our limitations, such as judgments, assumptions, fears, “dumb” questions, etc., we can work through these limitations in our thinking styles and into a shared, collective understanding that maximizes the diversity of our organization and bring all the appropriate personnel into the process. We can then move forward to cocreate a new culture, a culture that encourages every individual to contribute to the organization’s goals, vision, mission, values, and other activities of the business. An organizational culture that maximizes its diversity by valuing the differences in each other’s backgrounds, skills, and thinking styles has a potential of reaching its goals. Silence and avoidance will never resolve the issues, they just postpone the reckoning. It is unfortunate that in most organizations open communication does not exist and, in fact, their leaders themselves have misunderstood the mission of their own organizations and act as “cowboys” at the exclusion of others. It is unfortunate that the leadership of most organizations avoids mediation and resolution for whatever reason. It is downright foolish for all involved not to put the interest of the organization and its employees above personal pride and who wins. It is just terrible in an organizational environment to not be able to resolve issues in the open, and, when different opinions are shared, to have everyone flare up with someone to blame. The most appropriate person for handling conflicts and issues, as they relate to the supplier — organization — customer triad, is the quality professional with appropriate delegation of authority and responsibility to carry out a resolution based on truth and integrity for all concerned. It is time for a quality professional to demonstrate “relativeness” in the situations that plague the organization. (This is in contrast to what some consulting houses preach in reference to six sigma training. That is, they feel that the quality professional will hinder the improvement of the project. Obviously, we strongly disagree.) It is through communication that if we all really communicate, then and only then will we have fellowship, participation, friendship, understanding, learning, and growing. That would be the way. And perhaps in dialogue, when we have this very high energy of coherence, it might bring us beyond just being a group. Specifically, what can be done to open and sustain the dialogue? I propose the following: 1. Get everyone together and discuss all issues, without any preconceived notions. 2. Everyone must participate; to make sure of this, designate a facilitator.

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To do this, however, we need to establish some general conditions for the dialogue to be effective. We must: 1. Trust that people of good intentions can work through difficult issues together. 2. Respect each other’s right to have different points of view. 3. Speak clearly, in an authentic way that encourages feedback. 4. Seek shared meaning through engaged listening; remember that silence for reflection is okay. 5. Listen from the speaker’s point of view. 6. Let your undiscussables surface. 7. Ask questions that encourage more data. 8. Talk to the center. Connect to what’s being said! 9. Give others the benefit of the doubt. Why is it so important to have a dialogue? Because it is through a dialogue that we truly communicate. Please note that the meaning of the word “dialogue” is somewhat different from what is commonly used. The derivations of words often help to suggest a deeper meaning. “Dialogue,” as we mentioned earlier, comes from the Hellenic word dialogos. Logos means “the word,” or, in our case, we would think of the ‘meaning of the word.’ And dia means ‘through’ — it doesn’t mean two. A dialogue can be among any number of people, not just two. Even one person can have a sense of dialogue within himself, if the spirit of the dialogue is present. The picture or image that this derivation suggests is of a stream of meaning flowing among and through us and between us. This will make possible a flow of meaning in the whole group, out of which will emerge some new understanding. It’s something new, which may not have been in the starting point at all. It’s something creative. And this shared meaning is the “glue” or “cement” that holds people, organizations, and even societies together. In a dialogue, however, nobody is trying to win. Everybody wins if anybody wins. There is a different sort of spirit to it. In a dialogue, there is no attempt to gain points, or to make your particular view prevail. Rather, whenever any mistake is discovered on anyone’s part, everybody gains. It’s a situation called win–win, whereas the other game is win–lose — if I win, you lose. But a dialogue is more of a common participation in which we are not playing a game against each other, but with each other. In a dialogue, everybody wins. Now, why do we need dialogue? People have difficulty communicating even in small groups. But in a group of, say, up to 10 to 15 individuals with different agendas, many may find it very hard to communicate unless there is a set purpose, or unless somebody is leading it. Why is that? For one thing, everybody has different assumptions and opinions, not to mention different operational definitions. They are basic assumptions, not merely superficial assumptions, such as assumptions about the meaning of life; about your own self-interest, your organization’s interest (sometime, even a country’s interest), or your religious interest; about what you really think is important. And these assumptions are defended when they are challenged. People frequently can’t resist defending them, and they tend to defend them with an emotional charge.

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It is important to see that the different opinions that you have are the result of past thought: all your experiences, what other people have said, etc. That is all programmed into your memory. You may then identify with those opinions and react to defend them, but it doesn’t make sense to do that. If the opinion is right, it doesn’t need such a reaction. And if it is wrong, why should you defend it? If you are identified with it, however, you do defend it. It is as if you yourself are under attack when your opinion is challenged. If we defend opinions in this way, we are not going to be able to have a dialogue. And we are often unconsciously defending our opinions. We don’t usually do it on purpose. At times we may be conscious that we are defending them, but mostly we are not. We just feel that something is so true that we can’t avoid trying to convince this “stupid” person how wrong he is to disagree with us. To be sure, people in any group will bring to it their assumptions, and as the group continues meeting those assumptions will come up. What is called for then is to suspend those assumptions, so that you neither carry them out nor suppress them. You don’t believe them, nor do you disbelieve them; you don’t judge them as good or bad. You simply see what they mean — not only your own, but the other people’s as well. We are not trying to change anybody’s opinion. When this meeting is over, somebody may or may not change his opinion. This is part of what I consider dialogue — for people to realize what is on each other’s minds without coming to any conclusions or judgments. (At the end of this meeting, it is imperative that we do not assign blame. If blame is assigned, we already have lost.) That is part of collective thought — people thinking together. At some stage we would share our opinions without hostility, and we would then be able to think together, whereas when we defend an opinion we can’t. An example of people thinking together would be that somebody would get an idea, somebody else would take it up, and somebody else would add to it. The thought would now be shared rather than there being a lot of different people trying to persuade or convince others. The object of a dialogue is not to analyze things or to win an argument or to exchange opinions. It is to suspend your opinions and to look at the opinions — to listen to everybody’s opinions and to see what all that means. It is, for all intents and purposes, a data collection forum without bias. If we can see what all of our opinions mean, then we are sharing a common content, even if we don’t agree entirely. The opinions, therefore, don’t matter so much. Eventually we may be somewhere between all these opinions, and we start to move beyond them in another direction, a tangential direction, into something new and creative. It is very unfortunate, indeed, that different stakeholders in the organization do not take ownership of their own problems and concerns. Rather, they try to find someone to blame. It is precisely this attitude that a facilitator is needed to mediate the differences and points of view. That is why the quality professional is best qualified to do this facilitation, because more often than not he is familiar not only with the assumptions of the different individuals, but also with the basic disagreements as well as the customer requirements. A perfect application of a dialogue is in the situation where a concern has been identified, say in the assembly plant. As a general rule, even before a thorough investigation has taken place, the supplier is accused of shipping a bad part. At that point fingers are being pointed in both

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directions, and quite often the problem ends up being an assembly concern rather than a supplier concern. A dialogue would have resolved the issue much faster and in a more amicable way.




The dialogue session will not be like a typical planning meeting or problem-solving discussion. Instead, it will be very loosely structured. The most valuable insights and learning come from the freest discussion. This opening meeting may be conducted as a check-in process: before the official meeting begins each person takes no more than 60 seconds to share whatever is on his or her mind. It could be something personal or a question/concern about the meeting purpose or goals. There will be no leader; only a facilitator. All titles will be left at the door. There will be no action plans. So, what will happen to the learning that comes out of the dialogue session or the issues that we raised? 1. Every individual is responsible to act on any revelations he or she has regarding how to do his or her work better or can help make the organization better as a whole. 2. Everyone leaves the session with an increased understanding of each other’s perspectives. 3. Everyone shares insights and the group’s learning with everyone else. 4. When it is clear that some action needs to be taken as a result of the dialogue session, the appropriate leaders will be responsible to take action to address the issue. 5. As we learn better communication skills through the dialogue process, those skills will begin to filter through the organization and will eventually become part of our local culture (department) as a community. Finally, what is the process of participating in such a dialogue and expecting positive results? There are nine fundamental steps that will be required. They are 1. Everyone participates equally and respectfully. Open up all issues for general discussion, without any preconceived notions, resolutions, and/or actions (Learning Process). The intent is to learn the process — let it all loose. After receiving new knowledge during this general meeting, take time to reflect on what it means on a personal level; share your insights in small groups, and then discuss key points at your table groups. Wrap up with volunteers sharing insights with the whole group. 2. Ask lots of questions around each topic in a friendly manner until all viewpoints are exhausted. 3. Record your comments on Post-it® Notes after you speak. Create a visual bridge with the Post-it Notes. To the left of the bridge pile the Post-it Notes color coded with stories from the past. These are the current reality or what we have done. To the right of the bridge pile the Post-it Notes color coded with stories about the future. These are the desired outcomes

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4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

or what we want to create. In the center of the bridge pile the Post-it Notes that indicate what the issues are below the surface. The facilitator will post comments into common clusters. Move on to the next topic. Save the last half hour for identifying cluster themes, champions, and systemic impact on other themes. Begin the dialogue with a “check-in” to share whatever is on your mind (personal or business). Passing is okay. As an option, take five minutes to reflect on the topic background, e.g., why are we here? End the dialogue with a “check-out” to share your comments and feelings about the content and/or process.

To see that everything moves in the right direction, make sure a facilitator is in place who recognizes the Ladder of Inference. It is imperative that we recognize that one exists, especially since we start from a bottom-up approach to communication. Like a stepladder, starting at the bottom, our mind processes what we see and hear. (1) We observe the event (data); (2) we add meaning based on our personality preference and how we were raised at home, work, etc.; (3) we reach a conclusion; (4) we make inferences around what might happen; and (5) we develop beliefs that will influence how we think in the future. It is the facilitator’s job to make sure that everyone participates and everyone contributes without any unusual bias and/or threatening behaviors. Say what’s on your mind by starting at the bottom of the ladder where you are discussing the data, not just your opinion or beliefs. When you advocate it is helpful to begin by sharing your intention and encouraging others to ask you questions. Being genuinely curious about what others are saying is a must. Everyone must share their concerns for this to be successful. Ask open-ended questions in a friendly tone that prevents defensiveness. Understand the “what” and “why” of the issue before making any judgments or jumping to conclusions. To make sure that the what and why are understood, use a T-account approach and focus on the left-hand column. If you took the time to reflect back on a conversation that did not turn out the way you hoped, you could learn from it by recording what you said in the right hand of the “T” or column of a piece of paper, e.g., What I said, what they said, what I said, etc. In the left-hand column you would record what you were thinking but not saying. It’s a process you can use to surface a previously undiscussable issue. Real learning comes from our willingness to share what’s in our left-hand columns in safety. As the dialogue progresses, make sure that there is a process check (check-out). It is similar to the check-in process, only you share your likes/dislikes around the meeting content and process. It is a way of continuously improving the efficiency of your meetings and encouraging everyone to say what’s really on their minds before they leave. It is okay to pass. It is this process check that will create our mental models of all the collective opinions we will store in our minds that eventually will influence the way we think, and will help create the preference of our behavior.

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For a quality system to be effective it must provide a structured problem-solving methodology that can help to identify opportunities for improvement. Every work activity — also called work function or work process — has inputs and outputs. Critical points in the process can be selected, and measurements can be taken at the input, at the output, and within the process. These measurements help identify the most serious problems to be resolved. Considerations such as culture, incentives, teamwork, training, and work involvement are typical. The optimum effectiveness of a quality system results from an appropriate mix of the social and technical systems. It is common practice to emphasize the technical aspects of improvement — new machine tools, computers — with less emphasis on the people and their roles in the process. Improving quality and productivity to achieve competitiveness reemphasizes the need for an enterprise to capture the potential inherent in its workforce by enabling each employee to do his or her job right the first time. This requires that top management demonstrate to all employees that they are personally committed and will continuously pursue efforts to improve quality. The organization’s management must accept the idea that employees can and want to contribute. Employees will expend the necessary effort if they perceive that their performance will lead to desired rewards. Rewards are both extrinsic (salary, bonuses, and work security) and intrinsic (meaningful work, responsibility for outcomes, and feedback on the results of work activities). Employees model their behaviors by how management acts. Management must demonstrate by its actions that quality is extremely important and must support employee involvement in quality improvement efforts. Team activities are an effective way to tap the human resource to achieve quality improvement. Employees gain pride in their work and develop a personal stake in the achievement of excellence in quality and productivity. Team activities are also an effective way to manage the interfaces between functional disciplines. In team activities, the integration of design, quality/reliability, and production is an effective way to achieve the synergy necessary for quality excellence. Various names have been given to the team approach like simultaneous engineering and concurrent design. These teams can range from 4 to 20 members and can have representation from every function in the organization.

QUALITY CONTROL Quality control is defined as the operational techniques and activities that are used to fulfill requirements for quality. Quality control is the process of checking to see whether the product conforms and is fit for use and, if it is not, responding appropriately. It is an appraisal system. It sorts quality. It evaluates quality in “good” and “bad.” Some of the ways it does that is through: • Inspection. Inspection is the process of monitoring measures of product or service quality. Inspection data can be used for process-control purposes and for defect-reduction efforts.

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• Receiving Inspection. In a manufacturing environment, receiving (incoming) inspection is the group that inspects purchased raw materials or components to ensure that the correct materials have arrived, that they meet specified criteria, and that they are properly identified. Contents might be visually inspected using attribute sampling plans, measurement of variables, or laboratory chemical or physical testing. The materials will be identified as being held until released by receiving inspection. In some regulatory cases they will be in a bonded or quarantined area until released. In a service organization, receiving inspection is the act of checking the raw materials used to produce the service. In this case it would be the customer’s written or verbal order (insurance policy application) or a true raw material for the service (surgical pin). (Note: most quality functions started with the manufacturing world and are now being translated into the service world. In the receiving inspection of written or verbal orders, most manufacturing firms did little about contract review until required by such standards as ISO 9001-1994 and, of course, the latest revision of ISO 9001-2000.) • In-Process Inspection. In-process inspection is the act of checking materials to a specification or drawing while the product is being produced. It ensures that the product’s content and status are properly identified and traceable. Checking specifications might consist of measurement, physical, or chemical testing, and the testing might be destructive or nondestructive. If the material passes the inspection criteria, it is so noted, and the product moves along to the next stage of the process. If it fails inspection, the product will be scrapped or quarantined until disposition can be made. This quarantine can be simple tagging or storage in a bonded area. Immediate corrective action will be taken and then documented to allow long-term evaluation of the effectiveness of the action. In service industries, the interim test might be the review of a credit card application or a travel agent reviewing an itinerary. The concept is still the same: the information or request has been received, and the act of providing the service has started while a review is being performed. In most cases the review is performed by the individual performing the work. • Finished Goods Inspection. Prior to the release of a manufactured product, a final review or test of the product may occur. This can be 100% visual, formal sampling of attributes, chemical or physical testing, or a functional test. It can take the form of a batch review in which all records of the production and inspection process are reviewed for anomalies. These tests normally take place when a product is ready for shipping and only packing remains. The product is also checked for identification of content, status, and traceability. In a service industry, finished goods inspection might consist of the final steps before delivery. In a restaurant the chef or waiter might check the presentations of the food. Another example would be an

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optometrist polishing a new pair of glasses prior to handing them to the customer. Metrology. Metrology is the individual or group responsible for the devices used to measure and/or test material or product quality. This function is directly involved with the selection, purchase, and/or redesign of gages, test equipment, measuring devices, and associated jigs and fixtures. Metrology also maintains calibration of the measuring equipment and ensures its maintenance for precision. Internal Auditing. Internal auditing is responsible for determining whether the quality system is compliant with required standards, and whether the system is effective. Internal auditing can be an individual, group, or department, but should be independent of the department being audited. It is common practice for an experienced lead auditor to train and lead people from different departments for specific audits. Using personnel from other departments increases employee awareness of the need for and benefits of a quality system and the internal auditing process. Administration. Administration is a separate entity only in the largest organizations. Administration is responsible for developing the organization’s quality plan and corresponding budget, as well as coordinating the activities to achieve the plan and reporting on its status. Changes being introduced are usually of a technological nature, but cultural shifts might be required. Administration will determine the professional qualifications and training requirements for each position in the department. This department’s overall mission is to develop and maintain the quality system in order to ensure the quality of the product or service being provided. Customer Quality. The customer quality group works with customers in almost a mirror image of the supplier quality group. This group should respond to problems presented by customers with a quick and precise action that will prevent recurrence. Successful customer quality groups must work with other internal departments to ensure that problems that are effectively addressed, and to anticipate and address problems that have not yet occurred. Consulting and Training. In some companies the quality function is responsible for formal classroom instruction on the tools used for quality improvement. These tools may be of a basic nature — flowcharting, Pareto analysis, control charting — or advanced, such as design of experiments and so on. They are often taught in the work environment by quality professionals working as team facilitators to solve existing problems on an as-needed basis.

QUALITY ASSURANCE Quality assurance consists of all the planned and systematic activities implemented with the quality system and demonstrated as needed to provide adequate confidence that an entity will fulfill requirements. Therefore, the role of quality assurance is to design and implement a system that meets the quality needs of the customer as well

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as the business. This may include compliance to generic quality system standards (e.g., ISO 9000), specific industry standards, or special customer quality requirements. Some of the ways it does that is through: • Reliability Engineering. The objective of reliability engineering is to determine the probability that a product will perform its intended function for a specified time interval under stated conditions. This individual, department, or group is usually found in industries that build complex mechanical or electronic devices with multiple subcomponents, all of which must function in order for the device to perform as intended, no matter what the device is. The performance of this task might involve optimization; design of experiments (DOE); stress analysis; failure mode, effects, and criticality analysis (FMEA and/or FMCA); reliability prediction; supplier selection; reliability testing; and failure reporting and corrective actions. • Quality Engineering. The quality engineering function is involved with the design, production, or servicing of a product. The quality engineer will be involved in advanced quality planning, establishing quality standards, test equipment, and gage design or selection, process capability analysis, rejected or held material analysis, and general troubleshooting in any area of the organization described as having a quality problem. Quality engineers ensure that the proper data will be collected and analyzed during all appropriate phases of a product’s life. These statistics are used to prevent problems prior to occurrence and to identify and correct problems after they occur. The emphasis, however, is always on the planning mode of operation. • Supplier Quality. The supplier quality function works with the purchasing department to ensure the quality of purchased parts. This is done by ensuring that the supplier has an effective quality system in place and that the supplier is able to meet specifications for material to be purchased. A partnership relationship might be created to help the supplier meet the standards or to improve for the benefit of both parties. Problems with purchased materials are reported to the supplier, and both parties should work to prevent them from recurring. The supplier quality department is also responsible for developing and implementing supplier certification programs that will reduce the need for incoming inspection and enable just-in-time shipments.

COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS IN QUALITY Several mistakes that commonly occur within the quality domain of a given organization are as follows: • Forgetting that the quality department does not make anything, rather it reports quality results and evaluates performance based on customer requirements

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• • • •

Forgetting that the quality department is a service department Forgetting that the company is there to make a profit Forgetting that unless the customer is satisfied there will be no business Feeling that quality’s only responsibility is rejecting product, thinking that it is other people’s jobs to improve the process (you cannot throw problems over the wall and ignore them) • Feeling as though the customer is out to get you (this means that you do not understand your customer’s business) • Waiting for others to provide leadership (lead, or get used to the view) • Feeling like you do not need professional training (those who are reading this get it)

TOTAL QUALITY MANAGEMENT Unquestionably, the fundamental model for any total quality management (TQM) is based on the Shewhart/Deming. That model in its core presents the Plan–Do–Study (Check) and Act methodology. Of course, over the years modifications have been made; however, the basic principles are still intact.

PLAN PHASE (MANAGEMENT RESPONSIBILITY) The plan phase involves identifying the critical product and service requirements of major customers (see Figure 1.1). Process improvement efforts are based on these critical customer requirements. The management team and/or the steering committee work together in translating customers’ requirements into appropriate goals.

FIGURE 1.1 Plan phase.

A fundamental assumption of the TQM approach is that quality is defined by the customer. Therefore, the selection of major quality goals must be based on the information received from customers. During the planning phase there are several questions that should be answered. Some fundamental ones are • Who are our major customers? • Which products or services are most important to them?

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• What characteristics of these products or services could be improved (i.e., what are the “true” quality characteristics [Ishikawa and Lu 1985])? • What operations in the process have the greatest effect on the products or services? • How does the performance of these operations need to change? Addressing these questions aids in the development of a quality improvement plan. A well-developed plan enables an organization to concentrate its resources on achieving maximum quality improvements. Failure to develop a well-defined plan with specific, measurable goals can result in wasted time, misused resources, and needless frustration. The following paragraphs describe some of the major activities associated with the plan phase.

STATE GOAL A goal within this context refers to some desired change in products or service. Examples of goals could be (1) reducing processing time for customer orders, (2) increasing the service life of a product, (3) shortening delivery time to customers, or (4) reducing the cost charged to the customer. While TQM is a very effective way of obtaining quality improvements, certain conditions must be met before using the TQM methods and structure to address a goal. For instance, goals addressed by TQM should be (1) relevant to the mission of the organization and (2) measurable. Relevant Selected goals should reflect the potential for significant improvements in the product or service. Avoid “so what?” goals that have little, if any, impact on the central mission of the organization. For example, if the central mission of an organization is to provide health services, then it is unlikely that a major quality concern would be processing travel orders for personnel. (However, if the business is a travel agency, it may be entirely appropriate to optimize travel processing procedures.) Whenever possible, it is best to establish goals that will provide a direct benefit to the final customer. Measurable TQM is often concerned with economically related goals and relies on SPC and statistical methods to achieve those goals. Use of these methods requires that goals be defined so that their achievement can be verified by objective data, not subjective opinion. A goal that cannot be measured in some fashion is not appropriate for the process improvement model.

DESCRIBE PROCESS FLOW In many traditional organizations, managers and employees are encouraged to specialize in those activities and operations they perform. This emphasis has advantages,

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such as the development of operational expertise, clear job responsibilities, and welldefined management boundaries. On the other hand, there are potentially serious disadvantages associated with this departmentalizing of a work process. Some of the disadvantages include: conflict between interrelated operations in separate departments, restriction of needed information, duplicated efforts, and suboptimization. Suboptimization occurs when actions are taken to improve the performance of an isolated operation to the detriment of related or subsequent operations. (In the actual work environment, we talk about chimneys, silos, and the like.) One aid to avoid the disadvantages of a narrow process focus in a given organization is for that group to identify major interrelated process operations and departmental responsibilities. One way of accomplishing this is by using the flowchart method. The flowchart is a graphic method of describing the interrelation of operations and decisions required to transform resources into outputs (see Figure 1.2). Sometimes this is called “process mapping.”

FIGURE 1.2 A typical flowchart structure.

Once the process flowchart has been constructed and studied, the team should analyze the chart to identify such things as duplicated efforts between operations, gaps in accountability, overuse of inspection, and ways to streamline the process. Streamlining a process is sometimes known as “imagineering,” or “reengineering.” During imagineering the team constructs a flowchart of the ideal process, that is, a depiction of a process that creates perfect products in the most efficient manner. The comparison of the actual operations with the “imagineered” process can then be used to guide improvement activities.

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The achievement of quality goals will require specific changes in process performance. A critical task of the team as well as management is to identify and define these needed changes. During the planning and other phases of project improvement methods (PIM), there are three types of information that will be needed to achieve and maintain quality improvements. These types of information are outcome, output, and process. • Outcome. This information represents the customers’ evaluation of the product or service. This information can include timeliness, price, or fitness for use. These measures are provided by customers external to the organization. It is information from such customers that is the basis for defining product or service quality. If the organization’s current customer information system is considered inadequate, then different methods of obtaining information must be developed. Failure to obtain accurate definitions of customers’ requirements seriously weakens the entire foundation of any quality system. • Output. Output information describes objective features of a product or service. This information typically represents a comparison of critical characteristics of the final product or service with customer-defined requirements. These requirements could address physical specifications, degree of accuracy, manufacturing costs, or time standards. This type of information can usually be obtained through the review of inspection or audit records. • Process. Process information describes the resources and operations required to develop a product or service. This information can address equipment performance, condition of incoming material, variations in work methods, or worker characteristics. In the TQM approach this information is gathered by individuals who work directly with the process. Process information is collected to identify variables that have the greatest effect on the product or service. Measures of outcome, output, and processes are used throughout the process improvement cycle. The team obtains outcome information to identify major organizational goals. Both the team and management work together to relate the outcome requirements to specific process outputs. They then define how the outputs need to change. They also work together to identify the process variables that have the greatest effect on output quality. As these variables are changed, output and outcome information is collected. This information is analyzed to check progress toward quality improvement goals.

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DO PHASE (PROCESS ACTION TEAM RESPONSIBILITY) After quality goals have been defined, the process variables related to improved quality need to be identified. The identification of these variables is the task of Process Action Teams (PAT). PAT consist of individuals working on the processes selected for improvement. In the “Do” phase of project improvement method these teams have three major responsibilities (see Figure 1.3).

FIGURE 1.3 Do phase.

First, PAT study the current process and its outputs to identify variables related to quality; second, the teams develop measures of those variables; and third, the teams create a format to collect data.




PAT are expected to use their experience and knowledge to identify variables that affect output quality. Statistical methods are used by PAT to study process performance. First, information on past performance of output characteristics is gathered. This is known as baseline information. Second, a description of the process as it currently exists is developed. It takes the form of an “as is” flowchart. Third, the identification of specific process variables is accomplished through a cause-andeffect analysis. The following sections provide further discussion of these steps.




The first step in baseline development is to clearly define what quality characteristics of the process output will be studied. This definition is critical to subsequent process analysis and improvement efforts. Development of a baseline for a process output involves evaluation of the output over a period of time. The purpose is to determine how the process performs prior to and following any improvement efforts.

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The output studied by a PAT depends on the type of process. The output of a production process is usually a physical product, for example, automobiles, cameras, or clothing. Such outputs have physical dimensions that can often be quantified and objectively evaluated. The outputs of service processes tend to be more difficult to measure (Albrecht and Zemke 1985). Examples of services include medical examinations, haircuts, management consulting, and report editing. The results of these types of processes can vary greatly from customer to customer, and are often evaluated on the basis of subjective criteria. Thus, collecting baseline information on service outputs can require much more continuous and direct communication with customers than is required when the output is a product. There is no easy answer for determining what output characteristics should be measured to create a baseline. The characteristics should have a logical relationship to the goals defined by the executive steering committee and quality management. For example, if the goal is to reduce the amount of backlogged material, then a logical output to measure would be the ratio of completed orders over total orders received per day.




Each PAT should develop a flowchart that depicts its section of the process as it actually functions. Such flowcharts should be used to flesh out formal descriptions of operations. It could be discovered that the as is description includes redundant steps or that the informal process omits critical activities. It is also important to determine how the operations within a process interact. Process improvements must relate to the process as it functions. The as is flowchart can also serve to provide quality management members with more detailed knowledge of critical processes.

PERFORM CAUSE-AND-EFFECT ANALYSIS Cause-and-effect analysis is a brainstorming method used by a team to create a branching diagram. It shows the relationship between a set of possible process variables and a specific process result (Ishikawa 1983). The results often focused on during cause-and-effect analysis concern quality, costs, or schedule. Most causeand-effect analysis concentrates on six categories of process variables. These categories are 1. Manpower. The attributes of the people involved in the process such as their experience, training, strength, or even eyesight and reading ability. 2. Materials. The physical resources or raw materials used in the process. 3. Methods. The combination of information and procedures used to create process output. Information sources may be standardized, for example, technical data manuals or forms. Methods can include informal work experiences such as “short cuts” workers learn from others. 4. Machines. The equipment and tools used in a process. For a supply operation, this could include forklift trucks, computer terminals, or conveyance systems.

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5. Measurement. The measurement system that is used in the process to evaluate the on-going quality as well as the integrity of the measurement instruments and the operators who are using these systems. If the measurement is not appropriate and applicable for the process, then the outcome is of questionable quality at best. 6. Environment. The environmental influences that play a role in the process. It could include items such as: ambient temperature, humidity, governmental regulations, cultural norms, dust, and so on. While these six categories are commonly used in the identification of important “causes” of process performance, other categories can be added to or substituted for them. The following figures depict an example of cause-and-effect analysis of a problem concerning inventory accuracy in a supply operation (see Figures 1.4 and 1.5). Inventory accuracy as presented in the diagrams refers to the location of the correct amount of material within its assigned storage space. Inventory accuracy is the result or “effect” of a combination of variables or causes. An example of a causeand-effect diagram follows in Figure 1.4. Figure 1.5 describes an expansion of information displayed in Figure 1.4.

FIGURE 1.4 A typical cause-and-effect diagram.

The purpose of conducting the cause-and-effect analysis is to identify the variables that appear to have a major influence on process results. Once these potential “causes” have been identified, they can be analyzed using an SPC graph such as a scatter diagram. Such analysis is conducted to verify that the “causes” significantly affect process performance. The variables identified during the cause-and-effect

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FIGURE 1.5 A structural example of a cause-and-effect diagram.

analysis are also studied to determine the type of influence these variables have on process results.

IDENTIFY PROCESS MEASURES As important as it is to have valid data on outcomes and outputs, it is vital to obtain process measures as well. Unfortunately, organizations rarely have systems established to collect data on process characteristics. When such data are not available, it becomes necessary to develop the process measures. Developing process measures is not easy. Take, for example, a process variable such as legibility of documents. Members of a team might agree that it is critical to performing their job, but measuring the legibility of a form could be very difficult. Unfortunately there is no single method of developing measures for process variables. This is a problem that each team will have to work through by using its best judgment. However, once process measures have been identified and developed, it is possible to statistically determine the validity and reliability of these measures.

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As more knowledge is acquired on processes, the easier it will probably become to determine what variables should be measured and how they should be defined.

ESTABLISH DATA COLLECTION PROCEDURES After the PAT has developed measures, it must decide how to collect the data. Data must be collected in a systematic fashion to ensure accuracy of analysis and interpretation. After it has been collected, it is analyzed to identify those variables that are most critical to quality. Collect Baseline Process Information The first part of the data collection strategy requires that the team collect information on the “causes” of variation identified through cause-and-effect analysis. This information is collected to determine how the various “causes” influence the output or “effect.” Five questions need to be addressed prior to collecting baseline data on “causes”: 1. What process information will be collected? This question concerns the type of information that will be collected on each “cause.” In some cases a measure is a simple tally, for example, counting defects in a product, counting forklift trucks available at a receiving dock, or counting documents that are illegible. Some variables require detailed measurement, for example, visual acuity of material handlers, size of packages received from suppliers, or minutes required to assemble and deliver an aircraft component kit. 2. How will the data be collected? There are a number of issues that need to be addressed here. First, the PAT must develop a standard data collection format. In some cases this might require the team to construct check sheets or other recording forms. The individuals who use the forms must use them in a consistent fashion. The second issue is that of sampling. Sampling involves collecting data in such a way that it represents the effect of process variables accurately. A professional statistician is often required to ensure proper sampling. 3. Who will collect the information? An obvious, but sometimes overlooked, item is deciding individual responsibility for data collection. If individuals are not given specific data collection tasks, there is considerable danger of “things falling through the cracks,” that is, data collection failing to be carried out because no one was responsible for it. The old saying of “if everyone is responsible, no one is responsible” is an appropriate adage to remember. The individuals selected to conduct data collection should be able to do so as a routine part of their duties. This is likely to occur when the data collector works in the part of the process where the variable is found. For example, if a team is concerned with inaccurate documentation attached to supplier-supplied material, then someone who currently checks documents at the receiving operation would be an appropriate choice as a data collector.

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4. Where will the data be collected? The PAT must decide at what points in a process data should be collected. The “as is” flowchart developed by the PAT could be used to identify appropriate process data collection points. Data should be collected on “causes” at the points where they occur, rather than waiting to infer the existence of the “cause” through a change in the “effect.” For example, an insufficient number of wooden pallets could be identified as a “cause” of material backlog in a storage area. It would be more appropriate to measure the difference between available versus needed pallets than to measure the amount of backlog to determine whether or not the supply is adequate. 5. When will the data be collected? This question refers to identifying deadlines for data collection activities. Data collection deadlines are used to obtain process data in a timely manner. The time span should be long enough to provide a representative sample of measures. For example, if it takes an hour to process an aircraft component, then collecting data once a week could miss valuable information. In this instance, collecting data on an hourly basis during each work day would be more appropriate. Expert assistance from statisticians or operations analysts could be used to help the team determine an adequate time frame. Dealing with data, as we already have mentioned in the section on measurement, we must be also cognizant of (1) data mining, and (2) consider the applicability of “fake data.” Perform Pareto Analysis After baseline measures of the process “causes” have been gathered, the relative importance of the “causes” must be determined. Rather than expend the organization’s resources to correct a host of “causes” all at one time, it would be more effective to address those “causes” that have the greatest impact on the “effect” first. A method commonly used to identify the most important “causes” is the Pareto analysis (see Figure 1.6). This analytic technique involves the vertical bar chart that depicts “causes” sorted in descending order according to their impact on the selected “effect.” A Pareto analysis could be used to display the relationship between such data as: • Types of accident (cause) compared with labor hours lost (effect). • Supplier sources used (cause) compared with defective material found (effect). • Complexity of travel requirements (cause) compared with time required to process orders (effect). • Type of product defects (cause) compared with the cost of reworking the product (effect).

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FIGURE 1.6 A typical structure of a Pareto chart.

From a review of a Pareto chart, a PAT could identify those variables that have the greatest effect on an output characteristic. Those variables could then be analyzed to determine their precise influence within the process.




In the “Study” or “Check” phase (Figure 1.7), the PAT collect, process, and output data. During the data collection period, they summarize the data using graphic methods. Once the data have been summarized, the PAT and management interpret the findings to confirm which process variables have a significant effect on outputs and, subsequently, outcomes. As significant variables are identified, statistical experiments are conducted to determine the precise type of effect each variable has on output quality.

FIGURE 1.7 Study phase.

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In addition to flow charts, cause-and-effect diagrams, and Pareto charts, there are four other methods commonly associated with process analysis — histograms, scatter diagrams, run charts, and control charts (G.O.A.L. 1985; Houston et al. 1987; Ishikawa 1983). These graphic methods are presented below along with brief definitions. (More detailed information will be presented in Volume III.) It should also be pointed out that these are the most basic analytic methods and are most often used with “on-line” process analysis. Other more advanced techniques associated with design of experiments are beyond the scope of the present discussion. Histograms These graphs can be used to depict variation in process performance or results (see Figure 1.8). They can also be used to show how the majority of process outputs compare with a goal value as well as with its specification limits. It demonstrates the distribution of the process.

FIGURE 1.8 A typical structure of a histogram.

Scatter Diagrams These diagrams are often used to check the strength of the possible “cause-andeffect” relationships identified in the “Do” phase. These diagrams can be used to show if changes in a process variable result in changes in the output (see Figure 1.9). Run Charts These charts are constructed to determine if there are time-related patterns in process performance (see Figure 1.10). They can also be used to test “before” and “after” effects of process changes. Control Charts These charts depict process performance from samples taken over a period of time (see Figure 1.11). Control charts can be used to predict how a process should perform under stable conditions. These charts can be used to distinguish among variables that consistently

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FIGURE 1.9 A typical structure of a scatter diagram.

FIGURE 1.10 A typical run chart.

FIGURE 1.11 A typical control chart.

affect all of the outputs of a process (“common causes”) and those that have an unpredictable effect on outputs (“special causes”). These methods are used, when appropriate, by management and PAT to uncover causes of unwanted variation in process performance. Once the data have been graphed, both the PAT and the management interpret the findings. Based on the

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results of their interpretation, process improvement changes are made and evaluated in the “Act” phase. To assist in the selection and use of appropriate analytic methods, some organizations provide their management and PAT with “process consultants,” specifically trained to provide instruction in the analytic and problem-solving methods associated with TQM — usually quality engineers. In the absence of specially trained consultants, it is often necessary to have a professional statistician to help with these matters.




Before taking actions to improve quality, management and PAT should determine what types of “causes” or variables are within the process. “Causes” have either a “common” or “special” influence on a process. Common causes are those that arise from the system itself and influence overall performance in a statistically predictable fashion. Examples of common causes could include the accuracy of standards supplied to a work area, the training given to workers, or the consistency of materials used in the process. Special causes, on the other hand, refer to variables that are not regarded as part of the system and have isolated and statistically unpredictable influence on outputs. Special causes are often “local” to a specific operation, machine, or lot of material. Examples of special causes include a bad lot of material, a single malfunctioning machine, or a new worker using inappropriate procedures. Sometimes the source of a special cause cannot be determined or could reflect an unusual statistical event (sometimes known as “bad luck”). Failing to identify the exact nature of a problem could result in short-term “solutions” (Band-Aid solutions or quick fixes) being used on long-term problems. This is usually the result of incorrectly assuming that a common cause is a special cause. It is also possible to err by implementing broad-scope, long-term changes on what could have been a short-term aberration. Common and special causes can often be identified through the use of control charts (Wheeler and Chambers 1986).




At the conclusion of the “Study” or “Check” phase, the PAT select process variables believed to be major contributors to process quality. These variables are used during the “Act” phase in efforts to improve process quality (see Figure 1.12). At this point in the model, a critical task of the management is to identify those variables that can be handled at the lower organizational levels and those that require the efforts of upper management. Typically, actions on special causes, those isolated and unpredictable process influences, can be dealt with at the worker or first supervisory level. Changing common causes, those variables that affect total process performance, usually involve major changes that require the attention of higher management.

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FIGURE 1.12 Act phase.




In some cases it is necessary to take corrective action as soon as a “special cause” is identified. If unsafe working conditions are discovered, it is not necessary to wait until all analytic efforts have been carried out to improve the working conditions. Early in an organization’s TQM effort, many “causes” identified could require immediate action. Often these actions can be taken at the lowest organizational level. For example, a PAT might identify a machine with an incorrect setting; the team members could have the authority to correct the setting without any management assistance. It should be remembered that the main purpose of correcting special causes is to stabilize a process. After a process is stabilized it is possible to address common causes and improve overall performance.




As a process is stabilized and common causes are identified, the management and the executive steering committee (ESC) work to improve process-wide influences on quality. The management and ESC identify the resources and authority levels required to make the changes. As part of the change design, both management and ESC will have to decide how long a trial period should be used to test the change. Two factors that should be taken into consideration are the nature of the change and production time. Some changes might take a relatively short time to put in place and be expected to show immediate results. Other changes could require a longer period of time to install and affect the outputs. The determination of trial periods should be decided using statistical criteria before the change is implemented to avoid incorrectly evaluating the effectiveness of a change. For example, a change might be considered to be effective before it is actually tried. And once it has been put in place, any positive results could be interpreted as sufficient evidence that it was working. The “trial” would then be stopped and a potentially ineffective change established as part of the process. By collecting data for a sufficient time period, changes that only have a temporary effect can be ruled out.

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After changes have been designed by the management and the ESC, the changes are put into effect for a trial period. The management continue to work with the PAT and others involved in the changes to ensure that the design plan is properly executed. Failure to follow the change plan could lead to poor results and the discontinuing of an effective process change.




After the process change, management and ESC need to evaluate the effect of the change relative to the original goals identified during the “Plan” phase. Evaluation should be conducted at the process level, the output level, and the outcome level. These levels of evaluation are used to determine if the process change should be standardized or if further investigation is required. The following sections describe evaluation activities. • Collect and Analyze Process and Output Data. Once changes have been installed, the process is allowed to operate for the preselected trial period. Data are collected by PAT to assess the effects of the change, for example, use of a run or control chart to determine if the change has a significant influence on the output characteristic. The findings of the PAT are summarized and submitted along with graphs to be reviewed by the ESC and management. Management integrates the data obtained from PAT to form a complete description of the effects that changes have had on outputs. • Determine Impact on Outcomes. After the PAT have completed their collection of evaluative output data, the management and the ESC compare those data with outcome information. The purpose of this comparison is to determine what effect the changes have made on the meeting of customer requirements. It is possible that a change could have a positive effect on performance at an internal level without those benefits being transferred to the user of the product or service. It is also possible for this particular change to have created a new or a different sort of a problem. That is why it is very important for the management to identify all of the major process operations during the “Plan” phase. If a critical operation is ignored within a process, its poor performance could neutralize other gains. • Determine If Original Improvement Goals Have Been Achieved. After reviewing evaluation data, the management and ESC must determine if the process improvement goals have been achieved. If the changes lead to desired improvements, then the management and ESC take the steps needed to make the changes permanent parts of the process. If there has been no significant change in the outcomes selected during the “Plan” phase, then other possible causes of performance must be investigated. This could require returning to the lists created during the “Plan” and “Do” phases and selecting different variables to work on. In an extreme case, a new set of “causes” might have to be identified for the process.

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• Standardize and Document Process Improvements. If the results show a significant increase in process quality, then the management and ESC take actions to make the changes permanent. Such actions could include changing specifications, work methods, suppliers, or providing new training to workers. An important step in maintaining process improvements is documentation of improvement actions and results. By recording such efforts it is possible to develop case studies for the continuing education of managers new to the TQM approach, for informing suppliers of their responsibilities under a changed process, and for briefing customers on the organization’s efforts to meet their requirements. Perhaps, the most important element of this process is the quality awareness of all the employees to the process and the effect that “their” process has on the organization, the supplier, and the customer. • Monitor Process. The “final” step of this model is the establishment of monitoring procedures. Once a process has been improved so that it meets the requirements of customers, then the process changes that led to the improvement must be maintained. Maintenance of a process, at a higher level of quality, requires the ongoing measurement of critical process variables. The purpose of such measurement or monitoring is to ensure that process performance does not deteriorate. At the conclusion of a successful improvement effort, the participating groups should develop the procedures and forms necessary to monitor the process. Unlike the previous process analysis efforts, data collection for monitoring is expected to be a regular task of the people involved in the process. Simplicity in data collection and analysis should be a major consideration in the development of a monitoring system. • Continue Improvement Cycle. Although this model focuses on the individual process improvement effort, it should be remembered that under TQM, process improvement efforts are a continuous activity. The ESC should always search for new areas for improvement. At the organizational level, the ESC works to address new customer concerns and requirements as the previous goals are met. This could require increasingly detailed customer information systems. At the management and PAT levels, continuing efforts to reduce process variation and refinement of process improvements provide additional quality gains. Although the process improvement model was developed originally for manufacturing organizations, the summarized activities presented in the model can be applied to a variety of organizations, private as well as public; for profit and for notfor-profit; and manufacturing and service. The major impediments to the use of the process improvement model and, by extension, to the use of TQM are not likely to lie in the nature of the process under investigation, but rather to originate from inappropriate attitudes and practices of managers. Successful use of the process improvement model to improve an

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organization’s products and services will be heavily affected by the ability of managers to adopt the concepts associated with TQM.




At this time, for as many success stories that are available on behalf of TQM, there are as many which identify failures. For a successful implementation and application, on any quality initiative, e.g., TQM, OI, or even Six Sigma, the following conditions are considered minimum requirements: 1. Managers should understand the principles and techniques associated with the quality system of choice. 2. Managers should believe that they are capable of making significant changes in the ways the organization does business. 3. Managers at all levels should have a shared perception that improvement in product and service quality is essential to their organization’s mission. 4. Managers should agree that any quality initiative could be used to significantly improve the products and services of their organization, provided there is a true commitment and persistence. 5. Managers should clearly define their responsibilities, as well as the responsibilities of their subordinates, in process improvement activities. 6. Managers should appropriately empower the employees to do the right job without any fear of retaliation. 7. Managers must provide appropriate and applicable measurement systems. 8. Managers must provide appropriate, applicable, and on-time training to all employees. 9. Managers must understand customer requirements. 10. Managers must be truly committed to improvement in all aspects of their organization. The conditions for successful initiatives are identified in a seven-step sequence model. The model proposes performance improvement as each step involves a series of well-defined, straightforward tasks which lead directly into the actions required in the subsequent steps. Since the improvement process is to be continual, the procedure may be repeated as desired, as well as needed. That sequence is described as follows.

STEP 1 — ESTABLISH THE QUALITY SYSTEM, MANAGEMENT, AND CULTURAL ENVIRONMENT In this step, top management actions and responsibilities are fundamental in the success of the quality system of choice. Minimum activities are • Vision • Long-term commitment • People involvement

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• Disciplined methodology • Support systems • Training The quality system of choice must be a total organizational approach toward continual improvement of products and services. True quality requires management to exercise the leadership to establish the conditions for the process to flourish. Management must create a new, more flexible environment and culture which will encourage and accept change. The new culture is developed and operated so that all the people, working together, can maximize their contribution as individuals to the organization’s objective of excellence. Management must accept the up-front cost and the prolonged gestation period before the new systems become alive and productive. Some typical time-consuming cultural changes required are shown in Table 1.2. Vision: Provide the vision for what the organization wants to be and where it wants to go. Guidance: The organization needs to know of its current position before it determines where it wants to go. Benchmarking may be used here as a tool that will • Construct a picture of the way key processes are performing with respect to quality, productivity, and workforce involvement • Determine strengths and weaknesses • Set the course for the future • Provide a baseline for measuring progress The annual Malcom Baldridge Award, and the criteria used to evaluate an organization’s performance on which it is based, may be used as one set of yardsticks to measure the validity and the impact of your continual improvement effort. The following matrix (Table 1.3) provides a benchmarking guide. Obviously, one of your own may be used to assess the progress of your organization in implementing TQM.

LONG-TERM COMMITMENT Demonstrate a long-term commitment to implement improvement, even when improvement may be difficult or perceived to have high front-end costs. Guidance: Commitment entails more than new policies, directives, letters, and speeches. The workforce judges commitment of top management by the behaviors they exhibit. Management must provide the leadership to: • Maintain a long-term perspective in the face of short-term pressures • Realize that some results will be immediate, but others will take 4 to 7 years of commitment to achieve in support of a never-ending improvement process

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TABLE 1.2 Typical Time-Consuming Cultural Changes Category

Previous State


Maximum return on investment/management by objectives (ROI/MBO)

Customer requirements

Incomplete or ambiguous understanding of customer requirements

Supplier’s objectives

Unidirectional relationship Orientation to short-term objectives and actions with limited long-term perspective Acceptance of process variability and subsequent corrective action as the norm Unstructured individualistic problem-solving and decisionmaking



Jobs and people

Functional, narrow scope, management-controlled

Management style

Management style with uncertain objectives that instill fear of failure

Role of manager

Plan, organize, assign, control, and enforce

Rewards and recognition

Pay by job; few team incentives


Orientation toward data gathering for problem identification

New Culture Ethical behavior and customer satisfaction Climate for continuous improvement ROI a performance measure Use of a systematic approach to seek out, understand, and satisfy both internal and external customer requirements Partnership Deliberate balance of long-term goals with successive shortterm objectives Understanding and continually improving the process Predominantly participative and interdisciplinary problemsolving and decision-making based on substantive data. Management and employee involvement; work teams; integrated functions Open style with clear and consistent objectives, which encourages team-derived continual improvement Communicate, consult, delegate, coach, mentor, remove barriers, and establish trust Individual and team recognition and rewards, negotiated criteria Data used to understand and continuously improve processes

• Fund and staff to support the quality system of choice training and implementation • Institute compensation and/or recognition programs based on qualitybased goals • Encourage employee involvement • Promote timely training • Foster activity in quality issues • Reward expected behavior

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TABLE 1.3 Benchmarking Matrix TQM Category

Desired Direction


Use of Incentives

5 Training in quality People tools common involvement: among all employees self-directing work teams

4 Top management understands and applies the quality system of choice philosophy


Employee Involvement

3 Ongoing training programs

2 Training plan developed

Gainsharing is Statistics is a based and common distributed on the language concept of among all crossfunctional employees teams Manager defines More team than Design and limits: asks individual other team to make incentives and departments decision rewards use SPC techniques and other statistical tools Manager Quality-related SPC used for presents employee variation problem, gets selections and reduction suggestions, promotion and then makes criteria decision Manager Effective SPC used in presents ideas employee manufacturing and invites suggestion questions, then program used makes decision

1 Traditional approach to quality control • • • •

Use of Tools

Inspection is primary tool (control of defects, not prevention) Better quality = higher cost Significant scrap and rework activity Quality control found only in manufacturing departments

MBO improperly used for all departments

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TABLE 1.3 (CONTINUED) Benchmarking Matrix TQM Category

Desired Direction

Top Mgmt Commitment

Obsession with Excellence

Organization Is Customer Driven

Customer Satisfaction

5 Continual improvement is a natural behavior even during routine tasks

Constant, Customer More relative satisfaction is the customers improvement primary goal state intention in quality, cost, to maintain and long-term productivity business relationship 4 Focus is on improving Use of Tool used to Striving to the system and as a crossfunctional include wants improve value consequence improvement and needs in to customers improving the teams design is a routine financial status of the behavior organization 3 Adequate money and The quality Tools used to Positive time allocated to system of include wants customer continual choice must be and needs in feedback; improvement and supported, set design complaints training up, and in use used to improve 2 Balance of long-term Executive Customer needs Customer goals with shortsteering and wants are rating of term objectives committee set known company is up known 1 Traditional approach to quality control • • • •

Inspection is primary tool (control of defects, not prevention) Better quality = higher cost Significant scrap and rework activity Quality control found only in manufacturing departments

MBO improperly used for all departments

PEOPLE INVOLVEMENT Actively involve all people in the improvement process; encourage and empower people to create ideas and make decisions within their area of expertise — not only to do the work, but also to improve the system. Guidance: The ultimate objective is to empower the workforce to exercise selfdirection while continuously pursuing improvement strategies in routine work, as well as on special projects. This objective cannot be accomplished overnight but can

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be implemented over time according to a phased process that considers the existing organization structure and philosophy, information flow, and the reward structure. The three stages are (1) traditional, (2) participation, and (3) involvement. The following matrix (Table 1.4) provides a basis for understanding the continuum from participation to involvement. The critical element is the degree of decision power.

TABLE 1.4 Stages of People Involvement Traditional


Involvement Customer-focused, autonomous work teams Teams consistently analyze and improve processes Make process-related decisions Input into strategic decisions Team recognition

Organizational structure


Hierarchical and ad hoc teams

Typical improvement efforts Decision power

Suggestion program Work measurement Quality circles Top down

Ad hoc teams work on problems


Approved suggestions Individual work performance Supervising

Management focus

Recommend changes Limited team-based decision making Some team/unit participation and recognition Coaching

Creating environment for teamwork

DISCIPLINED METHODOLOGY Use a disciplined approach involving the appropriate tools to achieve continual improvement (Figure 1.13). Persistent, disciplined application of continual improvement methodology is a must. Persistence pays.

FIGURE 1.13 The process of continual improvement with focus on the system/process.

Guidance: Knowing what quality is all about and knowing what tools and techniques are available are necessary for success, but not sufficient for achieving it. Having the discipline to work on quality day after day so it becomes a new way of life is the key factor for success.

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A disciplined approach seems deceptively simple to achieve, but it is exceedingly difficult to execute. For example, most people know that personal fitness can be maintained by proper eating habits and exercise, but they cannot maintain the discipline required for well-being in their daily lives even though their lives are at stake. Rather, people try various fads and “quick fixes” unfortunately in cycles that leave them in worse shape than before. Organizations exhibit the same type of behavior. Various fads and programs are tried that may show early success but, ultimately, result in failure and a growing cynicism about future efforts. There is no substitute for the day-to-day discipline and tools of continual improvement needed to reinforce quality. You will know you lack discipline when: • • • • •

Any part of the process begins to lag or become delinquent Operating systems remain unchanged Authority and responsibility structure remains unaltered Assumptions concerning the role of people are not challenged Little consistency or continuity of purpose is exhibited toward seeking more efficient ways to meet and exceed customer needs • Day-to-day behaviors remain unchanged

SUPPORT SYSTEMS Ensure that an adequate supporting structure is in place. Guidance: A proven approach to implementation is to begin the improvement process with senior management and subsequently cascade the goals, values, structure, and training established and adopted at upper levels to succeeding levels. Each level is linked to the other by the common objective of making people capable of joint performance (see Figure 1.14). Initially, it is helpful to establish an executive-level steering group and a quality system support structure for the overall effort. Eventually, as the quality system of choice philosophy becomes a natural behavior exhibited in routine work, special support structures can be modified and blended into the organization. The steering group will serve to: • Identify and find out what customers need • Develop the vision for the organization and establish the initial goals to achieve • Identify the critical processes that need priority attention • Establish quality boards or equivalent at lower levels to focus on functional and cross-functional improvement efforts and to provide management of the quality process as established by the executive level • Identify and provide resources necessary to implement the quality system of choice • Provide review and oversight of progress

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FIGURE 1.14 The process of getting started (steps up the ladder to a quality system).

• Take action on unresolved process problems and issues referred to them by the quality boards • Identify and improve macro processes that are “owned” at the top management level The quality boards will serve to: • Conduct process analyses • Target specific processes that need improvement • Establish performance improvement teams composed of employees with representative skills and functions to work the specific process(es) • Assign and train facilitators to aid performance improvement teams in their activities • Establish, follow-up, and maintain a schedule The quality boards are relatively permanent, while the performance improvement teams are more problem and process oriented. Quality boards “own” the processes they seek to improve.

TRAINING Make all employees aware of the need for and the benefits of your chosen quality system, and train them in the use of tools and techniques to support continual

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improvement. Scope and intensity of training will depend on such factors as organization level, nature of work, and specific processes under review for improvement. Guidance:

Typical Tools Benchmarking Concurrent engineering Design of experiments Team building Quality function deployment Time management Quality loss function Tolerance design

Cause-and-effect diagrams Cost of quality Input/output analysis Nominal group technique Statistical process control Work flow analysis Parameter design Reliability

Training for specific tools should be tailored to support the vision and goals set by top management and should be provided on a timely and as-needed basis. Common mistakes are to: • Conduct mass training before support systems for your quality system of choice have been set up • Overemphasize the technical tools at the expense of leadership and management issues • Oversimplify and underestimate the difficulty of transitioning the commercial application of quality to the organization’s environment • Apply the tools before the needs are determined

STEP 2 — DEFINE MISSION OF EACH COMPONENT OF THE ORGANIZATION A typical model showing feedback loops between the operating organization and its customers and suppliers is shown in Figure 1.15. Everyone has a customer (internal and external), and all quality systems concentrate on providing customers with services and products that consistently meet their needs and expectations. Every member of the organization must know the purpose of his job, his customer(s), and his relation to others in the organization for providing customer satisfaction. Everyone must know his customer’s requirements. Everyone must also make his suppliers aware of those, and other requirements. Be aware that customers and suppliers can be anything from another organization to a co-worker. The mission of each element of an organization must reflect a perspective that, when combined with other elements of the organization, will provide the synergy that produces quality. To define the mission of an organization, the following steps are strongly recommended.

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FIGURE 1.15 The feedback loops and relationship of supplier–organization–customer.

• • • • • •

Identify the customer(s) you serve (do not forget internal customers). Identify the requirements of your customer(s). Identify the processes used to satisfy the requirement. Identify the products or services you provide to meet these requirements. Develop measures of your output that reflect customer requirements Review the preceding steps with your customer and adjust them as necessary. • Identify your principal inputs (labor, materials, products, services, etc.). • Involve your suppliers in the development of your requirements and their conformance to them. • Finally, define your mission with respect to the steps above. If the result does not match your current job description, your job description needs to be changed to reflect your mission. You also need to check policies, procedures, work instructions, and other documents that influence your job.

STEP 3 — SET PERFORMANCE IMPROVEMENT OPPORTUNITIES, GOALS, AND PRIORITIES Improved performance requires improvement goals. Both involve change. This relationship is shown in Figure 1.16.

FIGURE 1.16 The relationship of improved performance and goals.

Steps 1 and 2 determine where the organization wants to go, how it is now performing, and what role each member will play in achieving organizational performance. Step 3 sets the goals for performance improvement. These goals must reflect an understanding of the process capabilities of the organization so that realistic goals can be set. The goals should first be set at the senior-management level. They

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should reflect strategic choices about the critical processes in which success is essential to organizational survival. The above steps are driven by providing value to the customer (internal and/or external). Middle and line management set both functional and process improvement goals to achieve the strategic goals set by senior management. The hierarchy of goals establishes an architecture that links improvement efforts across the boundaries of the functional organization. Within functional organizations, performance improvement teams provide cross-functional orientation, and the employees on these teams become involved in process issues. Thus, the entire organization is effectively interlinked to form an ideal performance improvement setting.

STEP 4 — ESTABLISH IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS AND ACTION PLANS The initial direction and the initial goals set for continual improvement teams flow down from and are determined by top management. This is shown in Figure 1.17.

FIGURE 1.17 The process of selecting projects and action plans.

Role of Steering Group: • Develop philosophy, constancy of purpose, and guiding principles • Focus on critical processes that affect customer satisfaction and/or major cost waste • Identify a quality board as an “owner” of each critical process • Resolve organizational and functional barriers • Provide resources, training, and rewards • Establish criteria for measuring outputs/customer requirements Role of Quality Board: • • • • • • • •

Conduct system and process analysis Select performance improvement teams Train teams Develop improvement plans Track progress and provide help if necessary Train and provide facilitators to support performance improvement teams Characterize the capability of the process and continuously improve it Apply a structured performance improvement methodology as described in the next step

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Role of Performance Improvement Teams: • Apply a structured performance improvement methodology as described in the next step.

STEP 5 — IMPLEMENT PROJECTS USING IMPROVEMENT METHODOLOGIES The basic Performance Improvement Cycle is shown in Figure 1.18.

FIGURE 1.18 The basic performance improvement cycle.




To define a process, one of the best tools one may use is the flow diagram with all the inputs–outputs relationships identified, as well as the individual tasks within the process. On the other hand, a typical approach to analyzing a customer requirement is shown in Table 1.5.




All components of the process are subject to measurement. That means, appropriate and applicable, valid and reliable measures should be identified and implemented for inputs, the process itself, and the output. The flow of this measurability is shown in Table 1.6.




Perhaps one of the most important components of the implementation process of quality with performance tools and methodologies is how to assess the conformance to customer needs, wants, and expectations. One of the common approaches is to use graphical means, however, that is not the only approach. To maximize this process of evaluation the matrix shown in Table 1.7 may be helpful.

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TABLE 1.5 Typical Approach to Analyze Customer Requirements Objectives

Key Activities

Understand the process and what is required of it Identify the role of process members Identify the role of process owner

Define process boundaries, output and customers, inputs and suppliers, and major processes and flows Identify process owner and process members Define customer and supplier requirements Identify to customers changes to requirements which promote performance improvement

Tools/Approaches Nominal group technique (NGT) Block diagram/flow diagram Input/output analysis Benchmarking Acquisition streamlining Could (opportunity) cost Quality function deployment

TABLE 1.6 A Typical Flow of Measurability Objectives Determine measurements needed to understand and improve the process

Key Activities


Determine how to measure performance with respect to customer requirements Determine additional data to manage the process Establish regular feedback with customers and suppliers Measure quality/cost and or timeliness of inputs Measure quality/cost and or timeliness of outputs

Nominal group technique (NGT) Design to production transition templates Quality function deployment Statistical methods

TABLE 1.7 A Guide for Process Evaluation Objectives

Key Activities

Assess both customer and supplier requirements Separate special causes from common causes

Collect and review data on the process Identify and remove special causes of variation Identify common problem areas

Tools/Approaches Statistical methods inspection User feedback Preventive maintenance

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ANALYZE IMPROVEMENT OPPORTUNITIES To analyze improvement opportunities one has a vast base of tools to choose from depending on the problem at hand, as well as the familiarity of the experimenter with the available tools. The flow of the process to identify the improvement opportunity follows the following matrix (Table 1.8).

TABLE 1.8 A Guide to Identify Improvement Opportunity Objectives Analyze process improvement opportunities Eliminate nonvalue-added steps and simplify



Key Activities Gather data Identify potential process improvement areas Document

Tools/Approaches Brainstorming Pareto analysis Cause-and-effect analysis Work flow analysis Input/output analysis Statistical methods Nominal group technique


All organizations have tremendous improvement opportunities. However, due to the fact that all organizations have also constraints in their resources, they must prioritize not only their opportunities, but they must also evaluate them based on their efficiency, as well as their return on their investment. To do that, a formal prioritization methodology must exist in every organization with some objective and realistic criteria. A typical path for such a methodology is shown in the following matrix (Table 1.9).

TABLE 1.9 A Guide for Prioritization Objectives Decide on priorities Set improvement goals

Key Activities Review improvement opportunities Identify improvement projects and decide which ones should be worked on first

Tools/Approaches Brainstorming Pareto analysis Histogram analysis Nominal group technique Force field analysis Cost of quality

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IMPROVE PROCESS QUALITY One of the most fundamental issues of quality is to improve process quality. That means that the experimenter has to introduce deliberately an assignable cause for change. After all, improvement will have to be induced through some kind of a change in the process or system. To be sure, the assignable cause will be controlled and hopefully will result in positive change, but a change there will be. For the process to be improved, there are two possible ways: 1. Through Kaizen — incremental changes 2. Through breakthrough — changes in the process of magnitude of at least 30% A typical sequence of events that one will follow for process improvement is shown in the following matrix (Table 1.10).

TABLE 1.10 A Typical Sequence for Process Improvement Objectives Achieve improvement level of process performance

Key Activities


Develop action plan Identify root causes Test and implement solution Define necessary steps to hold gains Conduct periodic review of progress

Statistical methods Design of experiments Variation reduction Robust design

STEP 6 — EVALUATE IMPROVED PERFORMANCE Generally speaking, improved performance is through: • Cycle time • Lower cost • Innovation Measurement is an essential element of the continual improvement process. It focuses on the effectiveness of improvement efforts and identifies areas for future improvement efforts. A basic need in all improvement efforts is the ability to measure the value of the improvement in units which are pertinent and meaningful to the specific task. For example, one evaluation of the “before” and “after” levels of customer satisfaction following an improvement effort might include the numbers of customer complaints. In evaluating behavioral changes, one might measure and compare employee turnover rate, or the number of grievances filed in a month. Other meaningful yardsticks might be dollars of cost, units per hour, rejects per lot, and cycle time.

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Fundamentally, when one speaks of measurement the following items are assumed to be in place and/or accounted for in some way, shape, or form: • • • •

Process measurement Project measurement Behavioral change measurement Quality loss function

Process Measurements: These measurements track the performance of a process with respect to: 1. Internal customers (next operation) 2. External customers (ultimate customer) Most organizations have existing measures that may be used “as is” or modified as necessary. There is no menu of measurements applicable to all users. The key is to select measures that can be used by work units to manage and evaluate their products and services so that continual process improvement can be undertaken. Project Measurements: A performance improvement team should develop measures that are appropriate for their continual process improvement project. Behavioral Change Measurement: There should be observable, consistent evidence of the following: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11.

Management support for continual improvement Trust between management and employees Open communications without fear Involvement of all employees Teamwork Supporting salary and reward system Short-term issues should not overpower the long-run issues Process, rather than functional orientation Knowledge and skills of the quality system of choice Availability of time and resources for the quality system of choice Employee support for the quality system of choice

Quality Loss Function: The quality function is a mathematical function that was introduced by Dr. G. Taguchi in the late ’60s to demonstrate that deviation from the target always results in a loss of some kind. That loss, named Loss to society by Dr. Taguchi, is known as the Loss Function. The function itself looks like a parabola and is shown in Figure 1.19. From an engineering perspective, cost of quality can also be viewed as the losses that are caused by a product’s functional parameters deviating from its desired target value. A significant philosophical point is that cost of quality increases, not only when the product is outside of specifications, but also when the product falls within

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FIGURE 1.19 Loss function.

specifications but deviates from target values. These costs continually increase as the product deviates further from the target value. Examples of cost factors are: • • • • •

Inspection costs Rejects, scrap, rework Lowered reliability due to tolerance build-up Higher warranty costs Less customer satisfaction

The engineering objective is to reduce costs by decreasing variability around target values. The concurrent engineering approach is one way to do this. Another way is to plan robust design of experiments for parameter design and ultimately to conduct tolerance design experimentation.

STEP 7 — REVIEW AND RECYCLE A formal representation of any quality system may be identified through the PDSA model. Within this model, however, there are several steps that are mandatory for improvement. Figure 1.20 shows that relationship. It is important to recognize that in this model of interrelationships we can see that most human efforts go through the three phases of Beginning–Growth–Fading Out. As a consequence of this development, a quality system is introduced and it becomes necessary to perpetuate the continuous improvement process forever (lifetime). Approaches to quality tend to have a limited survival (cycle) and, if left unattended, will become ineffective. Quality circles, and some TQM initiatives, are examples. All employees will need to review progress with respect to improvement efforts and modify or rejuvenate existing approaches for the next progression. Just like quality circles evolved into autonomous work teams, suggestion awards evolved into gainsharing, and statistical process control evolved into variability reduction programs, so the new wave of quality must evolve into customer satisfaction programs, robust design, and advanced methodologies for improvement. This constant evolution reinforces the idea that a quality system is not a program but a new day-to-day behavior for each member of the organization.

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FIGURE 1.20 The relationship between the PDSA and the seven-step model.

REFERENCES Deming, W. E. (1982), Out of Crisis, MIT CAES, Cambridge, MA. Harry, M. and Schroder, R. (2000), Six Sigma: The Breakthrough Management Strategy Revolutionizing the World’s Top Corporations, Currency, New York. Latzko, W. J. (1995), Notes on the Six Sigma Concept. Neave, H. R. (1990), The Deming Dimension, SPC Press, Knoxville, TN. Prescient Technologies (2000), Shewhart, W. (1931), Economic Control of Quality of Manufactured Product, D. Van Nostrand, New York. Taguchi, G. (1986), Introduction to Quality Engineering, Asian Productivity Organization, Japan.

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY A T & T (1956), Statistical Quality Control Handbook, Delmar Printing Company, Charlotte, NC. Ackoff, R. L. (1981), Creating the Corporate Future: Plan or Be Planned for, Wiley & Sons, New York. Albrecht, K. and Zemke, R. (1985), Service America! Doing Business in the New Economy, Dow-Jones-Irwin, Homewood, IL. Crosby, P. B. (1979), Quality Is Free, McGraw-Hill, New York. Deming, W. E. (1986), Out of the Crisis, MIT CAES, Cambridge, MA. Dockstader, S. L. (June 1984), What to Do When There Are More Than Five Deadly Diseases, paper presented at Massachusetts Institute of Technology Conference on Quality and Productivity, San Diego, CA.

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G.O.A.L. (Growth Opportunity Alliance of Greater Lawrence) (1985), The Memory Jogger. A Pocket Guide of Tools for Continuous Improvement, G.O.A.L., Lawrence, MA. Grant, E. L. and Leavenworth, R. S. (1974), Statistical Quality Control, (5th ed.), McGrawHill, New York. Houston, A., Hulton, V., Landau, S. B., Monda, M., and Shettel-Neuber, J. (March 1987), Measurement of Work Processes Using Statistical Process Control: Instructor’s Manual (NPRDC Tech. Note 87-17), Navy Personnel Research and Development Center, San Diego, CA. Houston, A., Shettel-Neuber, J., and Sheposh, J. P. (June 1986), Management Methods for Quality, Improvement Based on Statistical Process Control: A Literature and Field Survey (NPRDC Tech. Rep. 86-21), Navy Personnel Research and Development Center, San Diego, CA. Ishikawa, K. (1983), Guide to Quality Control, Asian Productivity Organization, Tokyo. Ishikawa, K. and Lu, D. J. (1985), What Is Total Quality Control? The Japanese Way, PrenticeHall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ. Juran, J. M., Ed. (1974), Quality Control Handbook, 3rd ed., McGraw-Hill, New York. Moen, R. D. and Nolan, T. W. (September 1987), Process improvement: a step-by-step approach to analyzing and improving a process, Qual. Prog., 62. Ott, E. R. (1975), Process Quality Control, McGraw-Hill, New York. Pettit, R. C. (January 3, 2000), Data mining: race for mission-critical info, Marketing News, 18. Sheposh, J. P. and Shettel-Neuber, J. (1986), Contribution of a multi-method approach to understanding implementation, in O. Brown and H. W. Hendrick, Eds., Human Factors in Optimization Design and Management-11, North-Holland, Amsterdam, 655. Shewhart, W.A. (1931), Economic Control of a Manufactured Product, Van Nostrand Reinhold, Princeton, NJ. Stamatis, D. H. (1997), TQM Engineering Handbook, Marcel Decker, New York. Takacs, S. (January 3, 2000), Improve your research through fake data, Marketing News, 19. Tunner, J. R. (October 1987), Total manufacturing control: the high road to product control, Qual. Prog., 22(10), 43. Wheeler, D. J. and Chambers, D. S. (1986), Understanding Statistical Process Control, Statistical Process Controls, Inc., Knoxville, TN.

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This chapter summarizes the rationale and methodology of the six sigma phenomenon. It tries to explain the development and some of the shortcomings of the concept.

Pogo said it long time ago: “We have met the enemy and he is us.” It is unfortunate that the quality community has not recognized that methods and tools do not improve quality. Quality is improved by using methods and tools consistently throughout a given organization emphasizing planning and designing for quality, rather than appraising quality. Also, quality is improved when the organizational culture is committed to change and is willing to make quality a priority characteristic and/or metric in the entire organization. There are no shortcuts! There are no silver bullets! If quality matters, then it should be a way of life. Period! Even though the above truism is known by both practitioners and management, it is sad to see that so many resources are being wasted in the name of quality with the innovation of a new tool, program, methodology, or even a new concept. It seems that no matter what is invented or practiced, “quality” is still being viewed as an appraisal system, and always in search of a silver bullet. Or, as Guaspari (2000) refers to this mystery of change, “The problem isn’t next big things; it’s next big thingism.” If one looks at quality 20 years ago, one will see that the innovation and implementation of quality methodologies were second to none. Yet, quality was and still remains a problem. We all seem to forget that quality is a function of products and/or services, markets, and customers. No matter what we do, these items are always there, and we will always be responsible to optimize them. Words, methodologies, tools, or anything else will not change that fact. There is no single silver bullet that will improve either the process, product or service, markets, or customers. For improvement to take place we must think “design.” All things begin with design and a “trade-off” analysis. If the design is not appropriate and applicable, then the product and/or service, the market, and the customer will suffer. It is ludicrous to think that if we design something and then measure “customer satisfaction” we will be out of trouble. We seem to forget that what we are interested in is not so much satisfaction but “loyalty” for our products. Repeat customers! I keep seeing both research and practical surveys with three “catchall” questions to measure customer loyalty. Sometimes variations of these questions are tested. More often than not, these questions are expected to be answered based on a fivepoint Linkert scale. The typical questions are 1. Overall, how satisfied are you with ______? 2. Would you recommend ______? 3. Do you intend to repurchase _____? 69

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That’s ridiculous! Those questions do not measure loyalty. Indeed, they usually are measuring the same thing, that is, satisfaction with the product or service — at a given point in time. For most people, if they are satisfied with a product/service and say so when asked, then they also are highly likely to say they would recommend that product/service to others and that they would likely repurchase that brand in the future. If there is a doubt to what is said here, run simple correlations among the three questions. If they are measured on a decent scale, the answer should not surprise you. In fact, the value of “r” will be equal to or higher than 0.80. One cannot turn a customer satisfaction measurement instrument into a customer loyalty measurement instrument by simply adding the two other questions. If that is done, then one just measures the same thing two more times. Adding the results of these questions, or taking their average or simply adding the percentage of respondents that give you top-box scores for each question, just compounds an already ludicrous situation, especially if one is using five-point scales. We are not suggesting that customer satisfaction measurement surveys are of no value. To the contrary, well-designed customer satisfaction measurement surveys and programs are a great way to drive process improvement in an organization. But remember: you can’t make a silk purse from a sow’s ear, and you can’t make a customer loyalty survey from a customer satisfaction measurement survey. Loyalty is a behavior. If I purchase in a product category 10 times in one year, and I purchase the same product/service all 10 times, I am 100% loyal. If I purchase the product/service only 5 out of 10 times, I am 50% loyal. It’s that simple. It doesn’t matter whether I am exhibiting that loyalty because I’m truly dedicated to the product/service, or it has some performance characteristic that I want or need, or whether I don’t have a choice in the matter. I exhibit behavioral loyalty. And that is the point — loyalty is a behavior. Value drives loyalty, not satisfaction. Satisfaction is a necessary but not sufficient component of loyalty. If I am not satisfied with my experience with a product/service, I won’t consider that brand again unless I don’t have a choice in the matter. However, just because I am highly satisfied with a product’s/servise’s performance doesn’t mean I will necessarily repurchase that product/service at the next opportunity. It simply means it will probably be in my consideration set. I will evaluate the product/service in my consideration set in terms of how valuable they are to me — that is, given my preference structure for that product category, I’ll pick the product/service that offers me the best value. Value can be defined as the benefits I receive from the product/service less the cost to get those benefits. Benefits have two components: the tangible benefits delivered by the product or service itself and the intangible benefits delivered by the product/service name — its equity. This item is perhaps the most misunderstood concept in quality, as most designers and manufacturers seem to think “better,” “improved,” and “faster” is the way to capture the customer’s loyalty. They keep emphasizing better specifications at the expense of truly understanding what the customer really needs, wants, and expects. Directly asking customers what they value and what they will do in the future has never worked well. Over the last 15 years, we have learned that the best way to

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understand importance, preference, value, and choice is through “trade off” experiments. Thus, to adequately measure what customers value, you should consider conjoint and choice experiments (Stamatis 1997). Well-designed trade off models do predict choice well, at least compared with the earlier tools of quality that we had at our disposal. To be sure, it is very critical to know and use customer satisfaction within an organization. The basic objectives that should be met by any study include the following: • Understanding the expectations and requirements of all customers • Determining how well your company and its competitors are satisfying these expectations and requirements • Developing service and or product standards based on your findings • Examining trends over time in order to take action on a timely basis • Establishing priorities and standards to judge how well you’ve met these goals So, for all of you out there fooling yourselves into believing you are measuring customer loyalty with the magic three questions, think it over. Customer loyalty is a bottom-line issue for most companies, and that warrants an investment in proper measurement. After all, a 5% increase in loyalty can increase profits by 25 to 85%. Why this apparent diversion of “loyalty” and “satisfaction” in the section of six sigma? We believe that the focus of the six sigma is “loyalty,” since it is the derivative of value, and it is value that the customer is always searching for. Therefore, it is imperative that we understand what is really happening when we talk about nonconformances in a million opportunities, and what are the consequences of those nonconformities to the customer. Now then, let us examine this new wave of approaching quality through the six sigma methodology. For all intended purposes six sigma is viewed as a methodology to significantly improve customer satisfaction — through fixing problems — and thus drives the shareholder value of a given organization to its maximum by reducing variability in every aspect of the business. Its focus is after the fact; therefore, it is an appraisal system. Another way of looking at the six sigma is through the understanding of Harry and Schroder (2000) who define it as a means to realize the philosophy and values associated with total quality management. In other words, Harry and Schroder believe that the six sigma methodology will cut across all of the key initiatives within any given organization. It will unify the initiatives and provide a common language which all people can understand and speak. For both Harry and Schroder, the foundation of this methodology appears to be in the collection of data, the level of analysis, and the Define Measure Analyze Improve Control (DMAIC) model. As for the data, they believe that data is generated from objects, situations, or phenomena in the form of measurements, and ultimately they are used to classify, describe, improve, or control objects, situations, or phenomena. As for the level of analysis, they propose six levels — from the very simple nonstatistical approach to very complex inferential statistical analysis. The six levels are

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

We We We We We We

only use experiences, not data collect data, but just look at the numbers group the data so as to form charts and graphs use census data with descriptive statistics use sample data with descriptive statistics use sample data with inferential statistics

As for the DMAIC model, which by the way is not a linear activity, it turns out to be a variation of the Plan Do Study Act model. The difference and the significance, however, is that the DMAIC model introduces a level of detail for each of its faces and demands a very strong upfront commitment from top management. From an overview perspective, the model looks like the one shown in Figure 2.1.

FIGURE 2.1 The DMAIC model with its detail.

The hope and expectation of this methodology is that it will accelerate existing processes in order to better achieve the goals of the organization and it will help create a “mind set” internal to the organization by emphasizing:

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• • • •

Teamwork Skill building Data-driven decisions Measuring tangible results as opposed to promises and nebulous benchmarks • Accountability • Management commitment

These items alone will not be sufficient to achieve the goals set by the organization. The organization must have a plan to implement this methodology and a timetable to which the top management not only will give their blessings but also personal support. An example of how an automotive company may implement this methodology, say in Vehicle Center, would begin by: 1. The first step is a management buy-in process, which begins with an executive training session. Typically, this is a one-day training session and requires participation from appropriate VPs, vehicle line directors, manufacturing directors, and plant managers. 2. The intent is to have representation from product development and manufacturing to ensure that a cross-functional and multidiscipline team works together on the same issues that everyone has ownership. This team, ultimately, sets the scope of the deployment after there is a thorough understanding of the benefits and the pains. This is a Go-No Go managerial decision. 3. Once a vehicle line and the associated plant are selected to start, the vehicle line director and the plant manager select deployment champions to work with the six-sigma corporate deployment office to coordinate the rest of the deployment plan which includes: • Training schedules • Projects selection • Deployment/project champions • Black belt candidates • Resources resolution • Remove barriers so the black belts can succeed 4. Deployment/project champion training is 4 to 5 days long and occurs 1 month after the executive training date. The deployment champion is the ideal person to conduct roll-out presentation to the plant. The six-sigma deployment office will support or present if required. 5. Once the champions have been selected, then the individual candidates for black belt training are selected. This black belt training typically occurs 1 month after the deployment champion training. The individuals who are selected for the black belt training are dedicated personnel who will stay on the black belt assignment for some time, usually 24 months. The training is expensive and is conducted either in a central corporate location or the plants depending on where the bulk of the people are. The training includes 4 one-month segments. Each segment includes 1 week classroom

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and 3 weeks application (return to their area to work on the assigned project). Delivery of two successful projects (bottom line results) is required to graduate as a certified black belt. Upon graduation, the black belts stay in the same organization to keep working on more projects (six to eight per year) to deliver $1.5 million savings in efficiency or quality improvement. Perhaps one of the most interesting aspects of the six sigma methodology is the fact that projects must be identified as early as possible, approved by champions, and reviewed at every session of the training. The projects are often (1) “short projects” that can be completed in less than 4 months, (2) come from the Single Quality Agenda item list, usually generated from a managerial meeting (in some cases exceptions do occur and projects from other plants operational projects are accepted), (3) projects can be led by plant vehicle teams, ongoing program departments, or plant members as long as everyone agrees to support as needed, (4) all projects must have measurable results that show up as contributing to customer satisfaction (e.g., warranty reduction) and financial improvement to the team, and (5) results are reported monthly to VPs. Generally speaking, at the beginning, long-term projects are not encouraged. This is because (1) the low fruit savings should be identified first and something should be done right away, and (2) the early success will be used as a motivational factor to move bigger and more complicated projects later. A generic deployment time line is shown in Table 2.1.

TABLE 2.1 A Typical Example of a Six Sigma Deployment Time Line Month 0 What

Executive training




Month 1

Month 2

Month 8

Deployment project champion training Learn how to manage the process/choose projects

Black belt training

Green Belt training

Learn the process, tools of solving problems

VPs, plant mngrs,

Respected managers in the organization

Learn the process, tools of solving problems from an overview perspective. Focus is on usage of tools and implementation Individuals who will be helping the black belts in fulfilling the requirements of their projects

How long

1 day

5 days


Specific location

Specific location of training

High potential individuals who will be involved for at least 2 years 4 months (from start to 5 days finish) Specific location of Specific location on a plant training level

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THE MODEL OF SIX SIGMA There are many ways to model a six sigma strategy. However, the most straightforward approach is shown in Figure 2.2. Using this strategy, effective executives should pay more attention to the impact of their decisions than the technique. Speed is not important. Results are. Perhaps the decisions will be more effective if one follows the following steps: 1. Classify the problem. Most problems are not unique; a few are. Some common problems may be unique to your company. Sometimes, what appears to be a unique problem is really just the beginning of a common one. You can solve all generic problems by making and applying rules, policies, or principles. When a problem is truly unique, however, you must treat it individually. 2. Define the problem. Make sure the definition explains all the observable facts and does not blame easy targets. For example, in the 1960s the U.S. auto industry blamed the high number of auto accidents on unsafe roads and poorly trained drivers. However, as both the roads and training were improved and the total number of accidents continued to climb, one fact became clear. We needed safer cars. 3. Define the boundary conditions. Your decision must satisfy such boundary conditions as objectives and goals. If your specifications change, your decision must change. Critics rebuked Franklin Roosevelt for switching from a conservative candidate in 1932 to a radical president in 1933. But Roosevelt had simply reacted to changing conditions — the economic collapse between summer 1932 and spring 1933 — which made his earlier plans inappropriate. Decide. Don’t worry about what is acceptable. Usually you will have to compromise in the end anyway. Decide what is right given the circumstances. 4. Take action. Converting a decision into action is the most time-consuming step. Make sure you tell the people who need to know, spell out who will take action, and what they’ll do. A major manufacturer decided to discontinue one of its models, but didn’t tell its purchasing clerk. Consequently, the clerk continued to stockpile parts for it, resulting in a costly inventory when production finally halted. 5. Get feedback. Gather information on, and personally check out, the effectiveness of your decision. You need to do both to make sure the decision continues to be relevant to actual events.

ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS OF THE SIX SIGMA METHODOLOGY In the pursuit of becoming a six sigma company, we have found that there are some specific elements within the DMAIC model that every organization must embrace as a matter of course and as a matter of a prerequisite to success. Some are

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FIGURE 2.2 A model of six sigma strategy.


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self-explanatory and some do need some explanation. Let us then explain what the model itself demands from an organization that is about to embark on the six sigma methodology.




It was A. Lincoln who said: “I don’t think much of a man who is not wiser today than he was yesterday.” Today, that statement is still a fair comment for us, especially if we look at our self-development as a process. To be up to date in knowledge and techniques, it is a constant effort in our own individual development. Due to the fact that the six sigma methodology is very demanding conceptually and practically this self-development must continue all the time. Therefore: • Become a continuous learning machine. Set a personal goal to learn something new about your job, your organization, or your professional discipline every year. • Encourage others to pursue self-development activities. Make time and resources available for them to enhance their job skills. • Learn by teaching. Volunteer as an instructor for organizational training programs. You’ll not only develop in-depth knowledge about subjects you prepare to teach, you’ll also be able to help others develop and grow. This is especially true for black belts, teaching the green belts about experimentation.




• It was J. M. Clark who said, “Knowledge is the only instrument of production that is not subject to diminishing returns.” A profound statement, indeed. For the person about to embark in the six sigma methodology it is imperative that he or she should dedicate a minimum amount of time to enhance their knowledge. • Divide and conquer. Work as a team to stay abreast of technology advancements. Share knowledge with others; otherwise the volume of the new knowledge will be overpowering and overwhelming. • Volunteer for projects that will likely increase your knowledge, skills, marketability, and value to the organization. Perhaps the two most important elements in this area are the contribution of value to you and to the organization. • Actively participate in one or more professional associations. Since knowledge is important, the person who is undertaking the six sigma methodology must always look for new approaches, new techniques, and new tools to solve problems. Belonging to professional associations is at least one way that one may keep current.

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• The focus of the six sigma methodology is to remove waste and improve profitability in the organization. As such, the six sigma practitioner should not wait for someone else to make the first call. That practitioner must make the attempt and demonstrate the initiative of concern and care for improvement and removal of waste. • Therefore, focus on results-oriented processes and outcomes that add value to the organization, and improve overall profitability, rather than staying busy on activities and events that merely consume time and make you look busy. • Create a list of desired results (end states) when planning tasks and projects. By evaluating potential activities against this list, you’ll maintain focus and increase your chances of achieving the results you want. Of course, this list should have been generated from the “voice of the customer” perspective. • Go on a Work Safari once a week. Hunt for an important task that needs to be done ... and do it. Then place it in an imaginary trophy case. You’ll soon develop a reputation as a great hunter. The safari could be through reviewing customer complaints, market research “want list,” warranty data, and so on. To be sure, if one tackles important tasks first, even though they may be ones you’d least like to do, the propensity for greater rewards will make up for the difficulties. Save the fun work as a reward for handling the tougher issues, even though you can claim easy success.

EXPECT TOP PERFORMANCE In the six sigma methodology one should be very careful not to focus on low expectation. In fact, it is our opinion that “failure” itself is not as big of a problem as “aiming low.” It is too expensive of a methodology (6σ) to be wasted in low aim projects. The analogy has been made by many that the return on the investment of the six sigma is similar to harvesting a fruit tree. The ground fruit is the easiest, whereas the sweet and ripe fruit is at the top of the tree. Needless to say, the majority of the projects are focusing in the “process entitlement,” which is equivalent to the tree analogy from Ground through Bulk. This relationship of complexity, effort, and return on the investment (ROI) is shown in Table 2.2. • Be conscious of the self-fulfilling prophecy: when you expect something to happen (positive or negative), you unconsciously act in a manner which makes it more likely to occur. • Involve your team in setting standards that are achievable, and realistic, but also require them to stretch their knowledge and skills.

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TABLE 2.2 The Relationship of Complexity, Effort, and Return on Investment Location


Ground fruit

Not at all

Low hanging fruit

Some complexity

Bulk of fruit

Complex and time consuming

Sweet fruit

Very complex

Effort Very minimum. Use of logic and intuition Minimum. The seven basic tools of quality are usually encouraged to be used Much effort. The process characterization and optimization techniques are encouraged. The foundation here is the operational definitions. The more precise the definitions the better the anticipated results Great effort. The shift now is in the design rather than the product

Return on Investment Small Somewhat


The greatest

• Avoid settling for mediocre or subpar work. Remember that regardless of what you say, it is the performance you’re willing to accept that becomes your true standard. • Think of each member of your work group as a high jumper. Celebrate the reaching of new heights ... then “raise the bar” together. But don’t forget, as you’re raising the bar, so is your competition. • Make sure you walk the talk — earn the right to hold others to high standards by meeting them yourself.






It has been said many times that, “there is always room for improvement.” However, to appreciate continual improvement, one must appreciate systems thinking. To be sure, one may improve without it, but it makes improvement much easier if systems thinking is the driving force. Systems thinking is the ability to see the big picture. The person who uses it: 1. Thinks cross-functionally about ideas that impact the business 2. Boldly pursues ways to prove processes and incorporate new ideas. This thinking breaks tradition and the person is willing to take risks. 3. Inspires systematic change efforts that make a difference. So, what are some of the characteristics of a systems thinker? The following list is a sample:

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• • • • • • • • • • • •

Creative Intuitive Willing to take risks Proactive Open minded Able to turn diverse ideas into a new application Flexible Values differing ideas and opinions Persistent Visionary; future focused Weighs decisions via a trade-off analysis Positive in the face of resistance (enthusiastic about his/her convictions)

How would you develop the ability to recognize continual opportunities? The following six may prove worth the effort. Take the time to: • • • • • •

Build relationships with everyone around you Know your company, plant, and expectations Communicate those expectations Keep up with technology Improve management skills Know the process that you are focusing on for improvement

Certainly, all this discussion requires change. However, change is viewed differently by different people. In general, people react to change in one of the following ways: 1. For some, simply communicating the need to change and the expected behavior(s) is sufficient for the change to occur. 2. Others may not want to change but need rewards for changing and consequences for not changing. 3. Others will want to change but do not know how. They need to learn new behaviors before they can successfully change. For the appropriate change to occur and success to be the result of the change consider the following: • Adopt the 10% Rule — set a personal goal to improve everything you’re involved in by merely 10%. Small improvements add up quickly. This is the typical Kaizen approach. Do not confuse this with the Breakthrough Strategy of six sigma which focuses on improvements of 20 to 30% improvements. This is an important issue because if continual improvement is to be a way of life, eventually the % return is going to diminish. (Remember, there is only so much fruit on the ground!)

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• Focus on people as well as processes. Keep in mind that quality is ultimately a matter of individual performance. It happens one day at a time, one person at a time, one process at a time. • Recognize and reward those who make improvements to products, processes, and services in relationship to the organization’s profitability. Remember: what gets rewarded and celebrated gets repeated.

BE CUSTOMER DRIVEN To be successful in the six sigma methodology from the start, every one in the organization must recognize that the employer is not the one who pays the wages. Employers only handle the money. It’s the customer who pays the wages. As such, the focus of the six sigma project selection should be directly related to what the customer finds important. Customers are, indeed, the key to success. Therefore, be able to: • Adopt the following mind-set: (1) everyone you interact with is either an internal or external customer; and (2) if your customers ever stop needing you, so will your organization. In other words, you exist for the customer. • Tell horror stories, to emphasize the loss opportunities for customer satisfaction. Share personal examples of receiving poor service along with the impact it had on both the customer and the service provider. Discuss what could have turned them into success stories. • Deliver what the customer actually wants rather than what you think they ought to have. If you’re not sure what they want, ask! Build business partnerships with your customers by underpromising, overdelivering, and following up to ensure they are satisfied. Solicit their input on how your products and services can be improved.




• Avoid the decision-making extremes: knee-jerk reactions (acting too quickly without considering alternatives or all the facts) and paralysis of analysis (stalling a decision with too much analysis and research). Remember (1) that no decision is a “no” decision, and (2) that for every problem (opportunity) there is usually more than one answer — that answer depends on the current situation and information you have at hand at the time of analysis. • Involve those who must implement decisions in the decision-making process, as well as those who will have to leave with this “new” decision (change). Consider the ideas and opinions of those who do the work, because they frequently know best and have a great deal to contribute. In addition, they’ll be more likely to support decisions they help make.

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• Become an In-Sync-Erator. Ensure your decisions are in sync with organizational values before you implement them. If there’s a conflict, pursue alternatives that are a better match with stated values. Perhaps, this item is of the most concern for those who pursue six sigma projects, because unless the objective of the project is not in tandem with the organizational values and objectives, it will not be a success. • When announcing a decision, always explain the reason for it as well as the process used to arrive at it. At all times, present the decision with data that support the action taken!

SOLVE PROBLEMS EFFECTIVELY In the evolution world of quality, over the last 50+ years, everyone seems to be focusing on problem-solving techniques. Much has been accomplished, and yet much needs to be done in this area. (Volume II of this work will cover this topic quite extensively.) What is incredible about this “problem-solving” process is the fact that it seems that we solve the same problems over and over again — oxymoron, indeed!!! It reminds us of Mark Twain’s comment that “Additional problems are the offspring of poor solutions.” In the six sigma methodology, we cannot afford to do circular problem solving to appease ourselves and management. We must be committed to true problem solving and, as such, we must follow some of the following guidelines: • Adopt the Solution-Plus-One Rule. Develop and consider at least two solutions for every issue or problem. Be ready for a trade-off. Plan in advance for contingency. Conduct a pro vs. con analysis on all proposed solutions. Consider all relevant facts, issues, and perceptions. Eliminate those with significantly more downsides. • Avoid negative returns by making sure the ultimate cost of the solution (money, time, effect on others, etc.) is less than the cost of the problem. Remember, sometimes a negative return may be a government regulation or a safety item, or a competitor advantage, in which case there is no choice but to implement. • Search for winning solutions whenever possible. Adopt those solutions through which the most people are positively affected and the fewest negatively affected. Remember that,“The hallmark of a well-managed organization is not the absence of problems, but whether or not problems are effectively resolved, once and for all.” • Remember that “stuff” happens! Disputes are a natural outcome of individuals working together. So expect problems ... and accept the challenge of resolving them as an opportunity to eliminate obstacles to organizational effectiveness. • Make sure your “open door” is really open. Encourage members of your work group to bring their complaints to you, and don’t become defensive when they do. Do not hold it against them if they take you up on the notion of the “open door” policy and begin to communicate honestly.

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• Thoroughly investigate all complaints and make a sincere effort to resolve them as quickly as possible. Handle them as your top priority on any given day — that’s exactly what they are to the people involved in them. That means that sometimes one has to work under tremendous pressure to resolve a concern. Under those conditions remember that the difference between charcoal and a diamond is that the diamond became brilliant only because of time and pressure. • Focus on what’s right rather than who’s right. Don’t let unrelated issues bias your decisions. • The six sigma methodology is a team orientation to problem solving. As such, approach crises as a team. Allow everyone to “own a piece” of the problem. Don’t be an overprotective parent by trying to shield them. Capitalize on individual strengths and give everyone the opportunity to contribute to the solution. • Critically assess your behavior and request feedback from others on how you handle crisis situations. Take responsibility for setting the example. Realize that others will assume it’s okay to respond to a crisis the same way you do. • Overcommunicate to keep others informed and grind down the rumor mill, especially during the peak of the project. Consider implementing the 5/3 status system, that is, briefings — 5-minute updates during different times of the day. This is a good approach to keep everyone involved enthusiastic and interested about the project. • Conclude each crisis (things gone wrong [TGW], as well as things gone right [TGR]) with a post-mortem celebration. Review what happened, identify key learning that can be applied in the future, and celebrate the accomplishment of getting through it together. Remember that most people want to be informed and feel needed.

BE FLEXIBLE In all walks of life, change is inevitable. In the implementation process of six sigma, change is vital. After all, the fact we are pursuing the six sigma means we are admitting to ourselves that we are interested in changing the process. We do want to eliminate waste. However, by definition every improvement is a change. So, how do we go about becoming flexible? The following may help: • Encourage others to break tradition, when appropriate, in order to find better ways of doing things. Remember: if you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always got! • Understand and appreciate that others may not do things exactly as you would do them. Be open-minded ... you might discover their way is even better. To do this, one must learn to delegate and empower one’s workers. • Remove stop signs to progress by avoiding negative statements such as “We’ve tried that before” or “That’s not the way we do that here.”

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• Don’t cast all decisions in cement. Be willing to modify them as changing circumstances or data dictate.

SUPPORT RISK TAKING Recognize that all decisions have risks attached to them. However, our task is to minimize that risk, given a situation. If we choose not to take a risk, we will not change. To make “risk” a supportive activity, the following are suggested: • Develop a common (shared) definition for “intelligent risk taking” to be used as a guideline for future activities. Focus on the operational definition of your project and the risk associated with the outcome of that project. • Identify specific behaviors that encourage risk taking and those that discourage it. Make a commitment to adopt encouraging behaviors, and ask others to do the same. Try to diffuse negative comments and to address all nonencouraging behaviors. • Turn failures into developmental experiences by asking, “What’s positive about this? What have we learned that will help us do better in the future?” Bottom line: make it okay to fail. If you punish all failures, people will not take chances for fear of retaliation, punishment, and so on. Failures can be very constructive, if they are used constructively. Recognize and celebrate intelligent risk-taking no matter the outcome. Make it something to brag about.

PROVIDE RECOGNITION Recognition is a way to motivate individuals. Contrary to many reports, studies have shown that money is not a long-term motivator. Recognition and challenging work are. Let us then examine this recognition and provide some clues for implementing: • Be a star catcher. Regularly “catch people doing things right” and recognize them for it. And, make recognition self-perpetuating by recognizing those who recognize others. Remember: what gets recognized gets reinforced, and what gets reinforced gets repeated. • Develop a list of at least 20 ways to recognize others for their performance and contributions. Some ideas to get you started: a homemade thank you card or praise-a-gram; small gifts; special assignments; an announcement in the local newspaper, etc. • Customize the recognition you provide. Ask each member of your team how you can best demonstrate your appreciation for them. Then provide “different strokes for different folks.” In other words, make the recognition as personal as possible. • Let everyone “hold the trophy.” Be sure each contributing member shares in the recognition for achievements.

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COACHING Six sigma and coaching are inherently symbiotic. One feeds on the other. They are always together. For the methodology to work, it must be understood from the very beginning that it is a process. For that process to be successful, appropriate coaching must be in place for guidance. Coaching is also a process. As such, it can be managed. However, to manage it, one must understand its purpose, which is to make things grow. Here we use GROW as an acronym which stands for: G


— — —

Goal oriented. Questions related to what one wishes to change, become, or accomplish. Reality. Questions related to current need and actions. Options. Questions related to alternative actions to consider. Way forward. Questions related to next steps and barriers.

In any project, one of the time robbers in pursuing resolution is to schedule meetings. Meetings, however, have a tendency to feed themselves and require much time. A good coach is cognizant of time limitations and, as such, manages meetings with the following in mind: • Is it really necessary to have a meeting? If it is, then provide all participants with a written agenda before the meeting, with all objectives and issues to be discussed. Also, mention who the participants will be and what is expected to be accomplished. • Manage the meeting. Keep it on focus. Establish ground rules up front. • Target the time wasters. • End the meeting with a short warm down, reviewing the results. • When addressing the participants make sure that you are prepared — you know what you are talking about. Be concise and specific. Communicate creatively, so that everyone understands the issues and concerns. Never assume others understand what you say… check to be sure. This will allow you to clarify and correct any misunderstandings. • Never establish a surprise rule during the meeting. • Do not hoard the time in the name of coaching. Allow others to identify appropriate and applicable information. Paraphrase, if you have to, and you need to make the point emphatically. • Regularly summarize key points during the meeting. • Whoever is talking, treat him with respect and give him your attention. • Make listening a highly valued activity for everyone. • Never… interrupt; never … assume you are listening because you can hear; never… plan what to say while someone else is talking to you. In the six sigma methodology, it is imperative that master black belts coach the black belts, the black belts coach the green belts, and the green belts coach everyone

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else who is involved with the project. Obviously, the coaching process is a cascading one indicating that the flow of the information may go in both directions. For that to happen, i.e., for coaching to be successful, at least three items must be present. They are • Communication — Asking questions, giving feedback, responding, listening, managing expectations up-front. • Empowering — Enabling another person to exercise autonomy (within their own process), providing positive reinforcement. • Helping — Empathy and identifying developing needs. Obviously, coaching depends on the coach, who must have at least the following traits: • • • • •

An aptitude for learning The ability to lead The ability to mentor others The desire to help others be successful The desire to continue to progress through the organization

Let us examine, then, how a good coach uses coaching to the advantage of the organization. • Pay attention to “middle stars.” Avoid the trap of focusing only on the “super stars” (those with exceptional performance) and the “fallen stars” (those with significant performance problems). Most people shine somewhere in the middle. Remember that all people are stupid; however, they are stupid at different things. A good coach can identify the strengths of different individuals and complement these strengths for extraordinary results. • Schedule a short meeting with each of your direct reports often to let them know about the project and how each one’s contribution is helping the project’s success. • As a coach you need new information, new skills, new techniques. Do not be afraid to ask for additional training or special training if it is necessary for the project’s success. • Build an everyone’s-a-coach environment. Begin by identifying the characteristics and behaviors exhibited by good coaches. Then ask everyone for their commitment to practice those behaviors. Consider providing coaching skills training to help each person assume their new coaching role. • Ask each member of your work group to identify the three most significant obstacles to their performance. Create a master list and develop a strategy to eliminate them. And, by all means, reward people for identifying obstacles. They’ve made a significant contribution by pinpointing ways

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• •

you can add value and positively affect organizational effectiveness. To do this, trust must exist in the organization. If you don’t control an obstacle your work group is facing, talk to the people that do. Point out the impact and cost of the problem and discuss possible solutions. Even if you can’t eliminate an obstacle, you may be able to minimize its effect by showing people how to get around it easier and less painfully. This function, perhaps, is one of the most important functions of a coach in the six sigma methodology. Ask others what you may or may not be doing that creates obstacles for them. If they tell you, thank them for their honesty, don’t get defensive, and do something to eliminate the obstacles you’re creating. Benchmark the best. Study industries, organizations, and individuals who beat the competition by overcoming challenges and obstacles. Also, review case studies of those who did not ... and lost. Remember, “the best” does not have to be outside your organization, rather “the best” may be someplace within your organization. Be certain that each person who reports to you fully understands your performance expectations. Feedback is most effective when people know the standards against which their performance is being measured. As Ken Blanchard and Spencer Johnson remind us in The One Minute Manager book, “Feedback is the breakfast of champions.” Develop the habit of giving each member of your team some type of feedback every week. If you’re apt to forget, put a tickler in your calendar or computer. Without feedback, we do not know where we are nor do we know how we are progressing. Make sure the feedback you provide passes the TIPS Test: timely, given as soon as possible after the performance takes place; individualized, tailored to the feedback receiver; productive, focuses on the performance rather than the performer; and specific, pinpoints observable action and behaviors. Solicit feedback on your feedback. Ask others to critique your nonverbal (looks, behaviors, etc.) as well as verbal feedback. Keep in mind that body language often communicates stronger messages than words. As a coach, one must be cognizant of the behavior that is displayed at all times. Make certain everyone understands the importance of, reasons for, and specific details of rules and policies. If they do, then they will respect them. As a group, define the terms fairness and consistency as they relate to policy and rule application. Use those definitions as guidelines for yourself and others. Don’t ignore “bad” rules and policies. Instead, try to get them changed. Be sure you’re fully prepared when proposing a change: explain why the rule is problematic, describe how it negatively impacts business, and offer at least two alternatives for consideration. Create a list of other rules of the road (e.g., treating each other with respect, practicing open and honest communication, etc.) and treat these equally as important as all other rules.


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• By definition, a coach addresses deficiencies. Therefore, remember: one catches more flies with sugar, rather than vinegar. Consequently, pay attention when someone has a performance problem. Make sure, however, you bring it to their attention in positive terms, rather than a humiliating experience. Unaddressed deficiencies can have a negative effect on every member of your team. By dealing with performance issues as early as possible, you can prevent them from growing more serious ... and more distasteful for both you and the individual to face. • Investigate each deficiency to uncover its root cause. If the problem stems from a lack of skills, arrange for skill-building activities (formal training, on-the-job training, etc.). If there is an obstacle to performance, attempt to eliminate it. If you believe the person can perform properly but just isn’t doing so, review the standard with them and hold them accountable for meeting it. • Follow-up for follow through! Follow the initial performance discussion with one or two short meetings to assess the person’s progress and encourage them to follow through with correction. • Treat people as adults — never assume total responsibility for correcting someone else’s deficiencies. If you alone take the responsibility, they become nonresponsible. • Try a positive approach to discipline. (Yes, we did say positive and discipline in the same sentence!) Focus on correction and individual responsibility rather than blame and punishment. Avoid perspectives such as write you up and punishment that fits the crime. • When holding disciplinary discussions, concentrate on the particular problem and its impact on business. Deal with specific facts and behaviors rather than personality or attitude traits. This will help decrease defensiveness and produce value-added outcomes. • Never document a disciplinary problem without talking to the person about the issue. A good rule of thumb: if it’s important enough to document, it’s definitely important enough to talk about. • Apply discipline effectively by ensuring that (1) your process and decisions are fair and consistent, and (2) your overall objective is to build commitment rather than mandate compliance. Whereas a good coach and a good coaching process is invaluable in the six sigma methodology, there could be also some problems associated with coaching and the coach. One such problem is stagnation. Stagnation is the direct result of poor coaching. Many projects have not been successful or have come to completion only barely because the coaching and guidance either never existed or was very poorly defined. The following statements are good indicators that the project will be in trouble if nothing happens: 1. It costs too much. 2. We have never done anything like that around here. 3. It will not work anyway.

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4. 5. 6. 7.


Why do we need this? We are doing fine without it. We are not ready for this “staff,” yet. Remember, we did try something like this before and it did not work. That is not our responsibility.



When we think of integrity we think of Margaret Thatcher who said: “Being powerful is like being a lady. If you have to tell people you are, you are not.” As a master black belt or black belt, you will have authority and responsibility for a project. Many people will be looking up to you for direction. To be successful, handling authority appropriately is an ingredient that will set you apart and will help you in everyday situations. Some considerations and clues for success are • Adopt “the” mind-set that black belts or green belts do not work for you — you work for them. • Be enthusiastic with what you are doing. Enthusiasm is catchy. Get excited about positive things. However, when things do not go your way, remember Vince Lombardi’s statement: “It is not whether you get knocked down, it is whether you get up.” It is inevitable that disappointments will occur in the course of a project; make them a learning experience and view them as opportunities to improve. Be persistent in the goal of improvement. Demonstrate your resilience. • Avoid an arrogant attitude of “my way or the highway.” Involve others in developing a mission statement for your project and above all in the operational definition. Humble yourself and visit the “place” where the problem exists. Allow the people who work with the process to tell you about the “problem” or the “issue” or “concern.” • Share authority — with delegating, both authority and responsibility provide true empowerment. Hold individuals accountable. • Create opportunities for people to shine. Provide appropriate and applicable training to enhance team performance. • Never turn your back to people after giving them authority. Recognize that some time they will make mistakes. We learn from mistakes. Actively solicit and apply feedback to everyone who is associated with the project. • Always support your team, by accepting the fact that team performance will take a little longer than if you do the task yourself. Appreciate your people’s effort and work towards the project and make sure you become sensitive to their special occasions. Try to balance work needs and personal needs. Always try to walk in their shoes. When you do, you see things from their perspective and you will be a better decision maker for it. • Make sure the recruitment and selection of people for projects are individuals who are familiar with teamwork behaviors. If not, make sure they are trained. • Make sure you always remind everyone of the big picture as it relates to the organization’s mission and objectives.

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In dealing with six sigma projects, the outcomes are expected to be substantial. It is not unusual for the expectations to be as low as $250,000 per project savings. This sort of expectation sometimes may encourage leaders in charge of the specific projects to be careless and eager for results. The carelessness and eagerness may be in the areas of stretching the truth, ignoring moral codes, and cutting corners of their own professional conduct. Therefore: • Everyone must play by the same rules. Rank has its privileges may apply in some circumstances, but never when it comes to integrity issues. • Nobody’s perfect. We all make mistakes and errors in judgment. Admit to them and apologize for any negative impacts they may have caused. How you recover from mistakes is a true indication of your integrity. • Be a person of your word. Write down all promises and agreements you make ... and honor them. Remember: one broken promise overshadows five promises kept. • Let your conscience be your guide. Do the right thing no matter how inconvenient, unpopular, or painful it may seem. That’s integrity!

ORGANIZATIONAL VALUES • Before any major project is undertaken, make sure everyone involved is aware of the organization’s values. • Once the project is under way, make sure everyone follows the values and rules that the organization has set. • Make sure that all projects selected, support and/or enhance the organizational values.




Winston Churchill has been credited with saying that: “The price of greatness is responsibility.” In the six sigma methodology responsibility is everywhere. It starts with the commitment of senior management and it concludes with the accountability and responsibility of everyone else to carry out the objectives of the organization. Therefore, if you have been designated as the lead person for a project: • Ensure everyone’s responsibilities, including yours, are clearly defined and commonly understood. Whether it’s a specific project or general job duty, don’t assume people know who’s responsible for what ... discuss it! • Be selfish! Never share the blame for your mistakes. • Volunteer to take on additional responsibility, especially when no one else wants it. It may temporarily result in more work for you and your group, but it’s also a chance to develop individuals and have a greater influence on important outcomes for your organization. And your gesture just might compel others to do the same. • Check the mirror first! Meet your responsibilities before holding others accountable for meeting theirs.

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FREQUENT QUESTIONS ABOUT SIX SIGMA METHODOLOGIES ORGANIZATIONS LOVE NEW INITIATIVES. ISN’T SIX-SIGMA ANOTHER FLAVOR OF THE MONTH? Some answer this with a very emphatic No. They claim that the six sigma is a new approach to address quality because it is a sustained effort over a period of time. It is not something that can be done in months or even 1 or 2 years. This is the natural next step in the quality journey of improvement that has started many years ago, and it will take 3 to 5 years for a typical organization to reach optimal effectiveness. However, the good thing about six sigma is that anyone may start at any time and ... can start realizing some of benefits in 6 months. However, if we look back, in the mid-1930s inspection was the answer for customer satisfaction. In the post-World War II through the 1950s we were introduced to formal Quality Control methods including: Quality Circles and Group Dynamics. However these did not take care of our problems. In the 1960s we looked at the “focused factory” of Wick Skinner, a Harvard Business School Professor, to solve our problems. It did not work. In the late 1980s and through most of the 1990s we were pushing for “mass customization.” We are still not there. Now, we push for the e-commerce as the “cure-all” of our products and/or services, but we have forgotten that we still have to make and deliver a product and or service that delights the customer. This is where the six sigma is catching the world on fire, promising breakthrough improvements and a level of customer satisfaction that the world has never seen before. So, what is this six sigma all about? In our estimation it is a regurgitation of old tools in a new packaging format. To be sure, its focus is “bottom line” and direct accountability from management. It is also a very expensive formal appraising methodology. In any event, the six sigma is here to stay for the short term. However, no one knows the long-term effect nor its effectiveness. The reason for this is the fact that organizations have major problems in designing their products and/or services to meet their customers needs, wants, and expectations. They have a problem fulfilling the three sigma requirement on a consistent basis. How are they going to meet the requirements of the six sigma? To reach the six sigma level, any organization must understand the difference of a “root cause” and a “problem.” Both are important; however, they need a different approach to resolving the issues. Whereas the root cause is excellent in uprooting repetitive problems, problems, on the other hand, present a unique perspective in any organization. To resolve them one must understand the principle of the 80/20 rule (Pareto). This notion suggests that 20% of business operations create 80% of the problem. To take this step further, about 5% of any business creates 50% of the problem. Another way of saying this is to admit that quality issues are not distributed evenly throughout an entire business, but lie within a few select areas. Because of this, problem solving in some situations is more effective and desirable.

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DOES SENIOR MANAGEMENT HAVE THE PATIENCE TO SEE THIS THROUGH? IS THERE A TRUE COMMITMENT? Yes, commitment is the price of entry. Unless there is a true commitment to improvement by senior management, the effort will be a waste of time and another “flavor of the month” program. Commitment must be demonstrated throughout the organization, and milestones of achievement must be communicated to suppliers, customers, and employees.

ISN’T SIX-SIGMA REALLY JUST ANOTHER COST-REDUCTION INITIATIVE? Many people claim that six sigma is not deployed as a cost-reduction tool; it’s about customer satisfaction. To substantiate this claim, most organizations select projects that are related directly to customer dissatisfaction (warranty), or things that have gone wrong (TGR). In addition, they claim that six sigma is different than any other quality initiatives in the past because it is a business strategy that emphasizes the philosophy of “Good Quality Is Good Business.”






Some companies have claimed that six-sigma projects have indeed returned their investment in terms of warranty reductions, process efficiency, and many items that were measured internally within a year.




This is a very sticky point with six sigma training. There is a major overlapping requirement between technical training and black belt training. It is not yet clearcut where one stops and one begins to evaluate the return of individual training skills as they are applied in selected projects. Where the benefit is coming from is not explicitly identified since most of the technical tools are indeed part of the six sigma methodology. Another way of looking at this technical training, especially if the organization is bothered with a problem, is to pinpoint it and provide the appropriate and applicable training on an as-needed basis for only the specific areas of concern, rather than train the entire organization.




Six-sigma deployment and training at this point is not an open enrollment. As the deployment is rolled out to each organization, the management of that organization selects suitable six-sigma projects and individuals who will be trained to become black belts. The initial training requires 4 months, but the black belt certification requires about 8 months to allow the black belt candidates enough time to successfully complete two projects delivering real and measurable results.

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It is assumed that before an individual is trained for the black belt, he or she must have some fundamental training in statistical methods. This training is often called the green belt training. It is expected (strongly hoped) that the green belt training will facilitate everyone’s participation in the six-sigma effort. It is envisioned that the green belt training will become mandatory for everyone enrolled in the training plan towards a six sigma training.




Black belts are individuals selected by their management to take intensive training in statistics, problem-solving techniques, and leadership to lead teams in solving a series of projects. They are assigned to do these projects for a predetermined time — usually, for about 2 years. The length of the assignment is required to allow the comprehensive training and the expertise building that comes through doing many projects one after another. The idea is that the six-sigma concept becomes the natural way business is done. Let’s look at it this way. Every organization has a list of problems to solve ... and the best people are assigned to solve them. Six-sigma basically takes these people and gives them special black belt training so that they can dedicate their time to completely solve customer satisfaction problems and to do them faster.




Many companies use incentives to attract and retain their black belts. Some are in the process of doing a benchmark study on this subject. However, as black belts are given special training to deliver good and fast results, the pay-for-performance policy seems to apply. In addition, as black belts become proficient at team leading and achieve technical competency, they will be natural candidates for future leadership positions. It is common in some six-sigma companies to require black belt training for key leadership positions. These are important considerations above and beyond the monetary incentives.

DOES AN ORGANIZATION COMMITTED TO THE SIX SIGMA METHODOLOGY HAVE TO ADD MORE RESOURCES TO START THE PROGRAM, I.E., REPLACING THE BLACK BELTS WITH NEW PEOPLE? To our knowledge no organization has, to date, added resources as they deployed six sigma. The goal is to reduce variability in every process and reduce inefficiencies and waste; so, benefits should be forthcoming from the start. It doesn’t make sense to add people, only to eliminate them as you gain efficiency. By the way, most organizations currently have critical problems that are being tended to ... not very effectively so they keep having to tend to them all the time. With six sigma they will use the same people to solve the same problems. They don’t invent new problems; therefore, they don’t need to hire new people to work on them. The difference with six sigma is that once the problems are solved, they don’t come back.

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No, not at all. Hopefully, all programs in a given organization are geared to increase the value of the organization. Six sigma is an additional method to satisfy the customers profitably. To do that, an organization must produce excellent products and services efficiently. Six sigma is a comprehensive tool combining business concepts with technical skills and leadership, which helps an organization to achieve its goals and visions.








The answer to this question depends on who is asking the question and who is answering it. Generally speaking, the elements of TQM are sprinkled throughout the six sigma approach to quality, just like they are in all quality initiatives of the past. However, the difference appears to be in the up-front commitment of management to resolve the known problems “once and for all.” The definitive answer, unfortunately, remains to be seen. It is claimed that six sigma is a very powerful tool and will prove to be the most important tool because it integrates other tools that are currently scattered within organizational processes in a nonsystematic approach.




If you are part of a black belt project you will feel the pressure to approach problems more intensely, more data driven, more accountability driven. However, once you see the benefits of doing things the efficient way, you will work more efficiently, and you will feel better about the end product of your work. You should be able to find more time to do things well, rather than to do the same things over and over again because they were not done well to start with. On the other hand, if you are a green belt, expect to be very involved with the black belt in doing the everyday assignments of the assigned project. You will be expected to help the black belt in completing the project.

CAN SIX-SIGMA BE APPLIED TO NONPRODUCTION OR NONTECHNICAL FUNCTIONS SUCH AS HUMAN RESOURCES, PURCHASING, MARKETING, AND THE LIKE? Absolutely. Any outcome, whether a physical part or a business transaction, must be produced by some kind of process. Any time there is a process, especially one handled by human beings, there is variability. Any time there is variability, there is opportunity for reducing errors, waste, and inefficiencies. These nontechnical areas are the hardest areas to start six sigma because the processes are not well established and there are very little hard data to help guide the process improvement. However, once started, they yield impressive results because they generally do not require capital investments or facility and long lead design changes, and they can be replicated quickly in many business areas.

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95 TO


Just like anything else, for change to occur there must be a critical mass. In the case of six sigma, most organizations start out with selected individuals and projects and then they move into the depth of the organization. This process is a lengthy one, and generally speaking it does not take any less than 3 to 4 years. Eventually, however, if the program is adapted by the organization, it is expected to become the way of life and, as such, everyone is going to be involved.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SIX SIGMA AND CONSUMER SIX SIGMA? The methodology is the same. However, the focus is different. Whereas the traditional six sigma methodology focuses on internal improvements with the customer in mind, the consumer six sigma (or a variation of this) focuses on all customers and potential customers for driving the improvement in the organization. In other words, the drive is essentially from outside the organization to improve and satisfy the customer as well as the potential customer (consumer).

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SIGMA (Σ) AND STANDARD DEVIATION? Whereas the standard deviation is associated with variation of a distribution and is designated with the Greek letter σ, the sigma as used in the sigma convention is a derivative of Motorola’s early work that accounts for more variation in a process than will typically be found in the short term. In other words, the σ in the six sigma convention translates the nonconformities (defects) of a particular process for the long term in a statistical base for comparison. For the short term, the comparison that is used is the normal distribution z value.




It is the process shift of a stable and a controlled process in the long term. It turns out that the 1.5 sigma is an empirical finding of an electronics company (Motorola) and it has been used with all companies that have embraced this methodology. In reality, we know that the shift occurs; however, every organization has its own shift in their process and therefore they ought to find it, calculate it, and use it themselves, rather than the 1.5. As it is used today, it is nothing more than a fudge factor. (In the automotive industry, for example, the shift is 1 sigma and it has been used for at least the last 10 years. The 1 sigma is in fact the difference of a Ppk = 1.67 and a Cpk = 1.33. The reader should observe that these two indices, Ppk = 1.67 and a Cpk = 1.33, are the complete opposite of the classical definition of the six sigma — short- vs. long-term capability.) So, to put it in perspective, the short-term capability is designated as the z-value (, and the long-term capability accounting for this shift is designated as the z-value plus the 1.5σ shift ( The trend today is that the shift and the sigma are being dropped completely and instead organizations use the actual z numbers which are more accurate and

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give the experimenter a better handle of understanding the comparisons and improvements of their projects.




This is the proportion of nonconformities (defects) over the total number of opportunities in a particular group. There is a big issue, however, as to how to actually calculate the opportunity. By definition, the opportunity has to be correlated with the critical to quality characteristics (CTQ) requirements. However, this definition may be misused, and depending on the calculated “opportunity,” the ultimate value of sigma will change significantly.






This is the classical measure of the six sigma methodology, which indicates how many defects would arise if there were one million opportunities.




In the six sigma context, it is an ad hoc system and/or process set up by management to correct mistakes made during the manufacturing process. They take up unnecessary resources, such as space and time. To understand the concept of the hidden factory, one must evaluate the throughput yield, that is, the probability that all nonconforming opportunities produced at a particular step in the process will conform to their respective performance standards. Another way of looking at this is the notion of doing something right the first time, every time. In conjunction with this throughput and its relationship to the hidden factory, there are also two other concepts that one should be familiar with. They are 1. Rolled throughput yield which is the probability of being able to pass a unit of product or service through the entire process defect free. It can be calculated by either multiplying each of the probabilities separately and then adding the total or it can be calculated by Yrt = e–DPU. 2. Normalized yield is the average throughput yield result one may expect at any given step of the process.




It is a visual representation of the individual levels of the process. It is often driven by design considerations as well as the available manufacturing technologies. The “critical to” characteristic is always a function of the Y = f(X), where Y is a product requirement which impacts quality delivery or cost and the f(X) is one of the vital few process variables which can leverage the Y. Similarly the CTY (product) tree is a visual representation of the individual levels of the product. It must be remembered that both the CTX and CTY give the opportunity to select the strategy for improvement. Whereas the CTY will help in

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the area of defect opportunity, the CTX will help in the controlling opportunities of the process. Therefore, the more we understand the trees, the better the results of our analysis.




The letters are an acronym and stand for supplier, inputs, process, outputs, and customer. The SIPOC model is the complete chain of a process. It is shown in Figure 2.3. The significance of this model is the definition of the entire process but also the feedback links of each component, in both forward and backward fashion. It is this feedback (especially the backward one) that makes the model very powerful and worthy of consideration. It allows for direct feedback of the customer’s response to be taken into consideration, all the way from the supplier to the actual outputs.

FIGURE 2.3 The SIPOC model.




The DMAIC model is the generic model of the six sigma methodology. It is an acronym that stands for define, measure, analyze, improve, and control. Sometimes this model includes recognize as an awareness item to the model. Each of the components addresses a different aspect of the overall improvement and breakthrough strategy. A cursory summary for each of the components is Recognize Customer focus Business metrics Six sigma fundamentals Define Nature of variables Opportunities for defects CTX tree Process mapping Process baseline Six sigma projects Six sigma development Measure Scales of measure Data collection

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Measurement error Statistical distributions Static statistics Dynamic statistics Six sigma statistics Analyze Process metrics Diagnostic tools Simulation tools Statistical hypotheses Continuous decision tools Discrete decision tools Improve Experiment design tools Robust design tools Empirical modeling tools Tolerance tools Risk analysis tools DFSS principles Control Pre-control tools Continuous SPC tools Discrete SPC tools

HOW DID SIX SIGMA ORIGINATE? Motorola coined the term in 1986. However, for those of us who are familiar with process capability and variation, the six sigma is nothing new. Before this concept came about to signify superb quality, the going standard was the three sigma quality. In Motorola’s case it was discovered that its processes weren’t in statistical control. Estimates based on field failure data indicated that Motorola’s processes apparently drifted by an average of ±1.5 standard deviations. So, when we hear that a six sigma process will produce 3.4 parts-per-million (PPM) failures, we find that this PPM corresponds to the area in the tail beyond 4.5 standard deviations above or below the mean for a normal distribution. To measure this, Mikel Harry began to use the Ppk index (which measures actual performance rather than process capability), instead of the traditional Cpk (which measures short-term process variability under statistical control, and for him it is worthless.) Special note: This is a major shift in thinking since up to this point the Ppk was used to measure short-term capability and the Cpk was used to measure long-term capability. In effect, M. Harry flipped the terms. M. Harry prefers the Ppk index and recognizes it as a more accurate statistical index to measure the long-term capability of the process. Many experts disagree with his notion and understanding of the Ppk

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and Cpk. In any case, before computing expected process failures, Motorola adds this 1.5 standard deviation, which, in the language of the six sigma methodology, has become known as the long-term shift of the process. Current thinking, however, is dismissing this shift and most people have already began to use z values.

A CRITICAL PERSPECTIVE OF THE SIX SIGMA At this juncture, it would be unfair if we also do not point out that the six sigma methodology has come under some attack as being old “staff” with a new face-lift. To be sure, in the past, many tools, methodologies, and philosophies have been introduced to the world of quality. Gurus (Juran, Deming, Feigumum, Crosby, and others) introduced innovative ideas to address quality in the planning stages, that is, to build quality in the design, not to monitor it at the manufacturing level. None of them were 100% effective. None of them were able to penetrate the organizational cultures of appraising systems, even though they were talking about very similar, if not identical, ideas in regards to improvement and resolving problems once and for all. The introduction of the ISO and later the QS-9000 standards had the same effect, that is, much flair in their introduction, but short on delivery, with an overwhelming generation of paper trail, but no major quality breakthroughs. Organizations fell in love with the process and forgot the intention of the International Standards which was and still remains to be the effectiveness of a quality system in the organization. We keep on reinventing the wheel, but we give it a new name in the hopes that the name will help us stay ahead of the competition. We are looking for that “silver bullet.” Unfortunately, the more we change, the more we stay the same. We have allegedly reduced in-house inspections because they are a waste, but secretly one of the booming industries is third-party inspection houses. Who are we kidding? We have certification of third-party entities but nonconformaces on major and indispensable items of the standards are missing, such as quality manual, internal auditing, and much more. Yet, the certification process continues. Now comes a new wave of quality methodology, with the name of “six sigma” that is revolutionizing every organization. In essence, it is an old methodology with a new name and a new face-lift. Some have argued that six sigma presents nothing to the quality field of prevention. Bluntly, it is an old appraising methodology that focuses on “after the fact” problems. However, we must recognize that the six sigma methodology revolutionizes the old paradigm of horizontal integration to a new approach of vertical integration. Whereas that vertical integration (executive accountability) is an important issue and worth exploring, it is not a revolutionary thought, nor a breakthrough approach to quality. It is simply a proposal that many have introduced in the past, and it has failed miserably. Some also have said that the fact that traditional quality professionals are not encouraged to take part of the six sigma training is a mistake for the organization about to apply this approach. The rationale, of course, is that the traditional quality professional is “set” in his ways and will not be able to change in to the revolutionary “breakthrough” quality strategy. It is an argument that in our view does not have much merit, because the traditional quality professional can offer the organization

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tremendous knowledge about the supplier–organization–customer triad. It is indeed an organizational loss when the talents within the organization are not used effectively. We do, however, recognize that modern quality is a function of everyone, and everyone should be involved with reducing waste. Another argument about the six sigma methodology is that it presents itself as one more appraisal activity, rather than a planning orientation. This is counter to modern day quality which is focusing on optimization of resources through robustness and not by defining defects in a particular way. The argument seems to be that the current approach of the six sigma follows existing problem identification and resolution, and misses the opportunity of designing products/services right the first time. Another issue is the fact of the training in specific tools and specific methodologies, especially statistics. It appears that the heavy usage of statistical techniques will increase quality. That is not the case, nor will be the case, unless the personnel trained in the tools and methodologies are allowed to utilize them in the improvement process. Yet another issue is presented, when one focuses on specification limits while seeking a breakthrough strategy. That seems to dismiss Taguchi’s principle of Loss Function, which targets uniformity around a nominal with no references to specifications. Indeed, six sigma, as proposed, takes us backwards! Finally the issue of the 1.5σ shift is a concern. This item is the shift of a process that is capable, in control, and stable over time. In the methodology this shift, it seems, has been standardized across all industries, where in fact it is a shift of only one electronics company. This shift when it exists must be empirically determined and not shared with companies at large. We have come to accept the notion of short term PPM associated with six sigma as 0.001 and long term PPM associated with six sigma as 3.4. We have forgotten that in practical terms there is nothing outside of three sigma. Plenty of research has taken place in this area, some of which are given in Neave 1990; Deming 1982; and Shewhart 1931. Many programs and processes have been tried over the years (e.g., Quality Control, Total Quality Management, Continuous Improvement, Quality Improvement, etc., and now the six sigma). Some have been successful, some have been failures, and still others are lingering. No one knows what the total effect of the blitz marketing for six sigma will have in the world of quality. However, one thing is for certain. Six sigma is getting management’s attention in an unprecedented way, focusing on bottom line results. We hope it works this time and does not end up being another flavor of the month. To be successful, with all the shortcoming that the methodology presents, the users must accept the fact that the major contributing factor is not so much the methodology itself, but the politics of the internal organization’s culture. It is interesting to note that some of the companies who have proclaimed they follow the six sigma strategy are the ones where if you call their Customer Service departments you will find yourself waiting for over 15 minutes. You will also see record cost for warranty. And we are wondering: how can a six sigma company have so many complaints? How can they have such a high bill for warranty? Is it perhaps that the six sigma methodology will pass as yet another fad, because it really is not working?

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We do not need the six sigma methodology to improve efficiency and productivity in our products, rather we need to stop issuing “letters of deviation,” “alerts,” and “waivers” from our specifications. Every time these deviations occur, we are introducing mistakes and “off specifications” parts, therefore nonconformance parts. We are continually building products with nonconformances from the “get go” without any one being responsible and accountable. It is of interest that Prescient Technologies (2000), conducting a study on more than 3300 product models from aerospace, automotive, consumer products, and electronics industries worldwide, found that more than 90% failed company-defined standards. So much for standards, policies, and quality initiatives. We do not need to use the six sigma methodology to improve throughput and timing requirements on an annual basis; rather, we need to stick to the milestones of timing and follow the guidelines of APQP. So, what are we to do with this six sigma phenomenon? And why, if this six sigma “staff” is so common with ideas of the past, is there a need for us to devote so much time? Recognize it for what it is and use it whenever it is appropriate and applicable. It is not a panacea nor a silver bullet and it will not bring spectacular results in most organizations. A better way to report progress on a breakthrough project is to exhibit the before and after picture without any financial manipulations. We all must understand that sometimes some cases require problem solution rather than root cause solution. We need problem solvers utilizing statistical thinking rather than root cause problem solvers dealing in high level statistical analysis. This is especially true in the transactional domain. To solve actual problems, it takes more than one method, one observation, one study, one experiment. To demonstrate improvement, one must wait to see the process developing and confirm the results based on verification of the “fix.” Storytelling alone will not do it. Shooting from the hip as the old cowboys used to do it won’t do it. Much thought has to be invested and a good target must be set on achievable measurables to track the improvement. As for the second question, the answer is simple. Our focus is to identify the core methodology of the six sigma, explain it, and then use it in a prevention mode rather than the traditional approach. Our aim and purpose is to discuss the issues and methodology that an organization “truly” can use in a preventive mode and “truly” use to optimize the customer satisfaction euphemism that everyone talks about when they really are focusing on the “bottom line” with an afterthought on customer satisfaction.

BEYOND THE SIX SIGMA PHENOMENON We admit that the six sigma in the current status, as it has been applied, is nothing more than one more methodology in the tool box of a quality professional or an organization. It does not have to be. It can be very effective and this is the very reason why this series of volumes has been written. By far the best argument for implementing the six sigma methodology in a given organization — manufacturing or service — is the factor of the top management commitment and not the bottom line effect. Why? Because in the past, many

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programs and methodologies have been introduced with reduction of variation and maximizing customer satisfaction. They did not work, not because they were bad tools or methodologies, but because top management was not championing the quality cause. It appears that six sigma is changing all this. We hope so, and that is why this series of volumes. The value of the six sigma, we believe, has not been tapped yet. We are using an atomic bomb to demolish a 150-year-old log building. We can do it, but it is inefficient and a waste of time. There are other tools better suited and more economical to resolve the problems of the past, if management commitment is or is willing to be on board. The six sigma we believe is the best candidate for the design issues of manufacturing or service organizations. It is easier and much more cost effective to do the planning up front rather than having to fix the problem afterwards. Volume VI is devoted to this topic. However, in this section let us address some of the concepts that are fundamental for design to six sigma capability and beyond. First, a fair question is: how far can quality go? Until very recently, the idea of six sigma was considered utopian. Now that it has been conquered by some companies, we can aspire to an even higher standard. Seven sigma (1.2 DPM), and even eight sigma (0.5 DPM). These are indeed achievable, given the gathering power of the drivers for quality and continuing developments of specialized tools, approaches, and certainly the commitment of senior management. Second, the realization of customer satisfaction must be in the forefront of any organization trying to implement the six sigma methodology. For this realization to occur there are 14 keys to service quality that must be addressed. They are shown in Table 2.3. Whereas product and/or service development depends on design, and it is the focus of Volume VI in this series, we must not underestimate the significance of the market. To increase market share through offering “value” to the customer, an organization must, at least, recognize and do something about the following: • Merge and broaden product lines. The more definition a product line has, the better the differentiation in the market. • Create a series of resource centers. The centers should be an extension of Marketing, so that they could offer customers a greater level of assistance from applications engineers, as well as on-site training and demonstration facilities. • Change the production strategy. Changing the production strategy from a “count” perspective to a “quality” perspective must become a way of life. Planning for quality should be the modus operandi rather than fixing problems after they occur. • Foster a more growth-oriented organization. The focus must be in globalization and niche markets or, better yet, mass customization. For this to occur, “quality” must be in the forefront of the organization and not as an afterthought. • Focus sales in business units. As the value of the product or service increases, so does the loyalty of the customer, and as such, sales increase

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TABLE 2.3 14 Keys to Service Quality 14 Keys to Service Quality Gather market intelligence

Consider consultants Examine business processes

Anticipate problems and pitfalls (contingency planning) Create culture change Build leadership skills

Develop work teams

Reinforce training Empower staff Motivate staff

Win commitment Develop standards Exceed expectations

Measure results

How to Manage Service Quality Find out how to use market research to get useful information about customers’ opinions, and distinguish between their needs, perceptions, expectations, and their level of satisfaction Get advice on how to decide whether you can justify the cost of consultants and when to use them You get details of process management and control techniques, which conventionally work only on the factory floor, but can be applied with equal success to service delivery Learn from the mistakes of others without having to make them yourself Discover ways to turn your business on its head and change the whole way that people think when they’re at work Recognizing service quality offers workable new ideas for leadership skills training in any customer-focused organization Read about techniques for developing self-motivating and selfdirecting work-teams — teams that can determine the success of your service quality program Find ways to assess and meet the service quality training needs of new and established staff — on a tight budget Learn how to make staff want to take on the responsibility for delighting customers Learn how to communicate a real passion for service quality and a real commitment to the customer at every level of your organization How to stop a customer care program from becoming the slogan of the day or the program of the month Read how to devise workable quality standards, which your own people can understand, apply, and measure Read how to use marketing to reshape your customers’ expectations of your organization, and then exceed those expectations Discover how to build a “self-assessment matrix” to monitor the progress of your service quality drive and report results easily

as well. At least one way to focus on sales in business units is to zero in on the “functionality” that the customer is looking for in your products and/or services. The more you identify and understand the “functionality” needs of the customer, the more you will increase the sales in the particular business units.

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Yes, the six sigma methodology repeats many techniques and approaches for solving problems. However, if that is the way that is going to be used, we have in our hands another pink elephant in the long list of other dead elephants. Obviously, we do not believe that the intent of the six sigma is to fix and appraise problems. If we did, this series would not be forthcoming. Instead, we strongly believe that the power and significance of the six sigma methodology lies with design products and services. We believe so strongly in this, that every volume of this series will focus on specific issues and techniques to help the reader maximize the use of this methodology. Furthermore, we believe that the six sigma approach to quality is extremely strong in persuading management to see things from a “planning perspective,” since it offers a direct return on investment. This is perhaps another twist in the methodology that has never been articulated or implemented before on the executive levels of different organizations. Finally, we believe that the six sigma methodology has the potential of being effective in a given organization because the price to enter is so high. In our culture, price is viewed as value and as such many executives are influenced by the fact that the training and implementation is expensive. Of course, there is a second element to this equation that sometimes is not heard. That element is culture change. The fact that the methodology provides its own structure and a systematic process — that makes it repeatable — makes the six sigma approach mystical and perhaps inviting. We hope so!

TYPICAL IMPLEMENTATION OF THE SIX SIGMA STRATEGY Just like any other program, the six sigma approach to quality must have a strategy for success. This strategy is a specific methodology focusing on extensive training, project orientation, and selection that ultimately produces specific savings for the organization. Examples of some organizations pursuing successfully the six sigma methodology are • Motorola. Began the implementation process in 1985, results were measured in 1989, and there was a renewal effort in 1990. • Texas Instruments. Began the implementation process in 1991, results were measured in 1995, and there was a renewal effort in 1996. • ABB. Began the implementation process in 1993, results were measured in 1997, and there was a renewal effort in 1998. Part of the success in an organization successfully implementing the six sigma methodology is the candidate selection and training. In this section we are giving an overview of the basic characteristics for a successful completion as well as a fruitful continuation of this extraordinary initiative in the best-in-class worldwide organizations. More about this in Volume VI.

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CANDIDATE QUALIFICATIONS AND TRAINING Improved customer satisfaction, significant gains in quality, breakthrough bottomline profitability, decreased cycle times, increased sigma shifts, and approaching zero nonconformities are the results of the six sigma methodology. Since people, not programs, achieve results, it takes people trained in the breakthrough strategy to implement this methodology in order to improve designs, reduce defects, and cycle time, and approach the 3.4 defects per million opportunities. Individuals who have technical proficiencies, interpersonal skills, and leadership abilities within their respective discipline area and are actively involved in the process of organizational change, development, and group dynamics may be candidates. The training is conducted in levels, in which, over a period of time, the candidate will become proficient in the six sigma strategy. The first level of training is the green belt. Here the candidate is introduced into basic quality philosophy and the basic quality tools by the black belts themselves. It is the least demanding of all training. The second level of training is the black belt. Here the candidate is introduced to a very extensive technical training in identifying, analyzing, evaluating, and implementing solutions to specific problems. To appreciate the intensity of the black belt training let us look at a typical program of this breakthrough approach to quality, both from the objective as well as the curriculum perspective. Six sigma black belt candidates undergo 4 weeks of rigorous and applied training over a 4-month period. After each session, candidates return to their company to apply what they have learned. During the training experience, candidates focus on a working project approved by their employer and the black belt instructor during the first session. These projects, typically high-leverage, business-based projects, center on delivering bottom-line financial results while simultaneously increasing customer satisfaction. In order to achieve black belt certification, each candidate must show dollar savings and benefits achieved and demonstrate his or her proficiencies in the use of six sigma tools and techniques. A typical curriculum will involve the following: Session 1 (Week 1) • Understand the basic concepts of six sigma • Develop the language of six sigma and statistics • How to compute and apply basic statistics • How to establish and benchmark capability Session 2 (Week 2) • Understand the theory of sampling and hypothesis testing • How to apply the key statistical tools for hypothesis testing • Understand the elements of successful application planning • How to apply and manage the breakthrough strategy • How to identify and leverage dominant sources of variation • How to establish realistic performance tolerances

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Session 3 (Week 3) • Understand the basic principles of experimentation • How to design and execute multivariable experiments • How to interpret and communicate the results of an experiment • How to plan and execute a variable search study Session 4 (Week 4) • Understand the basic concepts of process control • How to construct, use, and maintain charts for variables data • How to construct, use, and maintain charts for attribute data • How to implement and maintain precontrol and postcontrol • How to plan and implement process control systems The deployment of each of the 4 training weeks are separated by 3 weeks back at the organization’s site, during which time the black belt works on projects using the methods and tools he/she is being taught. The first training session includes guidance on selecting a project assignment; subsequent sessions begin with a project report and critique. The third level of training is master black belt training. Here the candidate is introduced to facilitation and teaching skills for training others in the six sigma methodology and is certified by the organization. To become a master black belt, one must have been a black belt and also must have solved several projects within the organization. The six sigma master certification program (or the shogan six sigma master) delivers the philosophy, theory, and methods you need to apply six sigma in your organization. Six sigma masters undergo intense training in quantitative analytical skills, project management, group dynamics, team building, and change management. As a six sigma master candidate, you will apply what is being learned to demonstrate the capability of six sigma to achieve breakthrough financial results. The improvement projects you choose provide early returns on the investment in training, and the entire development process reinforces internalization of what is being learned. Upon completion of the six sigma master program, you will have successfully applied six sigma tools as a leader of a major business improvement project in your organization. This project typically involves a team of three to six people and delivers significant cost savings and/or a measured improvement in eliminating waste, reducing cycle time, and increasing profits. Additional training may be required — and is strongly recommended — in the areas of champion training and executives. This training is essential, because it teaches the champions and executives what to expect and how to respond to the black belt’s needs.

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SIX SIGMA CHAMPION TRAINING Key individuals with the managerial and technical knowledge necessary to facilitate the leadership, implementation, and deployment of six sigma and the mentoring of black belts are prime candidates for champion training. This week-long training focuses on 3 days of educating the student on six sigma tools, principles, and applications. The remaining 2 days teach champions the development and deployment tactics and strategies for implementing six sigma within their organization, and how to select black belts, projects, and metrics.

SIX SIGMA EXECUTIVE OVERVIEW Executive training is offered to the senior management and leadership team of an organization and is a first step toward internal deployment. Training includes a six sigma overview, examples of successful deployments, deployment strategies, tools and methods for improvement, measurement, and management controls.

PROJECT SELECTION Project selection is very fundamental in the six sigma methodology. It provides the opportunity to improve, given a problem that is worth the effort and time to be investigated. The question, though, quite often is how do I go about selecting a project that is interesting for me, for my management, and will result in customer satisfaction? It is not an easy task. One must prioritize, because projects as used in the six sigma content are the means through which processes are systematically changed. They are the bridge between the planning and the doing. Project planning is, of course, the inherent knowledge and implementation of project management, where project doing is the domain of the six sigma methodology. The difference is quite significant, although there are some overlapping concepts that separate the two. Fundamentally, the project describes what will be done while the plan describes in advance how it will be done. In the glossary we provide some of the jargon used in project management and that we feel a black belt should be familiar with. As for the importance of prioritization let me explain it through a story that a good friend of mine (Mr. H. Potiris) told me some time ago. I do not know who the author is, and I apologize if I made a few, minor changes to the original story, as some of you may have heard it. One day an expert in time management was speaking to a group of business students and, to drive home a point, used an illustration those students will never forget. As he stood in front of the group of high-powered overachievers, he said, “Okay, time for a quiz.” Then he pulled out a 1-gallon, wide-mouthed Mason jar and set it on the table in front of him. He produced about a dozen fist-sized rocks and carefully placed them, one at a time, into the jar. When the jar was filled to the top and no

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more big rocks would fit inside, he asked, “Is this jar full?” Everyone in the class said, “Yes.” Then he said, “Really?” He reached under the table and pulled out a bucket of gravel. He dumped some gravel in and shook the jar causing pieces of gravel to work themselves down into the space between the big rocks. He asked the group once more, “Is the jar full?” By this time the class was on to him. “Probably not,” one of them answered. “Good!” he replied. He reached under the table and brought out a bucket of sand. He started dumping the sand in the jar and it filled all the spaces left between the rocks and the gravel. Once more he asked the question, “Is the jar full?” “No!” the class shouted. Once again he said, “Good!” Then he grabbed a pitcher of water and began to pour it in until the jar was filled to the brim. He looked at the class and asked, “What is the point of this illustration?” One eager student raised his hand and said, “The point is, no matter how full your schedule is, if you try really hard you can always fit some more things in it!” “No,” the speaker replied, “that’s not the point. The truth this illustration teaches us is if you don’t put the big rocks in first, you’ll never get them in at all.” What are the big rocks in your organization? Customer complaints, profitability, design issues, manufacturability? Training? Regardless of what the big rocks are, you must identify their priority and focus on them. Unless you remember to put these big rocks in first, you’ll never get them in at all, because you will be busy with the trivial items of your organization. If you sweat the little stuff (the gravel, the sand) then you’ll fill your life with little things you worry about that don’t really matter, and you’ll never have the time you need to spend on the big, important stuff (the big rocks). So, as you reflect on this story, ask yourself this question: What are the big rocks in my organization? Then, put those in your jar first. The big rocks are the projects that you will be asked to undertake for improvement. Hopefully, they will be rocks that can indeed affect the bottom line of the organization in addition to customer satisfaction. But how do we select those rocks? Do we let our subjectivity control us, or do we use a methodology that is sound and effective? We like to think that the choice will be overwhelmingly for the second option. What is the mirror of the organization that we are going to use for selection? Is it warranty? Is it customer satisfaction? Is it a chronic problem? Is it cost of quality? No matter what it is, whether we like it or not (and most of us do not), a mirror does not lie. It always shows us exactly as we are, flaws and all. No matter what our own preconceived notions or perceptions of what our appearance may be, a mirror merely reflects our real and true self. (Of course, we assume that a regular mirror is used, because there are mirrors that do indeed distort our physical appearance.) Why the storytelling in this section? Because most of us have perceptions of problems that we feel very strongly about with or without data. We look at problems as vehicles of blaming some one when, in fact, they are opportunities for improvement. Indeed, they are diamonds in the rough, waiting to be excavated, refined, and ultimately polished.

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The mirror we use has to be reflective and accurate of the real world. It has to be representative of a concern. It has to have a return that is commensurable with the time and effort of the six sigma methodology. It has to be well selected and defined so that the results will be good and fast. How do we start then this selection process? We begin by looking at:

EXTERNAL SOURCES These focus on the customer. Fundamental questions are • • • •

What new needs are projected for the customer? How is the market evolving? Are we keeping up? Where are we falling short in the expectations of our customers now? Are we behind our competitors?

INTERNAL SOURCES These are inputs that may be generated from your daily business. In the final analysis, they are daily challenges that test the integrity of your organizational system. Fundamental questions are • What better value products can we offer to our customers? • What processes have to be modified, changed, or acquired so that we can provide a better profitability and alignment of our corporate goals? • What are the barriers between what we are doing and what we should be doing?




In the process of selecting a project we must at all times be cognizant of the following: • Is the cause of the problem understood? Would attacking the problem be more effective? There is a definite difference between root cause and a symptom. Your selection and definition would define the scope and methodology of your project. • The solution is always circumstantial. That is, the solution is based on selected data and selected tools for the analysis. Therefore, the solution depends on the integrity of the data and tools. Change either one of them and a new solution appears. Make sure, therefore, that the results are not predetermined nor are the solutions apparent. Realize that “quick fixes” are okay, but the project may be more convoluted than you originally thought. Make sure the appropriate data and tools are used. • For a project to be effective, there must be a gap (difference) between what is now and what is desired or needed in performance terms. The performance must be defined in a measurable characteristic that ties to the customer in some way, shape, or form.

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All projects must go through a priority analysis first. Then, provide the appropriate rationale for it. If priority is not established and the business case cannot be made, then obviously the wrong project is being discussed. Some additional and very common criteria that must be met before a six sigma project is authorized to be launched are • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Complexity Expertise availability Impact on business strategy and/or competitive position Impact on external customers Impact on external requirements Impact on market trend Impact on profitability Impact on resources needed Impact on the “core” business of your organization Is the project manageable? Is the project realistic, meaningful? Learning opportunities about the process and or organization Likelihood of success Management support Urgency

The steps of a typical project under the rules of the six sigma in the DMAIC model are Define 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Phase High-level problem statement development Identifying customers Translating voice-of-customer into CTO Develop operational definitions Develop process map Develop refined problem statement Develop cause-and-effect matrix Update project charter

Measure Phase 1. Sources of data 2. Data stratification 3. Developing data collection tools 4. Completing the data collection plan 5. Determining attribute process capability 6. Calculating variable process capability using some kind of software, e.g., SPSS or SAS or Minitab

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Analyze Phase 1. Pareto tool using some kind of software, e.g., SPSS or SAS or Minitab 2. Box plots using some kind of software, e.g., SPSS or SAS or Minitab 3. Histograms using some kind of software, e.g., SPSS or SAS or Minitab 4. Scatter plots using some kind of software e.g., SPSS or SAS or Minitab 5. Run charts using some kind of software, e.g., SPSS or SAS or Minitab Improve Phase 1. Evaluating improvements (payoff matrix/criteria matrix) 2. Create “should be” process map 3. Validate improvement (process capability) Control Phase 1. Error proofing 2. Long-term MSA plan 3. P-Charts using some kind of software, e.g., SPSS or SAS or Minitab 4. U-Charts using some kind of software, e.g., SPSS or SAS or Minitab 5. I-MR Charts using some kind of software, e.g., SPSS or SAS or Minitab 6. Xbar/R Charts using some kind of software, e.g., SPSS or SAS or Minitab

REFERENCES Deming, W. E. (1982), Out of Crisis, MIT, CAES, Cambridge, MA. Guaspari, J. (September 2000), Solving the mystery of change: the problem isn’t next big things; it’s next big thing-ism, Qual. Dig., 23–25. Harry, M. and Schroder, R. (2000), Six Sigma, Currency, New York. Neave, H. R. (1990), The Deming Dimension, SPC Press, Knoxville, TN. Prescient Technologies (2000), html. Shewhart, W. (1931), Economic Control of Quality of Manufactured Product, D. Van Nostrand, New York. Stamatis, D. H. (1997), TQM Engineering Handbook, Marcel Dekker, New York.

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This chapter deals with the essential concerns of the process of six sigma. Specifically, it picks up where Figure 2.1 left off. In that figure, we introduced the model with its major categories. Here we are more detailed as we examine the model from a functional perspective of the implementer. Therefore, we begin by asking the question of whether or not six sigma is the answer for the organization and then progressively move into the details of preparation and implementation phases, always following the RDMAIC model.

RECOGNITION Recognition of a change from the status quo is the first step in embarking on a six sigma initiative. However, this recognition is expensive in time, effort, and resources, if senior management of the organization does not make the right decision. Therefore, the starting point is to verify that indeed your organization is ready for a change. Of course the critical question is, is there a better way to run our organization? To answer this question we have to do an introspective analysis by probing and asking questions of everything regarding potential improvement(s). Typical questions may be • Is the strategic course and objective clear for the company? • Are we realistic in our financial or other goals? • Do we have the overall resources to respond to the changes that possibly may result from this initiative? A strong warning is appropriate here. Generally, most people believe that their organization is okay and is doing fine. It is perhaps the fear of change, the fear of accepting failure, the proximity to the problem, or whatever that prevents us from evaluating the situation objectively. The fact of the matter is sugarcoating will not work. It will not work for single problems and it will not work for the organization as a whole. We must be alert to evaluate our current performance or else…. An internal analysis should begin by asking some very direct questions that may be general, yet they will give the person who is asking the question some insight as to whether or not the six sigma initiative is worth pursuing. After all, it could be that at this time six sigma may not be worthwhile because (1) everything is exceptionally


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running as it should and then some, (2) there are no breakthrough gains to be made, and (3) your organization is on overload for some other initiative. This item, however, may also be a cop-out, an excuse to avoid engaging in improvement. Appropriate questions for this recognition phase are questions that follow the spirit of: • Are we pleased with the results that our processes produce (process here may be manufacturing and or service oriented)? Is there a potential of conflict? Is management truly committed to this initiative? • Are our operations operating with high efficiency in all levels? What is happening to inspection, rework, and waste? What is our cost of quality? Are there any potential opportunities for improvement? • How is the customer viewed — really? Are we focusing on customer functionalities or do we pretend to appease their needs and forget their wants and excitement issues? Do we really understand our customer? Are we partial to some of our customers? What is our measurement system? Is it effective? The final issue in the recognition phase is the notion of cost/benefit perspective. As we already have mentioned, six sigma and cost/benefit are tied together very closely. That is because improvement (1) has to satisfy the customer and (2) has to increase the profitability of the organization. Therefore, it is imperative to estimate this ratio (cost/benefit) as early as possible, so that appropriate and applicable decisions are made. What are some of the inputs for this decision? Certainly direct customer complaints, warranty costs, and internal waste are the most formidable items. There may be others. A good tool for such a search is the cost of poor quality (COPQ) and defects per million opportunities (DPMO) report. Whereas the benefits may be quite large, there are also costs that may be incurred in the process. Typical costs are • The cost of the individuals dedicated to the initiative full time (direct labor cost). • The cost associated with the time that executives, team members, and others devote in the necessary activities in all phases of the six sigma (indirect labor cost). • The cost associated with training and consulting. • The cost associated with implementing the results of the projects.

DEFINE Perhaps the most important phase of the model, this is the stage that (1) team charting, (2) customer focus, and (3) process mapping are defined and agreed upon.

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TEAM CHARTING Items of concerns are The Business Case for the Project Selection This is where black belts make the case for a given project based on need. The case for need must be made on two fronts: (1) whether or not the project is important now and (2) what the consequences are of not doing this project. Preliminary Problem Statement This is where the problem is defined and compared to the critical customer quality requirement. There must be a relationship of this problem and the customer’s functionality. In other words the f(x) must be related directly to the Y. (Remember that the f(x) is a cascading requirement from the f(X)). The problem statement must be quantifiable, and it must provide answers to the question of what is the nature of the problem? When does it occur? Where and under what condition does it occur? What is the extent of the problem? Project Scope Here we define the boundaries of the project. The more we understand the project definition, the better the project scope. The better the project scope, the better the control. The better the control, the better the solution. Typical questions deal with issues of resources, starting and stopping points, criteria for success, constraints, and conflicts with other projects. Goals and Milestones Here typical questions we ask are what specific goals must be met? How will they be measured? When must they be met? This is the stage where we must stretch the results. In other words, if we expect that the project will take 5 months the question must be can we resolve an interim goal within 4 months? Make sure, however, that the stretching goal is really attainable and realistic because each goal, once defined with a set of milestones, become critical and must be met. In this stage also the fundamental question is raised as to whether or not the identified goal relates to improving the customer’s CTQ characteristic. Roles In this early stage the team decides whether or not the champion is a working member of the team and at what level the champion should interact with the team. What are the responsibilities of each member of the team? Is the team responsible to implement or recommend a solution and whether or not the focus is on root cause or “the” problem? Finally, this stage defines the interrelationship of black belt with the master black belt (coach) and the green belts.

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CUSTOMER FOCUS This component of the define model establishes operational definitions with which everyone understands and agrees. Typical issues are Definition of Quality As we already have mentioned in Chapter 1, there are many definitions of quality. However, from the six sigma perspective, quality is defined by the customer. In fact, so much of the definition depends on customer’s perception, that without the customer’s understanding and satisfaction, there is no need for six sigma. It is the definition and understanding of quality that will drive the initiative for improvement and excellence along with the senior management’s commitment. Without them, the project and initiative of six sigma will fail. Types of Customers Here the focus is to understand the customer and its expectations. Therefore, the first task is to recognize who the customer is and the realization that we may be talking about internal and external customers. Internal customers are those who utilize the output of our process to complete their own process. They may indeed supply the ultimate customers. On the other hand, external customers are not limited to end users of the product or service. They may include the public at large, monitors of laws, and certainly governmental regulators. So, how do we tap the customer for their input? We must listen to the “voice of the customer” which is always a continual strategically driven set of activities on establishing a learning relationship between providers and customers that drives business results on one hand, and customer satisfaction through meeting needs, wants, and expectations on the other hand. Typical tools for this are quality function deployment (QFD), Kano model, benchmarking, surveys, interviews, focus groups, and others. The interest in this category is to establish what makes the customer “tick.” Some of the basic items that are common in all industries we already know through marketing research and historical data. They are Product quality characteristics Reliability Durability Usability/features

Prestige Prestige Failure recovery

Service quality characteristics Tangibles Treatment and interaction Convenience

Speed Reliability Failure recovery

Price Value ratio Total costs Discount/sales

Frequent buyer plans Low original price Terms, tax

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These items, however, are not exclusive and exhaustive and that is why we want to direct our attention to make them more specific to our organization and our product or service. Figure 3.1 shows how to come up with the CTQ and understand them.


FIGURE 3.1 Understanding customer’s needs.

Voice of the Customer Sources Some sources for listening to the customer are • • • • • • •

Internal intelligence Research Formal transactions Causal contact Field representative Competitors Inbound/outbound communications (sales calls)

Methods of Collecting Customer Requirements The choice of customer data collection method is determined by at least two methods: (1) proximity to the customer’s environment and (2) level of customer intervention. These two levels are shown in a graphical format in Figure 3.2. The idea of collecting information about the customer is so that the definition of the “improvement” will be concise, be measurable relating to the requirement and not the solution, and be written from a positive perspective. After all, by converting customer feedback into specific CTQ, you will be able to create a concise directive for the seeking improvement goal. To do that, one must transform the verbatim voice of the customer into a customer requirement. Voice of the Customer Analysis The analysis begins with an understanding of the Kano model and its implication to the CTQ. Identified CTQ are not of equal importance to customers. So, the purpose of this step is to determine what is the importance of each CTQ. Fundamentally, the Kano model will help us identify the following: 1. Delighters which are based primarily in innovation and are identified through market research and trend analysis.

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Unstructured interviews

FIGURE 3.2 Collection method interrelationship matrix.

2. One dimensional which are based on competitive priority and they are identified through competitive analysis and surveys 3. Must be those which are of critical priority and which are identified through complaints, lost customer analysis, and scorecards

PROCESS MAPPING A process is defined as a combination of factors or activities that lead to the production of some result (an output), whether that is a product or a service. A process is indeed a transformation of inputs to outputs. To understand the complexity of the process, the following elements associated with the process must be understood by everyone in the team. Process: Output: Customer: Input: Supplier: Boundary:

Value-added transformation of inputs to outputs The tangible or service that results from the process Whoever receives the outputs of that process Materials, resources, and data required to execute the process Whoever provides the inputs to your process The limits of a particular process, usually identified by the inputs and outputs, that separate what is within the process from what is outside the process. In other words, where it starts and where it stops.

The configuration and flow of all these elements is called the SIPOC model and a visual representation is shown in Figure 2.3.

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Process Definition Whereas the basic components of a product/manufacturing process is typically defined by people, methods, machines, measurement, material, Mother Nature (5M&P), a process for transaction or service is typically defined as people, procedures, measurement, place, policies, and Mother Nature (4P&2M). From this general description one may surmise that a process refers to linked activities with the purpose of producing a program or service for stakeholders within or outside the given organization. In some situation, processes might require adherence to a specific sequence of steps, with documentation (sometimes formal) of procedures and requirements, including well-defined measurement and control steps. In service situations such as education particularly when those served are directly involved in the service, process is used in a more general way, i.e., to spell out what must be done, possibly including a preferred or expected sequence. If a sequence is critical, the service needs to include information to help those served understand and follow the sequence. Such service processes also require guidance to the providers of those services on handling contingencies related to possible actions or behaviors of those served. On the other hand, in knowledge work such as teaching, strategic planning, research, development, and analysis, process does not necessarily imply a formal sequence of steps. Rather, process implies general understanding regarding competent performance such as timing, options to be included, evaluation, and reporting. Sequences might arise as part of these understandings. Business Process Mapping In this stage of the define model, the process not only has to be defined appropriately but it also has to be understood by everyone involved. To understand it, it must be analyzed through process mapping or flow charting. Mapping Guidelines To understand the process, one has to understand its components. This, in the six sigma methodology, is accomplished by process mapping or process flow charting. Process mapping is the graphic display of steps, events, and operations that constitute a process. Mastering the concepts of process management presupposes the understanding of the SIPOC model. The model, of course, is applicable for both product and service, since every one and every thing has inputs and outputs. To understand the SIPOC model is very important in this stage, because the output of the selected process will create either a product or service that meets and/or exceeds some expressed or implied requirements, which, of course, are customer dependent. Therefore, to understand this model means that the results will drive: 1. Structured thinking to visualize a complex process 2. The ability to see the entire process 3. The ability to recognize bottlenecks and to see the effect of possible changes

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4. The identification of nonvalue steps 5. The ability to identify the true cycle times of the process The result of this analysis should identify four outcomes: (1) what you think the process is, (2) what the process really is, (3) what the process should be, and (4) what the process could be. Theoretically, the “could be” process should be a linear one, which implies no waste. The goal then for all processes is to behave in such a manner. Therefore, the difference between “is” and “could be” is called a gap, and it is the focus of the process mapping, so that linearity of the process may be accomplished as much as possible. For best results of this activity it is necessary to: 1. Involve people who know — the closest to the process 2. Clarify the boundaries of the process 3. Brainstorm the steps as the team understands them (it helps to use verb— noun format) 4. Clarify steps 5. Organize the steps 6. Validate and refine before analyzing

MEASURE Measure describes the dimension, quantity, or capacity of a process. As important as this is to the process, we all must be aware of its cost dimension. Therefore, the benefits of having a measure need to outweigh the cost of getting it. The fundamental question of this stage in the DMAIC model is “what does this measure enable us to do?” Unless we have an answer, perhaps it is time to reconsider the need for the measurement. The elements of this stage are (1) measurement, (2) variation, and (3) data collection.

MEASUREMENT Measures are important because they help create baselines and targets for improvement, and provide a common language and focus for cross-functional groups. Good measures and data collection techniques are requirements to show how cycle time reduction and elimination of defects directly link to the bottom line and how improved customer satisfaction directly links to impacts on customer retention and market share. Input/Output Process Measures The overall components of measurement are input, process, and output measures. The input measures define the key quality and delivery requirements placed on the suppliers. Typically, these measures are contributions to the process that are transformed into value for the customer. The process measures measure internal items to the process as defined in the define stage of the DMAIC model. They include

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quality and delivery measures important to your internal customers as well as waste and cycle time measures. They are correlated to the pertinent output measures and not necessarily easily collected. Typically, they are taken at critical points in the process. Output measures are measures used to determine how well customer needs and requirements are met. Typically, these are measures that are the most downstream measures of the process. The question that one is expected to answer in this element is what CTQ characteristics can you measure at each point in your process map, whether they be input, process, or output related? As a rule of thumb, try to target one to three measures in each category. Effectiveness and Efficiency Measures There are two types of process measures: (1) effectiveness and (2) efficiency. Effectiveness has to do with an effective process meeting and/or exceeding customer expectations. On the other hand, efficiency has to do with a process that does not waste resources. Both are important but their focus is different. Therefore, dealing with measurement, we must be confident in our measurement that we measure the right type.

VARIATION All activities and measures have a certain amount of fluctuation. This fluctuation is called variation. Variation is waste and it is the effort of the six sigma methodology to minimize it as much as possible. One way to minimize variation is to aim at the target and understand the process through appropriate and applicable data collection. Process Variation Process variation is inherent in all processes through the 5M&P components. Therefore, as we understand each of the components and their contribution to variation we can optimize or, rather, control the variation. Types of Variation There are two types of variation: (1) common cause and (2) special cause variation. Common causes are those that are built into the process. In other words, they are inherent and always present. They are predictable, expected, and follow a normal random chance. To eliminate this type of variation, management must intervene, usually with a new and updated technology. The second type of variation is the special cause which is an undue influence by one of the 5M&P. They are not always present and as such sometimes they are called assignable causes due to the fact that there is a specific reason associated with this variation. To eliminate this type, the intervention of the person who is closest to this process is mandatory. That person is the most knowledgeable about the process and their input is very important for the appropriate resolution.

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DATA COLLECTION Without data nothing can be resolved objectively. Data are the foundation of the six sigma methodology. It is the data that will guide the project and decision. Therefore, let us look at some of the issues regarding this stage of the measure component of the DMAIC model. 5 Step Data Collection Process There are five steps to meaningful data collection. They are 1. Clarify data collection goals. Asking the right questions here may save time in the long term. Typical questions are what is the need for the data? How this data is going to help us? What data are we collecting and why? What data do we need? How are we going to use this particular data? 2. Develop operational definitions. In this stage we must be concerned with the definition of what we are trying to accomplish. The more precise that definition is, the better the results. The precise definition will help us decide how will we collect the data. The operational definition of your measure is a critical aspect of the data collection plan. A clear, unambiguous, concise, valid, and measurable operational definition will ensure an excellent collection of data that are appropriate and applicable to your study. Typical questions are can we define precisely what we trying to evaluate? How do we attach value to what we are measuring? Do we need new data? How is the data going to be recorded? How long of a period are we going to study? Does similar data exist someplace else? If so, how does it compare? 3. Plan for data consistency and stability. Here we must ensure that all collectors collect data the same way. We must also make sure that the measurement system produces the same measure over time. We are concerned with stability, bias, accuracy, precision, linearity, repeatability, and reproducibility not only for the collectors but the measurement system as a whole. Typical items that could avoid problems with measurement integrity are (a) determine factors that could cause the measurement of an item to vary and by how much, (b) find ways to reduce the impact of those factors, and (c) test your data collection forms for appropriateness. 4. Begin data collection. It has been said that a long journey begins with the first step. With this step we formally begin our journey. If the foundations of our data planning are not correct, then we are in trouble. Therefore, we must be very careful to get off to a good start in our data collection process and not to have any erroneous, contaminated, or inappropriate data included in our study. To avoid or minimize problems make sure that (a) everyone is trained in the process of collecting data, (b) collection procedures are easily understood and are mistake proof, and (c) make sure everyone begins the process right. One of the most basic tools to collect the data is the checksheet. This is a form to standardize the collection

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process. It identifies the description, the location of the data, as well as provide room for comments and room to keep track of stratification factors. Once the data have been collected at this stage you may start the analysis by evaluating the shapes of the data. For this you may want to use frequency plots, such as histograms, quartiles, box and whisker plots, scatter plots, Pareto analysis, and so on. The idea here is to evaluate the data in some preliminary visual way. 5. Continue improving measurement consistency. This stage reminds us that it is imperative to stay on track, by continually reviewing the process. Types of Data There are two types of data: (1) qualitative and (2) quantitative. Qualitative data are expressed in words and can be very subjective. On the other hand, quantitative data are expressed in numbers. However, within the quantitative domain there are two categories: (1) attribute, which measures the data in whole numbers and (2) variable, which measures the data along a continuum. Sampling Sampling is the process of collecting a portion or a subset of the total data that may be available. The whole data is called a population. However, because quite often it is impossible to collect the entire population, we use samples to draw conclusions about the population. This process is called statistical inference. We use samples because to collect the entire population may be too costly, impractical, destructive, and certainly because the science of statistics allows us to form sound conclusions from a relatively small amount of data. This is true only if the sample is random, unbiased, and representative of the population. There are plenty of rules of thumb as to how to use sampling, and what we show in Table 3.1 is only an example. We will cover the issue of sampling in Volume III in more detail. Process Capability By measuring a process over time, one gains an understanding of its capability. Processes with too much variation will consistently produce defects. On the other hand, processes not centered present a similar problem. Therefore, using data to evaluate process variation is often called “voice of the process.” This is where the six sigma measurement helps us understand the process as well as making the evaluation part of a benchmark item. As already mentioned a six sigma measurement is a scale that compares the output of a process to customer requirements. In other words, it is a statistical unit of measure that reflects process capability. That capability means less than 3.4 defects per million opportunities. To calculate this we must figure the DPMO, find the area under the z-curve (short capability), and then add the 1.5σ for the long term. Of great importance here is the notion that the defect opportunity must be related to the customer. Once that is accomplished, then the

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TABLE 3.1 Sampling Guidelines Tool Average Standard deviation Proportion defective Scatter diagram Control chart Process capability – six sigma Discrete Continuous Pareto chart Histogram Stratified histogram

Sample Size 5–10 25–30 100 (and np = 5) 25–50 20–30 n such that at least 5 defects have occurred 25–30 25 defects 50–100 average of 25 per strata

opportunities per unit stay constant before and after improvement for comparison purposes.

ANALYZE The analyze stage of the DMAIC model can be the least linear of all stages. This means that the items analyzed may be performed in any sequence without the fear of losing integrity of data and/or the results. The main objective of this stage is to develop reasonable educated guesses, which we call hypotheses, about the cause of the problem. The initial cause hypotheses may be generated from data, the observation of the process, or just the experience of whoever is doing the analysis. Hopefully, the causes are confirmed by data. In this stage we examine (1) data analysis, (2) process analysis, (3) root cause analysis, and (4) quantity opportunity. Data Analysis Here we begin the examination of the situation using (1) data, (2) process analysis, and (3) experience. We follow with generating possible explanations using visual graphical presentations of the data such as: histograms, Pareto, box plots, and so on. With the histogram we expect to see the amount of variation that the process has within it. The analysis of the histogram centers around the issues of shape of distribution, spread of distribution, and whether or not there are outliers of the data. The Pareto analysis will help us identify the priority of the causes and give us a cumulative percentage contribution. The box plots are graphical summaries of the patterns of variation in sets of data. They have the advantage of displaying data from several different categories on one graph, for better visual comparison. With the box plot we can visually interpret the highest value, the lowest value, median, and first and third quartile. As part of our analysis we may also use the run chart, which is a simple time-ordered plot of data that can be used to test the presence of special

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causes. In a run chart we look for shifts from the average, trends, and whether or not we have the same points. It is important to recognize that if this analysis does not help us, then we can stratify the data. Stratification is dividing a group into several subgroups on the basis of certain factors, such as what type, when, where, and who, that are potential causes of observed variation. The purpose of stratification is to examine the difference in average values between different subgroups and to take measures against the difference. The goal is to prioritize and focus our efforts. This becomes a reality only through clarity and reliably chosen measures. Process Analysis In process analysis we focus on (1) moments of truth analysis which ensures that we are completely satisfying customer needs through a customer-focused process improvement perspective, (2) value-added analysis which is concerned with understanding whether or not the work in one’s process is valued by the customer, and (3) cycle time analysis which characterizes the work along the dimension of time. Root Cause Analysis Root cause solutions are the ultimate solutions to a problem. Sometimes they are easy to find and fix and sometimes they are impossible. That impossibility is quite often present in complex systems, because in those situations there is more than one root cause. A simple tool that may be used to visually display this complexity of potential causes is the cause-and-effect diagram. Of course, the problem effect is the (Y) and the causes are the (X) which are the 5M&P. Yet another simple graphical tool for this stage is the scatter diagram which shows the strength of the relationship between a potential cause and the effect. The scatter diagram does not identify the cause, rather it verifies the cause. Quantify Opportunity The purpose of pursuing the six sigma initiative is to increase customer satisfaction and to increase profitability for the organization. How do we do this? Simply put, the answer is by improving the quality of our goods and services. To be sure, the algorithm to translate some of our CTQ to dollars is relatively easy to develop because they are quantifiable and it is a matter of a mathematical exercise of “hard dollars.” However, we must also recognize that this is easier said than done for “soft dollars.” There are many payoffs that are very difficult to quantify such as: improved customer satisfaction, increased market share, improved employee morale, and enhanced company reputation. Because of that difficulty, caution in the way payoffs are calculated should be used. In quantifying the opportunity, whether for “hard” or “soft” dollars, it is imperative that communications must be clear, concise, and factual. Remember: the language of management is dollars and cents, and the language of process improvement is “things.” Therefore, do not wait until the end of this stage in the DMAIC model to develop the list of opportunities. Start this list at the beginning of the DMAIC process.

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IMPROVE To improve means to have implemented some level of change. This implies that a process has been analyzed and some solutions for this particular improvement have been implemented. However, the question that is usually associated with this stage of the DMAIC model is are we sure that the purpose of this solution is clearly and specifically identified to reflect (1) customer satisfaction and (2) organizational profitability? As we answer these questions, we must also be cognizant of the risks associated with the chosen solution(s). The analysis is not complete without taking into account the adverse consequences of the particular choice(s). Remember that alternatives that seem particularly attractive in meeting the objectives may also have inherent dangers. Therefore, part of the task in this stage is to define the solution criteria, to generate possible solutions, to evaluate the solutions which make the best choice, and to validate the solution. This is the stage that we evaluate (1) generate solutions, (2) select solutions, and (3) implementation planning. Generate Solutions Before we generate anything we must evaluate the criteria for such an activity. Generally, the first task is to classify the criteria in (1) absolute requirements (musts), which are designed to screen unacceptable alternatives, and (2) comparison criteria (desirables), which are designed to identify the characteristics and features for an accurate comparison. Once the criteria have been identified and agreed upon, then the process for refinement begins. This is where the criteria are clarified and refined. This refinement is based on a combination of similar criteria, elimination of duplicate criteria, and making each criterion as specific as possible. Being specific in this stage will help to unbundle criteria that are convoluted and/or difficult to explain. The second task in this process is to evaluate each of the criteria based on a weighing scale with the most important being valued at ten. Other schemes, of course, may be used here with just as much validity. The point is that the criteria must be evaluated on the basis of importance. The third task in the evaluation process is to compare the relative importance of the other criteria in terms of the most important. Here we are looking for the values of one to nine in comparison to the most important value of ten. Needless to say the desirable criterion that stands out as the most important is designated as a ten and all the others are assessed relative to this benchmark. As a consequence a criterion assigned a five has half the influence of a ten weighted desirable criterion and so on. To generate these possible solutions one may use brainstorming, cause-and-effect diagrams, or any other tool that the team may feel is appropriate. However, regardless of the tool used, consideration must be given to the following: • Involve people affected by the problem and/or its solution • Involve people with familiarity and/or experience in the subject matter

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Select Solutions Now that the solutions have been identified based on the most important criteria, the selection process begins. To start the process, a payoff matrix is generated in which the relationship of benefit and effort to reduce the number of solutions is addressed. The result of this process will be a streamlined outcome of the combinations that reflect low effort/low payoff and high effort/low payoff. Obviously, as these combinations are identified, they will be dropped from any further consideration. The results will be focusing on low effort/high payoff. How is this evaluation taking place? By doing a comparison against (1) other alternatives, (2) other desirables, and (3) cost–benefit analysis. Implementation Planning At this stage we have generated solutions and selected the solutions based on the most important criteria. Now we are ready to create the “could be” process. We begin by generating a process map of the “as is” process and then we do the following: • • • •

Review the impact on the activities as a result of the new solution Identify tasks and/or activities that are to be eliminated Identify tasks and/or activities that are to be combined or resequenced Redraw the process and verify with an actual observation

Now that the “could be “ process has been appropriately planned, it is time to pilot the solution to see if it works and whether or not it may be an opportunity to further the effectiveness. The points that will affect the pilot steps are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Ensure strong leadership from management Planning of the pilot Create buy in and train employees Prepare pilot measurement plan Monitor and verify pilot results Debrief and if necessary make changes

Finally, as part of this implementation planning we must recognize that the process we have been following is that of project planning. It is indeed a requirement of the six sigma methodology to be familiar with basic concepts of project management (PM). Items of concern should be • • • • • • • •

The plan itself Project purpose and objectives Work breakdown structure Resource requirements Influence strategy Risk management plan Budget Control

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These items are important because the current situation is about to change through the transition of the recommendations that have been made for the desired situation. As a consequence, a technically excellent new process may be recommended but it will fail if people do not accept or understand it. This is where project management is contributing its strength to the six sigma. People must address the people side of implementing change (more about PM in Volume VI).

CONTROL Why do we need control, since we have identified the optimum solution for the process? This is a common question and it needs an answer. Perhaps one of the most common problems that any improvement team has faced with any improvement initiative is the issue of holding the gain. To make a recommendation for improvement is not that big of a deal. To implement and to hold that implementation is a very, very big thing. This is where control comes in. This is the final stage of the DMAIC model that focuses on (1) document and institutionalize and (2) monitor the process. Document and Institutionalize Whether we like it or not, all processes evolve. The incremental steps of that evolution, however, are nowhere to be found except in the minds of the workers. That can present a problem for consistency. This is where documentation helps. By definition documentation reflects accurately the way the organization operates. Documenting then, the new or revised processes will help (1) as a training aid and (2) as an implementation tool, since it will reduce variation and it will enhance best practices. Documentation will identify the activity, the purpose of the activity, accountability, location of the activity, the tasks, and any special instructions. Institutionalize, on the other hand, means cementing the gains of improvement by building supporting organizational systems and structures. In order for this to happen, each of the supporting organizational systems and structures must be modified to ensure that desired behaviors become the basis of the cultural transformation, ensuring that improvement targets are met. Typical systems and structures within the six sigma methodology are considered the following: • • • • •

Training Measures Rewards Organization design Communication

Documentation and institutionalization will help in the continual improvement process. This may sound strange at this juncture of the DMAIC model, but the intent here is to improve the improvement process. How do we do this, especially since we just finished with an improvement project? Some thoughts:

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• Reflect on the process. Talk about the TGW and TGR. How would you improve? • Evaluate the tools you used. Were they appropriate? • Evaluate the team dynamics and performance. Were the team roles clear? Was the team empowered? • Document the story and present to management. Was feedback provided on a timely basis? Monitor the Process Most organizations for the past 20 or so years have been accustomed to monitor the process via statistical process control (SPC). SPC is an approach used to monitor processes and to ensure they remain stable (more about SPC in Volume IV). That is fine; however, performance measures are better. In other words, looking only at control charts may force someone to miss the bigger picture. When we address “monitoring of the process” inherently we do a comparison of some kind. Usually that comparison deals with standards. The value of standards is in that they provide a reference against which the team can do an evaluation of the input, the process itself, or the output measures. Standards are nothing but goals, goals that for the six sigma initiative become minimum performance. Nevertheless they are the foundation element in the control step and they form the basis of measurement.

REFERENCES Deming, W. E. (1982), Out of Crisis, MIT CAES, Cambridge, MA. Guaspari, J. (September 2000), Solving the mystery of change: the problem isn’t next big things; it’s next big thing-ism, Qual. Dig., 23–25. Harry, M. and Schroder, R. (2000), Six Sigma: The Breakthrough Management Strategy Revolutionizing the World’s Top Corporations, Currency, New York. Latzko, W. J. (1995), Notes on the Six Sigma Concept, ?? Neave, H. R. (1990), The Deming Dimension, SPC Press, Knoxville, TN. Prescient Technologies (2000), Shewhart, W. (1931), Economic Control of Quality of Manufactured Product, D. Van Nostrand, New York. Taguchi, G. (1986), Introduction to Quality Engineering, Asian Productivity Organization, Japan.

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY _____ (November 1999), Six sigma enigma: taking the mystery out of the methodology, Keeping Tab, Minitab Inc., 1. _____ (November 1999), Customer focus: practice what you teach. Six sigma in academia, Keeping Tab, Minitab Inc., 4.

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A T & T (1956), Statistical Quality Control Handbook, Delmar Printing Company, Charlotte, NC. Ackoff, R. L. (1981), Creating the Corporate Future: Plan or Be Planned For, John Wiley & Sons, New York. Albrecht, K. and Zemke, R. (1985), Service America! Doing Business in the New Economy, Dow-Jones-Irwin, Homewood, IL. Blackeslee, J. A. (July 1999), Implementing the six sigma solution, Qual. Prog., 41. Brandt, R. (August 14, 2000), Loyalty really isn’t all that simple, restrictive, Marketing News, 7. Bravener, L. C. (Spring 1999), The genesis of continuous improvement, Automotive Excellence, 32. Burr, J. T. (March 1993), A new name for a not so new, Qual. Prog., 87. Cacioppo, K. (September 2000), Measuring and managing customer satisfaction, Qual. Dig., 14–16. Chowdhury, S. (May 2000), Changing management styles put their mark on industry, Qual. Prog., 61. Chowdhury, S. (Winter 2000), Management 21C, Automotive Excellence, 10. Cone, G. (Fall 1998), Black belt training for quality, Automotive Excellence, 10. Crosby, P. B. (1979), Quality Is Free, McGraw-Hill, New York. Dambolena, I. (November 1994), What is six sigma anyway? Quality, 10. Deming, W. E. (1986), Out of the Crisis, MIT CAES, Cambridge, MA. Dockstader, S. L. (June 1984), What to Do When There Are More Than Five Deadly Diseases, paper presented at Massachusetts Institute of Technology Conference on Quality and Productivity, San Diego, CA. Erwin, J. and Douglas, P. C., Six sigma focuses on total customer satisfaction, Qual. Times, 6–9. Feigenbaum, A. V. and Feigenbaum, D. S. (December 1999), New quality for the 21st century, Qual. Prog., 27. G.O.A.L. (Growth Opportunity Alliance of Greater Lawrence) (1985), The Memory Jogger. A Pocket Guide of Tools for Continuous Improvement, G.O.A.L. Lawrence, MA. Grant, E. L. and Leavenworth, R. S. (1974), Statistical Quality Control, 5th ed., McGrawHill, New York. Green, R. (December 2000), Dedicated teams successfully merge two divergent quality systems, Qual. Dig., 24. Harry, M. J. (1997), The Vision of Six Sigma: A Road Map for Breakthrough, Tri Star Publishing, Phoenix, AZ. Harry, M. J. (1997), The Vision of Six Sigma: Tools and Methods for Breakthrough, Tri Star Publishing, Phoenix, AZ. Harry, M. J. (1997), The Vision of Six Sigma: Application Resource, Tri Star Publishing, Phoenix, AZ. Hawks, T. M. (October 2000), Is TQM dead?, Qual. Manufacturing, 11(5), 18. Houston, A., Hulton, V., Landau, S. B., Monda, M., and Shettel-Neuber, J. (March 1987), Measurement of Work Processes Using Statistical Process Control: Instructor’s Manual (NPRDC Tech. Note 87-17), Navy Personnel Research and Development Center. San Diego, CA. Houston, A., Shettel-Neuber, J., and Sheposh, J. P. (June 1986), Management Methods for Quality, Improvement Based on Statistical Process Control: A Literature and Field Survey (NPRDC Tech. Rep. 86-21), Navy Personnel Research and Development Center, San Diego, CA:. Ishikawa, K. (1983), Guide to Quality Control, Asian Productivity Organization, Tokyo.

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Ishikawa, K. and Lu, D. J. (1985), What Is Total Quality Control? The Japanese Way, PrenticeHall, Englewood Cliffs, N.J. Johnson, R. S. (March 1993), TQM: leadership for the quality transformation, Qual. Prog., 91. Juran, J. M., Ed., (1974), Quality Control Handbook, 3rd ed., McGraw-Hill New York. Lamons, R. (July 31, 2000), How Marcom can be Six Sigma–ready, Marketing News, 10. Levinson, W. A. (July 1999), How to design attribute sample plans on a computer, Qual. Dig., 45. Lindland, J., Love, F., and Sitek, R. (Winter 2000), Leadership, management and accountability, Automotive Excellence, 25. Lindland, J. L. (Spring 1999), Managing change, Automotive Excellence, 10. Love, F. and Sitek, R. (Winter 2000), Six sigma, what does it really mean?, Automotive Excellence, 17. Moen, R. D. and Nolan, T. W. (September 1987), Process improvement: a step-by-step approach to analyzing and improving a process, Qual. Prog., Z0(9), 62. Moore, D. (Summer 2000), Managers–Leaders: What’s the difference?, ASQ CommuniQue, 6. Munro, R. (May 2000), Linking six sigma with QS-9000, Qual. Prog., 47. Nagi, S. and Guar, A. (July 2000), The voice of the customer — The starting point of quality, Qual. Times, 7. Ott, E. R. (1975), Process Quality Control, McGraw-Hill, New York. Ouellette, N. P. (February 1999), Quality management and continuous improvement at Campbell, Qual. Prog., 65. Pettit, R. C. (January 3, 2000), Data mining: race for mission — critical info., Marketing News, 18. Plsek, P. E. (May 2000), Creative thinking for surprising quality, Qual. Prog., 67. Pyzdek, T. (July 1999), Six sigma and beyond, Qual. Dig., 26. Pyzdek, T. (May 2000), Six sigma and beyond, Qual. Dig., 24. Pyzdek, T. (September 2000), Selecting six sigma projects, Qual. Dig., 24. Ramberg, J. S. (May 2000), Six sigma: fad or fundamental?, Qual. Dig., 28. Semon, T. T. (June 19, 2000), Quality sampling, research means avoiding sloppiness, Marketing News, 11. Sheposh, J. P. and Shettel-Neuber, J. (1986), Contribution of a multi-method approach to understanding implementation, in O. Brown and H. W. Hendrick, Eds., Human Factors in Optimization Design and Management-11, North-Holland, Amsterdam; 655. Shewhart, W.A. (1931), Economic Control of a Manufactured Product, Van Nostrand Reinhold, Princeton, NJ. Stamatis, D. H. (1997), TQM Engineering Handbook, Marcel Decker, New York. Stamatis, D. H. (May 2000), Who needs six sigma anyway?, Qual. Dig., 33. Takacs, S. (January 3, 2000), Improve your research through fake data, Marketing News, 19. Townsend, P. L. (July 2000), Total should mean total. Qual. Times, 3. Tunner, J. R. (October 1987), Total manufacturing control: The high road to product control, Qual. Prog., 22(10), 43. Uhlfelder, H.F. (February 2000), It’s all about improving performance, Qual. Prog., 47. Whatts, B., Dale, G.B. (February 1999), Small business evaluation and support services: A model from the United Kingdom. Qual. Prog., 80–83. Wheeler, D. J. and Chambers, D. S. (1986), Understanding Statistical Process Control, Statistical Process Controls, Inc. Knoxville, TN. Yilmaz, M. R. and Chatterjee, S. (2000), Six sigma beyond manufacturing — a concept for robust management, Qual. Manage. J., 7(3), 67.

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Part II Teams

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This chapter gives a very general overview of participative management and teams and attempts to explain the significance as it relates to the six sigma methodology.

Increasingly, organizations of all types are using teams in the workplace to pursue the power of collective wisdom and effort. Organizing workers, from assembly line to boardroom, into teams seems to be part of the natural order of business in the new millenium. Teams are indeed an integral part of the human experience and the more we understand their dynamics, the more effective we can make them. From the beginning of time, humans have recognized the power of collective wisdom and effort. However, in the last 10 to 15 years the effort of understanding the make-up, behavior, and the general dynamics of teams has been accelerating beyond everyone’s expectations. Often, teams don’t realize their full potential and in some cases they do not work at all. The reason for such failure is that what organizations expect from teams is fundamentally different from what individuals expect. Recognizing the difference and learning to integrate them is the key to building and perpetuating successful teams in any organization. Strictly speaking, the notion of team is an abstraction. There is no team that does the work however defined. There are only individuals working together as a team. The concept of team and teamwork in the workplace can elicit strong emotional responses that have their origin in early experiences with teams. It is not unusual, when teams are introduced in the organization, to have potential members exhibit fear of the unknown, anxiety, and an attitude of wait and see. We hope that in this part of this book the reader will be able to find the critical elements of the team process, and the issues that are raised as a result of pursuing the team concept. The reason for this hope is that for approximately 30 years, I have been involved with quality and its effect on both the organization and the customer. In all this time, one of the items that keeps surfacing, quite often, under different names is the term team. Personally, I am fascinated with the concept, but what is really interesting about it is the fact that everyone talks about it from different perspectives and, in the process, we forget or at least we overlook the “whole picture.” Many books and hundreds of articles (academic and professional) have been written about the topic, each one of them focusing on a specific item within the context of teams. As a consequence, we have books written about self-directed teams, teams, empowerment, communication within teams, improvement with teams, quality circles, and participative management to name a few. The wave of participative management hit the American corporate world with profound results in the early 1980s, especially since the release of In Search of 135

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Excellence by T. Peters and L. Waterman, Jr. One sees that participative seminars were offered throughout the country and consulting firms were flourishing by conducting culture studies within given organizations utilizing some of the latest techniques in quantitative and qualitative analysis. The results have been phenomenal and in fact it is not at all unusual for an observer to see Quality of Work Life (QWL) departments in every conceivable industry with some great success. The focus, of course, was teams and their function within particular organizations. Whereas this participative philosophy and this new paradigm change of doing work in teams have continued since then — in fact, some may argue that it has surpassed some of the expectations — the area of management attitudes towards this new approach of doing business has not been fully explored. The seminars, the QC teams, the quality, and all the other programs that management uses to show their sincerity towards this new approach are of minor importance when one compares them with the management attitudes. Many serious business problems in American corporations can be solved if managers adopt new management attitudes and techniques rather than the traditional ones, i.e., (1) Machiavellian Power (do something because the superior “orders” it to be so) and (2) Gordian Knot approach (refusing to see the “hidden variables” by cutting the knot, because of fear of failing). Believing in these management attitudes is of paramount importance because through them the actions of true participative management will materialize and they will be used as beacons for the entire corporation. These true attitudes will help both the formation and the sustenance of teams. Eight such attitudes are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Make great products and profits will follow. The job of management is to serve the people under it, not to rule them. Train right or not at all (systematic). Put creative people at the top of the organization. Encourage positive nonconformity. Big is okay but small can be just as beautiful. Allow people to show their individuality in their jobs provided that job has been defined. 8. Open and honest communications.

These eight points are the catalysts of our ultimate change, especially for the six sigma methodology, for the brighter horizon of the future. Now let me expand on each of these points.




I will be the first to admit that “no profits, no business,” but by the same token, the short-term profits attitude should be stricken from the corporate language once and for all, for it perpetuates in itself a disharmonious atmosphere to work, not to mention executive piracy and lack of strategic planning. The executive piracy perpetuates exorbitant salaries and also encourages transfer of trade secrets. As an example of what the good product vs. profit attitude can do to an organization, let us compare

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the American automakers with those of Japan. The American companies exemplify the short-term profit motive and in the process let the competition increase its share from approximately 15 to 17% to close to 30%. Their policy backfired but worse yet the American companies could not turn around fast enough to implement the drastic changes necessary for survival. So they lost money. On the other hand, the Japanese counterpart emphasized “good quality” all along with the result of increasing profits via a larger chunk of the market but more importantly they were able to change their image of quality from “poor” to “excellent.” The automobile companies, of course, are only a small portion of the companies practicing the short-term profit concept. One can see it is imperative that the attitude changes to “good product” first and “profit” second for the long-range success of the American dream. Another example, where emphasis is needed, is in the area of maintenance. In the past, for the sake of profit, American companies have “fought” maintenance on an as needed basis. There was no such thing as preventive maintenance. I suggest that unless there is a systematic preventive maintenance program, in this day and age the product will linger and never be in the competition of profitability, for we all know that a good product is a direct function of good equipment. In the six sigma methodology it is expected that after about 4 years a company will have continuing results. That does not mean that individual success stories may not be the results of implementing six sigma within a year.







A textbook definition of management is to do the job through others. In a participative management, however, this principle is extenuated even more, for it emphasizes the importance of the worker and his input to the organization. The axiom of management to serve the people under it is very important, for it recognizes that employees are of the same species as the management. I can’t help but recall an anecdote from WWI relating a manager’s prevalent attitude. The manager in this case was Douglas Haig, the World War I British field marshal, who saw some of his soldiers bathing in a stream. Haig turned to his subordinate and said, “My God, they are built just like we are.” For those of you who know history, you will recall that Haig was not a very good general and his attitude may have had an effect on his results. I sincerely hope that the days of bombastic managing and insensitivity are drawing to a close. The job of management is not to rule, for immediate obedience is a necessity for soldiers in combat, and is a negative force in the running of a commercial enterprise.






The old axiom of a little knowledge is worse than no knowledge at all has always been one of my intuitive presuppositions of the American corporate management. Until recently this presupposition was not substantiated. Now it has been tested systematically by N. K. Napier and J. Deller (1985). In their results they substantiated

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statistically that to train right or not train at all is in fact very important. The knowledge gained from the “proper” training is worth the effort and cost. For the training to be of maximum value it must be based upon a proper need assessment, development/design, and evaluation process. Otherwise, by trying to cut corners the training will generate insufficient results and thereby incorrect conclusions. The six sigma methodology is very heavy on training; therefore, unless management sees the benefit of this training translating into profitability, the inevitable will happen. That is, corners will be cut and ultimately failure will be the outcome of the best of intentions.






Albert F. Siepert, a management consultant, has said, “There is no substitution for having in the top post of a research installation, a technical man whose individual scientific contribution has been indisputably accepted by his peers over a period of years. The more distinguished he is as a scientist, the better. His executive skills are secondary and can be supplemented as needed.” And yet, one of the most “insidious ideas” of the past 20 years of American business is the notion that a good manager can manage anything! How preposterous. What that really means, for example, is that a good bean counter can count beans in any company. And, therefore, a whole lot of major companies have been run by bean counters who have no feel or love or instinct for the specific business they are in. Time and again American corporations are trusting their reins to individuals who, because of “conformity,” have gained respect within an organization. I submit that unless organizations are willing to take risks in their own endeavors by placing people who can see the forest before the trees, the American corporate world is in trouble. It amazes me to think that the U.S. corporate culture is willing to take on the Japanese under the pretense of QWL, participativeness, and other such programs except where it really counts. That is, we must recognize that the Japanese will hire an extra engineer to solve the problem while the American companies have been content to hire an accountant to find a loophole and an attorney to fight in the courts. The time has come for a change. Business is not at all as usual and all of us must recognize that the top people in our organizations must have the expertise to lead us during the storm of economic fluctuations. These top people must be creative and open-minded to see, recognize, and study possible alternatives. In the six sigma mentality it is imperative to have the brightest at the top. They will be the ones who will demonstrate (not talk about it, although that is important, too) long-term profitability, customer awareness and satisfaction, true empowerment of teams, and true resolution of problems.

ENCOURAGE POSITIVE NONCONFORMITY Many management practices of the post-World War II period have forced a “conformity concept” on the American corporate world. That conformity has taken the form of wearing dark suits, imitation of language, certain mannerisms, certain hair cuts, and college pedigree. In other words, be perfect. Peter Drucker, a management

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expert, has said, “The idea that there are well-rounded people, people who have only strengths and no weaknesses, whether the term is whole man, the mature personality, or the generalist, is a prescription for mediocrity if not for incompetence. Strong people always have strong weaknesses, too.” It is interesting that the Japanese do not use appraisals of their employees, the cherished documents that the American corporations swear by. The Japanese manager’s view is that appraisals are only concerned with bringing out a man’s faults and weaknesses, when, in fact, they need to know the strengths of the individual and what he/she can do. In the American corporation, however, there is a certain distrust of imagination, originality, creativity, and teamwork. This is destructive to their best interest. Rigidity, conformity, and mindless discipline can only block the kind of thinking that is going to be absolutely crucial to American business in the years ahead. Management should look for people who, according to poet James Dickey, “know how to have a beer with their own souls.” In addition, the American corporate world must realize that the idea of an appraising system, whatever it might be, must exist for the sole purpose of “improving” not “proving” performance. By emphasizing improvement, the system will allow for increases in productivity because all of us have something to offer. By zeroing in on the strengths, we can utilize them to our advantage just like a carpenter utilizes his proper tools for the right job. It is important also to allow nonconformity in the spirit of innovativeness, for, after all, all our present day inventions came as a result of someone being a nonconformist — a “rebel.” In the six sigma culture we must understand that the individuals who will tackle serious problems may indeed have to step on management’s toes. They will challenge the “status quo” of operation. After all, how else will they be able to find the “should be” process? The beauty of the six sigma methodology is not so much the statistical tools that it brings into its arsenal, rather it is a new paradigm of doing business. That new paradigm is focusing on identifying problems as they relate to customers, fixing those problems, and showing continual profitability.




No one will argue that “big” is “okay,” but the emphasis is on “small” and its effect on the organization. Americans and, especially, executives have trouble accepting this concept because we all have been raised with the expectations of growing, building, and expanding. In modern day management technique, however, it has long been the custom of wise companies, no matter how large, to try to simulate the atmosphere and modus operandi of a small company in its different parts. The more people feel free to improvise and construct creative answers to today’s questions, the better the work will be. The key to this is the creation of reasonably sized units with the authority and responsibility to do the best possible job. There is no reason why one must drive to be “big” for the sake of bigness. What is important is that the organization should be operating under the “optimization” model rather than a maximization one. By following the “optimization” model, the organization will always know the risks and alternatives to a given venture and accordingly will take the proper

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measures to satisfy the bottom line. On the other hand, when “maximization” is followed, the organization accepts production for its own sake and loses the war of profitability. In the six sigma context we must be very diligent on this issue. It has been said that if we are seeking improvements of over 20% then we should focus on the six sigma breakthrough strategy. That is fine, and no one will argue with this. However, that strategy can lead us astray if that is all we are looking for. All organizations have big and small opportunities to improve and as time goes on it is more difficult to identify “big” problems, not to mention fixing these problems. The focus of six sigma in this area is to keep on target the direction of continual improvement and not lose track of customer satisfaction and/or profitability. The issue of “big” or “small” in this context is insignificant; however, management must be cognizant of both.

ALLOW PEOPLE TO SHOW THEIR INDIVIDUALITY IN THEIR JOBS ONCE THEIR JOBS HAVE BEEN CLEARLY DEFINED When Max Waber designed the bureaucratic system he never envisioned the creation of layer upon layer of management to the extent that the creative thought could be suffocated. He never intended to use power, sheer power, for the means to an end. And yet, we see American business falling into what is called the bureaucratic model. Waber would be astonished to see what the corporate world has done to his model of organization. I can’t help but think of one of my ancient ancestors, Alexander the Great. Having conquered the known world, he went to visit Diogenes, a cynical philosopher of the day. Upon meeting with Diogenes, he said, “What can I do for you? Tell me and it shall be done.” Diogenes, lying under a tree, unmoved by the power of a king, replied calmly, “Only stand out of my light.” The moral, of course, is that even if we act as powerful as Alexander the Great, we must learn to stand out of people’s light and let them do the work themselves. Doing this presupposes at least three responsibilities on the part of management. The first responsibility is to keep people happy, not necessarily monetarily happy, although it helps, but, more importantly, keep them productive by giving them interesting and challenging things to do. Second, abolish direct controls on creative individuals, for they are highly objectionable and they do, in fact, stymie creativity and individuality. Third, change the notion of a “standard business,” for all businesses are or should be creative enterprises. In the six sigma context this is perhaps the most important issue that is facing management. That is, how do they demonstrate the desire to black belts that they mean business in improvement throughout the organization? The fact that they are assigned a champion to support the “project” is sometimes a meaningless gesture. The following statements may serve a warning to the system that something has gone astray:

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• Management talks about quality, but they do not spend much time working on it • Our quality effort involves less than half of our people and most of them are in production • It seems that the goals of production and sales are the predominant factors in our organization • The award system is based on productivity and not on quality improvement metrics • Performance evaluations are conducted to identify weaknesses and to threaten individuals with firing them from their jobs • There is no relationship between performance evaluations and accountability • Quality is viewed as an added task and not value added • Training in quality tools and techniques is ongoing but the system is not allowing the employees to use those tools and techniques for improvement of their own jobs • Quality is being heralded as important but management forces schedules, ignores suggestions, and does not listen to customers




For participativeness and teams to work there is no doubt that open and honest communication must exist between managers and employees. The communication process is the conduit to the total harmony of the organization. For unless there is harmony there is no effectiveness nor coherence to that organization. Harmony, I believe, as Confucius did, is more important than performance and is also a function of management vitality. By management vitality I mean the ability of management to coach, gather information, and distribute (delegate) as well as make a decision. Unless a manager can comprehend the Principle of Complementarity (duality) when dealing with employees, he runs the risk of shutting the door to the communication process. In fact, Peters and Waterman (1982) have called the process “managing by walking” because it gives the executive a chance to meet with the employee face to face and interact. By following the prescription and recognition of duality, managers will be able to take time to see or recognize additional solutions to the Gordian Knot rather than the single one “to cut it.” Even though the convolutions to that knot are complex and very tangled, they do offer the opportunity and challenge of a “genuine” success. By failing to recognize patterns of the convolutions we become victims of the immortal words of W. Kelley’s comic character Pogo, “We have found the enemy and they is us!” There is no reason why anyone should stop at the recognition of the enemy. A good manager will prevail if and only if he succeeds in identifying a viable strategy to combat the problem at hand. The strategy, of course, ought to include everyone concerned rather than just himself. If the decision maker is the only one actively participating for a viable solution, the most probable solution will be that of cutting

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a similar knot to the Gordian knot, for it is both easier and expedient. However, it is not efficient or necessarily optimum. In the six sigma methodology, communication is very fundamental from the initial steps of training to the final steps of presenting the results of the project. Communication is imperative at the selection of the project, as well as delegating appropriate and applicable authority and accountability for those that will participate in evaluating the project. In closing, I believe that without a sincere change of our attitudes, especially in the eight points I have mentioned, participative management and the cultivation of teams do not even stand a chance of being successful.

REFERENCES Napier N. K. and Deller, J. (Feb. 1985), Train right or don’t train at all, Training Devel. J., 39, 2, 90. Peters, T. J. and Waterman, Jr., R. (1982), In Search of Excellence, Harper and Row, New York.

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It seems that everyone in the field of quality is talking about teams and their impact on the organization. Much has been written about teams and much discussion has occurred in the literature as to what is the best approach. In this chapter we introduce the concept of social influence and then proceed to summarize the development and applications of teams in the workplace. We also review some of the foundations of teams and their effectiveness.

To understand change and more specifically change in the workplace, we need to understand the process of social influence. To understand the essence of this process we must go back in the late fifties and examine some of the theoretical work of H. C. Kelman. It is his work that allows us to develop, design, and implement effective teams in the workplace. Herbert C. Kelman (1958) realized that change, both behavioral and attitudinal, varies in its degree of permanence and effect. Some people make “shallow” changes but are unable to, or have no intention of, making the changes permanent or altering the attitudes behind them. Others change not only their behavior but their underlying attitudes and ways of thinking. An example of this would be two dieters. In order to lose weight, one person goes on a starvation diet and loses 5 pounds. After the weight loss, the dieter resumes his habitual eating patterns and gains back the weight. No attitude change or permanent alteration of behavior has taken place. In contrast, the second dieter thoughtfully contemplates his eating patterns and becomes aware of a habit of consuming large quantities of junk food in the evening while watching television. The second dieter also recognizes his lack of fitness, which is contributing to a lack of energy in the evenings and, thus, to the snacking. The second dieter begins a swimming program and begins buying fruit instead of potato chips and candy for snacking. This example illustrates the difference between surface change and deeper, more permanent change. Aware that there are different “levels” of change, Kelman hypothesized that the process by which a person is influenced to change affects his or her level of commitment to permanent change. Kelman and Hamilton (1989) proposed that there are three ways of influencing and producing attitude change in others. 1. Compliance. The person being influenced accepts the influence because he or she expects to obtain a favorable reaction from the person who is exerting the influence. 2. Identification. A person accepts influence because he or she identifies with the influencer and wants to create or maintain an association with the influencer. The behavior that the influencer wants is maintained by the person influenced only in the appropriate role. 143

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3. Internalization. A person accepts influence because the influencer’s demands are consistent with his or her values. The behavior that occurs as a result of the influence is rewarding and becomes part of the normal repertoire of the person who was influenced. Further influence is not necessary to maintain the behavior. A person who complies changes easily and willingly in order to please a person or group of people. Compliance is not necessarily synonymous with agreement or belief; a person can comply with a regulation without believing that it is right. According to Kelman, people comply with external pressure to gain expected rewards and to avoid punishment or the displeasure of the group. Therefore, any satisfaction gained by complying with social influence is produced by the favorable reaction that the individual elicits from the group. Compliant behavior is a response to external authority, e.g., “I will dress like everybody else at work because there is a dress code and I don’t want to lose my job.” Some people not only comply with social pressure but identify with the persons doing the pressuring. People often willingly conform to social influence because they wish to be viewed as “that type of person” or because they want to be accepted and liked as part of the group. (The “group” may be several people or just one.) As with compliance, the person who conforms may not personally value the conforming actions; rather, he or she values the group’s acceptance, affection, etc. Identifying behavior is a response to peer pressure, e.g., “I will dress like everybody else at work because I want my co-workers to like me.” A person who responds to social influence with identification is more committed to maintain the behavior/attitude change than someone who merely complies with authority. The highest level of commitment to behavior or attitude change occurs when the person internalizes the desired change. When a person believes that the influence exists in order to produce a behavior or attitude that is intrinsically right or good, he or she is far more apt to embrace the influence and make a strong effort to change. This type of influence, though it may be sparked by outside influence, is actually inner driven. Most of the pressure to change is from within the individual. An example of internalized influence is, “I will dress like everybody else at work because I value my company’s professional image.” Internalized influence is the most likely to produce permanent behavior or attitude change. It is the sole type of influence that the individual truly “buys into” or believes in.

ANTECEDENT AND CONSEQUENT CONDITIONS Kelman also studied the degrees to which influence is accepted. He concluded that the effect of influence on an individual is determined by a combination of the following: • Importance and prominence of the desired change • Importance of the anticipated outcome to the individual • Power/authority of the influencer

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Just as different types of influence tend to produce different results and levels of commitment, the results of any attempt to influence can be attributed to a certain set of “antecedent conditions.” In other words, the right combination of prior circumstances can reliably produce compliance, identification, or internalization — whichever is desired. Likewise, each process has a unique set of “consequent conditions.” Kelman proposed the following hypotheses concerning antecedent and consequent conditions.

ANTECEDENT 1. The more the power of the influencer is based on means–control, the more likely that compliance will result. 2. The more the power of the influencer stems from its appeal, the more likely that identification will result. 3. The more the power of the influencer comes from its believability, the more likely that internalization will result.

CONSEQUENT 1. Compliant responses are usually performed only when the respondent is being watched by the influencer. 2. Identification responses are usually performed only as long as the desired relationship is intact. 3. Internalized responses are usually performed whenever the issue in question surfaces, without concern about “who’s watching” or “what everybody else thinks.”




Kelman’s theory can help to reveal the mechanisms underlying some phenomena that have been observed by organizational and developmental psychologists. In fact, perhaps one may use his theory to apply McGregor’s theory. Douglas McGregor (1960) postulated that managerial behavior and results of management can be predicted by the assumptions that leaders make about their subordinates. The “Theory-X” manager assumes that most people are lazy, uncommitted to organizational goals, and unlikely to be productive without continual supervision. Therefore, the Theory-X manager uses a program of rewards and punishments to obtain performance from subordinates. The subordinates soon learn not to exert themselves when they are not being bribed or coerced to do so. On the other hand, “Theory-Y” managers assume that creativity is widespread among the populace, that people want to be productive, and that the most effective way to manage is to allow subordinates to make a useful contribution toward the achievement of organizational goals. Theory-Y also assumes that employees who are trusted and given responsibility will perform well even though they are not closely monitored. Kelman’s theory may explain why Theory-X and Theory-Y act as self-fulfilling prophecies. When a Theory-X manager uses coercion to elicit performance,

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compliance occurs. The employee’s production drops off whenever the supervisor lessens the pressure. In turn, this reinforces the original assumption that employees are lazy and shiftless. Managers who use the “soft” version of the Theory-X method, coaxing or bribery, may obtain identification, but bribed employees identify with organizational goals only in the sense that they meet them for their own self-interests. Only Theory-Y management results in internalization. Theory-Y employees are personally committed to what they are doing and will do it more effectively, more consistently, and with self-regulation. Increasingly the management literature has focused on the importance of “communicating vision,” “honesty,” “modeling,” “empowering,” and “encouraging” as means to motivate employees to superior performance. The common denominator seems to be to foster internalization of organizational goals rather than to force compliance or bribe people to identify. This factor of internalization is of profound importance for organizations that are undergoing any form of reengineering. It is after all the internalization that will be the impetus for an intrinsic motivation and ultimately the driving force for personal ownership and, therefore, change. Kelman’s theory can also be applied from a developmental psychology perspective. Specifically, it can be related to stages of maturity. Young children are dominated by absolute authority figures — their parents. They learn to seek praise and avoid punishment for its own sake; they are not concerned with whether what they are doing is right or with being “liked” by their parents. This stage of development can be likened to Kelman’s compliance influence. Teenagers are not as intimidated by parental authority. Their primary concern is “fitting in” and being similar to their friends. Many teenagers’ actions are a direct result of peer pressure and are undertaken with careful consideration of how they will look to the peer group. Teens can be said to be controlled by the identification influence. Mature, self-actualized people, on the other hand, tend to have strong internal moral and ethical codes by which they conduct themselves. They will act in a manner that suits their personal standards and values without worrying excessively about authority or the opinions of others.

EMPLOYEE DEVELOPMENT Now that we have at least reviewed some of the most basic issues of social influence we are ready to look at the employee development process. Employee development is an important factor in working with management and groups to accomplish organizational goals. The employees must be trained to obtain the maximum use of their resources. To do this, they must understand the functions of planning, organizing, and working in the workplace that utilizes the participative style of operations. This volume will help the employee understand the difference between working for somebody and being a part of the organization, participating in the decisionmaking process. It is designed to introduce the concept of team in the work environment, as well as improve working relationships by improving techniques in the following:

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The Changing Workplace and Building a Team. Understanding the need for change as an employee, defining one’s role in the workplace, and understanding the democratic leadership style by working as a team is indeed a task in itself. Changes in the workplace must be undertaken in at least the following areas for positive results. Problem Solving. Using the team approach to problem solving. Communications. Effectiveness of employees and management, at all levels, to communicate. Quality. The importance of quality, its relationship to productivity, and to the customer. How it can improve the competitive position. So, the question arises when one sees the pictorial representation on the democratic vs. the relationship-oriented approach, as to what is more effective. Much has been learned over the years about this question and most studies indicate that the number of first line supervisors who are high producers are indeed employee centered. On the other hand, low producing sections are frequently job centered. Obviously, to move from one category to the other there has to be change. There is also a resistance to change and it is this resistance that creates the problems for most people. To facilitate any change, one must understand that the resistance to a particular change is a force and just like any other force it must be handled appropriately and applicably. After identifying the force(s), one should then assess the strength of each force. For example, rank these forces by importance, putting priorities to what you think is the most important force down to the least important. Some forces are automatically stronger than others and are more important in the situation. Next, the determination of which forces over which you have control, or at least those you can influence strongly, can be prioritized. Consider each force in terms of the individual’s ability to control that force. Label that force as either: 1. 2. 3. 4.

Able to influence strongly. Able to influence moderately. Able to influence through others. Unable to influence.

It must always be remembered that change and resistance to change originate from several sources and can be placed in the following categories. • Technological Sources: Forces that arise because of impact of technology on the system. • Organizational Sources: Forces that are generated because of policies, procedures, regulations, customs, or rules that the organization itself has established over time. • External Sources: Forces that are initiated outside the organization. • Individual Sources: Forces that arise because of feelings, beliefs, values, or attitudes that are held by individuals in the organization.

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STRATEGY FOR CHANGE 1. Increasing the strength of changes or add additional related changes. 2. Reducing the strength of resistance to change or removing itself completely. 3. Changing the direction of force — make a resistance to change into a change. To be sure, these strategies are simple and straightforward. However, to be applied in the work environment, one must be cognizant of some basic things regarding basic issues of (1) leadership, and (2) issues that deal with team building.




The concept of leadership is one of the most important from the point of view of the practicing manager. It is through the exercise of leadership that the manager becomes involved in implementing the plans and strategies which have been established and in ensuring that the organization is functioning as it is supposed to. Once the “planning” phase of the manager’s responsibilities has been completed, and the “doing,” phase begins, the leadership style and capabilities of the manager become of critical importance. While the importance of leadership is widely recognized, very little is really known about leadership. What do you think will make you a good leader? What kind of behavior patterns should you follow? Should you set goals and let your people determine the best ways to meet them, or should you provide specific instructions for each step? How should you make the trade-offs between accomplishment of the organization’s goals and satisfaction of the needs of the members of the organization? How will you know when you are being overly accommodating to the desires of your subordinates? When should you pay more attention to these desires? Do different kinds of situations require different behavior from you? We submit that, at this time, there are no definitive answers to these questions. We simply don’t know that much about the phenomenon of leadership. But a brief look at the chronology of leadership research may prove helpful in outlining the different basic approaches used and the conclusions that have been reached to date. The early thinking and research on leadership suggested that any particular individual might be a leader or not depending on personality traits, intellectual abilities, and physical characteristics. If individuals were honest, imaginative, dynamic, intelligent, and of sufficient physical size, they probably would be leaders. Leadership was entirely a function of these kinds of traits. This trait approach has been fairly well discredited for there were too many exceptions to the theory. Too many people who did not have the “right” traits were successful as leaders. Yet, many organizations still look for a magic set of traits in their leaders and even, in extreme cases, ignore actual performance in order to promote to leadership positions those who have the “appropriate” traits.

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Over time the emphasis on leadership theory has switched from a consideration of traits to the consideration of the followers of the leader, i.e., the person’s subordinates. Under this approach, the effective leader was the one who could most completely meet the needs of the followers. The leader is permitted to lead only as long as he or she does what the followers desire. Part of being a good leader is to be able to ascertain the needs of one’s followers, even when they themselves may not be very aware of or able to articulate their needs. Obviously, as the number of followers grows large this can become an exceedingly difficult task. A problem also arises concerning over accommodation by the leader to the desires of the followers. When does a leader have to do what is best for the organization, even if this conflicts with the desires of the followers? Generally accepted leadership theory now suggests that leadership is in fact a process and is not necessarily embodied in an individual. The kind of leadership that is most effective varies from situation to situation and depends upon the circumstances involved. Thus, an individual who would be effective in one situation would not necessarily be effective in another. At a given point in time, natural leadership will come forth depending on what is necessary at that time. Leadership evolves an interrelationship among three elements: 1. The capabilities and needs of the leader involved 2. The needs of the followers 3. The demands of the situation While some attempts have been made to define this interrelationship precisely and to suggest the most appropriate leadership styles for different situations, progress has not been substantial. At this stage, each individual manager must evaluate the trade-offs in each particular situation, in determining what leadership style to use. The research findings do not provide definitive answers. Looking at leadership as a process, rather than as something attached to an individual, helps us to recognize that there are two major components in the leadership process. The first component is highly concerned with the task which must be done, and places great importance on accomplishing that task quickly and efficiently. This task-oriented aspect of leadership is often assumed by the formal leader appointed by the organization. To be effective, however, a leader must possess the following attributes: Integrity (does the right thing) • Exemplifies honesty and maintains trustworthiness. • Exercises principled judgment, especially on the tough calls. • Keeps one’s word despite the consequences. Courage (takes action in the face of challenge) • Offers new ideas that question the status quo. • Takes risks in championing better ideas. • Demonstrates judgment and self-confidence, even in stressful situations.

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Teamwork (collaborates to achieve results) • Values team members with different ideas, points of view, and backgrounds. • Acts to break down barriers and chimneys to innovative team ideas. • Demands team-oriented behavior and insists on personal accountability for such behavior. Durability (perseveres despite hardship) • Maintains originality and creativity in staying the course to achieve agreed-upon objectives. • Shows tenacity and boldness in securing and using resources. • Maintains inspiration, focus, intensity, and persistence, even under adversity. Communication (exchanges information and ideas that impact and influence others) • Listens completely, and then confidently speaks up on the issues. • Provides concise, compelling, innovative evidence to support positions. • Demonstrates sensitivity to language and cultural communication requirements. Systemic Thinking (sees beyond the details) • Thinks cross-functionally about ideas that impact the business. • Boldly pursues ways to improve processes and incorporate new ideas. • Inspires systemic change efforts that make a difference. People Development (teaches, develops, and motivates people) • Values and confidently promotes a diversity of new ideas and a diverse workforce. • Acts to enhance the creativity and professional development of self and others. • Treats everyone with fairness and respect regardless of position or social consequences. Desire to Serve (demonstrates personal commitment) • Seeks new ways to ensure customer enthusiasm. • Determined to achieve the organization’s objectives and act in the organization’s best interests. • Accept willingly the challenge of different functional assignments. Drive for Results (gets the job done) • Develops challenging, innovative objectives and accepts personal responsibility for accomplishing them. • Prioritizes resources, inspires performance, and measures outcomes. • Negotiates agreements that move the business forward.

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Innovation (applies learning for competitive advantage) • Demonstrates adaptability and flexibility in evaluating creative ideas. • Applies lessons learned from successes as well as failures to inspire new ideas. • Dares to dream about and implement new ways of doing business. Business Acumen (understands the essential requirements of the organization’s business) • Knows the organization’s global business operations and the global business context in which the organization operates. • Knows the basic business principles used to achieve quality, customer, and profit outcomes in a global environment. • Demonstrates functional and technical proficiency. Quality Methods (understands what it takes to do quality work) • Shows passion for achieving quality. • Measures and monitors quality on an ongoing basis. • Demonstrates resolve for meeting customer quality requirements. The second component places much emphasis on maintaining the group of people involved in doing the task in a condition such that they can continue to function. Primary concern is for the feelings and relationships among individuals in the group rather than for accomplishing the assigned task. This emphasis, called the maintenance aspect of leadership, is often undertaken by someone selected by the informal organization, without official sanction. No matter who performs these two roles, both the task and the maintenance elements of leadership must be present in a reasonable balance in a given situation. Overemphasis on task aspects may result in short-term effectiveness, but long-range human problems. Overemphasis on maintenance aspects may result in a group that is so involved in its relationships that it cannot do the required job properly. Awareness of these components of leadership and the necessity to strike a reasonable balance between them is important for the manager, for it is easy to unknowingly overemphasize one or the other of these aspects. Some of the most current issues in the study of leadership are concerned with determining the amount of participation that subordinates should have in the process of decision making. The most popular labels attached to different styles of leadership — autocratic, democratic, social, laissez-faire — generally refer to the amount of influence or control the subordinate has on the decisions of the manager. Much of the current literature suggests that a high degree of participation is very valuable, yet in many instances autocratic leaders seem to be most effective. In one of the classic articles on leadership, Robert Tannenbaum and Warren Schmidt II (1958) treat this question by looking at leadership as a continuum (see Figure 5.1). At one end of the continuum are highly authoritative leadership behaviors and at the other are highly freedom-oriented leadership behaviors. The authors suggest that the choice of an appropriate leadership style is based upon the three

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FIGURE 5.1 Leadership as a continuum.


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interrelationships mentioned previously. These, of course, may be viewed as forces and can be identified as: 1. Forces in the manager 2. Forces in the subordinate 3. Forces in the situation Forces in the Manager Value System To value something is to esteem it to be of worth. And values are critically important. Our values drive our choices and actions. But we can value many different things — love, security, money, status, recognition, fame. Just because we value something does not necessarily mean it will create quality-of-life results. When what we value is in opposition to the natural laws that govern peace of mind and quality of life, we base our lives on illusion and set ourselves up for failure. We cannot be a law unto ourselves. As a manager, how strongly will you feel that individuals should have a share in making the decisions which affect them? Or, how convinced are you that the official who is paid to assume responsibility should personally carry the burden of decision making? The strength of your convictions on questions like these will tend to move you to one end or the other of the continuum shown earlier. Your behavior will also be influenced by the relative importance you attach to organizational efficiency, personal growth of subordinates, and company and profits (Argyris 1955). Confidence in Subordinates Managers differ greatly in the amount of trust they have in other people generally, and this carries over to the particular employees they supervise at a given time. In viewing a particular group of subordinates, you will likely consider their knowledge and competence with respect to the problem. A central question you may ask yourself will be: “who is best qualified to deal with this problem?” Often you may, justifiably or not, have more confidence in your own capabilities than in those of your subordinates. Leadership Inclinations We are constantly making choices about the way we spend our time, from the major seasons to the individual moments in our lives. We are also living with the consequences of those choices. And many of us do not like those consequences, especially when we feel there is a gap between how we are spending our time and what we feel is deeply important in our lives. When we are in a formal leadership role, if we are not into micromanaging, hovering over, checking up, and managing crises, what do we spend our time doing? We create vision, we strengthen, coach, and mentor to help develop the capacities of individuals and teams. We build relationships of trust. We do long-range planning, scan horizons, look at stakeholders’ needs, study the trends of the market, work on systems, and create an alignment within the organization. In other words, we are not just into managing our time to do what is in front of us. We literally do different things. We become a “true leader” or as it has been called a “leader/servant.”

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The idea of leader/servant has been around for a long time, but it is never really taken hold because the conditions of empowerment have not been in place. It becomes just another nice place, another way of exercising a benevolent authoritarian kind of control. Eventually it creates cynicism. But when the conditions of empowerment are in place, servant leadership creates powerful results. Some leaders/managers, however, seem to function more comfortably and naturally as highly directive leaders. Resolving problems and issuing orders comes easily to them. Other managers seem to operate more comfortably in a team role, where they are continually sharing many of their functions with their subordinates. In any case, as leaders/managers we must: • • • •

Seek continual improvement, with emphasis on robustness Establish a global mindset Establish realistic goals Enable people to take chances — make sure they have the appropriate skills, the capacity, and the resources to do the task • Commit to continual learning and training Feelings of Security in an Uncertain Situation The manager who releases control over the decision-making process thereby reduces the predictability of the outcome. Some managers have a greater need than others for predictability and stability in their environment. This “tolerance for ambiguity” is being viewed increasingly by psychologists as a key variable in a person’s manner of dealing with problems. Forces in the Subordinate Generally speaking, managers can allow subordinates greater freedom if the following essential conditions exist: 1. If the subordinates have relatively high needs for independence. 2. If the subordinates have a readiness to assume responsibility for decision making. (Some see additional responsibility as a tribute to their ability; others see it as “passing the buck.”) 3. If they have a relatively high tolerance for ambiguity. (Some employees prefer to have clear-cut directives given to them; others prefer a wider area of freedom.) 4. If they are interested in the problem and feel that it is important. 5. If they understand and identify with the goals of the organization. 6. If they have the necessary knowledge and experience to deal with the problem. 7. If they have learned to expect to share in decision making. 8. If the restrictive effect or many of the forces are, of course, greatly modified by the general feeling of confidence that subordinates have in the boss.

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Forces in the Situation Type of Organization Like individuals, organizations have values and traditions which inevitably influence the behavior of the people who work in them. These values and traditions are communicated in many ways — through job descriptions, policy pronouncements, and public statements by top executives. Some organizations put more emphasis upon the importance of the executive’s ability to work effectively with people, i.e., human relations skills. The fact that a company’s superiors have a defined concept of what the good executive should be will very likely push a manager toward one end or the other of the behavioral range. Group Effectiveness Before turning decision-making responsibility over to a subordinate group, the boss should consider how effectively its members work together as a unit. The degree of confidence that the members have in their ability to solve problems as a group is also a key consideration. Finally, such group variables as cohesiveness, permissiveness, mutual acceptance, and commonality of purpose will exert subtle but powerful influence on the group’s functioning. The Problem Itself The nature of the problem may determine what degree of authority should be delegated by a manager to subordinates. Most managers will ask themselves whether a particular subordinate has the kind of knowledge which is needed. It is possible to do subordinates a real disservice by assigning them a problem that their experience does not equip them to handle. Since the problems faced in large or growing industries increasingly require knowledge of specialists from many different fields, it might be inferred that the more complex a problem, the more anxious a manager will be to get some assistance in solving it. However, this is not always the case. At times the very complexity of the problem calls for one person to work it out. For example, if you as manager have most of the background and factual data relevant to a given issue, it may be easier for you to think it through yourself than to take the time to fill in your staff on all the pertinent background information. The Pressure of Time Time is perhaps the most clearly felt pressure on the manager (in spite of the fact that it may sometimes be imagined). The more you feel the need for an immediate decision, the more difficult it will be to involve other people. Given this contingency picture, we see the forces interacting to suggest an appropriate style of leadership. A pictorial representation of this is shown in Figure 5.2. Leadership Style Outputs Warren Bennis (1990, p. 44), in his differentiation between managers and leaders, has captured many of the mindsets to be effective globally. He offers this list.

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FIGURE 5.2 Forces interacting to suggest an appropriate style of leadership.

• • • • • • • • • •

The manager administers; the leader innovates. The manager is a copy; the leader is an original. The manager maintains; the leader develops. The manager focuses on systems and structure; the leader focuses on people. The manager relies on control; the leader inspires trust. The manager has a short-range view; the leader has a long-range perspective. The manager asks how and when; the leader asks what and why. The manager has his eye on the bottom line; the leader has his eye on the horizon. The manager accepts the status quo; the leader is his own person. The manager does things right; the leader does the right things.

Whatever leadership style that is chosen, it will result in particular outputs in areas that are important to both organizations and individuals. Among these are the following: 1. Organizational efficiency, i.e., how many desired outputs per input of time, money, or resources. 2. Organizational effectiveness — how well does the organization accomplish its goals. 3. Organizational flexibility as evidenced by its ability to handle new or different tasks and respond to change. 4. Organizational growth. 5. Individual motivation to do the work desired by the organization. 6. Individual satisfaction with holding a job in the organization. 7. Individual growth and development. With these in mind the model then looks like this.

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Forces in manager subordinate situation


Leadership style



Leadership outputs: Organizational: Efficiency Effectiveness Flexibility Growth Individual: Motivation to work Satisfaction with job Growth Work team: Growth and development

The leader’s main job, then, is to decide on an appropriate style given the constraints of the forces and the desired outputs. Short Run vs. Long Run In addition, leaders, while faced with relatively fixed or given forces in the short run, have important opportunities to change these in the long run through their actions and choice of style. For example, through selection of decisions and/or development, leaders may significantly affect the nature of their subordinates. This often gives rise to trade-offs between short-term and long-term results. Effectiveness of Style: The Third Dimension In addition to deciding on appropriate styles of leadership, the manager is faced with the additional question: how can I be more effective in using whatever style is chosen? Effectiveness of style, the third dimension of leadership, has not been as extensively handled in the literature as choice of style. It, however, may offer managers greater opportunities for improvement. In general, each style calls for a different mix of skills. For example, to be most effective an authoritarian style requires among other things that the manager be able to communicate information very effectively. It also requires extensive knowledge or information necessary to make good decisions. On the other hand, a style in the middle of the continuum involving a high degree of joint participation typically requires the ability to listen, to handle interpersonal give and take, and to handle group processes effectively. At the far end of the continuum, skills in delegation are most needed including structuring the limits within which the subordinates can operate. Job Maturity Scales To appreciate even more the continuum of leadership, one must understand that within each category the individual leader must have some personal attributes as they relate to job (experience) maturity and personal psychological maturity. Typical job and psychological maturity attributes are considered the following:

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• • • •

Past job experience Job knowledge Understanding of job requirements Willingness to take responsibility

TEAM OVERVIEW A team is two or more persons who must coordinate with each other in order to get some job done. It is very important to recognize that a group is not a team. A “group” becomes a team primarily because there is an interdependent task or function that requires the members to interact with and influence each other in order to accomplish a specific task to which everyone in that team has ownership. Therefore, to become a team is a process. The process, however, is circumstantial to the task. In other words, depending on the need teams will be developed to fulfill that requirement. Table 5.1 displays some examples of the different interdependencies.

TABLE 5.1 Examples of Different Interdependencies Types of Coordination or Interdependence Sequential Must depend on one another for necessary input or information to their specific task performance Pooled Must influence each other on the use and allocation of shared or scarce resources Mutual/Reciprocal Must influence each other to make key decisions to accomplish primary task(s)

Groups that Would be “Teams” around Certain Tasks

Assembly line group Surgical team Sports teams Law office/group practice Matrix groups Planning groups Project teams/task forces Plant manager and staff Interdisciplinary groups

It follows, then, that a team in order to be developed must be nourished and supported. That process is called team building. Team building is the current designation given to a process for revitalizing or increasing a work team’s effectiveness. Work teams have a tendency to become established, routinized, and institutionalized around certain procedures, methods, and processes that may not really be meeting their current demands. The overall goal of team building is to improve the team’s effectiveness through better management of task demands, relationship demands, and group processes. Team building is creating the opportunity for people to come together and share their concerns, ideas, experiences, and learn to more effectively work together to solve their mutual problems and achieve common goals. A team building program involves putting data gathering, diagnosis, and action planning activities into a

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framework with action taking and evaluation as followup activities. The focus of these activities centers around the following questions: 1. What keeps us from being as effective a team as we could? 2. What problems do you experience that we should work on? 3. What changes do you really need to make to be more effective? Stages in Team Building In here we are talking about the mechanics of the team building as opposed the development of the team. The development is going to be addressed later in the volume. So, one possible (see Table 5.2) set of steps to go through to build a team is the following. When May Team Building Be Needed? In most organizations, the main reason for building a strong team is the recognition of the need for interdependence. Most jobs require bringing together the talents of many departments or specialists, or other resources, in a collaborative effort. If the manager is clear about this kind of need, then the next step is to recognize those behaviors or issues, which can block and distort the effectiveness of the system. Collaborative behavior is often obstructed by: 1. Varied perceptions of the task to be performed and the goals. 2. Lack of clarity about roles, responsibilities, and authorities. 3. Lack of effective means of planning, problem solving, and decision making. 4. Inappropriate win/lose relationships. 5. Dysfunctional agreement among team members. 6. Different feelings of equality of membership or influence in the team; feeling in or out of the group. 7. Dependent or rebellious attitudes toward authority. 8. Difficulties in interpersonal relationships. 9. Financial or other rewards seem unfair. 10. Inability to manage the inevitable conflicts between groups. When May Team Building Not Be Appropriate? Team building is an optimistic, forward-looking process. There are, however, certain situations where team building should not be used. Some of these situations and conditions are 1. Where the diagnosis of the system indicates that team building is not a major concern, but the need exists for job enrichment, or new equipment and machinery, technical or skills training, etc. 2. It should not be used if it is not necessary to the results and the effectiveness of the group that they work together on common goals and objectives.

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TABLE 5.2 Steps in Team Building Process Identify the team

Set a climate

Gather data about a team’s tasks and processes

Analyze the data

Plan action

Implement the plan(s)

Follow-up and evaluation

Issues What constitutes a team? Number of people? Organization levels? Relationships? Interdependence? Common purposes? Frequency of content? How do you get people to feel a “part” of the team? How do you get openness? How do you encourage “risk-taking”? What are the team’s values and norms? What does the team do well? What keeps it from being more effective? How do we set goals? Establish work procedure? How well do we work together? What gets in the way of effectiveness? How is leadership handled? What does the data mean? What should we do about it? What are the priority items? Is there a trend of “kinds of concerns”? How do we sort out the data? What are we going to do “back home”? Who is responsible for action? Is there commitment to action? How do we build support for change? Who will be affected by changes or plans? Who is to do what? What forces will support “implementation”? What forces will inhibit “implementation”? How can we make things happen? How are we doing? How do we know how we are doing? What can we do to reenforce and recommit to action? When do we get together again?

3. It should not be tried if the other parts of the system are likely to undo, or prevent, the changes the group determines to be desirable. 4. If there is no chance for dialogue or negotiation with the rest of the organization, then team building can generate aspirations and enthusiasm which can only lead to increased disappointment.

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5. It should not be tried unless the group really has the opportunity to influence its own future. 6. If decisions have been made to phase out a group, it is not likely to be helped by team building. Characteristics of Productive Teams In the early 1960s both McGregor (1960) and Likert (1961) developed some of the key characteristics of productive teams. Nothing much has changed since then. It is essential, however, today more than ever to recognize that all members are working together toward common goals which are well understood and accepted. Some specific characteristics are identified in the following statements: • The values and goals of the team are a satisfactory integration and expression of the relevant values and needs of its members. Clear assignments are made and accepted. • Team leader adheres to a supportive and cooperative vs. competitive relationship among members. Mutual help is characteristic. • Frequently the team will examine and discuss how it is functioning. • High participation in discussion. • Discussion remains pertinent to task of group. • Communication takes place. • Members listen to one another, do not topic jump, and are free in expressing feelings and ideas. • People are involved and interested and the atmosphere is informal and relaxed. • The team is comfortable with conflict and carefully examines and resolves it. • Criticism is constructive in remaining obstacles to get job done. Characteristics of Unproductive Teams Just as there are positive things to have productive teams, so there are negative things that can contribute to unproductive teams. Some are identified below: 1. Members are unclear of their and other’s goals and priorities and what the overall goals of the team are. 2. There is unnecessary duplication of effort. 3. Some things just don’t get done, they seem to “fall between the cracks.” 4. Team members seem to be pulling in different directions. 5. Team productivity is low. 6. Decisions are not followed up as well as they could be. 7. Meetings are ineffective, dull, and get off the subject. 8. Communications are blocked and messages are not received — some people don’t know what is happening. 9. Communications primarily up and down, little laterally.

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10. 11. 12. 13.

People are very careful about what they say. Members of the team are frequently in conflict and conflict is suppressed. Team morale is low; people are grumbling. All goals are not being met or the process of setting and accomplishing them could be smoother or better.

Factors Influencing Team Functioning Teams by their own nature are dynamic entities; therefore, it needs to be recognized that their function can be controlled as well as coached and guided for optimum functionality. A useful scheme for analyzing team functioning is to ask the following questions: 1. What is the team trying to do — what are its tasks (goals)? 2. Who — which people, resources — is required in order to accomplish those tasks (roles)? 3. How should people work together in performing their roles (procedures)? 4. How do the goals, roles, procedures, and relationships affect people’s emotions and feelings (interpersonal)? In determining answers to these questions it is important to remember that there is no one best answer or set of answers that applies to all teams. There are, however, some qualities associated with the factors listed above that represent issues to work on in order to improve team functioning: • Goals (Do we all know why it is we are here to work together?) 1. Are the goals clear? 2. Are the goals shared? 3. Are the goals operational (desired goals vs. performance goals)? 4. Are the goals owned (mandated vs. individual)? • Roles (Are we clear about who should be doing what?) 1. Are the roles clear? 2. Are the roles unconflicted (independent)? Overload Disagreement in other’s expectations Disagreement with own expectations • Procedures (Do we all know how we are going to work together?) 1. How does decision-making take place? a. Valid, complete information b. Acceptance 2. How are meetings conducted? 3. How is conflict management implemented? 4. How is communication handled? 5. How is leadership perceived (autocratic vs. participative)?

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• Interpersonal 1. Energy/emotions 2. Norms (unwritten rules) 3. Job mismatch (intrapersonal) • System/structural (Are we working in a system that makes it possible for real teamwork to exist?) 1. Reward systems 2. Environmental climate 3. Personnel policies 4. Structure 5. Physical setting The Team Effectiveness Critique Most groups exist and persist because (1) the purpose of the group cannot be accomplished by individuals working on their own, and (2) certain needs of individual members can be satisfied by belonging to the group. Of course, the mere existence of a group does not ensure that it will operate effectively; a group is effective only to the degree to which it is able to use its individual and collective resources. The measure of the group’s effectiveness is its ability to achieve its objectives and satisfy the needs of the individuals in the group. An organization is a collection of groups. The success of an organization depends on the ability of the groups within it to work together to attain commonly held objectives. Because organizations are becoming increasingly more complex, their leaders must be concerned with developing more cohesive and cooperative relationships between individuals and groups. Similarly, the development of effective groups into teams within the organization will determine, to a large extent, the ability of the organization to attain its goals. Let us examine, then, what are some of the fundamental issues in the team development process. Team development is based on the assumption that any group is able to work more effectively if its members are prepared to confront questions such as: how can this collection of individuals work together more effectively as a team? How can we better use the resources we represent? How can we communicate with one another more effectively to make better decisions? What is impeding our performance? The answers to these questions may be found by examining the factors that lead to team development and effectiveness. These factors can be measured, or inventoried, by team members with the use of the team effectiveness critique. Before the critique form is administered, however, all team members should understand the terminology used to describe nine factors. The following descriptions can be presented in a leatherette format to the team members prior to completion of the critique. Shared Goals and Objectives In order for a team to operate effectively, it must have stated goals and objectives. These goals are not a simple understanding of the immediate task, but an overall understanding of the role of the group in the total organization, its responsibilities,

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and the things the team wants to accomplish. In addition, the members of the team must be committed to the goals. Such commitment comes from involving all team members in defining the goals and relating the goals to specific problems that are relevant to team members. The time spent on goal definition in the initial stages of a team’s life results in less time needed later to resolve problems and misunderstandings. Utilization of Resources The ultimate purpose of a team is to do things effectively. In order to accomplish this, the team must use effectively all the resources at its disposal. This means establishing an environment that allows individual resources to be used. Team effectiveness is enhanced when every member has the opportunity to contribute and when all opinions are heard and considered. It is the team’s responsibility to create an atmosphere in which individuals can state their opinions without fear of ridicule or reprisal. It is each individual’s responsibility to contribute information and ideas and to be prepared to support them with rational arguments. Maximum utilization of team members requires full participation and self-regulation. Trust and Conflict Resolution In any team situation, disagreement is likely to occur. The ability to openly recognize conflict and seek to resolve it through discussion is critical to the team’s success. People do not automatically work well together just because they happen to belong to the same work group or share the same job function. For a team to become effective, it must deal with the emotional problems and needs of its members and the interpersonal problems that arise in order to build working relationships that are characterized by openness and trust. The creation of a feeling of mutual trust, respect, and understanding and the ability of the team to deal with the inevitable conflicts that occur in any group situation are key factors in team development. Shared Leadership Individuals will not function as a team if they are brought together simply to “rubber stamp” decisions made by their leader or others not in the group. The development and cohesion of a team occurs only when there is a feeling of shared leadership among all team members. This means that all members accept some responsibility for task functions — those things necessary to do the job — and maintenance functions — those things necessary to keep the group together and interact effectively. Task functions include: initiating discussions or actions, clarifying issues and goals, summarizing points, testing for consensus or agreement, and seeking or giving information. Task leadership helps the group to establish a direction and assists the group in moving toward its goals. Maintenance functions include encouraging involvement and participation, sensing and expressing group feelings, harmonizing and facilitating reconciliation of disagreements, setting standards for the group, and “gatekeeping” or bringing people into discussions. No one person can be expected to perform all these required leadership functions effectively all the time. Groups perform better when all members perform both task and maintenance functions.

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Control and Procedures A group needs to establish procedures that can be used to guide or regulate its activities. For example, a meeting agenda serves to guide group activities during a meeting. Schedules of when specific actions will be taken also regulate team activities. Team development and team-member commitment is facilitated through maximum involvement in the establishment of agendas, schedules, and other procedures. Of course, the team should determine how it wishes to maintain control. In meeting situations, control most often is achieved through the appointment of a chairperson whose responsibility is to facilitate the procedure established by the team. Some teams find that they do not need a formal leader; each member regulates his or her own contributions and behavior as well as those of others. Effective Interpersonal Communications Effective team development depends on the ability of team members to communicate with one another in an open and honest manner. Effective interpersonal communications are apparent when team members listen to one another and attempt to build on one another’s contributions. Effective interpersonal communications are achieved through self-regulation by team members, so that everyone in the group has an equal opportunity to participate in discussions. Approach to Problem Solving and Decision Making Solving problems and making decisions are critical team functions. If a group is going to improve its ability to function as a team, recognized methods for solving problems and making decisions should be studied and adopted. The lack of agreed-on approaches to problem solving and decision making can result in wasted time, misunderstandings, frustration, and, more importantly, “bad” decisions. A generally accepted, step-by-step procedure for problem solving and decision making is as follows: 1. Identify the problem (being careful to differentiate between the real problem and symptoms of the problem). 2. Develop criteria (or goals). 3. Gather relevant data. 4. Identify all feasible, alternative solutions or courses of action. 5. Evaluate the alternatives in light of the data and the objectives of the team. 6. Reach a decision. 7. Implement the decision. Needless to say, there are variations of this procedure. However, whatever method is used, an effective team will have an agreed-on approach to problem solving and decision making that is shared and supported by all members. Volume II of this series will address this issue in detail. Experimentation/Creativity Just as it is important for a team to have certain structured procedures, it also is important that the team be prepared occasionally to move beyond the boundaries of established procedures and processes in order to experiment with new ways of doing

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things. Techniques such as “brainstorming” as a means of increasing creativity should be tried periodically to generate new ways to increase the team’s effectiveness. An experimental attitude should be adopted in order to allow the team greater flexibility in dealing with problems and decision-making situations. Evaluation The team periodically should examine its group processes from both task and maintenance aspects. This examination or “critique” requires the team to stop and look at how well it is doing and what, if anything, may be hindering its operation. Problems may result from procedures or methods, or may be caused by individual team members. Such problems should be resolved through discussion before the team attempts further task accomplishment. Effective self-evaluation is probably one of the most critical factors leading to team development. Ultimately, the strength and degree of a team’s development will be measured in two ways: first, in its ability to get things done, its effectiveness, and second, in terms of its cohesiveness, the sense of belonging that individual members have and the degree of their commitment to one another and to the goals of the team. How to Build Trust in a Team Many businesses proclaim that they want a partnership of sorts with their employees to fulfill their goals. Their argument goes something like: our people are the most valuable asset the company has. As such, our people must be treated right and they have an obligation to follow the vision and mission of the organization. Whereas this may sound great and believable, in reality it is very difficult to do. That partnership, for one reason or another, winds up being dysfunctional at best, professionally fatal at worst. So, what happens to these relationships, since it appears that they all begin with good intentions? In our view, the answer lies in lack of trust. When a partnership, as in a team environment, does not share resources, does not communicate openly, does not behave in a legitimate alliance and true cooperation that produce better results, the results are inevitably failures. When members of the team are not willing to discuss their true objectives with one another, it is eminent that a chasm will result and profitability will be compromised and the objectives will not be reached. The glue that holds this team together is trust — a bond that must be initiated and sustained by management and grown throughout the life of the team. Mutual trust is a shared belief that you and your team partners can depend on each other to achieve a common purpose. Trust exists only under specific circumstances, such as having shared objectives. While trust does not imply easy harmony, in a trusting business relationship, conflicts motivate you to probe for deeper understandings and search for constructive solutions. Each participant of the team must be able to depend on the other to get results that exceed what a transaction could do. That notion leads to a set of eight conditions for trust: 1. Mutual need creates the opportunity. An early step in weighing a possible team is to determine whether it will serve an important objective

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in your firm. Then, determine the best way to achieve that objective, comparing the merits of internal development, teams, and alliances of different departments. Involve the units that the team participants will serve in the partner selection process; nothing discourages teamwork more than imposing an unwanted partner on your people. Focus on a win-win approach. Interpersonal relationships make the connection. Teams live through people — this is how all the parts come together and how deep trust is strengthened, creating value and solving even the most difficult of problems. Joint leaders deliver both points of view. When top executives work closely together, those below them know it’s safe to cross the internal boundaries. In contrast, polarization at the top virtually assures conflicts below. This is true for management–labor alliances as well as firm to firm alliances. Classic successful examples are the UAW and Ford Motor Company in implementing the six sigma program throughout the organization. On the other hand, the alliance between Hewlett Packard and Canon was strengthened by the solid, trusting relationship between HP’s Doug Carnahan and Canon’s Takashi Kitamura, who could not only cut through serious problems together, but who also genuinely liked each other. Shared objectives guide performance. If your objectives are not mutually agreed upon and aligned, expect discord. It can be surprisingly difficult to develop common objectives between partnering members if there is no agreement up front, such as a team charter. The way to achieve effective mutual objectives is to develop them from the common ones. If your mutual objectives are met, your individual ones will be as well. Safeguards encourage sharing. Cooperation entails sharing information and making investments with a partner. How far you go depends on your conviction that sensitive data will be protected, and that an equitable sharing or distribution of the data, assets, and resources you develop together will be affected should the alliance ever end. These agreements must be worked out before the alliance begins. If there is a concern about your own people not being able to hold confidentiality and safeguard sensitive information, then you might as well stop before you go any further. Commitment creates enthusiasm. A team excels when each of the partners invests its best effort assigning its finest people, backing them with needed policies and resources, and adjusting the organization to meet expanding needs. Adaptable organizations support alignment. Organizations that collaborate well internally between departments often are capable of forming excellent teams. Companies that manage by objectives are more likely to be successful in teams because they more easily link their internal objectives to their team objectives. Continuity sustains understandings. To maintain superior performance, the team must be confident that the successful collaboration will extend

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into the near and distant future. When those involved in a team effort then move on to other opportunities, the attitudes and understandings those people brought to the team must be carried on. Continuity is an invaluable condition for mutual trust. Pick Team Players Alliances are among people, not just companies. For example, if you compare alliances to transactions, you’ll note that negotiation of a transaction produces a detailed agreement — timing, quantity, delivery, payments, etc. Once the deal is in writing, it can be handed off to other parties who can act on its provisions without having ever been involved in the deal to that point. In crafting an alliance, on the other hand, the central goal is to develop a creative team between the involved employees to produce new value. You cannot document intangibles like shared understandings of each other’s situation and how to manage change (both of which will be needed to forge a successful team). More to the point, support cannot be easily transferred to other uninvolved parties. Invest in Relationships Start investing in relationships now. Interpersonal relationships are the conduits through which understandings flow in a team. You must reach a level of mutual comfort and understanding such that, if trouble surfaces, you can discuss it logically and candidly. A team may fall on hard times; personal relationships should not. You must select the right people and develop an intimate understanding of the individuals and politics in each firm. Personal relationships help you discuss these issues candidly, develop constructive understandings, and reach practical conclusions. When your discussions with people from another department first turn to business, begin by sharing your views. Cover key people and possible constraints, and identify issues that you must resolve before implementation, including deal breakers for either department. Begin to divulge information slowly, gauge reactions, and monitor your own reactions as your counterparts begin opening up as well. Ensure Joint Leadership Joint leadership is key; only with joint leadership can you expect joint followership. From early negotiation through implementation, you will need consistent joint leadership at policy and operating levels. At the policy level, leaders must define a shared vision, building on separate and shared objectives and gaining alignment within firms as the alliance proceeds. At the operating level, leaders must develop mutual objectives, guide team building, and produce results. This is where the champion of the project may prove very valuable. In some organizations there is a quality council, formed by executives of the organization, to handle policy issues and implementation concerns. Define a Single Purpose Superior results emerge from blending your separate abilities in a way that best meets your mutual purpose. Indeed, the sole criterion for deciding what goes into

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a team should be whatever creates the most value for the organization, as defined by the objectives. These objectives must be used to plan every aspect of the team, from policies and resources to job assignments and organizational design. To not do so means risking failure on a dramatic scale. Developing Mutual Objectives Setting mutual objectives in a team requires more breadth and clarity than is typical for doing so internally. Be aware, however, that a mutual objective may not be an obvious combination of your separate objectives; sometimes creativity helps. Align Your Organization Once your mutual objectives are defined, you must forge an alignment of the departments involved — to get the needed parts of each department to work in concert. Your objectives should be the focus of the joint business plan and will guide alignment within each department. Use of the Team Effectiveness Critique The periodic review of a team’s operating practices in light of the factors leading to team development is a simple and useful method for improving a team’s effectiveness. The team effectiveness critique can be used as an observational tool by an independent observer or as an intervention device for the entire team. In this case, the critique should be completed by each individual team member, who will then share his or her assessment with the entire team. This sharing can be expanded to a consensus activity by asking team members to reach a common assessment for each of the nine factors. (This use of critique would be most appropriate with ongoing organizational teams.) Agreement about areas in which improvements could be made would then lead to team action planning. The critique also can be used as an experiential training device. Participants would be asked to complete a group task on a simulation basis and would then assess their teamwork using the critique form. Again, the group members would discuss their assessments with one another, focusing on generally recognized weaknesses. A typical instrument for measuring the team effectiveness may be developed through the following areas. These areas are intended to be used as a training and team-development tool; they are not intended to be used for statistical or research purposes. Therefore, the face validity of the form they can take will depend on the team, and their usefulness in team work will speak for themselves. No statistical validity has been established for any of the measurement matrices. They are only used based on the experience of the author. Team Effectiveness Questionnaire The following characteristics, if administered appropriately, will measure team effectiveness. • Commitment to purpose • Work product

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• • • • • •

Decision making Communications Creativity Conflict Leadership Team assessment

These themes of characterization, at least from the author’s experience, do provide realistic expectations of team behavior. This is particularly helpful to those in leadership positions, because they can base their behavior and interventions on these expectations. Appropriate leader interventions then can facilitate the team development process. This development process has been defined by Tuckman and Jensen (1977) and is shown in Table 5.3.

TABLE 5.3 Team Development Process Stages of Team Development Forming Storming Norming Performing Adjourning

Task Behavior Orientation Emotional response to task demands Expression of opinions Emergence of solutions Termination

Relationship Behavior Testing and dependence Intergroup hostility Development of team cohesion Functional role relatedness Disengagement

Stages of Group Development The initial stage of small-group development is characterized by a movement toward awareness. In the process of forming, the group’s task behavior is an attempt to become oriented to the goals and procedures of the group. (This is the first attempt to become a team.) The amount of information available and the manner in which it is presented is critical to team development. Resolving dependency issues and testing are the major relationship behaviors. Understanding leadership roles and getting acquainted with other team members facilitate team development in this stage. When orientation and dependency issues are resolved, conflict begins to emerge, signaling the second stage of team development. The storming process involves resistance or emotional responses to task demands and intrapersonal hostility in relationships. Team members engage in behaviors that challenge the group’s leadership or they isolate themselves from team interaction. If conflict is permitted to exceed controllable limits, anxiety and tension permeate the team. If conflict is suppressed and not permitted to occur, resentment and bitterness result. This can encourage apathy or abandonment of the team. Although conflict resolution often is the goal of teams during the storming stage, conflict management generally is what is achieved. In fact, conflict management is a more appropriate goal because

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it is desirable to maintain conflict at a manageable level to encourage the continued growth and development of the team. The third stage of small-group development into a team is norming and is characterized by cooperation. The dominant task themes are communication and expression of opinions. Sharing of information and influence promotes cooperation and synergistic outcomes. Cohesion is the relationship theme. A blend of harmony and openness is created by the work effort, which increases morale and team-building efforts. Group unity develops into a team, and shared responsibilities increase, typically leading to decision making by consensus and democratic leadership styles. The fourth stage of small-group development is evidenced by productivity. Performing encourages functional role relatedness. The task theme is problem solving. Team effort is mobilized to achieve team goals. Team members provide valuable contributions by assuming appropriate roles that enhance problem solving. The relationship theme is interdependence; it is the basis for any successful team effort and it requires team members simultaneously to be highly independent and highly dependent. Concluding a team creates some apprehension. In effect, it is a minor crisis. Therefore, the task-maturity level of the team generally will regress. If the team has been responsible for its own functioning, but now seems to be unable or unwilling to continue to do so, the appropriate leadership behavior would be to change to the participating style. Because the adjourning stage of small-group development centers around separation, grieving and leaving behaviors are typical (Ward 1982). The termination of the group is a regressive movement from giving up control to giving up inclusion in the group (Schutz 1958). On the other hand, because the group at this stage has been developed into a full-fledged team, the transition is more fluid as well as manageable. This is so, because the participating style facilitates the task termination and disengagement process. A low task orientation allows team members to become actively involved in the team’s conclusion while the leader provides high relationship support to combat reluctance to leave and the desire to remain within the safe, predictable structure of the team. If the crisis were to persist, the leader would match the decreasing task-maturity level by regressing to the selling style and increasing the amount of task-directive behavior. To appreciate the relationships between small group development into teams, with the appropriate leadership styles, descriptions of the maturity level of the group, and the related level in Maslow’s (1954) hierarchy of needs, the matrix shown in Table 5.4 is appropriate. The Role of the Consultant or Trainer In any team environment, sooner or later, a consultant and/or trainer will be involved to some degree. However, the question is always the same. That is: what is the role of the consultant and/or trainer in the team process? Understanding the theory of small-group development and its implications for leadership behavior can be a valuable tool for the consultant or trainer. The behavioral themes of each stage of team development offer insight into what happens naturally in a group; patterns that

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TABLE 5.4 Maturity Level of Group and Related Level of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Group Development

Leadership Style

Maturity Level



Inexperienced and unwilling



Inexperienced and willing



Performing Adjourning

Delegating Participating

Experienced and unwilling or not confident Experienced and willing Experienced and unwilling

Need Level Physiological needs, security needs Belonging and social needs Recognition and esteem needs Self-actualization needs

deviate from these themes suggest problems and a need for intervention. Such patterns might include moving too fast, skipping stages, focusing only on task dimensions, and blockages or fixations in particular stages. For example, a foreman who is eager to accomplish as much as possible to impress his superiors may spend little or no time on the forming process (stage one) in order to get directly to work on the task. This undoubtedly will result in confusion and misunderstandings among his group (not a team yet) of employees, thus hindering both team development and task accomplishment. A manager who dislikes dealing with conflict may make quick, authoritative interventions or delegate decisions to the group, thus abdicating her role in helping to manage the group’s conflict. The group is likely to view such behavior as unreasonable as well as unhelpful. Similarly, a manager who is very task oriented may be unaware of relationship issues and fail to deal at all with dependency or hostility early in the development of a staff group. The resulting work atmosphere would be one of independent, individual effort in a rigid, inflexible pattern. Conversely, if a task-force leader works too hard at building relationships, the team will develop problems during the norming process (stage three) because of the leader’s need to seek consensus on minor details. Mismatches between the stage of small-group development and leadership style often create serious problems. A leader’s reluctance to change styles, generally because he or she is comfortable with only one or two styles or has developed skill in using only one or two styles, limits the leader’s effectiveness and the team’s chances for success. For example, a supervisor who favors the participating style may have difficulty initiating team work. Although more experienced workers may assume responsibility, the more inexperienced ones will flounder or withdraw from team action unless more task direction is provided. While seeking the security of task direction, members of new teams are likely to perceive leader behavior that is highly relationship oriented as inappropriate; in fact, they may be suspicious of it. In another example, a company president who has used the high-task, telling style in establishing the firm may be very helpful to new project groups in their early stages. But if the president cannot change his leadership style once the teams become

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more functional, this domineering and crisis-oriented manner will prevent open discussion and true efforts at consensus. Low morale, apathy, or resentment, and low productivity may cause the group to end prematurely. In contrast, but equally ineffective, is the manager who has been encouraged to delegate more as her work force becomes more cohesive and productive but who delegates only those tasks that she personally dislikes doing. As the team members begin to perceive this, and especially if the manager also forgets to check on progress and provide praise or other rewards for superior work, it is unlikely that the tasks will be completed well or on time. The consultant or trainer may want to examine the motivation and power issues of the leader and the group to ascertain the impact of these on performance behavior. These concerns also provide excellent topics for staff training and development programs in organizations and for trainers and consultants who work with teams and their leaders and who want to increase the timeliness and effectiveness of their interventions.

A SUMMARY THOUGHT A group becomes a “team” primarily because there is a task which requires that they interact with and influence each other in order to accomplish that task. To actually go through the formation, some basic characteristics and assumptions are necessary. They are 1. The team exists and is always part of a “large system.” 2. The environment (demand system) must be understood in order to define the team’s goal(s) and task(s) related to that goal. 3. The demand system is not fixed — it is always dynamic. 4. A contingency set of procedures must be adopted in order to define and accomplish tasks that result from the complex and changing nature of the demand system. Finally, there is no one best way to organize a team. All teams do spend time and energy dealing with the factors discussed earlier. In this volume, we are going to elaborate and emphasize some of the key points that are essential in all teams, and we will provide additional references where the reader may go for further study.

CONCLUSION Ward (1982) advocates a democratic leadership style in order to allow and encourage the individual interaction necessary for team development and eventual shared leadership. The application of situational leadership to small-team development suggests that this style works best during the latter stages of team life (norming, performing, and adjourning) and is not effective during the early stages (forming and storming). Fiedler (1967) suggests that a democratic style of leadership is most appropriate for moderately structured teams and that highly unstructured or structured teams profit

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most from a directive style of leadership. Thus, as the team is more informing, uncommitted, and uncertain of itself and its task, the more directive, telling style provides instruction, direction, and structure under the guidance of the leader. During the storming stage, team members question things, ask for clarification, and begin to develop trust. The supportive selling style encourages group-member involvement and reinforces performance while still providing some direction and impetus to the group’s activities. As group members gain experience in working together and in working on the task at hand, they are able to handle more responsibility, and a more democratic style of leadership can be used (Hersey and Blanchard 1982). In fact, they do become teams. The participating and delegating styles of leadership offer opportunities for team members to begin norming and performing with shared and democratic leadership. Eventually, even supportive relationship behavior from the leader is reduced as it is replaced by individual pride and selfmotivation. Finally, as termination of the team approaches and the crisis of separation ensues, supportive leader relationship behavior again is increased to help the team to deal with termination issues. It should be obvious by now that matching the appropriate leadership style with each specific stage of team development not only answers the needs of the team members and facilitates team action and development but also encourages individual members and the team as a whole to increase in task maturity. However, the ability to diagnose the stage of development of the team and the knowledge of which style to use is not enough. Attaining skill in actually using each of the four leadership styles and the ability to change styles as the team becomes more mature or regresses are necessary developmental steps for any leader, manager, trainer, or consultant.

REFERENCES Argyris, C. (September 1955), Top management dilemma: Company needs vs. individual development, Personnel, 123. Bennis, W. (1990), On Becoming a Leader, Perseus Press, New York. Fiedler, F. (1967), A Theory of Leadership Effectiveness, McGraw-Hill, New York. Hersey, P. and Balanchard, K. H. (1982), Management of Organizational Behavior: Utilizing Human Resources, 4th ed., Prentice-Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ. Kelman, H. C. (1958), Compliance, identification, and internalization: Three processes of attitude change, J. Conflict Resolution, 2(1), 51. Kelman, H. C. and Hamilton, V. D. (1989), Crimes of Obedience: Toward a Social Psychology of Authority and Responsibility, Yale University Press, New Haven, CT. Likert, R. (1961), New Patterns of Management, McGraw-Hill, New York. Maslow, A. H. (1954), Motivation and Personality, Harper & Row, New York. McGregor, D. (1960), The Human Side of Enterprise, McGraw-Hill, New York. Schutz, W. D. (1958), FIRO: A Three Dimensional Theory of Interpersonal Behavior, Holt, Rinehart and Winston, New York. Tannenbaum, R. and W. Schmidt II (March – April 1958), How to choose a leadership pattern, Harvard Bus. Rev., 95.

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Tuckman, B. W. and Jensen, M. A. C. (1977), Stages of small-group development revisited, Group & Organ. Stud., 2(4), 419.

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY Bales, R. F. (1953), The equilibrium problem in small group, Working Papers in the Theory of Action, in Parsons, T., Bales, R. F., and Shils, E. A., Eds., Free Press, New York. Bales, R. F. (1961), Task roles and social roles in problem-solving groups, Readings in Social Psychology, in Maccoby, E., Newcombe, T., and Hartley, E., Eds., Basic Books, New York. Bennis, W. G. and Shepard, H. A. (1956), A theory of group development, Hum. Relations, 9, 415. Bion, R. W. (1961), Experiences in Groups, Basic Books, New York. Braaten, L. J. (1975), Developmental phases of encounter groups and related intensive group: A critical review of models and a new proposal, Interpersonal Dev., 5, 112. Hare, A. P. (1976), Handbook of Small Group Research, 2nd ed., Free Press, New York. Kormanski, C. (1982), Leadership strategies for managing conflict, J. Specialists Group Work, 7(2), 112. Lacoursiere, R. B. (1974), A group method to facilitate learning during the stages of psychiatric affiliation, Int. J. Group Psychother., 24, 342. Mann, R. D. (1967), Interpersonal Styles and Group Development, John Wiley, New York. McGregor, D. (1960), The Human Side of Enterprise, McGraw-Hill, New York. Miles, M. B. (1981), Learning to Work in Groups, 2nd ed., Teachers College Press, New York. Mills, T. M. (1964), Group Transformation, Prentice-Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ. Runkel, P. J., Lawerence, M., Oldfield, S., Rider, M., and Clark, C. (1971), Stages of group development: An empirical test of Tuckman’s hypothesis, J. Appl. Behav. Sci., 7(2), 180. Schutz, W. D. (1982), The Schutz Measure, University Associate, San Diego, CA. Slater, P. E. (1966), Microcosm: Structural, Psychological and Religious Evolution in Groups, John Wiley, New York. Spitz, H. and Sadock, B. (June 1, 1973), Psychiatric training of graduate nursing students. N.Y. State J. Med., 1334. Stanford, G. (1977), Developing Effective Classroom Groups, A&W Publishers, New York. Thelen, H. and Dicherman, W. (1949), Stereotypes and the growth of groups, Educ. Leadership, 6, 309. Tuckman, B. W. (1965), Developmental sequencing small groups, Psycholog. Bull., 63, 384.

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Communicating Communication

When one considers the topic of team, either for discussion or implementation or even a continual practicing of the team concept in the work environment, invariably the discussion will lead to the topic of communication. Indeed, one will have a very difficult time separating the two since they are both inseparable. After all, it is the process of communication that will facilitate the effectiveness of the team. Without communication, nothing happens. This chapter focuses on this process, i.e., communicating communication.

Effectiveness of management personnel of all grades is very dependent upon the ability to communicate orally not only the policy of the company but suggestions as to how work should be done, criticism of poor work, the application of discipline, and, of course, the general field of human relationships (Lull et al. 1955, p.17). It seems safe to conclude from research studies that by and large, the better supervisors (better in terms of getting the work done) are those who are more sensitive to their communication responsibilities. They tend to be those, for example, who give clear instructions, who listen empathetically, who are accessible for questions or suggestions, and who keep their subordinates properly informed (Reading and Sanborn 1964, p. 60). Research leads to the conclusion that there is a positive correlation between effective communication and each of the following factors: employee productivity, personal satisfaction, rewarding relationships, and effective problem solving. Two major components of effective communication are sending and receiving messages. Techniques of listening and verbalizing help in both these dimensions.

FACTORS AFFECTING THE SENDER SELF-FEELINGS In the context of each communicating situation, the sender’s feelings about self will affect how the message is encoded. The following questions are conscious and subconscious trade winds that affect the effectiveness of the message: “Do I feel worthwhile in this situation?”; “Am I safe in offering suggestions?”; “Is this the right time (place)?”; ‘‘Am I the subordinate or the boss in this situation?”; or in everyday jargon, “Am I okay?”; “Do I count?” Usually, the more comfortable or positive the self-concept, the more effective the sender is in communicating.


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Linked to self-concept is the belief that one has some rights, such as the right to change one’s mind, the right to say, “I do not understand,” or “I do not know,” the right to follow a “gut feeling” without justifying reasons for it, the right to make mistakes and be responsible for them, and the right to say, “I am not sure now, but let me work on it.” Believing in such rights can help strengthen the sender’s selfconcept and avoid the defensive maneuvering that hinders communication in exchanging information. It would be wise to remember that assertive rights are not complete without responsibility. For example, one has the right to say, “I do not know,” but probably also has the responsibility to find out.




Do I feel the information I have is valuable? Is it something I want to say or do not want to say? How do I feel it will be received? Is the topic interesting or not interesting to me? Do I understand the information correctly, at least well enough to describe it to others, and do I know the best way to say it?




The probability of effective communication is increased if the sender feels positive or respectful toward the receiver. Positive or respectful feelings usually carry a builtin commitment and/or desire to share communication. Negative or nonrespectful feelings require conscious effort to communicate effectively. For the sender it is important to know it is all right not to like everyone, or, for the optimist, to like some persons less than others. It is also important to know that we live in a world in which not everyone is going to like or respect us and that is okay, too.




In order to communicate messages effectively, the sender should consider the following points. 1. Become aware of thoughts and feelings. Do not be quick to brand them “good,” “bad,” “wrong,” or “right.” Accept them as a reflection of the present “you,” and let them become best friends by giving support and feedback to your effectiveness and to your needs; consider what they are whispering or shouting to you. By increasing your awareness of your feelings, you can better decide what to do with them. 2. Feel comfortable in expressing your feelings. Such expression, when it is congruent with the situation and appropriate, can enhance communication. 3. Be aware of the listener. Try to verbalize your message in terms of the listener’s understanding and indicate why you feel the message is important to him or her. Does it have a specific significance for the listener or is it just “general information?”

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4. Focus on the importance of the message and repeat key concepts and essential aspects of the information. 5. Use as few words as possible to state the message.

POINTS FOR THE LISTENER Effective listening is as important to communication as effective sending. Effective listening is an active process in which the listener interacts with the speaker. It requires mental and verbal paraphrasing and attention to nonverbal cues like tones, gestures, and facial expressions. It is a process of listening not to every word but to main thoughts and references. Nichols (1952) listed the following as deterrents to effective listening: (1) assuming in advance that the subject is uninteresting and unimportant, (2) mentally criticizing the speaker’s delivery, (3) getting overstimulated when questioning or opposing an idea, (4) listening only for facts, wanting to skip the details, (5) outlining everything, (6) pretending to be attentive, (7) permitting the speaker to be inaudible or incomplete, (8) avoiding technical messages, (9) overreacting to certain words and phrases, and (10) withdrawing attention, daydreaming. The feelings and attitudes of the listener can affect what he or she perceives. How the listener feels about herself or himself, how the message being received is perceived, and how the listener feels about the person sending the message affects how well the receiver listens. The listener should keep in mind the following suggestions. 1. Be fully accessible to the sender. Being preoccupied, letting your mind wander, and trying to do more than one thing at a time lessen your chances to hear and understand efficiently. In the words of Woody Allen, “It is hard to hum a tune and contemplate one’s own death at the same time.” Interrupting a conversation to answer the phone may enhance your perceived ego, but the interrupted speaker feels of secondary importance. 2. Be aware of your feelings as a listener. Emotions such as anger, dislike, defensiveness, and prejudice are natural, but they cause us not to hear what is being said and sometimes to hear things that are not being said. According to Reik (1972), listening with the “third ear” requires the listener to do the following things: (1) suspend judgment for a while, (2) develop purpose and commitment to listening, (3) avoid distraction, (4) wait before responding, (5) develop paraphrasing in his or her own words and particularly to review the central themes of the messages, (6) continually reflect mentally on what is trying to be said, and (7) be ready to respond when the speaker is ready for comments.

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RESPONSES THAT CAN BLOCK EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION As we all know communication is very delicate between individuals especially if there is an issue to be resolved. As a communicator, the following should be always in one’s mind: 1. Evaluation Response. The phrases “You should…,” “Your duty…,” “You are wrong,” “You should know better,” “You are bad,” “You are such a good person” create blocks to communication. There is a time for evaluation, but if it is given too soon, the speaker usually becomes defensive. 2. Advice-Giving Response. “Why don’t you try…,” “You’ll feel better when…,” “It would be best for your to…,” “My advice is…” are phrases that give advice. Advice is best given at the conclusion of conversations and generally only when one is asked. 3. Topping Response, or My Sore Thumb. “That’s nothing, you should have seen…,” “When that happened to me…,” “When I was a child…,” “You think you have it bad…” are phrases of “one-upmanship.” This approach shifts attention from the person who wants to be listened to and leaves him or her feeling unimportant. 4. Diagnosing, Psychoanalytic Response. “What you need is…,” “The reason you feel the way you do is…,” “You don’t really mean that…,” “Your problem is…” are phrases that tell others what they feel. Telling people how they feel or why they feel the way they do can be a two-edged sword. If the diagnoser is wrong, the speaker feels pressed; if the diagnoser is right, the speaker may feel exposed or captured. Most people do not want to be told how to feel and would rather volunteer their feelings than to have them exposed. 5. Prying, Questioning Response. “Why,” “who,” “where,” “when,” “how,” “what” are responses common to us all. But such responses tend to make the speaker feel “on the spot” and therefore resist the interrogation. At times, however, a questioning response is helpful for clarification, and in emergencies it is needed. 6. Warning, Admonishing, Commanding Response. “You had better,” “If you don’t,” “You have to,” “You will,” “You must” are used constantly in the everyday work environment. Usually such responses produce resentment, resistance, and rebellion. There are times, of course, when this response is necessary, such as in an emergency situation when the information being given is critical to human welfare. 7. Logical, Lecturing Response. “Don’t you realize…,” “Here is where you are wrong…,” “Yes, but…” can be heard in any discussion with two people of differing opinions. Such responses tend to make the other person feel inferior or defensive. Of course, persuasion is part of the world we live in. In general, however, we need to trust that when people are given correct and full data they will make logical decisions for themselves.

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8. Devaluation Response. “It’s not so bad,” “Don’t worry,” “You’ll get over it,” or “Oh, you don’t feel that way” are familiar phrases used in responding to others’ emotions. A listener should recognize the sender’s feelings and should not try to take away the feelings or deny them to the owner. In our desire to alleviate emotional pain, we apply bandages too soon and possibly in the wrong places. Whenever a listener’s response conveys nonacceptance of the speaker’s feelings, the desire to change the speaker, a lack of trust, or the sense that the speaker is inferior or at fault or being bad, communication blocks will occur.

AWARENESS OF ONE’S OWN FEELINGS For both senders and listeners, awareness of feelings requires the ability to stop and check what feelings one is presently experiencing and consciously to decide how to respond to the feelings. At first it may be uncomfortable and easy to forget, but only by using it will this technique become second nature. The individual should picture the following: Behaviors → Feelings → Responses → Outcomes At a given time, the person stops and mentally asks, “What am I feeling?” One usually experiences a kaleidoscope of emotions simultaneously, but the person can work on focusing on one present, dominant feeling. After the feeling is identified, the second “self-question” is what perceived behaviors are causing that feeling. Is it what the other person is saying or how he or she is saying it? Is it because I do not want to be bothered? The next step is for the person to choose how he or she wants to react to the feeling. There is much written about letting others know one’s feelings to bring congruence to actions and words. One can choose, however, not to express a feeling because of inappropriate time, place, or circumstances. For example, I may identify a feeling of annoyance at being interrupted. To share that feeling may not be worthwhile in the situation. The main thing is that I am aware of my annoyance and what caused the feeling and can now choose whether or not to let it be a block to my listening. I may tell myself that I am annoyed but that my feeling is not going to get in the way of my listening. I can decide if my feeling is to be a listening block and I can prevent it from becoming one, if I so choose. Another way of becoming aware of feelings is “hindsight analysis.” After any given situation, the individual can recheck his or her responses and/or feelings. What happened to cause those feelings? What was I feeling during my responses? Why do I tend to avoid certain people and why do I enjoy being around others? “Why?” is very helpful in finding feelings and behaviors that cue those feelings. As a person works with this technique, identification and decision making will become better, resulting in more effective communication.

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CHANGE THROUGH TRAINING AND INTERPERSONAL SKILLS As mentioned earlier, Kelman (1958) realized that change, both behavioral and attitudinal, varies in its degree of permanence and effect. Some people make “shallow” changes but are unable to, or have no intention of, making the changes permanent or altering the attitudes behind them. Others change not only their behavior but their underlying attitudes and ways of thinking. In the world of quality, we are faced with similar situations primarily because of world competition and because of an attitude that we must be the “best.” This attitude of change is based on many inputs, behaviors, motivation, and so on. As though that is not enough of a problem, the process of change depends upon geographic regions and the level of “exerted influence.” For example, in order for something to be changed, generally speaking, a needs assessment will be conducted and then followed by the development and evaluation of that training. These steps are obviously the fundamentals of any program of change. No one will deny their significance and their contribution to the change. However, that is only a small portion of what really has to happen for a legitimate change to occur. Aware that there are different “levels” of change, Kelman hypothesized that the process by which a person is influenced to change affects his or her level of commitment to permanent change, and as we said earlier Kelman and Hamilton (1989) proposed three ways of influencing and producing attitude change in others: (1) compliance, (2) identification, and (3) internalization. In the world of quality we see that these characteristics are everywhere and, in fact, if one was to compare them on a world basis, we find that successful programs are indeed derivatives of these major points. For example, in the international world we see this approach in a variety of ways, including dress codes, activities based on the “authority” figure, and an attitude based on the notion of “I want to please and to stay out of trouble.” A classic example of this is the proliferation of standardization. Standardization has become very fashionable and so important that even in quality we talk about ISO 9000, QS-9000, TE-9000, ISO 14000, and so on. We hope that this standardization will be the answer for a variety of issues and concerns. In the international world we see this standardization approach in a variety of ways, including activities that are based on peer pressure and an attitude based on the notion of “I want them to like me.” A classic example of this was the introduction and maintenance of quality circles. In addition, in the international world we see this approach in a variety of ways, including activities that are based on the individual’s internal value system and an attitude based on the notion of “my personal values or ethics dictate that I should do this.” A classic example of this is the introduction and maintenance of self-directed teams in the work environment. Once we understand these characteristics of change, then it follows that a program must be developed to promote that change. The success and/or failure of this program will be based on the development of the appropriate and applicable training, as well as the interpersonal skills of communicating the desired change. Let us look first at the training. All training should incorporate at least the following:

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• Importance and prominence of the desired change • Importance of the anticipated outcome to the individual • Importance of the anticipated outcome to the organization Just as different types of influence tend to produce different results and levels of commitment, the results of any attempt to influence can be attributed to a certain set of “antecedent conditions.” In other words, the right combination of prior circumstances can reliably produce compliance, identification, or internalization — whichever is desired. Likewise, each process has a unique set of “consequent conditions.” Generally speaking, these conditions are based on set methodologies and approaches for a given organization, as well as geographical idiosyncrasies as we discussed earlier. To make the point even more, some specific examples will be presented: 1. The more the power of the influencer is based on means-control, the more likely that compliance will result. (The old Soviet Union’s work environment is an example of this type.) 2. The more the power of the influencer stems from its appeal, the more likely that identification will result. (The concept of Motorola’s six sigma is an example of this.) 3. The more the power of the influencer comes from its believability, the more likely that internalization will result. (The commitment of Selectron’s founder on the importance of quality was one of the most important attributes of its success.) What is very interesting about these observations is the fact that worldwide applications of training are quite unique based on the expectations of change, the attitudes, and perhaps most important the culture that an organization may find itself in doing business. For example, effective training is being developed in all parts of the world; however, the approaches and the methodologies are very different. From my own experience the following approaches have been used for optimum results over the last 15 years around the world. In Guatemala, Hellas, Japan, and Panama, maximum results have been accomplished with the assignments of extra readings to support formal training. Participants not only welcomed the opportunity but they were impressed with the additional information given to them. In Brazil, Argentina, Singapore, Malaysia, Spain, and S. Korea, maximum results have been accomplished with small group discussions and discovery methods of teaching. In Taiwan, Indonesia, Italy, India, Hong Kong, Israel, and Germany, maximum results have been accomplished with role plays, case studies, and simulation exercises. In Turkey, Peru, and Chile, maximum results have been accomplished with demonstration techniques. In Great Britain, United States, New Zealand, Australia, Belgium, and Austria, maximum results have been accomplished with a combination of lectures, small group discussions, demonstration, and case studies.

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The second component of effectiveness in the change process is the issue of interpersonal skills. No matter what or where we communicate an idea, a program, or whatever, interpersonal skills are of a major concern. Let me introduce the issue of interpersonal skills with a specific situation. You start explaining to Mr. Jones why his operation needs more quality commitment, but he cuts you off and makes some sarcastic remark about your knowing better than he does. Or, you call the area general foreman at home to tell him his operation had to be stopped because of a quality problem. He tells you not to bother him unless it’s an emergency and then slams the phone down angrily. Sound familiar? Interactions like these occur every day between operating and quality people, but they don’t have to happen at all. To avoid them, you have to first educate the operating people as to the “worth” of quality and, second, the quality people must know why such interactions occur and what they can do to circumvent them. Perhaps we take it for granted. We may not even think of it as an attribute to quality. But the quality field is indeed not only recognizing its importance, it has become a pillar to everything that we do. From the hard engineering training to the support classes to the implementation phases of all sorts of programs in a given organization, interpersonal skills play a major role in the effectiveness of the issue at hand. Quality professionals indeed have recognized that interpersonal skills may be the difference between success and failure. It is through interpersonal skills that the quality professional will convince or sell a project to both the management and the work force at large. It is the usage of the interpersonal skills that will transform ideas and projects into worthy products and/or services that will be accepted into the organization.

HOW OPERATORS AND QUALITY PERSONNEL COMMUNICATE Language plays an important role in overall society, and language patterns between operators and quality personnel are no different. In fact, both groups demonstrate these patterns during their everyday contacts by actually speaking different languages. They consistently choose different words and/or phrases, emphasize different things, and most of all use distinct nonverbal behavior when they speak. It seems as though operators are always on the offensive and quality people on the defensive, ready for surrendering their life away. It is, in fact, the traditional view that holds this pervasive stereotypical relationship between the two camps. Furthermore, it is the quality people’s verbal and nonverbal language that tends to reinforce the dominant role of the operators. Recognizing communication patterns may not create any problems in your everyday dealings with the operators, but they can get the “best of you” if you as a quality person try to achieve a cooperative relationship with an operator who expects and believes that in order for the relationship to exist, he (the operator) must maintain

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the dominant role. To avoid seeming dependent and submissive, the quality person, based on my experience, must be cognizant of the following signals. • Indicators of submission: psychologists have told us that we communicate not only with our spoken language but with gestures and even with body language. First then, let me start with the spoken language. Signals that quality people give to the operators, as a general rule, are that they don’t believe what they are saying or that they are unsure of the information. They are, in fact, impressions that invite the operators to treat these ideas and/or comments lightly and without authority. It is the springboard of conflict and indeed misunderstanding. Specifically, there are six areas where quality personnel ought to be careful and not fall victim. 1. Disclaimers. Using expressions such as “I know you don’t like this but” or “I am not sure but…” undermine your credibility as a quality person. When you address an operator by belittling your capabilities, you invite him to ignore your comments. 2. Threats of calling your supervisor. Again the undertone of your argument is such that you doubt your abilities and knowledge of the given operation. The operator will, most certainly, ignore your comments. 3. Unnecessary questions. One of the gravest errors that quality people make is that they transform statements into questions in either of two ways. One, by the tone of their voice, and two, by phrasing it. By doing so the quality person shows the operator his uncertainty about the particular matter. What is even worse, he is implying unconsciously that he is asking for permission to give him a report of his operation. You should, instead, tell him that you would like to give him a report on his operation’s condition. 4. Qualifying words. Words such as “I think,” “I suppose,” and “perhaps” minimize your message and make you seem submissive. If they have to be used to avoid confrontation, use them very sparingly; otherwise avoid them. When they are used, their function is to lessen the impact of the message and, therefore, neutralize the effect you are trying to establish. 5. Tag questions. If you as a quality person have asked an operator for his opinion on a quality matter, you have in fact utilized a tag question. By using this tactic you have given yourself an out, if the operator does not agree with your decision. In effect, again you are proclaiming, although at a subliminal level, grave lack of confidence, as well as knowledge. 6. Trivial adjectives and adverbs. Words such as “costly,” “nice,” “awful,” or “terrible” are trivial and nonspecific. When these words are used, a “noise” surrounds your message. The net effect of trivial adjectives and adverbs is that you are more interested in small talk, and you appear more frivolous than forceful.

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• Nonverbal Messages: Three such messages are smiling, posture, and speed of communication. 1. Smiling. Many quality people don’t just smile when they are amused or happy. They are also smiling when they are uneasy or nervous. The uneasiness and nervousness comes about due to past experiences of confrontation, as well as the traditional role of quality as “extra baggage.” Over the years quality people have learned that by smiling they neutralize the negative emotions of the operator and, as such, they win both approval and cooperation. Yet, by the same token, they dilute the importance of what they have to say. 2. Posture. Even though research has shown that, in general, men have a more relaxed body posture, my experience over the last 30 years in quality control has shown that quality personnel are more consistently tense than operators. This tension shows up in posture behavior such as folding arms, leaning against a wall or a chair, and more often than not standing up when relaying the quality message to the operators. 3. Talking speed. Over my long experience I have made the observation that when quality people are about to inform the operators of a quality problem at a given operation, the speed of that interaction becomes a factor. Quality personnel seem to feel that by informing the operator in a quick manner and getting out of the way of the operator, less personality friction will develop and a confrontation will be less likely. They fail to recognize that the increased speed of their speech suggests again an uncertainty of their findings, as well as a lack of personal confidence to defend their position if they would have to.

CHANGING YOUR MESSAGES The first step in breaking the undertones of submissive behavior and communication patterns is to become aware of the message (language) you are sending. Examine the particular signals to the operators that you seem to have more problems with. Chances are, you will find you portray an image of uncertainty and that you seem to have little authority. The way to recover them is to try to focus on each of the points that I have mentioned, one at a time, and by all means do not overdo it. You do not have to stop asking questions or change your personality; just eliminate the unnecessary subliminal messages that put a mark on your personality. Next, and most importantly, prepare yourself for some strong reactions from the people that you have been working with. If you have been sending messages for years that show your submissiveness, they may not like your assertive personality. They may accuse you of being “moody” or “uncooperative” if you choose not to smile or compromise as before. But, on the other hand, they may indeed understand what you really want in quality. So, how does training and interpersonal skills help in the process of change? The answer of course lies in the fact that training will provide the why and how of

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what has to be done and the interpersonal skills will guide the form of communication for an optimum delivery of the message. It is imperative that as a quality professional you must know that different people, organizations, and different geographic locations may prefer different approaches. For example, generally speaking, in Europe the choice is by far open discussions as compared with the North American countries’ preference of lectures and computer-based media. On the other hand, the Far East countries prefer small group discussions, extra readings, and high technology simulation. Finally, you must have patience, because you can’t change overnight. You may, in fact, go back to your submissiveness when “the going gets tough” and you are under stress. That’s natural. Just tell yourself you’ll do better next time. After all “in this world the one who survives is the one who is the most symbiotic with his fellow man and his environment, not the one who is out for immediate materialistic gain to the detriment of nature and other persons” (Laslo 1978).

COMMUNICATION ISSUES IN WORK ENVIRONMENT In discussing communication, it would be a disservice to the reader if we do not address some of the current issues in communication, as they relate to the work environment. We are not going to give a detailed discussion but the reader is encouraged to see further readings in the bibliography of this section. In this day and age, the work environment has indeed become diverse. As a consequence, a given organization may have employees from different countries, and that may present itself with cultural and communication issues. However, more importantly, organizations face problems with the relationships and attitudes of females and males because of diversity. This mix can indeed present major personal and organizational problems if the appropriate precautions are not planned for. Especially in the six sigma methodology where team work, initiative, and perseverance are encouraged, the issue of diversity and communication is of paramount interest. Three categories of issues will be discussed here: (1) nonverbal language, (2) gender themes, and (3) diversity.

NONVERBAL LANGUAGE Albert Mehrabian in a 1968 article published in Psychology Today startled the world with his findings on how we interpret the meaning of communication. According to him, there are three sources: (1) 55% visual cues, (2) 38% vocal cues, and (3) 7% verbal cues. From the six sigma methodology perspective, this is very important information since six sigma is a paradigm shift for the entire organization. This shift depends upon effective communication on all levels and for all. Therefore, we must understand the mechanics of good communication but also its traps. Our focus here is to sensitize the reader about communication and, therefore, we are treating the issue on a very cursory level. That does not mean, however, that it is not of importance.

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Spatial Relationship A spatial relationship is the amount of space or distance between speaker and listener. Each of us exists within a personal area of space, sometimes referred to as the “body bubble.” While the amount of space we need varies from person to person, it is affected much more by relationship. The closer we are in relationship, or feeling, to another, the closer physically we can be and still feel comfortable. When someone violates our sense of personal space, we react. Literally, we move or take some action to protect ourselves. If physical movement is not possible, we withdraw mentally. Maintaining an appropriate amount of space is critical for good listening. If we are too close, either speaker or listener is focused on that “invasion” of personal space. If the space is too great, part of the mind is focused on interpreting the meaning of that distance or working at “closing the gap.” We can use spatial relationship to enhance or detract from the success of our communication. Some guidelines for communication distances are shown in Table 6.1.

TABLE 6.1 Guidelines for Communication Distances Relationship Intimate Personal Work Social Public

Distance 0–18 in. 18 in.–4 ft 2–3 ft is common 4–12 ft 12 ft and more

Body Language Body language is the way we position and use our bodies, especially head motion, facial expression, eye contact, posture, and gestures. • Position. Are speaker and listener faced toward each other? Is one or the other turned slightly? Is one leaning in, or away from the other? What does the position of the speaker or listener tell us? • Head Motion. Are speaker and listener nodding or shaking the head? Is the head tipped back to indicate the mind is elsewhere? Is the head tipped forward to indicate lack of certainty? What does the speaker’s or listener’s head movement tell us? • Facial Expression. Is speaker or listener smiling or frowning? Do they look bored or interested? Are the faces animated or frozen? Are there

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fleeting expressions that flash across the face? What do the speaker’s or listener’s facial expressions tell us? • Eye Contact. Are the speaker and listener looking at each other at least 50 to 60% of the time? Is one or the other avoiding eye contact? Are they frequently looking away from the other? What about staring, or frequent blinking? What do the speaker’s or listener’s eyes tell us? • Posture. Are the speaker and listener sitting or standing upright? Are shoulders and arms in an open or closed position? Is posture balanced, or uneven? What do the speaker’s and listener’s postures tell us? • Gestures. Are the speaker and listener using their hands or arms? Are fingers moving, or still? Is the speaker or listener fidgeting? Are they emphasizing meaning with their hands? What do the speaker’s or listener’s gestures tell us? Vocal Dimensions The sounds we make and the tone, pitch, and pacing of our words are called vocal dimensions. • Tone. Higher pitched tones can indicate excitement or strong emotion. Higher tones and louder volume can signal the intensity of feeling. Lower tones may mean the speaker is calm or relaxed. A low tone coupled with a slower pace may indicate fatigue or embarrassment. Facial expression impacts tone. Smiling literally changes voice tone — a smiling speaker sounds friendly. • Volume. Little volume makes a listener strain to hear; listening may become too much effort. Low volume frequently is interpreted as lack of confidence. Too loud a volume is difficult to listen to and may signal that the speaker is about to lose control. • Pacing. The speed of speech may be a cultural or geographical factor, or a result of nervousness. Speaking fast may give the impression of excitement or enthusiasm and can be transferred to the listener. Conversely, slow speech may cause the listener too much lag time and tuning out may result. • Inflection. Inflection and vocal emphasis give meaning and value to words and ideas. Too much inflection can have a sing-song effect. Too little inflection — monotone — may allow ideas to be lost in the sameness of sound. • Paralanguage. Words that are used as fillers, such as “you know” or “like,” detract from clear communication. Subvocal sounds, such as “um” or “ahs,” used with frequency may signal that the speaker is uncertain or lacking in knowledge. Sighs, “tsks,” groans, and other sounds impact the meaning of the message. Listeners can effectively use subvocal sounds, such as “uh-huh” or “mmm” to indicate interest and encourage speakers.

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Environment Environment is the surroundings in which we communicate, including noise, room arrangement, furniture, lighting, temperature, etc. • Noise. Background noise may be so distracting that a speaker and listener cannot communicate. How noise is handled sends a message about the importance of the communication. Noise may be turned down, or shut out in some way. If not, communicators may have to compensate for it, such as by speaking louder, or shortening the distance between one another. • Room Arrangement. The arrangement of the room may hinder good communication. If either the speaker or the listener is facing an open door or a window, distractions can get in the way of shared understanding. A room arrangement that creates too much distance or infringes on personal space can have an ongoing impact on communication. • Furniture. Furniture can send a message about power and authority and can function as a barrier to communication. It can also indicate openness and equality. Think about the impact of a small round table with two chairs compared to a big desk with different size chairs on opposite sides. • Lighting, Temperature, etc. Anything that affects the physical comfort of the communicators either enhances or detracts from the ability to achieve shared understanding. A bright light shining directly in someone’s eyes can make the speaker feel like he or she is under interrogation. A hot room may make a listener sleepy and interfere with concentration.

GENDER THEMES Only four issues, which we believe are the most crucial, especially in the evaluation and implementation phase of the six sigma project, will be discussed. They are (1) power, (2) support, (3) intimacy and sexuality, and (4) accountability. 1. Power. Ability to get things done through others; the ability to influence. This power, however, can be displayed in at least three ways. • Passive. Listening well, helping others, but not good at getting own agenda out or getting needs met. • Aggressive. Focusing almost entirely on getting your own needs met, at the expense of others. • Assertive. Best of both — listening and helping others meet their needs, while getting your own needs met. Once we understand the definition of power we must also attempt to recognize how gender reacts to power. Table 6.2 shows some of the differences.

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TABLE 6.2 Gender Theme — Power How Do Power Dynamics Affect Women?

How Do Power Dynamics Affect Men?

Socialization. Women, in general, are raised to be more at the passive end of the continuum. In many ways, they receive “nonassertiveness training” (to state ideas as questions, to wait for their turn to speak, to seek help, to listen well). They have become experts of “Invisible Rules.” When they come to the organization, generally speaking, they are met by a different set of expectations, and they must adapt in order to get their needs met. If they do not, they find themselves being interrupted in meetings, not getting credit for their ideas, being perceived as “supporters” rather than “leaders,” and finding themselves working on low-visibility assignments. Expectations. While women at any organization are expected to be assertive, they must not be too assertive. If they move along the continuum to the point of being aggressive, they are perceived quite negatively, in fact, more negatively than aggressive men are. Women are expected to take on characteristics of executives (assertiveness), while at the same time retaining characteristics of women (femininity). Combining the two sometimes contradictory roles can be confusing; there are few role models, and there is very little margin for error.

Socialization. Men, in general, are raised to be at the aggressive end of the continuum. The world of boys emphasizes competitive sports and lessons like winning is everything. As a result, hierarchy and status are more prominent than for women, and emphasis is on giving orders (high status) vs. taking orders (low status). At many organizations, this gets played out in “conversations as competitive sports,” competition over who worked the longest hours, and a greater level of comfort with pushing for high-visibility assignments and promoting their own careers.

Expectations. While the business environment is more supportive of aggressive men than aggressive women, most men find that being assertive is the most productive place to be. Moving toward assertiveness on the continuum creates confusion for men as well, since they may worry about being seen as a “wimp” or “indecisive” if they share power or are seen as too easily influenced. Since it is assumed that they will pursue their careers with gusto, their interests in family and balancing work/life are frowned upon more than women’s interests in these areas.

2. Support. Giving encouragement, feedback, and opportunities to succeed. This support can be displayed in three ways. • Isolation. Giving little guidance about formal and informal rules. • Overprotective. Sheltering from risk, feedback, and opportunities • Coaching/mentoring. Giving challenging opportunities to develop skills and get talents noticed Once we understand the definition of support we must also attempt to recognize how gender reacts to support. Table 6.3 shows some of the differences.

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TABLE 6.3 Gender Theme — Support How Does Support Affect Women

How Does Support Affect Men

Help that doesn’t help. In their efforts to “support” women, men sometimes go overboard by providing “help” that actually gets in the way. Sometimes this “help” means waiting until women are actually overqualified before giving a promotion (to make sure they don’t get in over their heads) vs. taking a risk and letting them stretch; steering women toward clients or industries that seem more hospitable (e.g., notfor-profit, universities, staff positions); or withholding unpleasant feedback to spare them the experience. While the help may be well intentioned, it also limits professional growth, visibility, and careers. More difficult to find true supporters. Since there are still very few female partners, the majority of women must rely on men as coaches and mentors. Yet, women sometimes find men reluctant to support them in the same way men support other men, for several reasons. It is often more awkward to develop rapport and find comfortable ways to spend personal time together. And, questions about a woman’s longterm commitment come up far more often than questions about a man’s commitment, fueled by traditional stereotypes of women as primary caretakers rather than primary breadwinners.

Socialization. Men are typically socialized to see women as weaker and more fragile, as needing help and protection (e.g., “watch out for your little sister,” “don’t hit girls”; if a boy is seen as weak, other boys call him a “girl”). This can lend itself to overprotection. Often this is well intentioned or unconscious, so feedback is difficult to hear. Higher risk to coach/mentor women. Take concerns about how close the relationship will become, how others will perceive this closeness, confusion around the “new” ground rules, questions about women’s long-term commitment, and add to that fewer shared interests or experiences and it equals more work in mentoring women than men. But I didn’t get this support. Men and women receive different training around support — women are encouraged to ask for help, and men are taught to resist seeking help (e.g., asking for unfamiliar territory). So men are sometimes resentful about being asked to support women, especially as it relates to formal mentoring programs, since they feel they didn’t receive that kind of “special treatment.” In fact, the coaching they received did look different — it was more informal.

3. Intimacy and Sexuality. How men and women react to closeness in relationships at work. This intimacy and sexuality can be displayed in three ways. • Aloof. Relationships at this end of the continuum are distant and cool. • Offensive. Relationships at this end are too close and hold the potential for sexual harassment. • Colleague. Relationships where men and women can relate comfortably and respectfully as colleagues. Once we understand the definition of intimacy and sexuality we must also attempt to recognize how gender reacts to this intimacy and sexuality. Table 6.4 shows some of the differences.

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TABLE 6.4 Gender Theme – Intimacy and Sexuality How Intimacy/Sexuality Affects Women

How Intimacy/Sexuality Affects Men

Misunderstood offers of friendship. Women are raised in a world that emphasizes “connection.” In this world, networks of friends are developed through intimacy — by sharing personal information and encouraging others to reciprocate. When women attempt to build relationships with men in the workplace, sometimes this extension of intimacy is interpreted by men not as an offer of friendship, but as an indication of sexual interest. This confusion is compounded because men and women, in general, have different expectations about friendships. For men, their friendships with other men are often conducted at a friendly, but not intimate, level. Intimacy is something they reserve for their significant other or sexual partners. Women, however, tend to experience intimacy with their sexual partners, and with their close friends. In the workplace, men sometimes respond to women’s attempts to build friendships through intimacy by backing off (shunning the relationship) or by moving too close (sensing interest that is not there). Both responses make it difficult for women to find ways to network with and develop rapport with men. Concerns about advances and appearance. Women are often concerned about being seen as a “potential date” rather than a “potential partner.” This sometimes leads them to remain distant so as to avoid any possible misinterpretation (but does not allow them to build relationships in a “relationship business”). Or, they may do everything possible to downplay their appearance and femininity, hoping to attract as little attention as possible.

Confusion over ground rules. The old rules don’t work anymore, and since women don’t even see eye to eye about what the new rules are, men sometimes give up trying to understand them. For instance, what about closed door meetings, a pat on the back, dinner for two on the road? And given that many dating relationships have started at work, what if you really are interested in somebody? Talking about these things is awkward, so men sometimes find it easier to opt for some safe “distance” in relationships with women in the office. This leaves men with the feeling that they’re “walking on eggshells.” Sexual harassment. This is a swamp. Lack of understanding about what constitutes sexual harassment provides even more rationale for keeping a “safe” distance. As a result, the comfort level and familiarity that men develop with other men (and that some staffing decisions are based on) does not develop in the same way between men and women. Spousal backlash and office gossip. If a male and female colleague do develop a more personal relationship, as sometimes happens when people work together intensely on long projects, how will this be viewed back at home? And what about the repercussions of office speculation?

4. Accountability. Level of responsibility willing to take when confronted with difficult situation around gender issues. This accountability can be displayed in three ways. • Collusion. Not speaking up for inappropriateness or dismissing concerns without consideration. • Overreaction. Letting others know how you feel, but with little sensitivity to their perspective or their feelings.

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• Conscious choice. Providing straightforward feedback about your feelings and preferences in a constructive way. Once we understand the definition of accountability we must also attempt to recognize how gender reacts to this accountability. Table 6.5 shows some of the differences.

TABLE 6.5 Gender Themes — Accountability How Does Accountability Affect Women?

How Does Accountability Affect Men

How women collude. Women collude by being silent, by laughing along with something that is inappropriate, or by aligning themselves with men and being an active part of the problem (e.g., “The most sexist jokes in our office are told by a woman”). Most often, silence is the collusion of choice. Price for silence. When the work environment does not support honest discussion, silence often feels like the path of least resistance for women, and it “protects” friendships with men. The price they pay is having to put up with inappropriate behavior, which can have serious career repercussions. Silence does not give men the benefit of the doubt, and since it is unlikely that things will get better, it can ultimately lead to women leaving the company. Price for speaking up. Women who do choose to speak up also take risks: the risk of jeopardizing relationships and feeling like an “outsider,” the risk of getting a reputation as someone who is difficult to work with, and the risk of not being believed or of being wrong (e.g., “How do I know if I’m being treated this way because I’m a woman or for other reasons?”). After tolerating a bad situation for a while, women sometimes go straight from silence to overreaction.

How men collude. Men’s collusion often takes a more combative form. “If it happens to me, it isn’t a gender issue. If it doesn’t happen to me, then it doesn’t exist. Therefore, gender issues don’t exist at our company. And women who say they do have a chip on their shoulder and expect unfair advantages.” Risk informal membership. Men also collude through silence; if they speak up to defend women they may quickly find themselves feeling like outsiders. Also, when women don’t seem to mind, men wonder why they should speak up. When it’s men only, men are likely to be in all male groups; may be reluctant to call other men on inappropriate behavior.

DIVERSITY Diversity means respect and valuing all types of individual differences. If we appreciate differences, we can communicate and understand each other better. We tend to think of diversity as mostly in terms of multiculturalism, but there are other differences such as regional, religious, gender, and educational backgrounds. Even the individual preferences for communication style that we just addressed are a form of diversity.

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We all must recognize that diversity is important to globalization, and also to empowering employees and achieving win/win outcomes. If we are open to diversity, we are more likely to take advantage of individual difference in a new and positive way that capitalizes on the strengths of these differences. This recognition is of paramount importance when black belts are conducting their projects in the designated part of their organization. They depend on someone else’s knowledge about the specific process under study as much as on their own technical knowledge. Without good interpersonal skills and communication techniques they are doomed to fail.

COMMUNICATION AND CULTURAL DIVERSITY Differences in the way we communicate are influenced frequently by the culture in which we were raised. For instance, in North America, we tend to favor a direct, tothe-point approach. We may think or say: “If you mean ‘no,’ say ‘no.’” Asian cultures, on the other hand, may find such directness rude. Misunderstanding can occur because of cultural differences in how we use language — word choice, style, approach, etc. Being aware of the potential for these misunderstandings can help us be more effective in our communication in the workplace. Recognizing that cultural or individual differences may get in the way of our reaching shared understanding is the first step in improving our ability to adapt to cultural communication differences. Brake and Walker (1995) have generated the following list of potential traps for misunderstanding: • • • • • • • • • • • •

Courtesy Sequencing Phasing Objectivity Specificity Assertiveness Candor Simplicity Accents Telephone “Walking on Eggs” “Hot Buttons”

CONCLUSION The communication process is complex but vital to effective problem solving in a team environment and meaningful personal relationships. It is a process that is never really mastered; one can continually improve on it. It requires certain attitudes, knowledge, techniques, common sense, and a willingness to try. Effective communication happens when we have achieved sufficient clarity or accuracy to handle each situation adequately.

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REFERENCES Brake, T. and Walker, D. (1995), Doing Business Internationally, Princeton Training Press, Princeton, NJ. Kelman, H. C. (1958), Compliance, identification, and internalization: Three processes of attitude change, J. Conflict Resolution, 2(1), 51. Kelman, H. C. and Hamilton, V. D. (1989), Crimes of Obedience: Toward a Social Psychology of Authority and Responsibility, Yale University Press, New Haven, CT. Laslo, E. (1978), The Inner Limits of Mankind, Pergamon Press, Oxford, 16. Lull, P. E., Funk, F. F., and Piersol, D. T. (1955), What communications means to the corporation president, Adv. Manage., 20, 17. Nichols, R. G. (1952), Listening Is a Ten Part Skill, Enterprise Publications, Chicago. Reik, T. (1972), Listening with the Third Ear, Pyramid, New York.

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY Aldenstein, M. E. (1984), Business Communication, Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich, San Diego. Axtell, R. (1991), Gestures: The Do’s and Taboos of Body Language around the World, John Wiley & Sons, New York. Beebe, S. and Masterson, J. (1994), Communication in Small Groups, Harper Collins, New York. Bolton, R. (1979), People Skills: How to Assert Yourself, Listen to Others and Resolve Conflicts, Simon & Schuster, New York. Burley-Allen, M. (1995), Listening: The Forgotten Skill, John Wiley & Sons, New York. Covey, S. (1989), The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Simon & Schuster, New York. Cox, T. (1994), Cultural Diversity in Organizations, Berret-Kohler, San Francisco. Decker, B. (1983), The Art of Communication, Crisp Publications, Inc., Los Altos, CA. DeFleur, M., Kearney, P., and Plax, T. (1993), Mastering Communication in Contemporary America, Mayfield, London/Toronto. Donohue, W. with Kolt, R. (1993), Managing Interpersonal Conflict, Sage, Newbury Park, CA. Helgesen, S. (1990), The Female Advantage: Women’s Ways of Leadership, Currency/Double Day, New York. Gray, J. (1992), Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus, Harper/Collins, New York. Gudykunst, W., Ting-Toomey, S., Sudweeks, S., and Stewart, L. (1995), Building-Bridges: Interpersonal Skills for a Changing World, Houghton Mifflin, Boston. Hargie, O. (1986), A Handbook of Communication Skills, UP, New York. Harre, R. and Parrot, G., Eds. (1996), The Emotions: Social, Cultural and Physical Dimensions, Sagbe, Thousand Oaks, CA. Henderson, G. (1984), Cultural Diversity in the Workplace, Praeger, New York. Knapp, M. and Vangelisti, A. (1992), Interpersonal Communication and Human Relationships, Allyn and Bacon, Boston. Larkin, T. J. and Larkin, S. (1995), Communicating Change: Winning Employee Support for New Business Goals, American Management Association, New York. Lyle, J. (1990), Body Language, BCA, London. Mapes, M. J. (1994), The Art of Fielding Questions with Finesse, Mapes and Associates, Kalamazoo, Ml. Meiss, R. (1991), Effective Listening Skills, Career Tracks Publishers, Boulder, CO. Montgomery, R. (1981), Listening Made Easy, A.MACOM, New York.

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Morris, D. (1994), Bodytalk: The Meaning of Human Gestures, Crown Trade, New York. O’Hair, D., Friedrich, G., Weimann, J., and Weimann, M. (1995), Competent Communication, St. Martins, New York. Robbins, H. (1992), How to Speak and Listen Effectively, American Management Association, New York. Samovar, L. and Porter, R. ( 1995), Communication between Cultures, 2nd ed., Wadsworth, Belmont, CA. Swets, P. (1983), The Art of Talking So That People Will Listen, Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA. Tannen, D. (1994), Talking from 9 to 5: Women and Men in the Workplace: Language, Sex and Power, Avon, New York. Tannen, D. (1986), That’s Not What I Meant: How Conversational Style Makes or Breaks Relationships, Ballentine, New York. Tannen, D. (1990), You Just Don’t Understand: Women and Men in Conversation, Ballentine, New York. Walton., D. (1983), Are You Communicating?, McGraw Hill, New York. Weaver, G., Ed. (1994), Culture, Communication and Conflict, Intercultural Press, Yarmouth, ME.

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Team Development

In this chapter we address the issues of team development. Because the topic of team has been addressed in many ways and from different points of view, we have chosen to answer specific questions regarding teams and their development. Our focus is always from the quality point of view, and, as such, we feel that the reader will have an easier time assimilating the information in their organization.

THE CONCEPT OF TEAMS IS BASED ON PARTICIPATION PHILOSOPHY. WHAT IS PARTICIPATION PHILOSOPHY? Participation philosophy is a set of concepts predicated on a philosophical conviction, which is based on the notion that the vast majority of people can make significant contributions to business, and both human and social endeavors, if they are provided the opportunity, knowledge, support, and reinforcement to do so. This, obviously, has considerable appeal, since it assumes that most people want to work well, enjoy doing their work well, and are uniquely qualified to participate in establishing how the work should be done — because they are the ones doing it. Another reason why this philosophy works is the fact that the leaders are saying to their fellow workers: “We want you to participate because we value your opinions, your experience, and your desire to do a good job.” Finally, it works because it is a synergistic approach to doing things and in practice this means: • • • • • •

Two heads are better than one Participants in change understand the change better Participation clears the communication channels Participation reduces employee fears Participation increases morale Participation increases the chances of success




A team is a group of people trained and working together to accomplish a task. A team is based on the concept of synergy, which is defined as the total is greater than the sum of the individuals. In essence then, a team is nothing more than people working Together where Everyone Accomplishes More. A team is necessary, especially with modern technology, because of specialization and the accelerated knowledge that is gained on a daily basis. No one individual is capable of knowing all there is to know about a particular item. No one individual is capable of comprehending the “whole.” A team, on the other hand, through 199

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synergism and collaboration is able to accomplish much more than one individual could do in the same time.






There have been many success stories in the literature. However, here we will identify some of the most talked about success stories. • Xerox is 30% more productive than conventional plants • Procter & Gamble gets 30 to 40% higher productivity in self-directed work team plants • Tektronix Inc. produces in 3 days what took 14 days • General Motors reports 20 to 40% productivity gains • General Mills is capable of scheduling, operating, and maintaining machinery with no managers. Their productivity has increased by 13%. • Aid Association for Lutherans raised productivity by 20% and cut processing time by 75% • Shenandoah Life processes 50% more application and customer requests using 10% fewer people Teams and self-directed teams have been used by the following variety of organizations and many more. Organization

Year Started


Year Started

Boeing Caterpillar Champion International Cummins Engine Digital Equipment Ford

1987 1986 1985 1973 1982 1982

General Electric General Motors LTV Steel Procter & Gamble A. O. Smith Tektronix

1985 1975 1985 1962 1987 1983

What is interesting about these companies is the fact that they all have independently reported benefits and/or improvements in the following areas: • • • • • •

Productivity Streamlining of operations and personnel Flexibility Quality Commitment Customer satisfaction






There are five elements on which the team architecture should focus. They are

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5.


Positive impact on the business Processes Employees Customers Information and strategies

The relationship of these five elements is shown in Figure 7.1. The reader will notice that the result of the relationship between processes and employees is IMPROVEMENT. On the other hand, the relationship between employees and customers is COMMITMENT. The result of both improvement and commitment will result in the customers’ LOYALTY.

FIGURE 7.1 The strategic architecture of teams.

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE PREDOMINANT INDICATORS IN FORMING TEAMS? Usually the organization will identify the pulse of the organization through need assessment, audits, surveys, personal interaction, and/or personal interviews. In any case, the results of these endeavors will generate a list of information. Based on that information, the organization will act accordingly. In Tables 7.1 and 7.2 we provide a list of symptoms and causes that may contribute to the need of forming teams, based on obsolescence of either skill and/or technology.

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TABLE 7.1 Some Symptoms of Potential Worker Obsolescence Behavioral


Tension Frustration Boredom Conflict Defensive Pessimism Depression Hostility Low morale Low self esteem Health disabilities Bitterness towards organization and others Being resistant to change

Gradual lowering of job performance Inability to provide creative answers and suggestions No attempt to improve skills and knowledge or to grow Avoidance of goal setting Passed over for promotions Exclusion from meetings Name left off of circulation lists Increasing difficulty in meeting deadlines Assignment of co-workers to more challenging jobs Rising hiring standards of position Slowing in rate of career progress Retirement on company time

TABLE 7.2 Potential Causes of Worker Obsolescence Technological Substitute products Telecommunications Information explosion Technology explosion: robotics/computers Inventory techniques CAD/CAM techniques Distribution techniques Purchasing techniques Production techniques Miniaturization







Values Knowledge Motivation Physical ability Loyalty Stress Experience Initiative Creativity Adaptability

Organizational structure Corporate structure Position Corporate strategy Performance expectations Performance measures Co-workers The job itself Limited resources for the task Lack of long-term goals


No team exists without problems. But some teams, particularly those who have learned to counter negative team dynamics, seem to be especially good at preventing many typical team problems. How close a team comes to this ideal depends on a very simple recipe. The recipe for a successful team may be summarized in ten steps. They are Clarity in Team Goals A team works best when everyone understands its purpose and goals. If there is confusion or disagreement, they work to resolve the issues. Ideally the team:

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• Agrees on its mission, or works together to resolve disagreement. • Sees the mission as workable or, if necessary, narrows the mission to a workable size. • Is clear about the larger project goals and about the purpose of individual steps, meetings, discussion, and decisions. Indicators of potential trouble: • • • •

Frequent switches in directions Frequent arguments about what the team should do next Feelings that the project is too big or inappropriate Excessive questioning of each decision or action taken

An Improvement Plan An improvement plan helps provide a map for the direction of the team. It also helps the team determine what assistance, training, materials, and other resources are needed. Ideally the team: • • • •

Has a documented improvement plan. Utilizes the tools such as flowcharts to keep team on target. Refers to these documents when discussing what directions to take next. Knows what resources and training are needed throughout the project and plans accordingly.

Indicators of potential trouble: • Uncertainty about the team’s direction • When one step is completed there is little or no idea of what to do next • The team plunges ahead, hoping to stumble across improvement ideas Clearly Defined Roles Teams operate most efficiently if they tap everyone’s talents, and all members understand their duties and know who is responsible for what issues and tasks. Ideally the team: • Has formally designated roles (all members know what is expected of everyone, especially the leader, facilitator, technical expert, and on-call consultant). • Understands which roles belong to which person and which are shared, and how the shared roles are switched (for instance, using an agreed upon procedure to rotate the facilitator). • Uses each member’s talents, and involves everyone in team activities.

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Indicators of potential trouble: • Roles and duty assignments that result from a pecking order • Confusion over who is responsible for what • People getting stuck with the same tedious chores Clear Communication Good discussions depend on how well information is passed between team members. Ideally team members should: • • • •

Speak with clarity and directness. Be succinct, avoiding long anecdotes and examples. Listen actively, explore rather than debate each speaker’s ideas. Avoid interrupting and talking when others are speaking.

Indicators of potential trouble: • Poor speaking skills. • Members are unable to say what they really feel, cautiousness; lots of tentative, conditional statements (do you think, maybe, that sometimes it might be). • Opinions expressed as questions. • Plops, statements that receive no acknowledgment or response. • Bulling statements (what you don’t understand is … how many of you do not know what I mean). • Discounts (That is not important, what is worse is…). Beneficial Team Behaviors Ideally, team members should: • • • • • • • • •

Initiate discussions Seek information and opinions Suggest procedures for reaching a goal Summarize Test for consensus Keep the discussion from digressing Compromise and be creative in resolving differences Refer to documentation and data Praise and correct others with equal fairness; accept both praise and complaints

Indicators of potential trouble: • Failure to use discussion skills

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• Reliance on one person to manage the discussion • People repeating points Well-Defined Decision Procedures You can tell a lot about how well a team is run by watching its decision making process. A team should always be aware of the different ways it reaches a decision. Ideally the team should: • Discuss how decisions will be made, such as when to take a poll, when to decide by consensus, etc. • Decide important issues by consensus • Use data as the basis of decisions Indicators of potential trouble: • Conceding to opinions that are presented as facts with no supporting data • Decision by a minority • Too frequent recourse to majority rules or averaging out differences Balanced Participation Since every team member has a stake in the team’s achievements, everyone should participate in discussions and decisions, share commitment to the project’s success, and contribute their talents. Ideally the team should: • Have reasonably balanced participation, with all members contributing to most discussions. • Build on members’ natural styles of participation. Indicators of potential trouble: • Some team members have too much influence; others, too little. • Some members speak only about a certain topic, while others remain quiet and do not even ask questions. Established Ground Rules Ideally the team should: • Have open discussions regarding ground rules, where the group discusses what behaviors are acceptable and unacceptable. • Openly state and acknowledge norms (we all agreed to decide the issue this way), and continually review those norms. Indicators of potential trouble: • Recurring differences about what is acceptable or unacceptable behavior.

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Awareness of the Team Process Ideally, all the members should be aware of the team process — how the team works together — along with paying attention to the content of the meeting and/or project. Ideally, team members should: • Be sensitive to nonverbal communication. • Choose to work on team process issues and occasionally designate a team member or outsider to officially observe and report on group interactions at meetings. Indicators of possible trouble: • Pushing ahead on the task when there are nonverbal signs of resistance or confusion. • Inattention to obvious nonverbal clues and shifts in the team mood. Use the Scientific Approach Teams that use a scientific approach, relying on good data for problem solving and decision making, have a much easier time arriving at permanent solutions to problems. The scientific approach insists that opinions be supported by, or at least defer to, data. Ideally the team should: • Demand to see data before making decisions and question anyone who tries to act on hunches alone. • Use basic statistical tools to investigate problems and to gather and analyze data. Indicators of potential trouble: • Team members insist they do not need data because their intelligence and/or experience are enough to tell them what the problems and solutions are. • Wild stabs at supposed solutions; jumping to conclusions. • Hasty action, a “ready, fire, aim!” approach.






There are two major differences between a group and a team. The differences are in the structure and decision-making capacity. Both groups and teams are made up of individuals. However, the group is guided by a chairperson and the decisions are made through majority voting. On the other hand, a team is guided by a facilitator and the decisions are made through consensus. A group may be developed into a team with appropriate training.

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Just by placing a few persons together does not make them a team. It takes a lot of work to make a group into a team. In fact, the transition from group to team is a process. That process is generally accepted as a three-step process. That process may be summarized as: Orientation This step may be called a “groping” stage, in the sense that there is a general lack of understanding about the purpose and direction of the group. Each individual tries to find his or her place in the group; the group is “individual centered.” One may say that this step is the most confusing phase of the process. Confusion evolves around: • Why are we here? • What is to be accomplished? • How will we proceed? Work issues (must be addressed, enabling the team members to set a course of action) • Those things having to do with getting the job done • Planning • Organizing • Implementing • Following-up • Establish goals • Set priorities Personal issues (each member’s level of participation in the group) • Those things dealing with how people • Think • Feel • Respond to one another • How much will I involve others in the team? • How much will I involve myself in the team? Strategies (dealing with the orientation phase) • Break the ice — get acquainted, relaxed • Solicit active participation Power and Influence This step may be called a “griping and grasping” stage, in the sense that there is a period of discouragement, conflict, and frustration; members find it difficult to adjust

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to their places and roles in the group. However, as time goes on we find that the group begins to find harmony, first by avoiding conflict and then by beginning to listen and observe and soon begin feeling more comfortable. This step is the most volatile stage. The volatility is centered around the following issues: Work issues • Establish role — who does what • Assign responsibilities — how tasks will get done Personal issues • How much control do I want to exert over the team • How much control will I permit others to have over me Strategies (dealing with the power and influence stage) • Dealing with differences • Listening to others • Tolerating others’ opinions • Negotiating • Keeping an open attitude • Managing emotions • Expressing what you feel • Expressing what you think • Being sensitive to others and their feelings Team Production and Feedback (Most Cohesive Phase) This step may be called a “grouping” stage, in the sense that the group develops a sense of purpose and begins working together. Members begin responding to and clarifying one another’s ideas. Members give and receive support. Leaders emerge and efficient work begins. Specific issues in this step are Work issues • Follow through with execution of responsibilities (getting things done) • Follow up (making sure things are being done right) Personal issues • Emotional support (how much help, reinforcement, constructive feedback members are willing to give and receive) Strategies (to maintain high level of quality of efforts and good feelings. Strategies always deal with internal recognition as opposed to external recognition.) • Reward performance (feedback) • Building a team spirit Creating symbols, slogans that are practical, doable, measurable and representing team and member effort • Sharing of feelings • Dealing with team or team member needs and concerns

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As we already have mentioned, teams need a supportive environment and proper “diet” to develop normally. In addition, they need some basic prerequisites which include: 1. Clear mission about specific results to be attained, the time frame for the work to be completed, the method of measuring team performance, and the team’s authority to use resources and take action. 2. Defined reporting relationship, in which the team is accountable to a specific manager who reviews the team’s progress against agreed upon milestones and provides resources and support needed for team tasks. 3. Team composition; consideration should be given to member’s knowledge, skill, ability, and experience appropriate for the team assignment. 4. Location; ideally, member’s working area. 5. Access to a meeting room where the team members can meet and discuss the issues and concerns about the project at hand. 6. Size; the team should be made up of seven plus or minus two members. The ideal is seven. Larger groups present difficulties in a variety of ways including coordinating activities, meeting times, facilities, and so on. 7. Mechanism for reward and recognition of team accomplishments within the organization, and for individual contribution to teamwork.






In the question on the recipe for a successful team, we identified three primary steps in team development. With this question we want to emphasize the fact that the team development process is not a linear one. In fact, it may very well overlap. However, there are four distinct phases. They are 1. Preparation for start-up. The steering team forms, team structure is defined, charter (mission) is developed, and an implementation plan is proposed. This stage is sometimes called the forming stage. The challenge here is to understand the need for change. 2. The start-up. Management teams form, receive training, and employ process management methodology. This stage is sometimes called the storming stage. The challenge here is to understand and begin to understand the need for change. 3. Transition to continuous improvement. Natural work teams train in team skills, process management; key systems develop (voice of the customer, benchmarking, quality partnering, innovation). This stage is sometimes called the norming stage. The challenge in here is to make the “team” work and keep its effectiveness current, as well as sustain enthusiasm.

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4. Continuous improvement. Organizational culture and system dedicated to total customer satisfaction through people, processes, leadership, and teams. This stage is sometimes called the performing stage. The challenge here is to keep continually improving even under changing conditions. Changing conditions may be due to rotational duty of members, reassignment of others, changing of goal priorities, and so on. Each of the phases brings more or less predictable differences in • • • • •

Issues for teamwork Individual experiences Team interaction Milestones in team building Distress symptoms

WHAT ARE SOME CONCERNS Issues for teamwork:

Individual experience: Team interaction:

Milestones in team building:

Distress symptoms:

WHAT ARE SOME CONCERNS Issues for teamwork:

Individual experience: Team interaction:



Focusing and commitment. Finding shared purpose and goals, shared expectations, individual fit with team, commitment to belong to the team. Uncertainty. Why am I here? Who else is here? What will we do? How do I fit? Questioning and polite exchange. Individual probing for shared commitment, common interests, fit with team and task. Superficial, reserved exchanges. Dependence on leader. Individual commitment to be on the team. Positive working relations, including understood and shared expectations; ability for mutual influence; basis for trust: perception of competency, consistency, integrity. Rejection of individuals by the team, or of the team by an individual. Confusion about the team’s purpose. Apathy. Mistrust. IN THE


Defining roles, clarifying team purpose. Focus on leader role and member expectations, team charter and external reporting relationship, meeting place and times. Roller coaster highs and lows. Alternating anxiety, stress, satisfaction, and apprehension. Challenge, conflict, and resolution. Disagreement over leadership, leader and member roles. Confrontation of personal preferences and differences. Counterdependency on leader.

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Milestones in team building:

Distress symptoms:

WHAT ARE SOME CONCERNS Issues for teamwork: Individual experience: Team interaction:

Milestones in team building:

Distress symptoms:

WHAT ARE SOME CONCERNS Issues for teamwork: Individual experience: Team interaction:

Milestones in team building:

Distress symptoms:


Consensus decision making. Leader role. Individual differences: identify and discuss. Basic process check (formal). Meeting agendas. Brainstorming (formal) and priority ranking. Autocratic leader with strong dependency or counterdependency, hostility toward leader. Multiple monologues. Stereotyping/criticizing individual differences. Individual withdrawal/dominance. Hidden agendas. Sarcasm or cynicism. IN THE


Organizing and within-team communication. Focus on team purpose, procedures, norms. Belonging, attachment, enjoyment. Building consensus and operating procedures, cooperation, active listening, agreement on team purpose and goals. Leader–member interdependency. Team purpose statement (mission). Operating procedures. Constructive feedback to individuals. Defined roles, including facilitator. Flexible process checks. Force field analysis and problem-solving tools. Silent dissent. Willful confusion, malicious compliance. Group-think. Mechanical process checks. Sham teamwork. “Real” meetings in hallway. IN THE


Performing, producing, delivering, external relations. Energy, enthusiasm, pride of accomplishment, fellowship. Cooperation; task-focus and drive, with constant attention to interpersonal process; shared leadership, open sharing, straight talk. Reconciled purpose statement with manager. Individual task assignments. Measurements of processes for which the team is responsible. Routine feedback. Self-correcting process. Isolation from manager, other teams, customers. Overload. Boredom with the task; “stale” feeling. Burnout.

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Every team formed, by design, should and must have goals and objectives. These goals and objectives have to be articulated through some of the following: • • • • • •

Better communications Common goals Better teamwork Better understanding of our responsibilities and problems encountered Gain mutual trust and confidence in one and another Improve (personally and organizationally)

A summary of the expectations may be seen in Figure 7.2.








It seems that teams are everywhere. One may even say that teams are in vogue. However, there are some basic characteristics that set the “best” and “worst” apart. A summary of the literature reveals that at least the following are the common ingredients that will define the “best” and “worst” teams. Best Teams: • Two way communication • Positive reinforcement • Cooperation • Ownership • Common goals • Trust and friendliness • Established duties • Time to get problems solved • Confidence • Idea sharing • Pride and enthusiasm • Positive leadership • Each carried responsibility • Willingness to change • Respect and trust • Well organized • Had a sense of accomplishment • High mutual respect in peer group • Clearly defined goals • Loyalty and dedication • Pride in group or organization • Trust • Teamwork • Communication

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FIGURE 7.2 Teams and expectations.

Team Development

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• Good planning • Problem solving ability Worst Teams: • No goals • Lack of trust • Poor communication • Lack of teamwork • Little or no planning • Lack of leadership • Autocratic leadership • Lack of understanding • Lack of commitment • No recognition • No meaning to meeting • No willingness to change • No defined responsibilities • Too many single efforts (no cooperation) • Own interest • One-upmanship • Finger pointing • Lack of organization • Poor adherence to rules • Poor participation • Not free to speak openly • Lack of loyalty • Lack of confidence






Just like there are best and worst characteristics that will define a given team, so there are some common elements that will define a successful team. Based on literature research, the following elements have been identified: Best Teams: • Common goals • Pride (espirit decorps) • Trust • Teamwork Worst Teams: • Lack of leadership • Lack of trust • No teamwork • Poor planning • Lack of organization • Poor communication

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CONSIDERING HUMAN BEHAVIOR, WHAT KINDS OF BEHAVIORS WILL HELP ATTAIN THE GOALS AND OBJECTIVES OF A TEAM? For the success and vitality of any team, the individual participant as well as the entire team must display certain behaviors that will more or less guarantee success. The behaviors are as follows: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Open mind Good listener Healthy discussion Honest — trust Respect for others Contributing Receptive to new ideas Spend necessary time Openness speak freely, willingness to “really” listen Trust Loyalty to your commitments Willingness to accept constructive criticism Be willing to discuss calmly Be willing to compromise Try to see the other person’s point of view Try to have positive attitudes Be willing to accept responsibility Try to do more than given share Don’t dwell on blame, but dwell on solutions

The team must also demonstrate patience, confidence, dedication, initiative, spirit, optimism, sincerity, trust, honesty, opinion, enthusiasm, motivation, commitment, loyalty, pride, optimism, reward, awareness, expediency, and ability.

CONSIDERING HUMAN BEHAVIOR, WHAT KINDS OF BEHAVIORS WILL HINDER THE GOALS AND OBJECTIVES OF A TEAM? Just as the positive behaviors will have an impact on the team as a whole, so will negative behaviors. The following is a list of some of these behaviors: • Not listening • Fire fighting as a policy (crisis to crisis) • Ill-defined goals • Changing priorities • Not being honest • Not willing to compromise • Not willing to discuss calmly • Does not try to see the other person’s point of view • Having a negative attitude

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• • • • • • • • •

Not willing to accept responsibility Doing up to, but not beyond, given share Rather than seeking solutions, only trying to fix blame Unwilling to learn Unwilling to change Noncontributing Not helpful Close minded Lack of concern

The unsuccessful team will demonstrate distrust, insincerity, pessimism, impatience, skepticism, noncommitment, as well as be autocratic, domineering, and preconceived.




A guidance team is the same as an executive steering committee, which is the same as a strategic management team, which is the same as a quality management board, and so on. In essence, a guidance team provides guidance and total support to the process action team (PAT). Under no circumstances is the guidance team: • A PAT. • “The” team that does the nitty-gritty of eliminating waste. • “The” team that identifies waste.






The basic obligations are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Identify the project goals — from an organizational perspective Prepare a mission statement — from an organizational perspective Determine needed resources Select the team leader Assign a facilitator Select the project team Empower the team for action






In order to improve the process, the guidance team should: 1. Meet regularly with the project improvement team. 2. Develop and improve systems that allow team members to bring about change. 3. When necessary, run interference for the project team. 4. Ensure that authorized changes made by the project team are followed up; implement changes the project team is not authorized to make.

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Team Development





A PAT is a group of people with special knowledge and skills who have been selected, by management, to improve their own work environment. They plan, design, develop, and implement their ideas in their own work environment. Quite often these teams are cross-functional and multidisciplined.




A QC is a small group of people doing similar work, meeting regularly — often one hour per week — to identify, analyze, and solve service quality problems. They usually meet in or near their work area. Membership is strictly voluntary and anyone who wishes to join should be welcomed as a member. Each person must also feel free to decline membership.




A group of individuals who are committed to achieving common organizational objectives. They have the power to do many things within their own work environment, including: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Hire Fire Discipline Direct Schedule Perform Train Interact with others Plan Allocate resources Coach Evaluate Setting priorities Organize Take corrective action Solve problems

so that, improvement of the process occurs. The improvement results may be either economic or motivational. This group of individuals usually is made up of 6 to 18 highly trained team members with authority and responsibility to turn out a well-defined segment of finished work. They are really more than teams, since they have: • More resources • A wider range of cross-functional skills

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• Much greater decision making authority • Better access to information



The individual is very unique in any organization. However, his or her effectiveness depends upon the collaboration that the individual develops with his or her supervisor, peers, and/or subordinates. The better the collaboration, the more the effectiveness. This is shown in Figure 7.3. The figure shows the interrelation and dependence as well as expectations and skills that are necessary for an employee to function effectively in a given organizational structure.

FIGURE 7.3 The human relationship in the organization.

WHAT IS THE “NEW” RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE INDIVIDUAL AND THAT OF THE ORGANIZATION? The individual through his or her own intrinsic motivation develops an attitude of learning and as a consequence he or she becomes more effective in the team dynamics and interrelationships, Figure 7.4 shows the learning model, Figure 7.5 shows the process of developing interrelations, and Figure 7.6 shows the factors influencing the team performance. In the three figures, the role of the individual is very important to the outcome. On the other hand, in the traditional organization system, the individual — more often than not — was always subservient to the supervisor and/or management. In addition, Figure 7.7 shows that the team member (the individual) is indeed the core of the team relationship and as a consequence his contribution is sought, valued, and indispensable.

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Team Development

FIGURE 7.4 A learning model.

FIGURE 7.5 The process of developing interrelationships.


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FIGURE 7.6 Factors influencing the team.

FIGURE 7.7 Team relationships.

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In this chapter we address the implementation process of teams. Just as in the last chapter, we have chosen the Q & A approach to answer specific questions regarding teams and their implementation in a given organization. Our focus is always from the quality point of view, and, as such, we feel that the reader will have an easier time assimilating the information in their organization on an as-needed basis.




There are at least three reasons under which we should use teams. They are 1. The opportunity is obvious and solution(s) is simple. The better you get at studying processes, the more problems you will find that need fixing. Generally, you (person in charge of problem) should consult others to explore the problems in depth and collect data to make sure appropriate solutions have been developed. But there are times when a problem is easily understood and fixed. In these situations, you should simply think through the eight-step model to make sure you have covered all the bases and go ahead and empower your staff to make the change. For example, you should: • Make sure you and your staff understand the full process • Make sure you know what is causing the problem • Understand the ramifications of the solution You may want to ask yourself the following questions: • • • • •

What is the worst result if this solution does not work? How easily will it be to undo the change? Will this delay other actions? How expensive will this change be in terms of money and time? Is the disruption of the environment and the inconvenience to employees worth it?

If it looks like the solution you propose could have substantial negative effects if it fails to work, take the time to explore other alternatives and consult staff. If it is simple to put in place and easily undone, go ahead and have them try it out.


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2. The opportunity is not so obvious and the solution is not so simple. In this case you will need to further understand the process and create solutions that will eliminate the root causes. The gathering of employees into a team that is knowledgeable of the process and/or creative will help to solve the problem. The size and nature of the team should depend upon the process to be studied and the possible solutions. If you can employ the eight-step model with only minor assistance, you may just want to coordinate select employees who can enact the solution(s) as you or your staff think through the model. Caution should be adhered to, though, for incomplete information or resistance to solutions may cause your efforts to be in vain. If you foresee staff resistance, try your best to get them involved from the beginning. 3. The opportunity is complex as is the solution. For this scenario, you will need to gather a team that is representative of the process to be studied. The composition of the team — its members — must be the owners of the problem. By involving the proper employees as the team journeys through the eight-step model, you will be able to thoroughly analyze the process as well as implement improvements suggested by the team.




The eight-step model is an approach for process improvement. The steps are 1. Focus. Select and define the process improvement opportunity. a. Select the opportunity b. Define the opportunity c. Justify the use of the team 2. Examine. Examine the process and customer requirements to determine the highest magnitude problem. a. Review the opportunity statement b. Determine the customer requirements c. Define the process d. Measure conformance to requirements e. Select the most important problem 3. Diagnose. Determine through data the root cause of the problem. a. Formulate theories of root causes b. Test theories — data collection c. Determine the root causes 4. Prescribe. Develop and recommend solutions that eliminate the root cause(s).

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a. Develop alternative solutions b. Evaluate each alternative c. Select the most appropriate solution 5. Anticipate. Forecast the outcome of the recommended solution(s) and develop to “sell” the solution(s). a. Review the root cause(s) and their relative contributions to outcome and quality problem b. Calculate expected improvement in outcome c. Forecast other impacts of solution d. Translate benefits and tactics to appeal to target groups 6. Treat. Implement the solutions and manage the required change. a. Develop an action plan b. Communicate the plan and update status to those affected c. Implement the planned actions 7. Monitor. Measure the impact and determine gains and reasons from expected performance. a. Gather and chart required data b. Analyze variation from goal c. Take corrective actions to obtain expected results 8. Refocus. Ensure the gains hold and decide where further improvement is needed a. Present team report b. Decide follow-up activities i. Institutionalize the current changes 1. Define orientation process 2. Document policies and procedures 3. Identify person in charge (point person) ii. Move on… 1. Problem solve within the same process in the department 2. Problem solve within the same process but beyond the department 3. Move on to another process improvement within the department c. Recognize team member accomplishments d. Publicize results to all Special note. This eight-step model is not to be confused with the 8D problemsolving model used in the automotive industry. The two models are completely different and serve different objectives. Whereas the 8D focuses on problem resolution on the root cause level, this model focuses on the team approach and what is expected of the team.

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There are two major purposes for the use of criteria when selecting an opportunity. The first purpose is to distinguish the vital few opportunities, so that the most workable and worthwhile project is selected. Once the project has been selected, the criteria are also valuable in planning for any barriers that may need to be addressed prior to getting the project started. Workable criteria can be described as criteria that help judge whether the resources are available to complete the project. Workable criteria also help to identify barriers that may limit the ability to study and/or improve the problem. Worthwhile criteria can be described as criteria that help to judge whether the project can be completed in a reasonable time frame with a reasonable amount of effort. Worthwhile criteria also help to make sure the improvements and benefits that result from the project outweigh the costs. The following is a partial list of the criteria with the type noted in parentheses: • Chronic: The problem has been awaiting solution for a long time (worthwhile). • Feasible: There is a good likelihood of improvements within a reasonable time frame (workable). • Significant: The end result should be sufficiently useful to merit attention and recognition (worthwhile). • Measurable: The process should be measurable in technological and monetary terms (workable). • Return on investment: Is it worth the time and resources that will be required to solve it? (worthwhile) • Amount of potential improvement: Is the potential for improvement there? (worthwhile) • Urgency: Is this timely? (worthwhile) • Ease of technological solution: Will a vast technological solution be the result? (worthwhile and workable) • Health of product line and/or business and/or process: Will the opportunity be cancelled and/or closed in the near future? (worthwhile) • Probable resistance to change: Will the resistance be manageable? (workable) • Interest within the department: Will people want to study and/or improve the process? Do they care? (workable) • The process is in transition: It’s in a state of change at the current or near future time (workable and worthwhile). • Size of the opportunity: Will the team be studying a process or a system full of many processes? (workable) • Control of the process: The process is within the department and does not involve other areas with which the department does not have authority (workable).

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• Opportunity selected based on data: Data was used (surveys, interviews, indicators, or other data collection) to determine magnitude of problem (worthwhile).






The opportunity statement is a clear statement that identifies and establishes the following: 1. 2. 3. 4.

Identifies the process for improvement Identifies the customer needs that are not met Identifies the magnitude of the opportunity Identifies the monitoring indicator that represents the theme of the opportunity 5. Establishes any team boundaries




An action plan is a table listing the steps needed to be completed prior to implementation, the people responsible to complete the steps, and the date by which the step is to be completed. It is an excellent way to organize the implementation of solutions, publicize those responsible to complete the steps, and determine a time frame for the completion of each step. There are three categories that typify implementation of solutions: 1. Actions to change the process 2. Actions to eliminate the barriers to implement 3. Actions to communicate the plan A typical action plan is shown in Figure 8.1.

FIGURE 8.1 Action plan.

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One of the first steps in the implementation process of teams is to understand the elements of team dynamics and their relationship to each other. Our recognition of these elements will help us to properly identify the appropriate and applicable education and training for the employees and the process. The elements of any team dynamics are two. First content, which demands knowledge, and second process, which demands knowledge and skill. Of course, with both these elements the relationships of the people involved have to be taken into consideration. The relationships are shown in Figure 8.2.

FIGURE 8.2 Elements of team dynamics and their relationships.




Just like there are positive influences in the formation of teams and their development, so there are negative influences that will contribute to its demise. The three most anti-team behaviors are 1. Concentrating primarily on individual achievement 2. Striving to move up a hierarchical organization structure 3. Building up and protecting seniority








Absolutely! Unless management is totally committed to the concept of team, everything will fall apart. The following list provides a set of minimum requirements for which management must see itself responsible. • • • •

Management Management Management Management

is is is is

motivating employees to peak performance leadership planning and organizing saving precious hours each day via time management

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• • • • • • • • • • •

Management Management Management Management Management Management Management Management Management Management Management


is is is is is is is is is is is

delegation communicating with impact evaluation on performance decision making forcing concentration on results producing activities building and managing effective teams coaching directing doing the “job” through others listening training

HOW CAN MANAGEMENT SHOW COMMITMENT? As we already have mentioned, it is imperative that the management must be totally committed in the pursuit of teams throughout the organization. There are three areas in which this commitment may show, and they are (1) in the assigning of a champion, (2) in the assessing the feedback results, and (3) in the designing of a monitoring study. 1. Assign champion. The champion is responsible for at least the following: Assign task force Develop communication plan Perform situation (need) analysis to: • Review company mission and standards • Identify key service providers • Identify secondary service providers • Identify existing measurement systems • Identify existing employee training, motivation, and incentive programs • Identify existing employee performance measurements Design qualitative study to: • Talk with employees • Talk with customers • Analyze interviews • Identify important issues and service attributes Design quantitative benchmark study with customers to: • Be active participant in the design sample • Be active participant in the design questionnaire • Interview customers (follow Sam Walton’s philosophy) • Analyze responses 2. Assess study results Identify needs for improvement through steering committee Implement change as needed Recognize high performance

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3. Design monitoring study Periodically interview customers Communicate results Implement change In addition, to these specific and quantifiable responsibilities, management must develop a credo of their own to support the changing organization. A typical credo may be the following: 1. Identify the strengths of employees, and build upon them. (Provide appropriate career path.) 2. Risk is a good thing. Encourage risk and do not punish initiative. 3. Always praise publicly, but always criticize privately. 4. Always seek out constructive criticism. 5. Give encouragement to those who persist. 6. Define plans in conjunction with objectives. Tasks will be based on plans of action to meet objectives. When appropriate the employee may play a significant role in planning the action plan. 7. Give employees tasks that are within their competence and resources, and that are attainable. 8. Give employees specific expectations of specific tasks, i.e., time, budget, and so on, provided they are within the parameters of item six. 9. Do not accept results below agreed upon standards unless there is a very good reason, i.e., strike, act of God, emergency planning. 10. Plan for resisters to change — for the benefit of the organization. If resistance occurs, appropriate measures will be identified and handled. Some specific actions that management members may do to demonstrate commitment are • • • • • • •

Create a vision and establish a mission Set quality improvement goals Identify the customers, their needs, wants, and expectations Start the improvement process Lead a team Serve on the steering committee Lead the improvement by: • Providing the opportunity to form active teams • Recognizing the need for training • Training the employees • Empowering the employees to resolve issues affecting and effecting their work • Encouraging the employees to participate without fear • Listening • Providing timely feedback • Supporting/directing/coaching the employees

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Implementation • • •


Communicate with upper management Have a plan to Plan – Do – Check (Study) – Act Reward and recognize teamwork, improvement, performance, and contribution to effectiveness/quality. (See also questions on total involvement and on commitment).




In order for the SDWT to grow and to be effective, the appropriate environment must be in place. To help the organization identify the appropriate environment, the following questions may be of help. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

Is everyone clear about quality, cost, and delivery standards? Are there procedures for modifying performance standards? Do the teams have ready access to feedback on their progress? Do policies and procedures support self-direction? Are technical support groups responsive to the teams? Do the teams have the freedom to experiment? Do the teams have ready access to training and consultation? Is there a clear road map of the transition? Can the teams communicate internally and with other teams?

Let us assume that all the above questions have been answered with a strong yes. Does this mean that the SDWT will be successful? The answer is categorically yes (see next question). • • • • •

Management commitment Employee empowerment Appropriate and applicable training A corporate vision Focus on process improvement






The following requirements are a minimum for a successful SDWT: • • • • • • • • • •

Top management commitment Trust Willingness to take risks Willingness to share information Enough time and resources Commitment to training Operations conducive to work teams Union participation, if applicable Access to help The use of caution

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In addition to these requirements, there are also some fundamental attributes that will contribute to the team success. They are shown in Table 8.1.

TABLE 8.1 Attributes for Success The Six Preimplementation Actions Clear objectives Definable path Measurable check points Training Procedures Focus on improvement



Respect for humanity Every job is valuable Sincerity, honesty, and integrity You get what you accept Expect what you desire

Don’t give up, be patient Be prepared Demonstrate persistence Practice at the top Attack facts not individuals Team accountability

While all these attributes are straightforward and self-explanatory, we must remind the reader that the preimplementation actions must be • • • • •

Flexible Fluid Lean Responsive Proactive






When embarking on a new SDWT program, there are questions and concerns about them. In implementing teams and, specifically, self-directed teams there are no exceptions. There are at least four fundamental concerns and related questions. They are 1. 2. 3. 4.

Awareness — What is it? Readiness — Where are we? Where do we want to be? Motivation — Do we want it? Can we change? Support — Will management support it? Will management delegate to the team appropriate and applicable authority, responsibility, and accountability?

In addition to these concerns, when dealing with SDWT, one must be cognizant of the fact that there may be other issues as well. In Table 8.2, we present a sample of some possibilities.

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TABLE 8.2 SDWT Issues Factor



Culture change

Flat organization Team oriented

Career path definition Individual contribution assessment Personal compensation

Expanded responsibility and/or contribution Contribution value Self-esteem




Competitive in job market Reduced visible differentiation


Action Training information Measurement change Trust Remove rigid job description Self, peer, function, leader evaluation Compensation equals contribution Individualized job assessment and external comparison Visible compensation


A self-directed work team (SDWT) is an advanced formation of a team. Fundamentally a SDWT is a self-managed team. There are seven steps to be a SDWT. They are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Perform a need assessment Have a quality orientation (TQM, ISO, etc.) Have top management define a clear definition of vision Select an area and team for SDWT Train the team Empower the team Identify and define problems






Whereas in the preceding question we addressed the steps of SDWT implementation, with this question we emphasize the actual progression of the development. This progression is initiated via training and is then followed with the actual activation of the team. Specifically, the progression from team to a SDWT is through a series of training and transition steps as identified here: 1. Training • Technical skills • Administrative skills • Interpersonal skills

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2. The transition begins through stages • Start-up (6 to 12 months) • State of confusion (6 to 12 months) • Leader center teams (6 to 15 months) • Tightly formed teams (6 to 15 months: first sign of the real team) • Self-directed teams (indefinite) A typical model for understanding the SDWT implementation is shown in Figure 8.3. In this figure we try to show the relationship of the SDWT with that of the total organization. The input and understanding of many issues within the organization are of very critical importance and essential in the development of a successful SDWT.

FIGURE 8.3 The model of SDWT.






A successful team goes through a lot of tribulations before it reaches “performance” status. These tribulations may be viewed as challenges during the five-stage team development and are summarized in Table 8.3.

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TABLE 8.3 Challenges during the Five Stages of Development Stage 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Start-up (investigation) State of confusion (preparation) Leader center teams (implementation) Tightly formed teams (transition) Self-directed teams (maturation)

Challenge Understanding it Accepting it Making it work Keeping at it Keeping it continuously improving

TEAMS PROVIDE AN EFFICIENT WAY OF OPERATING MANY ORGANIZATIONS DUE TO SYNERGY. AS A RESULT, MANY ORGANIZATIONS FIND THEMSELVES WITH A FLAT STRUCTURE. WHAT ARE THE STEPS TO FLATTEN THE ORGANIZATION? The six basic steps to flatten any organization are 1. Recognize that everyone is responsible and accountable for their own task (job). 2. Define the structure based on strategic planning: • Functional • Hierarchical • Matrix 3. Reassign personnel to fit structure 4. Eliminate position(s): • Attrition • Transfer • Firing 5. Empower the individual regardless of position to act appropriately within his or her own jurisdiction 6. Job redesign

WHY IS THE UNDERSTANDING OF “CHANGE” A MANDATORY REQUIREMENT WHEN TEAMS ARE INVOLVED? We all behave in certain patterns and more often than not in a predictable manner. The reason for such an outcome is because we all deal in our own paradigms. A paradigm is a universally accepted model that provides the context for understanding and solving problems in a particular field. In the past the old system was to excel on individualism. In fact, the maverick attitude quite often was the preferred way of doing business. In modern times this

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attitude is not conducive to doing business both nationally and internationally, not to mention internally in a given organization. A change has occurred. And as a consequence: • Theories are being shattered • Old systems are discredited • People are threatened To soften the blow of all the changes that an organization may face, teams are organized and implemented with the belief that “synergy” will result in better outcomes.






First and foremost, we must understand that resistance to change is a given for any organization. Change must occur in both the culture of the organization and the individual. To be successful, there are three keys: 1. Study the people, and put ourselves in their place, so that we know how they feel. 2. Communicate to the people the “why” and the “when” as well as their questions. (If the message is not loud and clear, people will go back to the way they have always done it.) 3. Allow them to participate in the decision process.






To change something is to do it in a different way. That process, however, for most people is quite difficult and needs to be understood by those who initiate the change, as well as those that are going to be affected by the change. In the following list we provide some basic prerequisites to understand “change.” They are 1. 2. 3. 4.

Will — today and tomorrow will be more than wished and hoped for Belief — requires knowledge and understanding of tools Wherewithal — requires resources, know how, and know why Action — happens when management creates the system

Once these prerequisites have been considered then the steps for the actual change are designed according to the following steps: 1. Plan. The organization must find a suitable model for implementation. 2. Leadership. It must be understood at the onset that problems caused by management can only be fixed by management.

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3. Information. Everyone must know their role and responsibility. 4. Rewards. People perform in relation to the way they are measured and rewarded. Management must be willing to answer the question “what’s in it for me” on behalf of the participants. The essence of the four steps for change must be based on the following two premises: 1. Change must not be forced — before you decide to change try the following: • Try a pilot project that tests the changes in one or more groups prior to implementing them across the board. Remember, across the board implementation affects everyone at once. As a consequence, the organizational culture may not be able to withstand such a change. • Experiment with selected few changes to assess their effects in the organization. Remember, cultural change is made one person at a time until critical mass is reached. • Temporarily change management structure to address specific problems and implement new methods without making them formal. Evaluate these changes and then proceed. 2. Change must be managed — the way you manage change is by: • Establishing important goals and objectives • Formulating actions via policies, programs, and procedures to achieve the desired goals • Understanding the source(s) of resistance and neutralizing them

WHAT MAKES CULTURAL CHANGE DIFFICULT? There are many reasons why cultural changes are difficult; however, the basic reasons are either direct or indirect based on the following four: 1. 2. 3. 4.

No time to find out what motivates others. Organizations lack a clear vision of the future. Organizations lack feedback. Legal and contractual requirements are set to satisfy everyone equally. The aim is mediocrity, rather than excellence.






All individuals go through a series of stages (see Figure 8.4) in the pursuit of change. These stages are 1. Denial. In this stage we refuse to accept that change is upon us. 2. Anger. In this stage we rebel against the change by asking questions like: “Why me?”

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3. Negotiation. In this stage we try to make things as best as possible. We are ready to accept the outcome. 4. Based on the level of personal negotiation we can take one of two alternatives. The first is to adjust our attitude and behavior in such a way that our resolution will make us depressed and wait until some other outcome comes to pass. The second alternative is to adjust our attitude and behavior in such a way that a sound decision can be made and an action plan may be developed. A satisfactory approach to personal change is always the second alternative, since it offers an active path to personal resolution. The first alternative is very pessimistic and allows the individual to depend only on Lady Luck.

FIGURE 8.4 The path of personal change.




The bullseye model — taking the name from its shape that looks like a target — is a model that summarizes in a graphical format the activities and responsibilities that a typical team is responsible for in a given output. It focuses on the core of its responsibility but also relates other initiatives that come under the domain of “team.” The model itself helps those who are involved with any team to recognize that the effectiveness and the productivity are based on supporting roles, managing of resources, and leading characteristics. This is shown in Figure 8.5. Furthermore, the model helps one understand that the team is only as good as the inputs and the environment in which it operates. The boundaries of the different characteristics within the team environment are also important in the sense that the team itself must be able to decide when — under what circumstances — it will be in the supportive, managing, leading, or producing mode.




The goal, roles, procedures, and interpersonal relationships (GRPI) model is a model based on the work of M. Plovnick, R. Fry, and I. Rubin and it demonstrates the progression of team development from interpersonal relationships to specific goals. We have modified the original model (from a pyramid to a linear progression) to reflect modern understanding of the team reaching its goals. The significance of this model is that it sensitizes “all” who deal with teams to recognize that the goals may

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FIGURE 8.5 The bullseye model.

not be apparent right away; rather, the goals will materialize sometime after the formation of the team. This is so because it takes time to form cohesiveness. Cohesiveness also implies that there is plenty of interaction (back and forth) with each phase. This was addressed in the question on how a group develops into a team. The model is shown in Figure 8.6.

FIGURE 8.6 The GRPI model.




The team goal-setting process model is a model that combines the team goal with the setting process. It is shown in Figure 8.7. The model assumes that a preliminary need exists and through team performance (see Figure 7.7) “the” team goal will emerge.





The facilitation of implementing teams in any organization may be improved by recognizing what the culture of the organization “is now.” To do that, a culture assessment is necessary and it may follow the following: 1. Behaviors 2. Attitudes and perceptions

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FIGURE 8.7 The team goal-setting process model.

3. Focus on: Customer relationship Quality assessment Process audit 4. Programs and practices

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE EFFECTIVE BEHAVIORS FOR PROCESS FACILITATION? Process facilitation is the skill that the facilitator brings into the team discussion to make sure everyone participates, no one takes advantage of a particular situation,

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and to balance the discussion, regardless of personalities. In any team discussion, there are times in the group dynamics, maybe because of personalities, maybe because of knowledge difference, maybe because of different (internal) agendas, maybe because of misunderstanding or any other reason, when an atmosphere of hostility, uncooperativeness, silence, confusion, and so many other similar situations may occur. At that point, the designated facilitator must exercise his/her facilitation skills to bring the team back on target. To identify all skills and behaviors is not our intent. However, we want to make sure that the facilitator must recognize that there are many options to him/her, including: • • • • • • • • • • •

Reading body language Modeling Training Proposing consensus Paraphrasing Summarizing discussions Clarifying Validating Giving feedback Inviting feedback Contracting your role

• • • • • • • • •

Refocusing Asking questions Coaching Pinpointing points of conflict Reinforcing appropriate behavior Encouraging participation Celebrating Reminding people of mission and task Reminding people of norms and operating procedures • Advocating for teamwork • Clarifying roles on the team

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE GENERIC FACILITATIVE BEHAVIORS TO BE USED BY THE LEADER, FACILITATOR, AND EVERY MEMBER IN A TEAM ENVIRONMENT? Some of the most common facilitative behaviors are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14.

Asking questions Defining or clarifying roles on the team Polling for consensus Summarizing discussions Asking or proposing agenda items Summarizing agreement Asking for individual opinions or ideas Validating persons or statements Reading nonverbal messages Reminder of team mission or goal Reminding people of mission and task (agenda) Calling attention to team operating procedures or norms Paraphrasing (active listening) Using humor appropriately

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WHAT IS PROCESS FACILITATION? The facilitator and/or the team leader are responsible for the progress of the team. To make sure that the team is moving towards the defined goal(s), the following may be used by either the facilitator and/or the team leader. 1. Don’t do anything the team can do for itself (after initial training). 2. Intervene to satisfy the team’s needs, not your own. 3. Wait before interviewing; give team members time to correct the problem for themselves. 4. Start and end with validating the individual. 5. Allow the team to use their own method(s) and language. 6. Do not monopolize the conversation and do not give long speeches. Try to speak no longer than 30 seconds at a time. 7. Do more asking than telling; do more listening than talking. 8. Do not try to take over the team. 9. When you hear the same thing for the third time, intervene. 10. When the team falls silent, that is your cue to keep silent.






By far, the most important skills of effective facilitation are 1. Listen to the words being expressed, which means maintaining concentration on what the individual is saying. 2. Paraphrasing what was said to demonstrate understanding, which means interacting with the learner to ensure accurate understanding of the participants’ information.






Earlier we addressed the issues of developing a successful team. With this question we want to emphasize that success is also a function of facilitation. As such, we provide some items that any facilitator should be able to utilize during a team meeting. The items have been identified on a per phase basis. They are • Phase 1 — Preparation Contracting your role with leader and members Providing information on techniques for teamwork Asking clarifying questions about team purpose/task Modeling facilitative behaviors frequently Modeling leading of the process check Coaching the leader to clarify direction, boundaries, expectations Frequent process interventions Teaching tools for teamwork

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• Phase 2 — Start-up Helping refine and clarify team mission Surfacing issues and modeling how to phrase them as positive challenges Proposing and summarizing agreement Surfacing inconsistencies, areas for clarification Helping the team build skills to discuss issues in a supportive, constructive way Reinforcing facilitative behaviors by team members • Phase 3 — Transition Suggesting “celebrating” breakthroughs and refining operating procedures Encourage emerging shared leadership attempts Observing and adding feedback to process check Encouraging and expecting facilitative behaviors Doing less frequent interventions • Phase 4 — Continuous improvement Observing for “fine-tuning” the process Taking an active role in strategic or emotional meetings Staying out of the way most of the time






The roles and the responsibilities in a typical team are summarized in Table 8.4.




A leader, as a general rule, is the individual who has ownership and/or specific knowledge about the task that the team is addressing. As such, there are several duties that are associated with that responsibility. Some of the duties are During meetings: • Use facilitative behaviors • Propose an agenda for review • Guide without dominating; share leadership • Clarify and support other roles • Be an active participant; contribute ideas • Involve all members • Invoke operating procedures when appropriate • Clarify organization constraints and team boundaries • Help the team stick to the agenda (or modify as needed) • Focuses team energy on the task • Protect individuals and their ideas from attack • Help the team reach consensus

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Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance

TABLE 8.4 The Team Roles Role



Balance; progress on task; attention to process


Team interaction process


Accurate display of team consensus


Remind team of time


Constructive participation

Duties Use facilitative behaviors Poll for consensus Guide without dominating Monitor the process Use facilitative behaviors Call attention to process Negotiate role Stay out of content Don’t do what team can Capture key words Write legibly Check for accuracy Clarify expectations Give advance notice Call times Use facilitative behaviors Contribute and listen Share the leadership

Outside meetings: • Follow-up on team action items • Work with team members to measure and track results • Communicate success stories • Keep nonmembers informed • Help team members get access to training • Communicate with management through normal lines • Give feedback to facilitator and recorder • Invite feedback from team members




Just as the leader has specific duties, so does the facilitator. The following list presents specific duties that facilitators use. Some of the generic behaviors and duties were also mentioned in previous questions. During meetings: • Model facilitative behaviors • Follow the behaviors of facilitation (see question on page ____) • Negotiate role with team • Focus on group process only • Stay out of content and group decisions • Ask questions to focus or redirect

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• • • • • • • • • • • • •


Model paraphrasing Model giving and receiving feedback Suggest alternative methods and procedures Encourage full participation Help group reach consensus Allow appropriate time for team to correct its own process before intervening (depending upon team development) Help run the meeting “from the back of the room” Help keep the team on-track Assist/coach leader as required Don’t be afraid to make mistakes Don’t be defensive Make notes on observations of team process Conduct process check at end of meeting

Outside meetings: • Coach leader and team members as needed • Provide training on team skills • Serve as internal consultant to the organization • Act as champion and change agent A pictorial summary of the most important duties of a facilitator are shown in Figure 8.8.

FIGURE 8.8 Facilitator’s duties — a visual perspective.




A recorder captures basic ideas on large paper in full view of team. The recorder is the official scribe of the meeting. Some of the issues and/or concerns that make someone a good recorder are • • • •

Do not edit; do not be corrupted by the “power of the pen” Use the person’s exact words to record brainstorming Write down key words; abbreviate when appropriate Remain objective; avoid adding extra ideas

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• • • • • • • •

Step out of role to give your own ideas Write fast and large Do not be afraid to misspell (say you use “creative spelling”) Abbreviate words Vary color/use “stars,” and so on Be neat Number and identify sheets Step out of recorder role to contribute to the team task




A timekeeper is the individual who keeps track of time. Some of the duties that a timekeeper has are • Asking the team when and how often to give reminders • Reminding team of approaching time deadlines • Calling “time”




A team member is the participant of the team who has been selected to participate either because he or she is familiar with the problem at hand, or the individual possesses a specific knowledge or skill. Some of the duties are During meeting: • Use facilitative behaviors • Support your ideas, do not defend • Restate the other person’s idea before differing • Use the teamwork and quality management tools • Change seat to avoid cliques • Do not be prematurely negative • Contribute ideas and information related to the task • Give and receive feedback • Listen with respect; do not interrupt • Ask questions when you do not understand • Help the team reach consensus • Help keep the facilitator out of content • Help the leader keep the team focused on the task • Help keep the recorder objective and accurate Outside meetings: • Prepare for meetings • Do your homework

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WHAT ARE • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •




Use facilitative behaviors Understand quality management Actively support teams Use teams to achieve goals Attend team presentations Communicate and stay informed Implement team solutions when feasible Give and invite feedback Give recognition for achievement “Walk the talk” Allocate resources for training Allow time for training Participate in establishing goals and objectives Adopt a model for change Develop a plan for change Form own team Occasionally visit team meeting after training Invite periodic status reports






The most common problems are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Errors caused by misunderstandings Discovery of the need to capture additional information Incomplete data because the form(s) is (are) too difficult to complete Incomplete or biased data caused by fear Failure to use existing data






Yes. There is a way to prevent problems in any team primarily through: 1. Testing — where appropriate and applicable. The intent of this testing is to identify the knowledge and skill levels of the team members. 2. Training — where appropriate and applicable. The intent of this training is to supply the team members with just-in-time training for the necessary knowledge and skill level that is required for the task(s) on which the team will embark and/or is performing. 3. Auditing. A necessary activity to continually evaluate the effectiveness of the team.

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HOW DO YOU EMPOWER YOUR TEAM MEMBERS? You empower your team members by giving them: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

A clear role to play The education and training required The resources to “get” the job done The freedom to be creative and innovative The freedom to learn from their mistakes The freedom to “rock the boat” in your organization The freedom to be their own entrepreneurs The freedom to fail without fear of retaliation The authority and responsibility to carry out “the” project The authority to exercise their “best” judgment without reservations and/or fear of retaliation 11. The authority, responsibility, and accountability to improve continuously 12. The recognition they deserve 13. A sense of ownership




The most basic skills for empowerment may be summarized by the following: 1. 2. 3. 4.

Teaming: team building and conflict management skills Integration: communication skills People: coaching and mentoring skills Performance: goal setting, problem solving, and corrective action management skills





No question about it, authority is a very important ingredient in both the traditional and the team environment. However, to appreciate the difference of exercising authority Table 8.5 shows the six levels of freedom as they relate to the traditional and team environment. In addition in Figure 10.2 we demonstrate the concept of leadership in a continuum format.








The supervisor, at least in the transition period, may find him- or herself doing traditional tasks as well as some coaching, training, and facilitating in the team formation. However, as the team progresses, the role of the supervisor will be more likely that of a facilitator. The transition is not an easy one for most supervisors. In

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TABLE 8.5 Six Levels of Freedom Levels of Freedom



Give supervisor facts and supervisor decides

Supervisors expects the facts and is expected to decide

Give supervisor alternatives Supervisor approves decision Supervisor informed of decision

Supervisor is usually given alternative from which he or she decides Supervisor decides, based on his knowledge and experience Supervisor is not the decision maker. The decision is made from his or her superior and he or she is expected to pass it along Supervisor assigns responsibility for specific tasks and he or she expects resolution. If there is an unsuccessful resolution, then the supervisor calls a conference and/or handles the problem him- or herself. By definition the supervisor is aware of the status of the task. If there is no communication to the supervisor, that action may be interpreted as insubordination

Team investigates the facts and makes decision on “consensus” Team generates alternatives

Inform supervisor if unsuccessful

No need to inform supervisor

Team decides and approves decision, based on facts Team informs “sponsor” of decision

Team uses problem solving techniques to come up with appropriate resolution

Team informs the sponsor only if there is a problem with the process of decision making and/or problem solving. Otherwise, there is no need to inform anyone else about team behavior

fact, an easier transition may be accomplished if everyone concerned is familiar with the following four Rs. 1. 2. 3. 4.

Resistance: initial resistance to new role — is expected Realization: realization of the benefits of the new structure — is hoped Wrestling: wrestling with learning skills for new people — is expected Resource: understand that the new role will serve as a resource to the team — is hoped, expected, and encouraged






Obviously there is no standard time for implementation. However, we provide a timeline (see Table 8.6) of implementing the team concept in a variety of industries. Do not use these as matter-of-fact schedules for implementation; rather, these schedules, although actual, are provided as rough guidelines.

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TABLE 8.6 Implementation Examples 1st Example: Semiconductor Company Time Activity SDWT concept fan-out Multiskill certification Daily administration Material purchase Payroll update Attendance marketing On-the-job training/coaching Waste in process (WIP) People deployment Production optimization Interpersonal and team skills

6 months

1 year

2 years

3 years

2 years

3 years

• •

2nd Example: Camera/Film Company Time Activity SDWT concept fan-out Multiskill certification Daily administration Material purchase Payroll update Attendance marketing On-the-job training/coaching Waste in process (WIP) People deployment Production optimization Interpersonal and team skills

6 months

1 year

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TABLE 8.6 (CONTINUED) Implementation Examples 3rd Example: Consumer Product Company Time Activity SDWT concept fan-out Multiskill certification Daily administration Material purchase Payroll update Attendance marketing On-the-job training/coaching Waste in process (WIP) People deployment Production optimization Interpersonal and team skills

6 months

1 year

2 years

3 years

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Team Improvement

In this chapter we address the issues of team improvement. As in the other chapters we follow the Q & A approach, hoping that the reader will get the maximum benefit from the information provided. The questions in this chapter deal with effectiveness over time in the team environment and, as in the previous chapters, the focus is from the quality point of view. As such, we feel that the reader will have an easier time assimilating the information in their organization.






In the pre-1980 era, teams were thought of as something of superspecialized entities within an organization that protects “our” turf of knowledge and experience. In the ’80s we found that in fact this kind of operation was not resulting in the expected gains that we anticipated. The wheels of intuition and the entrepreneurial spirit guided us into what is quite familiar and is known as the era of “cross-functional” and “multidiscipline” atmosphere. However, as we practiced this multi-something idea, we found that even that was not operating at optimum. As a result, we radically changed our focus, and now we talk about Process Team Management. This is where we integrate the team network with a specific process definition, attainable goals, and objectives, and we delegate appropriate and applicable authority and responsibility to the team members, so that they can indeed perform the required task. A pictorial representation of this evolution may be seen in Figure 9.1.




A process management structure is a way of doing things in a given work environment. It is also an evolutionary process and depends on the appropriate management attitude to set the change in motion for doing things differently. The appropriate process management structure will facilitate the culture change, as well as facilitate the transformation of task orientation to process orientation. Where a process management structure is indeed the foundation of any organization, it is the process team management that serves that structure. An analogy may help in understanding this concept. If the process management structure is the boat, then the process team management is the rudder of that boat. It is the responsibility of the process team management to define both the deployment of improvement, as well as sustain that improvement. A pictorial representation may be seen in Figure 9.2.


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FIGURE 9.1 Improvement team evolution.

FIGURE 9.2 Process management structure (PMS).

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Team Improvement


253 INTO


The traditional approach was based on vertical functionality with very specialized entities within the same organization. As the participation philosophy came into the organization in the mid ’70s we saw a change in that. All of a sudden we started to deal with matrix management, extended job tasks, and eventually the now-familiar cross-functional and multidiscipline environments. As organizations evaluated the results, we found that indeed the process team management is a way to improve performance, since it is by definition an approach of integrating team network and team accountability, and is focusing on the process. This developmental shift can be seen in Figure 9.2.

WHAT MAKES TEAMS MOST EFFECTIVE? There are at least four areas that teams should focus on for effectiveness. They are when teams: 1. Become an integral part of addressing the most pressing issues of the business. 2. Speak many functional jargons and bring a broad range of tools/methods. 3. Are hands-on involved in the work place, not just consulted. 4. Help management change systems and help people add value to products and services. Once these areas have been identified and dealt with in an appropriate and applicable manner, then the issue of specific characteristics is addressed. The list is very exhaustive to be identified here; however, the following eight items should be evaluated, since we believe that these form the building blocks for any team performance. They are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Leadership Solid foundation Problem-solving knowledge Charter — Mission Understanding self, others, and the charter Responsive culture Knowledge, skills, and tools appropriate for task(s) Understanding of the decision-making process — group as opposed to individual

YOUR TEAM HAS BEEN FORMED. NOW THE QUESTION BECOMES: “WHAT IS THE ROAD TO HIGH PERFORMANCE?” There are at least ten specific stages that every team must go through in order for them to become highly effective. The steps are

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Develop a mission statement. (What are we about?) Clarify the team purpose. (What are we supposed to do?) Work out team composition. (Who should belong?) Identify overreaching goals. (What supersedes all conflicts?) Define success. (How will we know when we’re successful?) Identify roadblocks to success. (What will ensure failure?) Remove roadblocks. (How will we get around them or remove them?) Manage stages of team evolution. (How can we help the team get there?) Manage through teams. (What specifically can managers do?) Establish a self-correction process. (What can we do when things go wrong?)

WHAT MAKES TEAMS LEAST EFFECTIVE? The three most antiteam behaviors which will cause any team to be least effective are: 1. Concentrating primarily on individual achievement 2. Striving to move up a hierarchical organization structure 3. Building up and protecting seniority






The process of solving problems fundamentally is an eight-process approach, although there are many variations. The generic process is 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Understand the problem Gather information Analyze information Generate alternative solutions Evaluate the alternatives Implement Confirm solution Monitor and modify as appropriate





Not all problems are easy. In fact some problems may not even have solutions either in the short run, long run, or both. The characteristics of this kind of problem may be summarized as: 1. 2. 3. 4.

Cannot be exhaustively formulated Every formulation is a statement of a solution No rule for knowing when to stop No true or false

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Team Improvement

5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.


No exhaustive list of operations Many explanations for the same problem Every problem is a symptom of another problem No immediate or ultimate test One-shot solution(s) — no second tries Every problem is essentially unique





Based on much literature research, the answer to this question is an affirmative one. Employee involvement is a function of the following: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

The issues of what the team is going to address The number of people participating The status of the employees participating Resources available for the task(s) that the team may undertake Available training for the team members Available (current and timely) information for the team members Appropriate and applicable goal-setting practices Award system The role of the supervisor and/or the leader

HOW DO WE CONTINUALLY IMPROVE (KAIZEN APPROACH OR A “LITTLE” AT A TIME) GIVEN THE TEAM ENVIRONMENT? Because the team effort is based on the synergy factor, improvement may be measured as a result of the following: 1. Get and keep only the best people (perhaps, the leader’s most important responsibility). • Good people are hard to find; search for them continually and acquire them regardless of “openings.” • Remove poor performers and poor team players. • Regularly meet and talk with everyone — one-to-one, if possible. • Reorganize and rotate regularly on a planned basis. • Transfer your consistent poor performers to other assignments. 2. Make clear to them what needs to be done. Define it in terms of expected performance and results. • Know your individual customers and suppliers. • Develop job measures that lead to continual improvement in what is done for customers. • Know how to set achievable goals and achieve them; think small; think achievable. • Invite constructive complaining.

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• Practice the art of communication. • Managers should practice management by walking around. 3. Let them do it. Create conditions in which they can do what needs to be done. • Make clear who is responsible for what. • Attach authority and responsibility. • Develop useful information and make it readily available.






As the team matures and resolves issues and concerns about the work environment, the demonstrated commitment (by the team) will help to perpetuate their success. This demonstrated commitment by the team may be through their individual and collective integrity, objectivity, expertise, breadth, recognition, and realism that they bring in the work environment. Another way to improve performance is by the team being proactive as opposed to being reactive to work problems or challenges in the work environment. Yet another way to improve team performance is by demonstrating the appropriate image, presentation, competence, and feedback to all that come in contact with the team. 1. Image: physical appearance (professional) 2. Presentation skills: capacity to communicate verbally and in writing (appropriate to audience) 3. Breadth of competence and understanding: appropriate competence that others can put to use in accomplishing their goals, leading to their respect and confidence 4. Ability to give and receive feedback: sending and receiving verbal and nonverbal signals to maximize understanding and minimize misunderstanding tension, as appropriate to the situation.

WHAT IS “THE” QUALITY IMPROVEMENT PROCESS? The quality improvement process is a methodology that helps the team attain realistic and quantifiable (data driven) results about the goal(s) and objective(s) set for the team. The methodology may take a variety of steps depending on the organization and/or the complexity of the task at hand. However, the basic steps of any quality improvement process are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Problem identification Problem analysis Planning Data collection Data analysis and interpretation Action based on step #5

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7. Appraisal (evaluation, verification, confirmation) 8. Implementation based on step #7 9. Monitor Compare these steps with those of the question, “What is the road to high performance?” on page 253. One will notice that there is not much difference. Whereas the earlier question is more generic, this one is more specific in the methodology. A more advanced model of organizational quality improvement cycle is shown in Figure 9.3. However, the basic tenets of the above steps are kept.

FIGURE 9.3 Organizational quality improvement cycle.





The most important responsibilities of the guidance team during the process improvement cycle are

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1. Meet regularly with the team 2. Develop and improve systems that allow team members to bring about change 3. When necessary, run interference for the team 4. Ensure that authorized changes made by the team are followed up; implement changes the team is not authorized to make






The effectiveness of any team may be evaluated by designing a survey instrument based on a Likert scale of 1 to 10 measuring the following characteristics: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11.

Shared purpose and goals Full participation Trust Open communication Shared leadership Evaluating effectiveness Task differentiation Unity and cohesion Confrontation and differences Balance of performance and process Commitment to decisions and plans

In all the questions, a one (1) would indicate low effectiveness and a ten (10) would indicate high effectiveness.

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General Issues

In this chapter we address general issues that concern those that are involved with teams. Specifically, we address logistical concerns, as well as administrative concerns. Again, as in the previous chapters, we deal with all these concerns in a Q & A format and the focus is again from the quality point of view.

MEETINGS ARE AN INTEGRAL PART OF ANY TEAM ENVIRONMENT. WHAT ARE THE ELEMENTS OF A SUCCESSFUL MEETING? In any team environment, sooner or later there will be an occasion where a meeting has to be called to discuss the issues of the project at hand. The following selected elements may help towards a successful meeting: Before the meeting: 1. Plan the meeting • Who should attend the meeting? • What do we want to accomplish? • When is the meeting? • Where is the meeting? • How many people will attend? 2. Develop a clear agenda • Are goals and objectives set high but attainable? • What will be the process? • What will be the content? 3. Have flip charts ready and tape for temporary memory At the • • • • • • •

beginning of the meeting: Start on time. Use a recorder. Reach consensus on the agenda. Define participants’ roles. Give clear definition of process you want to use. Focus on the task. Prepare the team mentally.

During the meeting: • Be positive and give reinforcement. • Give recorder permission to misspell. • Stick to the agenda. 259

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At the • • • • •

end of the meeting: Reach consensus on results. Review the process — was it a productive meeting? Establish action items (who, what, when, where, how, and why). Set next meeting time and place. Assign responsibilities of participants for the next meeting.

After the meeting: • Follow up on action items. • Prepare and/or distribute team minutes.




An effective meeting is characterized by the following ingredients: 1. There must be a common focus on content. 2. There must be a common focus on process. 3. Someone must be responsible for maintaining an open and balanced conversational flow. 4. Someone must be responsible for protecting individuals from personal attack. 5. The facilitator involves and fully utilizes all participants. 6. Real issues are raised and dealt with honestly. Hidden agendas are brought out into the open. 7. The participants take responsibility for meeting’s success.

WHAT ARE GROUND RULES? The ground rules are the agreed upon, by all participants, regulations for handling the meeting dynamics. Typical ground rules are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Say what needs to be said. Listen to others: respect their opinions. No cheap shots or personal attacks. Discuss a topic enough to gain clarity and understanding. Stay focused on the task. Leave your badge (title) outside (L.Y.B.O.). Keep personal information in the team.






There are four basic requirements for a meeting facilitator. They are 1. 2. 3. 4.

Moderate the ground rules. Help the team focus on the team task. Facilitate the team process. Remain neutral — not a participant.

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Whereas a previous question addressed the duties of the team member, in this question we focus more specifically on the characteristics of the good team member. Obviously, there are some similarities between the two. To function as a team, participation of each and every member is imperative. The following list provides a list of characteristics that all team members should and must possess for successful results. • • • • •

• • • • • • • • • •

Understands and is committed to team objectives Must be willing to actively participate Utilizes resources of other team members Keeps cool at all times Shares openly and authentically with others regarding his/her feelings, opinions, thoughts, and perceptions about problems and perceptions about problems and conditions Involves others in the decision-making process Respects and is tolerant of individual differences Trusts, supports, and has genuine concern for other team members Considers and utilizes the new ideas and suggestions of others “Owns” problems, rather than blaming them on others Provides environment in which employees can direct themselves When listening, the member attempts to hear and interpret communication from sender’s point of view Makes decisions based on information rather than on status or organization role Encourages the development of other team members Has skills in understanding what’s going on in the group






Just like any other environment, teams are no different. Problems do occur and they are usually because of: • • • • •

Errors caused by misunderstandings Discovery of the need to capture additional information Incomplete data because form is too difficult to complete Incomplete or biased data caused by fear Failure to use existing data

Regardless of what the reason is, however, all these problems may be prevented through appropriate and applicable needs assessment; education and training, and measurement (evaluation).

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Every time more than one person does something, it is a matter of time before there is a conflict. One of the simplest ways to resolve the conflict is for the leader to: • • • • • • •

Find out as much as possible about the dispute or disagreement Set goals Attack problems, not personalities Generate ideas, clarify them, and evaluate them Listen twice as hard as you talk Don’t give up Facilitate — a means of helping the team improve its process for solving problems and making decisions • Mediate — a nonbinding voluntary arrangement used to settle a two-party dispute • Arbitrate — an arrangement, often put into contracts, that calls for twoparty disputes to be settled by a private judge.




To have an effective team, the following active participants play a major role in the development as well as the continuity of the team. Although their presence may not be found in all organizations, the active participants are President: He or she provides constant leadership. Without his or her active participation the team will not be successful. We do not imply that the president has to be a hands-on person all the time; rather, the president should inquire about the teams progress as often as possible. Quality Council: A quality council is the buffer zone between the workers and facilitator and the executive committee. As a consequence, all the participants must be senior officers. They are the ones that will establish team directions and goals and provide resources upfront as needed. It is the responsibility of the quality council to review the progress of improvement teams and the process and to communicate the results to the appropriate executive for applicable action. In addition, it is their responsibility to give recognition, where appropriate, and to revise the reward system to incorporate the team efforts. Participants of the quality council are required to participate not only in the presentation phase of the teams, but also to attend training courses as a participant. Therefore, they have to vent issues, concerns, recommendations, and acknowledge apprehensions about change(s), just like anybody else in the team. Quality Officer: The quality officer must be a senior officer of the organization. He or she is responsible for directing the quality process, monitors improvement team progress/output, and provides guidance, feedback, and structured training for problem resolution(s), as well as diagnostic tools. The quality officer, in a sense, is the individual who is in charge of implementing the actions agreed to by the team.

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In addition to these responsibilities, the quality officer develops quality training plans and captures overall company training requirements as they relate to the individual team tasks and/or responsibilities. Perhaps some of the most important roles that the quality officer plays in the team structure is the fact that he or she serves as mentor, coach, trainer, and a resource to the team as well as the individual members. Finally, the quality officer is the mediator between the team and the quality council, as he or she presents interim reports to the quality council. It is his or her responsibility to act as the communication link and to maintain appropriate records and evidence of decisions made. As part of this liaison responsibility, he or she coordinates the development of “the” strategy to capture customer satisfaction on an ongoing basis, whether it is through benchmarking, quality function deployment (QFD), surveys, audits, and so on. Sponsor: The sponsor, just like the quality officer, must be a senior officer of the organization. His or her fundamental purpose is to act as a champion and to support the team idea. Part of this support should be demonstrated through his or her willingness to accept ownership by fostering the improvement team’s formation. Other responsibilities of the sponsor are to provide the team with the appropriate and applicable resources to get the “job” done in a timely fashion and to reassign task priorities to accommodate team requirements including budgetary constraints. Facilitator: Perhaps one of the most key functions in the team environment. A facilitator serves as a consultant to improvement teams. He or she provides advice, support, and additional or remedial instruction for teams. Facilitators are instrumental in keeping teams on track to minimize wasted time and maximize team results. In addition, the facilitator helps recruit quality improvement team resources from other areas and coordinates additional training on an as-needed basis. It is his or her responsibility to focus on team process (less on task) and group dynamics as well as to provide appropriate and applicable guidance on diagnostic tools. The facilitator is also responsible for reviewing with (and where applicable to advise) the team about presentations to the quality council. Finally, the facilitator is the key person to make sure that the following are up to date: • Making sure that the follow up with team progress and/or improvement takes place and periodically with the project leader. • Assists and guides the application of project management tools. • Keeps quality officer informed of team progress and problems. Project leader: The project leader’s responsibility is fundamentally to serve as contact point for communication on specific project status, i.e., • Initial contact to team member supervisors • Keeps quality officer and team sponsor informed of team progress and problems • Seeks support from team facilitator

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In addition the project leader may: • Act as a full-fledged team member • Maintain official records and evidence of team actions • Retain functional authority to implement relevant recommendations after the quality council review • Lead problem-solving efforts using project management tools and schedule team activities Task leader: A task leader by definition is the person who is accountable for accomplishing the assigned task. He or she maintains specific task records for the project leader and is ultimately responsible for scheduling subgroup team activities. In the final analysis, the task leader serves as contact point for communication to project and subgroup members on their assigned task. It is important here to differentiate the task leader from “the” leader in general. The leader in general is based on the principle of influence and may be represented by: Power base principle → Value + Management recognition = INFLUENCE The consequences of power base only may be shown in Table 10.1.

TABLE 10.1 The Consequences of Power Base Power Base

Nonpower Base

Influence Authority

Noninfluence Authority

Influence Nonauthority

Noninfluence Nonauthority

Modified from Cahners TRACOM Group, 1985, 1995.

In addition, influence is an issue of authority and responsibility. The difference of influence and authority is equal to amount of risk. This may be represented with the following equation: RISK = Responsibility – Authority On the other hand, the scope and responsibility of the task leader is very limited and only within the project parameters as defined by the management leadership. Team member: A team member shares in a leadership role (if appropriate and applicable) to help develop a sense of teamwork. That is accomplished by developing

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a mission statement — problem statement or an opportunity statement — that the team will be responsible for. This mission is unique to the team and is not to be confused with the mission of the organization as a whole. A mission statement from this very specific vantage point is unique to each team as developed by the team after assignment of a problem by the quality council. This responsibility includes the preparation of a problem statement and ultimately the resolution of that problem statement. It is the responsibility of a team member to actively participate in identifying a problem statement describing the problem/opportunity. Once the problem/opportunity has been defined, then the team member has to analyze the symptoms and search for or theorize as to the root cause(s) of the problem. At that point he or she is also responsible for the following: • • • • • • • • •

Verifies that the findings have included all potential causes Agrees on what are considered to be the root cause(s) of the problem Addresses the problem by generating creative and feasible corrective actions Tests theories as to cause(s), stimulates remedies, and performs test pilots of the remedies Presents recommended corrective actions and solutions while establishing controls to prevent reoccurrence Implements the solutions using an action plan as a guide Monitors the results of the actions and evaluates the solution Monitors the on-going process for compliance with intended results Feels personally accountable for the problem’s resolution

At this point one may even consider the issue of “How can a team member be effective?” There are at least seven considerations and all of them are inherently dependent upon the team member him- or herself. They are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

A willingness to try something new. A spirit of compromise. A willingness to give “their” best. A willingness to sacrifice for the benefit of the team. A willingness to solve problems. A willingness to let the leader lead. The ability to see the difference between “symptom” and “root cause.”

WHAT IS TOTAL INVOLVEMENT (COMMITMENT)? Simply stated it is involvement with ownership. It is a demonstration of leadership, responsibility, and authority. It is management by walking. It is management of taking genuine interest in both people and project. It is providing opportunities for all employees in the sense that they (management) delegate responsibility and authority for improving work processes to those who actually do the work (empower). Finally, true total involvement is the creation of multidisciplinary, cross-functional work teams responsible for designing and improving products and services, processes, and systems. (See also commitment questions on page 227 and 279.)

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WHAT IS EMPOWERMENT? A typical dictionary definition defines empowerment as: to provide people with the knowledge, resources, and opportunities to achieve something. However, we must also differentiate between levels of empowerment. There is one level of empowerment dealing with improvement of the process and there is a second level of managing the process. In the literature these two levels have been called lower case “e” and upper case “E” empowerment. The two are not the same. In fact, some people may be excellent candidates for one but not good enough for the other. It is management’s responsibility to recognize the differences and provide the appropriate and applicable delegation of authority and responsibility. The ingredients of an effective workforce empowerment are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Must be selected Must be educated and trained Must be led Must be coached Must be directed Must be given authority and responsibility Must be rewarded Possess intrinsic motivation to go the extra mile

On the other hand, to empower the employees, management must give them: • • • • • • • • • •

A clear role to play The education and training required The resources to get the job done The freedom to be creative and innovative The freedom to learn from their mistakes The freedom to “rock the boat” in your organization without fear The authority to exercise their best judgment The responsibility to improve continuously The recognition they deserve A sense of ownership

For a more lengthy list see the list on page 246.




The 5S approach is a Japanese acronym dealing with the team environment. It stands for: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Seiri — proper arrangement Seiton — orderliness Seiso — cleanliness Seiketsu — clean-up Shitsuke — discipline

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In addition, the 5S approach is an instrumental philosophy for mistake proofing and for a total production system.

WHAT TYPES OF STRATEGIES CAN WE USE FOR CHANGE? WHAT ARE THE FACTORS FOR CHANGE? The strategies and factors for change are shown in Table 10.2.

TABLE 10.2 Four Types of Strategies and Change Factors Strategies

Change Factors


Blitz Settlers vs. the redcoats Change the ground rules Courts (e.g., Peter the Great, Roosevelt) Follow directives from above German vs. Russian approach to war (e.g., 10% error, 80% starve, 10% battle)

Indirect Divisional Containment strategy






A team may help the organization in many ways including: • • • •

Turnaround time Reporting tasks General improvements of the process Improve communication, morale, and effectiveness of resources






The payoff of a SDWT is in at least the following categories: • • • • • •

Productivity Streamlining of processes and tasks Flexibility Quality Commitment Customer satisfaction

On the other hand, the most common specific gains are 1. Improvement in job knowledge 2. Increase in self-responsibility 3. Increase in teamwork between members

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4. Improvement in discipline issues and noticeable reduction in tardiness and absenteeism 5. Improvement in quality of products and/or service 6. Increase self-confidence and reliance 7. Improvement in the communication process throughout the organization 8. Decrease dependence on direct supervision 9. Increase mobility and flexibility 10. Increase cycle of decision making






Two of the most basic criteria are 1. Workable — Is the team really going to work out? What barriers exist that will hinder the ability to do teamwork? 2. Worthwhile — Is it worth the time and effort? Will the benefits and savings override the costs?






The pay considerations are based on the following characteristics: Factors: • Performance and financial measures • Size of facility • Type of organization • Potential to absorb additional output • Impact of employees efforts • Union-management relations • Facility capital investments • Local management • Senior management continuity Design: • Which groups of employees should participate in the gain-sharing plan? • How much employee involvement should there be, and how should it be structured? • How should the bonus be determined? • How should the gain-sharing be measured? • When should gain-sharing begin? Pay for skill considerations: • Employee flexibility • Fewer, broader job categories • Employee involvement • Leaner staffing

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Perhaps one of the most delicate situations in a team environment is to keep motivating the team members without manipulating them. This is much more important after the “objectives” have been completed. The following may be of help. 1. Do not pretend as if everything is the same as before. It is not. 2. Continue to show support to the team members when needed. 3. Reiterate — and when possible demonstrate your belief — your confidence in the “new” outcome and the abilities of the members. 4. Demonstrate your honesty and straightforwardness. 5. Under no condition or any circumstances mislead your employees. 6. Try as hard as you can to be realistic. 7. Always focus on solutions for the present, rather than dwelling on past problems. 8. Do not forget to recognize a “job well done.” 9. Continue to delegate tasks. 10. Continue to have open communications.






Table 10.3 shows the relationship of the four styles and a summary of their behaviors.

TABLE 10.3 The Four Behavior Styles and Their Behavior in a Team Relater




Open People person Trusting

Open Fast-paced Dynamic

Self-contained Methodical Task-oriented

Self-contained Fast-paced Results-oriented




An effective member is one who displays a willingness to: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Try something new Compromise Give his/her best Sacrifice for the benefit of others and the team Solve problems Let the leader lead Address the “root cause” rather than the “symptom”

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Each organization defines the facilitator’s role differently. However, some common responsibilities include the roles of a (1) coach, (2) trainer, (3) consultant, (4) change agent, and (5) process facilitator. This relationship was shown in Figure 8.8.

AS A FACILITATOR YOU MUST ASK PROBING QUESTIONS. WHAT ARE SOME OF THE QUESTIONING SKILLS? Questions play a major role in conducting any team business. Some of the purposes questions serve in the team environment are to: • Help the facilitator determine what the team members already know about a topic, so you can focus the discussion on what they need to discuss. • Invite participation and involvement in the training process. • Provide the facilitator with feedback about how the team process is being received. • Enable the team members to assess their learning and to fill in their own learning gaps. Usually, there are three skills associated with the questioning process. They are 1. Asking questions: Asking questions effectively during training is one of the most important skills you can develop. Asking questions effectively means selecting the right type of question, phrasing it so it elicits the response you are after, then directing the question appropriately. 2. Handling participants’ answers to questions: There are two basic types of questions from which to choose, open questions and closed questions. A summary is given in Table 10.4.

TABLE 10.4 Types of Questions Types of Question Open




Requires more than a “yes” or “no” answer Stimulates thinking Elicits discussion Usually begins with “what,” “how,” “when,” or “why” Requires a one word answer Closes off discussion Usually begins with “is,” “can,” “how many,” or “does”

What ideas do you have for using this improvement tool?

Does everyone understand the many uses for this improvement tool?

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Once the facilitator has decided on the type of question that he or she will use, he or she needs to determine how to phrase it. There are important considerations in phrasing questions, so that the participant is focused on the precise information he or she is trying to obtain. Table 10.5 summarizes the appropriate guidelines.

TABLE 10.5 Guidelines for Phrasing Questions Do


Ask clear, concise questions covering a single topic

Ask rambling, ambiguous questions covering multiple issues Ask questions that are too difficult for the majority of participants to answer

Ask reasonable questions based on what the participants can be expected to know at this point in the training Ask challenging questions which provide thought Ask honest, relevant questions which direct the participants to logical answers

Ask questions which are too easy and provide no opportunity for thinking Ask “trick” questions designed to fool the participants

3. Directing and responding to participants’ questions: The final consideration in asking effective questions is how to direct the question. There are two ways to direct questions: a. To the group b. To a specific individual Table 10.6 summarizes the “how” to direct the questions.






The typical decision-making styles in a team environment are shown in Table 10.7 along with when it is best to use them and the primary dangers of each.

WHAT IS CONSENSUS DECISION MAKING? Consensus is a collective decision reached through active participation by all members, to which every member is committed. It requires all to express a viewpoint, to actively listen, and to differ constructively. Consensus does not mean 100% agreement, but a decision about which all members can honestly agree with and have some ownership stake with and agree to help carry out. Furthermore, it is a joint agreement which all members can accept and feel committed to. It is a course of action which each member can live with and can willingly agree to; a decision of a sufficiently high level of quality and high level of acceptance by those who will implement it. In essence, it is a solution that does not compromise any strong convictions or needs.

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TABLE 10.6 Questioning Techniques Encouraging Questions

How to Ask Questions

Set the climate for asking questions. Use phrases like “Don’t be afraid to ask questions.” “Raise your hand or just speak up.” “Please interrupt me.” Accept questions as they occur and don’t treat them as insignificant. There is no such thing as a dumb question. Allow enough time for participants to respond. Don’t ask for questions and immediately resume your discussion. Allow enough time in your planning for questions. Don’t ask for questions in a way that implies, “If anyone was too dense to get that, speak up now.” Your tone of voice will betray you. Pay attention to the back of the room, where it’s easy to overlook a raised hand. Don’t ask for questions while your eyes are glued to your notes or while you are writing on the board/overhead/flipchart.

Ask for specific examples Ask “W” questions: who, what, when, where, why, and how; also “how so?” “how come?” and “tell me more.” No leading questions: “Don’t you think that...?” is a manipulative statement meaning “you should think like I do or you’re stupid/wrong.” Ask “suppose we” to introduce a new idea, to break a deadlock, to bring up another perspective. Return questions to the person or team: “What do you think?” to encourage others to think Turn situations over to the team: If someone in the group asks how you think they should handle a certain situation, don’t be overly anxious to answer it yourself. There may be a better answer out there. “Who has an idea on how to handle that?”

Finally, a consensus decision is 1. Participative: All members join in the discussion. It is not: • Rule by a vote of the majority • A decision imposed by a dominant member • Made by yielding to an “expert” member of the team 2. Decisive: At a designated point, the team must make a decision. No member may leave the team; he may disagree with the team decision but willingly agree to implement it. 3. Synergistic (synergy): The action of two or more individuals to achieve an effect of which each is individually incapable. The results achieved by the members of the team working together usually exceed the results that could be expected by the sum of the individual efforts. (The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.) If the team results are not better, check the decision-making process against the rules in the first step above (sometimes referred to as “the wisdom of the team”).

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TABLE 10.7 The Decision-Making Styles, Best Applications, and Primary Dangers Decision-Making Approaches Directive Team leader decides alone and announces the decision Consultative Leader gets ideas from members individually or in a meeting, then decides Democratic Team members vote and majority rules Consensus All members participate in reaching a decision that all will support

Primary Dangers

Best Applications

Discourages involvement Fosters dependence

Emergency Confidential information

Stifles initiative Discourages critical thinking

Time deadline Stalemate Serious conflict

Win–lose situation Apathy or sabotage

Routine issues Very large team (over 10 participants) Individual commitment not needed

Takes time Requires skills

Individual commitment needed Synergy Coordination required Interdependence

HOW DO WE REACH CONSENSUS? Typical items of consideration are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Be willing to be open to influence. Contribute; don’t defend. Actively listen to others’ points of view. Find out the reasons for others’ positions. Do not agree for the sake of agreement. Avoid voting or averaging. Confront your differences, politely.

HOW CAN WE RECOGNIZE CONSENSUS? The team has reached consensus when all members can answer yes to the following questions: 1. 2. 3. 4.

Have I honestly listened? Have I been heard and understood? Will I support the decision? Will I say “we decided”?

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IF THE CONSENSUS METHOD TO DECISION MAKING IS NOT WORKABLE, HOW DOES THE TEAM PROCEED TO MAKE A DECISION? One of the most effective ways to make a decision is through the decision-making process. The process itself is the following: 1. Decision statement • On what situation are we going to take action? • What goal do we want to achieve? 2. Establish objectives • Results What results are the goal? Where do we want these results to take place? When do we expect these results? How much is our goal? • Resources What resources are available? How much money do we have? How much time do we have? How much manpower do we have? How much equipment do we have? What do we want to maximize? What do we want to minimize? What do we want to avoid? 3. Separate objectives • Required: what is absolutely critical to the success of the decision and can be measured? • Desired: all objectives not required are desired. If there is a question, make it a desired objective. Invert all required as desired objectives where possible. 4. Value the desired objectives • Assign a value of 10 to the most important and a 1 to the least important 5. Establish alternatives • What choices are available? • If the alternatives seem limited, look at each objective and consider what alternative could satisfy that objective 6. Test alternatives against required objectives • Fill in data about each alternative • Does the alternative pass? Yes/No • If no, drop the alternative from further consideration

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7. Score alternatives against desired objectives • Fill in data about each alternative • Score the alternative that best meets the objective a 10 and the least a 1 8. Value score • Multiply the value of each desired objective by the score of each alternative on that objective 9. Total value score • Continue higher relative total value scores to risks 10. Risks • If this alternative is our choice, what could go wrong? • How likely is that to happen? • If it does happen, what will its impact be? • Note where both likelihood and impact are high 11. Select best alternative • Which alternative gives maximum benefit at an acceptable level of risk to the decision maker?

WHAT IS LISTENING? Listening is a mental process shown in the following equation: Listening = Hearing + Processing + Responding with each of the variables including: Hearing — is to be fully accessible to the other person. Evidence of hearing, processing, and responding is seen in: • Eye contact • Tone of voice • Facial expression • Posture • Gestures • Body language Processing — is achieved by: • Listening for feelings as well as for facts • Identifying the central theme • Accepting “hidden” messages • Suspending judgement for awhile • Wait before responding • Be aware of when your feelings are blocking communications • Reflect on what is being said

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Responding — includes: • Rephrasing the other person’s words to show understanding • Expressing warmth and support • Showing trust • Using feedback to check meaning by clarifying, restating, neutral response, reflecting feelings, and summarizing • Asking for feedback to check understanding • Using self-disclosure in moderation

WHAT IS ACTIVE LISTENING? Active listening is basic to all aspects of the facilitation role. Specifically, it is • • • •

Hearing not only the words but also the feelings Feeling what the other person is feeling Suspending judgment so as to gain understanding Fostering an understanding atmosphere by: Restatement — this is a replay of the statement that the other person has just made. It is word-for-word of the statement of the person being asked. Paraphrase — this is a technique closely related to restatement, but the significant difference is that here understanding is demonstrated by the person who is asking the question by putting into his or her own words what is being said. Reflection — this is a “mirroring” technique in that the person asking the question plays back to the person being asked the feelings that he or she believes are being experienced by the other person. He or she responds not only to the words the other person is expressing, but also the “music” that he or she hears. Reflection of feelings can be an extremely powerful technique for generating the perception on the part of the person that he or she is being understood. Summarization — it helps from time to time for the interviewer to integrate the sets of data from the person being interviewed in the form of brief summaries. This fosters a climate of understanding.

WHAT ARE SOME ACTIVE LISTENING SKILLS? Some of the most basic skills are 1. Attentive silence — Good eye contact, head nods, facial expression showing alertness and interest. 2. Attentive words — “Yeah,” “I see,” “Uh-huh,” “I hear you,” “I understand,” etc. 3. Door openers — General open-ended questions rather than specific or closed-ended questions. For example: “Tell me more,” “What are you

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thinking?” “How do you feel about that?” “Then what happened?” “Go on.” etc. 4. Attentive listening — Pay attention to what the other person is trying to tell you. Be aware of nonverbal behavior. Avoid these distractions: • Rehearsing — Mentally planning what to say next. • Defending — Having defensive thoughts is natural, especially when confronted with a personally threatening message. Feeling the need to immediately defend yourself creates a barrier to the communication process. First find out the other person’s point of view. You can present your position next. • Judging — People often make statements that you either don’t agree with or that may offend your particular set of values. When this happens it is very difficult not to think to yourself, “That’s not right!” or, “He shouldn’t feel that way.” 5. Summary of thoughts and feelings of the other person — Verbal feedback of the other’s expressed thoughts and expressed or demonstrated feelings enables you to prove your understanding and empathy. Understanding is established when your paraphrasing of the other’s words is confirmed to be accurate. Empathy is your acknowledging the other’s feelings and being on target. Asking a “check-out” question at the conclusion of your summary or summarizing in a question form invites the other to respond and helps to keep the communication channel open. For example: “You seem wary of telling him how you feel. Is that right?” “Your main point is that this will save us several thousand dollars. Did I understand you correctly?”









We have a myth in our society that listening and hearing are the same. As we have already mentioned, they are not. Listening is a higher order cognitive process than hearing. While hearing is a natural, passive process, listening is a skill, an active process and requires attention, concentration, empathetic attitude, and training. Therefore it can be learned. The following are some tips to help you stay in a listening mode rather than hearing mode: 1. Search for something you can use: find areas of common interest. If you adopt a positive attitude toward what the talker is saying, you will usually find something that will broaden your knowledge. Sorting out elements of personal value is one area of effective listening. Ask yourself, “What is being said that I can use? What actions should I take?” 2. Take the initiative. Look at the talker and concentrate on what has been said. Ignore his or her delivery and personality and reach for the idea he or she is conveying. Show interest by the use of a noncommittal acknowledgment such as: “Oh, I see,” “How about that,” and so on. 3. Work at listening. Efficient listening takes energy. Practice makes it easier when you become aware of internal distractions.

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4. Focus your attention on ideas. Listen for the speaker’s central ideas and pick out the ideas as they are presented. Sort the facts from principles, the ideas from examples, and the evidence from opinion. 5. Resist external distractions. Where possible, resist distractions. Concentrate on concentrating. When you concentrate on concentrating, you make it possible to be aware of noises without being distracted by them. 6. Hold your rebuttal: watch out for emotion-laden words. Begin to recognize certain words that affect you to the point where you stop listening and start forming a rebuttal. One way to deal with this is to quickly analyze the reasons those words stir you. Another method is to jot down major rebuttal points as questions; do this briefly, not at length. Both methods can help clear your mind so that you can return to listening with an open mind. 7. Keep an open mind: ask questions to clarify for understanding. Quick and violent disagreement with the speaker’s main points to arguments can cause a psychological deaf spot. Keep your mind open. Give the talker more rather than less attention. Clarify meaning by restating, in your own words, what you thought was said! 8. Concentrate on the progress of ideas. Concentrate on what the talker says. Summarize in your head. Decide how well he or she is supporting his or her points and how you would have supported them. After each point is covered, mentally review the progress that is being made toward the theme.

WHAT IS PARAPHRASING? This is restating or reflecting in your own words what the other person said. It requires you to confirm that you have heard correctly, or to clear up misunderstandings. Paraphrasing does not mean parroting. Try to use different words from those the speaker used, while keeping the same meaning.




A meeting process check is an activity that may result to clarify, summarize, or give additional information through a variety of approaches. It may be called at any time by anyone in the team. Some of the reasons for a process check include: • • • • • • • • •

Purpose of meeting not clear Meeting was held just to “rubber stamp” No introductions Repeat of old information Irrelevant digressions No sequence to discussion Too boring; no humor to relieve tension Material not pertinent to participants’ situations Trivial matters discussed

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• • • • • • • • • • •


Leader lectured group Leader had predetermined solution; only pretended to listen to others Leader defensive Leader too conciliatory Leader read to audience (from visuals or other materials) Leader unprepared Leader scolded or argued with participants Leader’s sarcastic comments stifled creativity No time or willingness to deal with unanticipated issues Vague assignments No summary

WHAT IS COMMITMENT? Commitment is the application and demonstration of involvement through personal conviction, leadership, and ownership. A true commitment will provide improvement opportunities for all employees without any preconceived bias, by delegating authority and responsibility to those who have been assigned (actually do the work — empower) to particular task(s) for improving work processes. In addition, true commitment will be the impetus for creating multidisciplinary, cross-functional work teams responsible for designing and improving products and services, processes, and systems.





There are four levels of involvement. They are 1. 2. 3. 4.

Rendering of opinions based upon review of available data. Identification of problem(s) by collecting and analyzing data. Development of solutions to problems identified, by the above methods. Management of remedial activities including interfacing with outside sources.

WHAT IS FEEDBACK? Feedback consists of information you give to others about how they affect you, or information others give you about how you affect them. Giving and receiving feedback is fundamental to team process facilitation and essential to teamwork. The effectiveness of feedback depends on timing and delivery. It is helpful only when given in a constructive way to a receptive listener. It is seldom helpful when imposed on a recipient to satisfy the needs of the giver.

HOW DO YOU MANAGE FEEDBACK? There are many ways that one may manage feedback. However, the following approaches are the most common and seem to work best in most situations.

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1. Wait until asked, or ask whether the person would like feedback. 2. First, give feedback for positive behavior and then ask if the person would like suggestions for improvement. 3. Use descriptive, not evaluative, words. Be as specific as possible. 4. Use the “I” pronoun to describe how the other person’s behavior affected you. 5. Avoid the usage of the word “but.” 6. Always say “thank you for the feedback” even if it is critical. 7. Always ask for specifics. Generalities are of no help in the feedback process. 8. Accept the feedback as a valid perception of at least one person even if you disagree with what you are hearing.




Handling people is very important in any team environment. In fact, how people are treated is so fundamental in the team process that all team members must be cognizant of some basic communication techniques to deal with people who prefer communicating with at least four types of individuals. This is summarized in Table 10.8.

EVEN IN TEAM ENVIRONMENTS, WE STILL HAVE TO DEAL WITH INDIVIDUALS. WHAT ARE SOME OF THE DIFFERENT WORK SITUATIONS THAT A TEAM MAY BE FACED WITH? Myers-Briggs have identified the different individual characteristics in detail. Here we introduce the reader to the most common work situations dealing with individuals, which may be summarized in Table 10.9.

RECOGNIZING THAT INDIVIDUALS ARE UNIQUE, WHAT ARE SOME OF THE STEREOTYPICAL OBSERVATION CLUES THAT MAY HELP US IN THE TEAM PROCESS? Individuals have many characteristics. However, in the team environment different individuals may contribute — or not contribute — based on their own understanding and makeup of their own self. As a consequence, we provide Table 10.10 with some of the individual characteristics.

WHAT ARE TEAM OPERATING PROCEDURES (MECHANICS)? Team operating procedures are rules that everyone on the team agrees to follow in their dealings with one another. Some teams, depending on their scope, need complex operating procedures, while others need just a few ground rules. However, to be effective, all teams need at least some shared expectations. The process of developing them may be as important to the team as the procedures themselves. Team operating procedures usually address at least some of the following issues:

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TABLE 10.8 Communicating with Four Types of Individuals Feeling Tell who favors the idea Indicate the impact on people Be personable and friendly Indicate how it’s helpful Discuss how people will react Tell why it’s valuable Be positive Intuition Give a global scheme Point out the possibilities Use confidence and enthusiasm Indicate challenges Identify future benefits Sensing Be factual Document successful applications Reduce risk factors Work out details in advance Show why it makes sense Thinking Be logical State the principles involved Stress competent handling Be well organized List the costs and benefits Move from point to point

1. Agenda. Who prepares the agenda? When? Circulated how far in advance? When are contributions due? 2. Meetings. How often, where, and how long does the team meet? How many must be present to hold a meeting? What about breaks? 3. Attendance. How does the team handle latecomers? Absences? Whom to notify if unable to come? What about taking calls during meetings? 4. Guests. Under what circumstances, if any, are guests allowed at team meetings? 5. Behavior. Listening? Interruptions? Feedback? Handling of conflicts? Confidentiality of team discussions? (If the team does not raise this concern, then the facilitator should.) 6. Roles. What is expected of the team leader? How will the team define the roles of recorder, timekeeper, and facilitator? Is it applicable to talk about rotations of roles? If yes, how will the roles rotate?

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TABLE 10.9 Characteristics of Individuals Extrovert Types: Tend to move quickly Communicate freely Enjoy action and lots of variety Usually are good at meeting people Become impatient with long and complicated jobs and procedures Are interested in results and how it gets done Usually do not mind interruptions Sometimes act quickly without thinking first Enjoy having people around

Introvert Types: Prefer quiet for concentration Communicate less freely Are usually content to work alone Want to understand the idea behind the job Can work on one project for a long time without becoming bored Are usually careful with details and are uncomfortable with broad statements until they understand the details behind the statements Think first then act if action is really necessary

Sensing Types: Are aware of the uniqueness of each event Focus on what works Like an established way of doing things Enjoy applying what they have already learned Work steadily, with a realistic idea of how long it will take Usually reach a conclusion step by step Are not often inspired and may not trust the inspiration when they are Are careful about the facts May be good at precise work Can oversimplify a task Accept current reality as a given to work with

Intuitive Types: Are aware of the challenges and possibilities Focus on how things could be improved Dislike doing the same things repeatedly Enjoy learning new skills Work in bursts of energy powered by enthusiasm, with slack periods in between May leap to a conclusion quickly Follow their inspirations and hunches Dislike taking time for precision Can make a task very complex Ask why things are as they are

Thinking Types: Respond more to people’s ideas than their feelings Anticipate or predict logical outcomes of choices Need to be treated fairly Tend to be firm and tough minded Are able to reprimand or fire people when necessary May hurt people’s feelings without thinking Have a talent for analyzing a problem or situation

Feeling Types: Like harmony and will work to make it happen Respond to people’s values as much as to their thoughts Are good at seeing the effects of choices on people Need occasional praise Tend to be sympathetic Dislike telling people unpleasant things Take an interest in the person behind the job or idea Enjoy pleasing people as much or more than enjoy the task

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TABLE 10.9 (CONTINUED) Characteristics of Individuals Judging Types: Only the essential facts of the job are needed to begin Prefer things to be fixed and settled Enjoy following a plan Tend to make decisions quickly Tend to be satisfied after a judgment has been reached Sometimes do not pick up on “new” things that need to be addressed Like to finish tasks

Perceiving Types: Need all there is to know about a new job to feel comfortable beginning Adaptable and more flexible with changing situation Feel constrained by too much planning Tend to make decisions more slowly Tend to welcome and accept new information Delay addressing unpleasant tasks Like to start new tasks

TABLE 10.10 Individual Stereotypical Characteristics Controls



Emotes Inflections People subjects Opinions/stories More hand movement Casual postures Animated facial expressions Style: Amiable Need: Personal security Orientation: Relationships Growth action: To initiate

Monotone Task subjects Facts/data Less hand movement Rigid posture Controlled facial expressions Style: Driving Need: Results

Faster pace More statements Louder volume Directive use of hands/ points for emphasis Leans forward Direct eye contact

Slower pace Fewer statements Quieter volume Nondirective/relaxed use of hands Leans back Indirect eye contact

Style: Expressive Need: Personal approval

Style: Analytical Need: To be right

Orientation: Action Growth action: To listen

Orientation: Spontaneity

Orientation: Thinking

Growth action: To check

Growth action: To declare

7. Decisions. What decision methodologies are available to the team? Under what conditions will the team make decisions other than consensus? What if the team is unable to reach consensus in the time allotted? 8. Process Check. Can anyone call for a process check any time? Who leads the process check? Using what rating scales? How are team process improvements made?

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These operating procedures (mechanics) should be used by both beginning and advanced teams. Especially for beginning teams, these mechanics must be used, so that they begin to develop a discipline that maximizes their effort, and, at the same time, helps them to “get” into the habit of good practices. As such, the following is presented as a guideline: 1. Always use an agenda for each meeting. 2. Before starting, review the purpose of the meeting, the agenda, and tentative time allotments. 3. Try to decide the issues and concerns by consensus. 4. Follow the rule: only one person speaks at a time. 5. Follow the guidelines for giving and receiving feedback. 6. Every team member must take responsibility for calling a process check whenever one is needed. 7. Format process check at the end of each meeting, led by facilitator. 8. Conclude each process check by adding to the list of key learning for continuous improvement. 9. Rotate roles of leader, recorder, and timekeeper. 10. Agree on confidentiality of team discussions.




A team mission statement is a brief, concise statement which lends a sense of focus and direction to the team efforts. It is a specific statement that serves as a benchmark for setting priorities and evaluating the strategic value of the team performance, but not so specific as to state goals or objectives. (The process of developing the mission statement is as important as the statement itself.)






Any team mission statement has at least the following characteristics: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Unique reason for being a team — it must be clear Differentiates team — from other teams or previous assignments Value and benefit driven Motivating/energizing Scope defined Consistent with culture and organization Relevant to the team’s stakeholders (suppliers, employees, customers, management, functional interfaces) 8. Concise — 50 or fewer words




The team chartering process is a management responsibility and it involves the following steps:

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.


Do management prework Write charter — mission Select team leader and members Allocate team resources Hold chartering meeting Provide initial team building Reconcile team purpose and goals

In each of the seven steps there are additional requirements (functions) that need to be addressed. They are 1. Do management pre-work. When considering a team, address the following: • Select a team leader with appropriate and applicable qualifications • Determine the business priority • Determine responsibility — who is responsible for the process? who has the expertise and authority to make changes? • Determine if the team is necessary — it may not be • Define the assignment • Specific outcome(s) • Desired time-frame • Measure(s) of performance • Establish dollar cost (budget) • Reconcile with next-higher management team and be sure there is no conflict 2. Write charter — mission. The mission statement should be clearly understood by everyone concerned with the team. Some of the considerations for clarity are • Title should define specific task • Identify performance measure(s) for team accountability • Identify team authority to • Spend money (budget) • Introduce level of change(s) • Authorize requisition of resources • Consult outside experts • Receive special training, as needed • Assign work outside the team • Reporting guidelines • Identify management contact • Identify deliverables and desired time-line • For process improvement teams, the following should be considered: • Process measure(s) • Flowchart of the entire process (supplier — process — customer) • Data on process performance and customer satisfaction

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3. Select team leader and members. The selection process should consider/address the following: • Team size — seven plus or minus two members are the norm • Member’s managers’ commitment to the team — must be supportive • Motivation and enthusiasm of members • Selection criteria • Personal issues, i.e., responsibility, work ethic, attitude, interpersonal skills, communication ability, analytical skills, and so on • Appropriate knowledge and skill level for the team task • Teamwork skills and experience • Interest in joining 4. Allocate team resources. Perhaps one of the most important items in the team process. The following items should be considered before the embarkation of the team in the designated task(s). • Facilitator assignment, full time or part time. If part time, the percent time allocation to the specific team. • Project budget and spending authority • Logistical issues • Time commitment by the members • Concerns of member’s regular responsibilities • Training 5. Hold chartering meeting. In this phase of the process, the following tasks/objectives are performed. • Initial meeting is called by the management sponsor and the confirmation of the members occurs. • Sponsor delivers charter, answers questions, introduces the team’s facilitator, schedules the first meeting. • Facilitator proposes and negotiates his or her responsibilities to the team • Team members get acquainted and name the team 6. Provide initial team building. One of the main issues in every team building process is the initial approach. The following items may help focus the initial team-building process. • Facilitator evaluates training needs, and, if needed, delivers training in: • Consensus decision making • Meeting management • Priority setting • Brainstorming • Process check and feedback • Basic improvement tools • Problem solving • Team develops the ground rules and mission statement

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• Team sets attainable goals on performance measures • Team sets timeline and milestones 7. Reconcile team purpose and goals. A must activity in every team project. Some tasks for this phase are • Team meets sponsor within 2 or 3 weeks after charter meeting • Team presents purpose or mission statement and reconciles, if there are differences • Team presents goal • Schedule and milestones are reviewed and adjusted if necessary






One way to deal with team problems, particularly those arising from unspoken issues, such as competing loyalties to the team and departments, is to talk about them. Most problems, though, require a more structured solution. The following examples show how to use the guidelines for constructive feedback and working through common team problems. Floundering Teams commonly have trouble starting and ending a project or even different project stages. They flounder, wondering what actions to take next. At the beginning, they sometimes suffer through false starts and directionless discussions and activities. As the team progresses, team members sometimes resist moving from one phase or step to the next. At the end teams may delay unnecessarily, postponing decisions or conclusions because “We need something else. We are not ready to finish this yet.” Problems at the beginning suggest the team is unclear or overwhelmed by its task. Start up problems may also indicate team members are not yet comfortable enough with each other to engage in real discussion and decision making. Floundering when trying to make decisions may indicate that the team’s work is not the product of consensus, but some members are reluctant to say they do not support the team’s conclusions. Floundering after completing one phase of a project could mean the team does not have a clear plan and does not know what steps to take next. Floundering at the end of the project usually indicates that the team members have developed a bond and are reluctant to separate. Or, perhaps, they are reluctant to expose their work to review and possible criticism from outsiders. How a Team Leader Can Deal with Floundering 1. Get the group to look critically at how the project is being run. Here’s a step-by-step procedure for getting a team to focus on the point they are at in the process. a. Have the team members discuss their readiness to begin the next stage or step. What have we learned so far? What should we do next? What knowledge or skills do we need in the next stage of the project?

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2. 3. 4. 5.


b. Have the team make some early attempts at the next steps in the strategy. Allow the team to make mistakes. c. Reflect on your trial efforts and identify way to improve them. What worked or went well? What didn’t work well? What resources, training or knowledge does the team need to do the “job”? d. Have the team discuss how to incorporate the lessons learned from the trial runs. Use the progress checklist or milestone chart to stimulate discussion. Let’s review our mission and make sure it is clear to everyone. What do we need to do so we can move on? What is holding us up? (Data? Knowledge? Assurances? Support? Feelings?) Are we getting stuck because we have previous business that is unfinished? Does anyone feel we have missed something or left something incomplete? Let’s reserve time at the next meeting to discuss how we will proceed. Meanwhile, I suggest that each of us write down what we think is needed to move to the next stage.

Unquestioned Acceptance of Opinions as Facts Some members express personal beliefs and assumptions with such confidence that listeners assume they are hearing a presentation of facts. This can be dangerous, leading to an unshakable acceptance of various “earth is flat” assertions. Most members are reluctant to question self-assured statements from other members. Besides not wanting to be impolite, they think they need to have data before they challenge someone else’s assertions. Worse yet, the skeptic could be wrong and lose face with the team. How a Team Leader Can Deal with Unquestioned Acceptance of Opinions as Facts 1. Is what you said an opinion or a fact? Do you have data? 2. How do you know that is true? 3. Let’s accept what you say as possible, but let’s also get some data to test it. Rush to Accomplishment Many teams will have at least one “do something” member who is either impatient or sensitive to pressure from managers or other influential people or groups. This type of person typically reaches an individual decision about a problem and its solution before the team has had time to consider different options. They urge the team to make hasty decisions and discourage any further efforts to analyze or discuss the matter. Their nonverbal behavior, direct statements, and “throw-away” expressions constantly communicate impatience. Too much pressure can lead a group in a series of random, unsystematic efforts to make improvements. Teams must realize significant gains overnight. Quality takes patience.

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How a Team Leader Can Deal with a Rush to Accomplishment 1. Remind members of their prior agreement that the scientific approach will not be compromised or circumvented. 2. Make sure the leader is not among those exerting the pressure 3. Confront the rusher, using the techniques of constructive feedback. Have examples of rushing and describe the effect of this impatience on the team’s work. Discounts and Plops We all have certain values or perspectives that are, consciously or unconsciously, important to us. When someone else ignores or ridicules these values, we feel discounted. This discounting can also cause hostility in a team, especially if it happens frequently. For instance, there will be times in every team when someone makes a statement that “plops.” No one acknowledges it, and the discussion picks up on a subject totally irrelevant to the statement, leaving the speaker to wonder why there was no response. Discounts happen for many reasons. Perhaps the discounted member said something irrelevant to the team’s discussion or did not clearly state the idea. Perhaps the rest of the team missed the meaning in the statements. No matter what the reason, every member deserves the respect and attention from the team. Teams must help discounted members identify and articulate what is important to them. How a Team Leader Can Deal with Discounts and Plops 1. Include training in active listening and other constructive behaviors early in the team’s life. 2. Support the discounted person. “Timothy, it sounds like that is important to you and we are not giving it enough consideration; I think what Stephen said is worthwhile and we should spend time on it before we move on; Christine, before we move on is there some part of what you said that you would like the team to discuss?” 3. Talk off-line with anyone who frequently discounts, puts down, or ignores previous speaker’s statements. Digression and Tangents The following scenario will probably sound familiar to anyone who has sat in a meeting: A team describing breakdowns in a work process is told of how one worker solved the problem. This reminds someone of how that same worker solved a problem in another process, which reminds someone else of an incident between that worker and his supervisor, which leads to a discussion of retirement condominiums in Florida, and on and on. When the meeting ends, the team wonders where the time went. Such wide ranging, unfocused conversations are an example of wandering, our natural tendency to stray from the subject. Sometimes these digressions are innocent

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tangents from the conversation. But they also happen when the team wants to avoid a subject that it needs to address. In either case, the meeting facilitator is responsible for bringing the conversation back to the meeting agenda. How a Team Leader Can Deal with Tangents 1. Use a written agenda with time estimates for each item. Refer to the topic and time when the discussion strays too far 2. Write topics or items on a flipchart and post the pages on the wall where all members can refer to them throughout the discussion 3. Direct the conversation back on track: “We’ve strayed from the topic, which was________. The last few comments before we digressed were________.” 4. “We’ve had trouble sticking to this point. Is there something about it that makes it so easy to avoid?” Feuding Members Sometimes a team becomes a field of combat for members who are vying with each other. Usually, the issue is not the subject they are arguing about but rather the contest itself. Other members feel like spectators at a sporting match and fear that if they participate in any disagreement between the pair, they will be swept into the contest on one side or the other. Usually these feuds predate the team and, in all likelihood, will outlast it too. The best way to deal with this situation is to prevent it by carefully selecting team members so that adversaries are never on the same team. If that is impossible, then bring the combatants together before the first meeting to work out some agreement about their behavior. How a Team Leader Can Deal with Feuding Team Members 1. When confrontations occur during a meeting, get the adversaries to discuss the issue off-line. Offer to facilitate the discussion. 2. Push them to some contract about their behavior (if you agree to X, I will agree to Y) or ground rules for managing their differences without disrupting the team.




Problem individuals in any team environment may fall in the following categories. Overbearing Members Some members wield a disproportionate amount of influence in a group. These people usually have a position of authority or need authorities and experts because these are important resources. Most teams benefit from their participation. But the presence of an authority or an expert is detrimental when the person:

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• Discourages or forbids discussion encroaching into his or her authority of expertise. (“You need not get involved in those technicalities. We’re taking care of that. Let’s move on to something else.”) • Signals the “untouchability” of an area by using technical jargon of referring to present specifications, standards, regulations, or policies as the ultimate determinations of future actions. (“What you don’t understand is that p. 89753 requires a bimordial interface between the crag stop and any abutting AC135.” This, of course, is gibberish, just to prove the point of jargon and standard). • Regularly discounts any proposed activity by declaring that it won’t work, or citing instances when it was tried unsuccessfully here or in the past. Other members soon get the message that their suggestions will be seen as trite or naive. (“We’ve tried that in Heaventown in 1978. It was a disaster! Steer clear of that solution.”) How a Team Leader Can Deal with Overbearing Members 1. Reinforce the agreement that no area is sacred; team members have the right to explore any area that pertains to the project. 2. Get the authority to agree (before the project starts, if possible) that it is important for the team to make its own way, for all members to understand the process and operation. The expert may occasionally be asked to instruct the team, to share knowledge of a broader perspective. 3. Talk to the authority off-line and ask for cooperation and patience. 4. Enforce the primacy of data and the scientific approach. (“In God we trust. All others must have data!”) Dominating Members Some members, with or without authority or expertise, consume a disproportionate amount of “air time.” They talk too much. Instead of concise statements, they tell overlong anecdotes and dominate the meeting. Normal moments of silence that occasionally occur are in invitation for the dominator to talk. Their talk inhibits the team from gaining a sense of team accomplishment or momentum. Other members get discouraged and find excuses for missing meetings. How a Team Leader Can Deal with Dominating Members 1. Structure discussion on key issues to encourage equal participation. For example, have thoughts and share them around the table. (Use nominal group technique.) 2. List “balance of participation” as a general concern to critique during the meeting evaluation. 3. Practice gatekeeping: “We’ve heard from you on this, Cary. I’d like to hear what others have to say.” 4. Get the team to agree on the need for limits and focus in discussions and in the value of balanced participation.

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Reluctant Members Many teams have one or two members who rarely speak. They are the opposites of the dominators. When invited to speak, these “understanding” members commonly say “I am participating; I listen to everything that’s said.” “When I have something to say, I’ll say it.” Each of us has a different threshold of need to be a part of a group and a different level of comfort with speaking in a group. There is nothing right or wrong about being extroverted or introverted; these are just differences between people. Problems develop in a group when there are no built-in activities that encourage the introverts to participate and the extroverts to listen. How a Team Can Deal with Reluctant Members 1. Structure participation the same way for dominating members. 2. When possible, divide the project task into individual assignments and reports. 3. Act as a gatekeeper: “Does anyone else have ideas about this?” (done while looking at the reluctant member); more directly, “Sam, what is your experience in this area?” Attribution As individuals and group, we tend to attribute motives to people when we disagree with or don’t understand their opinion or behavior. Through attribution we try to bring order and meaning to apparent disorder and confusion. However, attribution is a substitute for the hard work of seeking real explanations. It also creates resentment: it is perfectly normal to bristle when someone else tells you they know what makes you tick or tries to explain your motives. Within a team, attribution can lead to hostility when aimed at another team member (“What you don’t understand is…” or “He’s just trying to take the easy way out.”). When aimed at individuals or groups outside of the team (“They won’t want to get involved. They’re just waiting ’til they can collect their pension.”) it can lead to misguided efforts based on erroneous attributions. How a Team Leader Can Deal with Attribution 1. Reaffirm prior agreement on the primacy of the scientific approach. 2. “That may well explain why they behave the way they do, but how do we know? What has anyone seen or heard that indicates this? Can we confirm that with data?” If the attribution is from one member to another, don’t let it go by without checking it out. “Say, Jeanne, I heard Lyn describe your approach as catering to the other side. How would you describe it?”




As a general rule a team may be led by:

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1. Commando: Basic level of leading used when providing specific direction for a team. Examples of commando level: supplying information, assigning members to tasks, tell the team what the next step will be. Not recommended. 2. Coaching: Is used to establish a dialogue with team members about the content being discussed. When you coach, you are answering their questions and stating questions to challenge their thinking or helping them come to a decision. You are still providing them with structured direction in this level. 3. Facilitation: Is used when you trust your team members’ knowledge and expertise and you let them take the ball and run with it. When you step back and let the team deal with the content of the discussion, you are taking yourself out of the role of the team leader by offering your own opinions and ideas which are subject to evaluation by the team members. The only direction you provide is summarizing the discussion and posing guide questions to further the discussion they will handle on their own. Highly recommended. To appreciate this leadership, however, we must understand the levels of participation (Figure 10.1) and the leadership continuum (Figure 10.2). Which are a variation of the Robert Tannenbaum and Warren II. Schmidt (1958) model of leadership as a continuum.



FIGURE 10.1 Levels of participation.

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(m (m

FIGURE 10.2 The leadership continuum.

1. The leader makes the decision and announces it. In this case the “boss” identifies a problem, considers alternative solutions, chooses one of them, and then reports this decision to his subordinates for implementation. He or she may or may not give consideration to what he or she believes the subordinates will think or feel about his or her decision. In any case, the manager provides no opportunity for them to participate directly in the decision-making process. 2. The leader “sells” his decision. Here the “boss,” as before, takes responsibility for identifying the problem and arriving at a decision. However, rather than simply announcing it, the “boss” takes the additional step of persuading his or her subordinates to accept it. In doing so, he or she recognizes the possibility of some resistance among those who will be faced with the decision and seeks to reduce this resistance by indicating, for example, what the employees have to gain from his or her decision. 3. The leader presents his ideas, invites questions, and presents a tentative decision subject to change. Here the “boss” who has arrived at a decision and who seeks acceptance of his or her ideas provides an opportunity for his or her subordinates to get a fuller explanation of his thinking and his or her intentions. After presenting the ideas, he or she invites questions so that his or her associates can better understand what he or she is trying to accomplish. This “give and take” also enables the boss and his or her subordinates to explore more fully the implications of the decision. This kind of behavior permits the subordinates to exert some influence on the decision. The initiative for identifying and diagnosing the problem remains with the “boss.” Before meeting with his or her staff, he or she has thought the problem through and arrived at a decision, but only a tentative one. Before finalizing it he or she presents his or her proposed solution for the reaction of those who will be affected by it. He or she says in effect, “I would like to hear what you have to say about this plan that I have developed. I will appreciate your frank reactions, but will reserve for myself the final decision.”

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4. The leader presents the problem, gets suggestions, and then makes the decision. Up to this point the “boss” has come before the team with a solution of his own. Not so in this case. The subordinates now get the first chance to suggest solutions. The manager’s initial role involves identifying the problem. The function of the team becomes one of increasing the manager’s repertory of possible solutions to the problem. The purpose is to capitalize on the knowledge and experience of those who are on the “firing line.” From the expanded list of alternatives developed by the manager and his subordinates, the manager then selects the solution that he regards as most promising. 5. The leader defines the limits and requests the group to make a decision within prescribed limits. At this point the manager passes to the team (possibly including himself as a member) the right to make decisions. Before doing so, however, he or she defines the problem to be solved and the boundaries within which the decision must be made. Here the team undertakes the identification and diagnosis of the problem and develops alternative solutions. The only limits directly imposed on the team by the organization are those specified by the supervisor. If the “boss” participates in the decision-making process, he or she attempts to do so with no more authority than any other member of the team. He or she commits himself or herself in advance to assist in implementing whatever decision the team makes. One can see that the participative management philosophy is not easy, and it may take a long time to become a way of life in your organization. Some may adapt to it easily; many may find it very difficult to make the change. To adopt it, it is necessary to give up the security of a tried and true style that has been working for your organization and the one the employees have been raised with. In any case, this style of management has proven highly successful and once its roots have taken hold it will rapidly grow.




Group-think is defined as conformity in reaching decisions. It can be avoided by trying to do the following: 1. Avoid reaching agreement too quickly; beware of reaching instant, unanimous agreement. 2. The group leader insists on critical thinking; all members recognize dissent as a way of getting all viewpoints. 3. Bring in outside opinion. 4. List all alternatives. 5. Question too much group unity and group cohesiveness. 6. Avoid pressure on members to change positions too soon. 7. Assign a decision role to each team member to estimate and evaluate the consequences of the proposed decisions.

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8. Avoid mind-guarding, that is, protecting members from access to negative information. 9. Avoid scapegoating other teams. 10. Practice the team leadership functions and avoid dysfunctional member behavior.

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An Introduction to Problem Solving: Selected Tools and Methodologies as Used in a Team Environment

In this chapter we introduce problem solving as an activity that teams usually do and are involved with. The intent in this chapter is to sensitize the reader about the process of problem solving and introduce the basic methodology. In the second volume of this series we will address problem solving in more detail.

WHAT IS PROBLEM SOLVING? The law of cause and effect applies to all situations. Things don’t just happen for no reason at all. For every effect there is a cause. The cause may or may not be simple — quite often it is indeed complex. What is of paramount importance is determining the true cause or, as it is most commonly referred to, the “root cause,” the why and wherefore, the reason(s) behind it all. This is what the world of problem solving is all about. Something has gone wrong, you do not know the cause(s), and you want to do something about it. In essence then, the problem solving process is an analytical method to solve the problem at hand.




The flow of identifying the problem in any situation is Symptoms → Causes → Solutions We perceive the symptoms, we analyze the causes, and we design the solutions in such a way that we remove the root cause, not the symptom. However, in order for us to pursue the problem identification process, we must recognize that there are three types of problems. They are


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Type I. Those which we have control over. Type II. Those which we have no control over, but can influence someone who does have control over them. Type III. Those which we have no control over and have no influence with anyone who does have control. In a team environment, the emphasis should be on Type I problems. Type II is of secondary importance, and Type III problems should be avoided. Special note: We must also recognize that sometimes the best we can do is to address the symptom. An example of this is the “headache.” Most of us take an aspirin, addressing the ache rather than finding out precisely the root cause of the headache. If the headache persists, then we may pursue other means, including rootcause analysis. In transactional issues, quite often problem solving is a major concern rather than root-cause analysis.




Everyone that has ever dealt with people will agree that the people problems are the most difficult to resolve, as compared with problems that deal with products, machines, or a combination. Every time anyone deals with people, invariably, sooner or later misunderstandings will occur. However, despite their difficulty, people problems can be analyzed and resolved systematically. The first step in the analysis process is to recognize the pitfalls in dealing with people and then to develop a systematic approach to resolve the problem. Some of the pitfalls are 1. Cause jumping. Rather than looking at the problem objectively, we are ready to accuse the people involved. 2. Trying to play psychologist. It is easy to try to psychoanalyze an individual as to the cause of his or her performance on the job. Do not do it. You are not qualified. Instead, look at the process. 3. Accepting information that is not clear. When in doubt, ask for clarification of all data. Remember, when dealing with people, the information is usually unclear, fuzzy, and ever changing. Make sure the information is timely, credible, and accurate. Despite all the complications of dealing with people problems, there is a way to simplify them by: 1. An awareness of the difficulties. Before proceeding, ask yourself just what the facts are about the situation. 2. Be systematic in your analysis. Deal only with the environment around the problem. Force yourself to be rigid in your analysis, eliminating past prejudices or unclear facts.

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3. Deal with controllable situations. You cannot force the individual to change against his or her will. Therefore, focus on changes in the environment, job assignment, work requirements, and the norms and rules.




Planning is a process to prepare a course of action and achieve a specific goal. It is designed to look ahead into the future to anticipate potential problems and plan to minimize their effect. The following process steps for planning provide the team with a systematic approach to assuring the success of a plan in the future. 1. Plan statement. Identify the goal we wish to accomplish. Part of this identification should address the “why” and the “how.” 2. List the component steps of the plan. Identify all the steps that the team must go through to accomplish the end goal. Be as specific as possible and whenever possible include the “why” and the “how.” 3. Number the steps of #2 in chronological order. 4. Identify the milestones. 5. Identify potential problems of each important step. 6. Assess each precise potential problem. A helpful question may take the form of: How likely is this to occur and what will be its impact if it does happen? 7. Determine probable “root cause” of each potential problem. Force the team to look at the root cause(s) rather than the “symptom.” 8. Assess the likelihood of each probable cause. 9. Plan for preventive action. The focus here is to eliminate the probable cause from happening. Therefore the question is which actions could prevent the probable cause from occurring? 10. Plan for contingent action. The focus here is to protect the team as much as possible should the preventive action in step #9 not work. Therefore the question is which actions could minimize the effects should the precise potential problem occur anyway? 11. Feedback points. One of the major reasons that plans in the team environment fail is because people assume they will succeed and do not specifically adjust to change. More important than the plan is the planning process itself. The process is flexible to adjust to changes through the feedback system that the team has agreed upon in the charter meeting.






There are at least ten principles of team problem solving. They are 1. Projects must be realistic, and solutions attainable 2. Success in problem solving requires that effort be directed toward overcoming surmountable obstacles

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3. Available facts should be used even when they are inadequate. 4. The starting point of the problem is richest in solution possibilities. 5. Problem-mindedness should be increased while solution-mindedness should be delayed. 6. Disagreement can lead either to hard feelings or to innovation depending on the discussion leadership. 7. The “idea-getting” process should be separated from the “idea-evaluation” process because the latter inhibits the former. 8. Choice situations should be turned into problem situations. 9. Problem situations should be turned into choice situations. 10. Solutions suggested by the leader are improperly evaluated and tend either to be rejected or accepted.




It has been said that “a problem properly stated is half solved.” The skill in problem definition is important for two reasons: (1) well stated, the definition will expose the essence of the problem to be dealt with and thereby guide one in the investigation of the problem; (2) a poor definition tends to confine the mind to a very limited area of search for solutions, whereas a good definition unlocks ideas, enabling the mind to examine a number of different directions for finding solutions. The following eight items may help in the definition process. 1. Define the problem broadly. To test an initial definition to see if it is broad enough, ask why. For example, if the definition were “how to make a better paint brush,” asking why could lead to the thought, “to apply paint faster,” which could lead to the revised problem definition, “how to apply paint more efficiently.” Such a definition opens up such solution possibilities as spraying, sponging, or rolling on paint. 2. Question the basic assumption of what the problem is by asking, “Why do this at all?” Sometimes the problem stated is not the real problem. 3. Word the definition concisely, expressing just the essence of the problem. Eight or ten words should usually be sufficient. 4. Redefine the problem in several ways. 5. Divide the problem into subproblems and write definitions for each of the subproblems. 6. Give the problem various interpretations. Express definitions in a variety of ways — shifting word order, substituting other verbs, changing negative statements to positive, active voice to passive, and so on. 7. Word the problem in a form that encourages idea finding by beginning the statement with “How to _____,” or “Ways to ____,” or “What to do about______.” 8. Take time for new perceptions of the problem to develop before settling on a final definition of the problem.

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There are a number of ways to solve problems, both qualitative and quantitative. In here, we will elaborate only on the method that we call the “principle of difference.” (It is based on the Kepner and Tregoe framework of “what is and what is not.”) In this approach, the team determines what makes the problem different from every other problem. This approach will give the team a guide to look for the “root cause.” The rationale for this approach is that once the team describes the problem completely, then only one true cause will fit it. The actual approach is the following steps: 1. Problem statement. State precisely what the deviation is, citing the object and defect. The problem statement is a direct statement of what is wrong (the effect). The objective of the team is to find the cause(s) of this effect. 2. Description. The description step of the process strives to completely and accurately specify the problem in four dimensions: what, where, when, and magnitude. What? Typical questions are What is the product/process/object with the problem (the problem may be a defect)? What other product/process/object could we also expect to be defective but is not in this instance? What is the defect/flaw/problem on the product/process/object? What other similar defect/flaw/problem could we reasonably expect but is not occurring on this product/process/object? Where? Typical questions are Where on the product/process/object is the defect/problem/flaw? Where else could the defect/problem/flaw be but is not? Where are the defective products/process/objects reported? Where else could the defective products/process/objects have been reported but were not? When? Typical questions are When is the defective product/process/object first reported? When could the defect/problem/flaw occur but does not? When in the life span of the product/process/object does the defect occur? When in the life span of the product/process/object could the defect have occurred but did not? Is there a pattern of any kind? What could the pattern be but is not? Magnitude, typical questions are How many defective objects are there? How many objects could be defective but are not? How much of the object is defective? How much of the object could be defective but is not? Is there a trend? What could the trend be but is not?

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3. Differences. What is different, unique, peculiar, distinctive about the “is” when compared to the “is not” — new data not in the description or a new process? 4. Changes. What has changed in, on, or about the difference? When did it change? Be specific? 5. Potential causes. How could this change or a combination of several changes or a combination of a change plus a difference cause this problem? 6. Examine for most likely cause. If each potential cause is the most likely cause, how does it explain why it effects — each “is” in the description — and why it does not effect — each “is not” in the description? 7. Document most likely cause. Who will verify the cause? How will it be verified on the job? When will it be verified on the job? Where will it be verified? Note: It is imperative for the reader to understand that in each step and or question that we addressed, where applicable and appropriate, the follow-up questions of “why,” “how,” and “magnitude” must be asked. Furthermore, we have restrained from identifying specific tools and statistical methods to address each question. We have done so by design, since the possibility of using a variety of tools exists and the specific usage is dependent upon the team’s knowledge and experience with the tool or statistical method, as well as the task at hand.





The following selected questions may help you find problems in a given area within your organization: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13.

What specific jobs give you the most problems? What jobs are held up because of delays or bottlenecks? What jobs frequently require overtime? What jobs require too many people? What jobs require lots of chasing around or walking? What jobs are causing a lot of rework? Where can forms, equipment, or supplies be eliminated? What reports, forms, or records require unnecessary information? Where can an operation be combined with another operation to save time? What jobs or procedures take too long? What jobs can be rescheduled to eliminate peaks or idle time? Where can better use of space be made? Where is work distributed unevenly among employees in respect to quantity, difficulty, urgency, or importance? 14. On what jobs are too many mistakes being made of quality or work unsatisfactory? 15. What shortcuts can be employed?

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16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25.


Where can wear and tear on equipment be reduced? Where can materials, parts, or supplies be reused? Where can machines or equipment be used to reduce handwork? What jobs require a lot of checking? Where does it take too long to locate records? Do any of the machines you use cause you trouble? What troubles result from these machines? What parts seem to cause more problems in your area? What problems do these parts cause? What processes cause you problems?




A detailed discussion will given in Volumes II and IV of this series. Here, we only mention the basic tools that every team must be aware of in both theory and application. They are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Check sheet Histogram Pareto Cause-and-effect diagram Flowchart Control charts • Run chart • X-bar, R chart • Individual and moving range chart • p-Chart • c-Chart 7. Scatter plot

WHAT ARE THE BASIC MANAGEMENT TOOLS THAT MANAGEMENT MUST BE AWARE OF IN FACILITATING TEAMS? A detailed discussion will given in Volumes II and IV of this series. Here, we only mention the basic management tools that every team must be aware of in both theory and application. They are 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

Affinity chart Correlation chart Distribution diagram Matrix chart Program evaluation and review technique (PERT) Matrix data analysis Process decision program chart (PDPC)

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There are many advanced tools that a team may use. In Volumes III, IV, V, and VI we will address these issues in detail. However, their application depends upon the complexity of the task and the knowledge/skill level of the team members. Some of the most common advanceed tools and methodologies used by teams are 1. Quality function deployment 2. Benchmarking 3. Design of experiments • Classical • Taguchi 4. Failure mode and effect analysis (FMEA) 5. Capability • Cpk • Capability ratio 6. Gauge reproducibility and repeatability (Gauge R and R) 7. Cost of quality 8. Reengineering

WHAT IS CONCERN ANALYSIS? In the real world we are forced to deal with “the messy situations” that are complicated and require a number of different approaches to resolve the situation. Making a choice among alternatives requires a different process than finding the cause of the problem. Setting a plan into action and establishing priorities requires two distinctly different approaches to follow. Concern analysis is the key to dealing with every kind of concern the team will face in the job environment. So, by definition then, concern analysis is the process that the team uses to determine what type of situation the organization, however defined, is in, so that the team can apply exactly the right kind of thinking to it.

HOW DO WE USE CONCERN ANALYSIS? Concern analysis is used as a starting point before using any problem solving, decision making, or planning processes. In fact, in order for the team to use concern analysis, the following things must be known: 1. 2. 3. 4.

Just what is the situation to be analyzed or studied? Exactly how are they isolated and examined? When is the best time to work on them — their priority? What is the best approach or process to use?

Once these preliminary questions have been answered, the team is ready now to undertake the concern analysis. The following process steps are utilized as an initial sequence in any situation before the formal problem solving.

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1. List the areas of broad concern . Fundamentally the question the team is trying to answer is what threats or opportunities do you (area of concern) face? Why? How? 2. Breakdown into manageable subconcerns. The team is trying to answer questions like: Can we be more specific? What evidence do we have concerning this situation? Is it possible to further break apart these concerns? Of course, with each answer the facilitator should probe even further with the basic questions of Why? and How? 3. Prioritize. What are the implications of the concerns in terms of impact, timing, and trend? Why? How? 4. Determine process. Are we looking in the past for cause(s) (problem solving)? Do we have a choice among alternatives (decision making)? Do we have a plan to implement or assure a decision’s success in the future (planning)? The selection of the right thinking process is the heart of concern analysis. The proper location of process enables the team to proceed quickly and accurately into the proper process.

QUALITY FUNCTION DEPLOYMENT (QFD) IS ONE OF THE MOST FREQUENT TOOLS TO IDENTIFY THE VOICE OF THE CUSTOMER. HOW DOES THE TEAM SCOPE THE PROJECT, USING THE QFD METHOD? QFD will be addressed in Volume VI in much detail. However, here it is addressed as an awareness tool. As a general rule the following steps are taken: 1. Sponsor has project in mind. 2. Kick off the project with inner core-team (leader, facilitator) to discuss draft scope, preliminary core team membership, and the owners. 3. Convene preliminary team, core-team, leader, facilitator (no sponsor) to refine project scope, timing, membership. At this point the leader and the facilitator may begin to plan the formal quality function deployment (QFD) analysis. 4. Present project draft scope to sponsor and owners. Adjust if required. 5. Convene the finalized core-team, review adjustments, and contract the scope. (All must agree.)







There are many ways that the analysis may be performed. However, here we present a generic one: 1. Inform the team as to what situation analysis (SA) information is available. 2. Find out from the team what SA information they wish to see. 3. Gather and summarize the SA findings.

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4. Present findings to the team and draw conclusions. 5. Share findings with sponsor and owners.




To gather information about the customer is perhaps one of the most important functions that the team must perform. Unless all the needs, wants, and expectations are recognized and taken into consideration, the team will fall short of its goal. Because there are many specific tools to do this analysis, here we address the process of identifying the customer’s wants. 1. Identify customers and establish selection criteria for who to interview. 2. Identify existing relevant research. 3. Identify alternative research methods with recommendations to core team. (The Pugh concept may be used and/or some other selection format.) 4. Core team draws research method conclusions and finalize project timeline. 5. Share conclusions with sponsor and stakeholders. (The intent here is to gain ownership by everyone.) 6. Tactical qualitative research implementation. (If possible get the customer wants.) At this stage a flow chart covering relative details may be helpful. 7. Analysis of root wants shared with the core group. 8. Organize the customer wants with the core group using tools such as affinity diagram, cause-and-effect dispersion analysis, and so on. Share the results with sponsor and owners. 9. Tactical quantitative research implementation. Based on the flowchart details, try to get the importance and customer priority ratings. 10. Share analysis of quantitative research with core group.






1. Enter customer wants from the affinity diagram for key customer segments. 2. Analyze customer interactions. (There may be both positive and negative interactions.) 3. Enter customer importance and satisfaction ratings. 4. Analyze the preplanning chart and set project strategy, based on the top priority. 5. Review analysis with everyone concerned.







1. Transfer top priority wants and related market information to planning matrix. 2. Develop the pertinent measures which respond to the customer wants. (Create the hows.)

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3. Establish the relationships between the wants and hows. Establish roof correlations. 4. Set preliminary target performance levels for the measures. 5. Validate the targets.

USING QFD, HOW DOES THE TEAM GENERATE AND EVALUATE CONCEPTS? 1. Unconstrained brainstorm session for concepts with core plus relevant support members. 2. External investigation report on related industries and benchmarking. 3. Filter out concepts which do not meet basic requirements criteria. 4. Detail the most promising surviving concepts to an objective level (flowchart or picture). 5. Core team and relevant support members establish and agree on criteria (measures), weighing any additional business considerations (from scope). 6. Evaluate the concept alternatives using the Pugh concept selection process. 7. Synthesize the best concept alternative. 8. Develop and refine the proposed concept. Develop business plan with implementation recommendations. 9. Present findings and recommendations to the sponsor and stakeholders.

ANOTHER FREQUENT TECHNIQUE USED IN IDENTIFYING PROCESS IMPROVEMENT IS THE SURVEY. HOW IS THE SURVEY INSTRUMENT CONSTRUCTED? In a very basic approach, the survey instrument is designed in the following manner: 1. Determine the information that is needed. Focus on the way to select and define the process improvement opportunity. 2. Determine who has the information in the most reliable form. Focus on an opportunity list that the team may use for projects. 3. Plan how you will use the information. Focus on the ultimate results and the effect on the process. 4. Determine the content of the questions. Focus on four main questions: a. Is the question necessary? b. Are several questions needed instead of one? c. Do respondents have the necessary information to answer? d. Will the respondent give the necessary information? 5. Determine the response format. Focus on the expectation of your results and design the instrument accordingly. 6. Determine the question wording. Focus on the KISS principle (keep it simple and short), as well as the following: a. Avoid leading questions b. Avoid implicit distractors (alternatives, choices) c. Avoid implicit assumptions d. Avoid generalizations and estimates

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e. Avoid double-barreled questions 7. Determine the question sequence. Focus on the following four questions: a. Use simple, interesting opening questions b. Use the funnel approach c. Ask for classification information last d. Place sensitive/difficult questions near the end In determining the question sequence, the designer should be aware of sensitive questions and they should make them, if necessary, less threatening. The following approach is recommended: a. Hide the question in other less sensitive questions b. State that the behavior is not unusual c. State the question in terms of others d. Present the responses so that the respondents just check the answer(s) A second point of awareness by the designer should be the issue of multiple choice questions. The following are some considerations: a. No alternatives captures the respondent’s feeling b. Requires mutually exclusive distractors (alternatives, choices) c. The list of distractors (alternatives, choices) d. Susceptible to potential order bias 8. Determine the physical characteristics of the questionnaire 9. Pretest (or pilot) questionnaire. Focus on the effectiveness to measure your expectations 10. Distribute the questionnaire 11. Followup with respondents to encourage response

ONE OF THE LATEST TECHNIQUES USED IN TEAM ENVIRONMENTS IS STORYBOARDING. WHAT IS IT AND HOW IS IT USED? Description: The storyboard documents a project through descriptive pictures and graphs accompanied by simple text. It is constructed in the style of a flowchart with a sequence of boxed information, each box containing a major step in the process and displaying the appropriate data, findings, or plans. Application: The storyboard is used throughout a process improvement project to communicate the progress and results of a team in a highly visual fashion, easily understood by persons outside the team. It sets a tone of open communication by the team and promotes awareness and involvement of others in the team’s work. Procedure: A storybook is put together in the following way. 1. On a large bulletin board (or other display space) designate space for 10 boxes: a. Focus b. Examine c. Diagnose d. Prescribe e. Prognose

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f. g. h. i.

Treat Monitor Refocus Team information (names of the team leader, members, facilitator and liaison) j. Process improvement review form 2. Over time, fill in the boxes with visual information showing the team’s use of the various tools. These include: flow charts, cause and effect diagrams, Pareto diagrams, run charts, histograms, scatter diagrams, and any other tools the team uses. 3. Exercise care to avoid displaying confidential information or information specific to any individual. 4. Use the storyboard as the basis for presentations and discussions about the project. Note: Display of storyboards presupposes that readers have been exposed to the organization’s process improvement model and approach to continuous quality improvement. The outline of the format for a storyboard is shown in Figure 11.1.

FIGURE 11.1 Outline format of a storyboard.

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Epilogue As we started this volume, we made the point that six sigma, indeed any quality initiative, depends upon individuals. Those individuals appropriately trained form teams, and it is through teams that exceptional results are recorded in the selected projects for improvement. We believe that we have made the point in this volume that for a successful six sigma campaign in any organization — manufacturing or service, profit or not for profit — the key element is how the team is going to perform. We also made the point that teams are here to stay. The challenge, however, is that we must understand that there exist different expectations between individuals and organizations. The individual expectation is that one has to “give” in order to “get.” In other words, there is a price for success. On the other hand, there is a marked difference to the organization’s expectation that the individual will sacrifice for the success of the team. In order for the team to succeed, it must recognize and promote the achievement of each individual. With the opportunity to “shine” as an individual comes the obligation to support others when they are in the “spotlight.” An analogy may help here. The collective performance (effort) of many musicians produces a symphonic ensemble that is greater than that of each member performing alone. In the workplace, the situation is often just the opposite. Individuals are expected to sacrifice and sometimes limit themselves for the success of the team. Let us face it, for most Americans, even in the ’90s, the term “team player” carries a negative connotation of sacrifice and subservience not to mention the attitude of a “yes” person. (It must be strongly emphasized that this attitude is changing however slowly.) If there is no personal benefit to being on a team, individual motivation is sapped. As a result, both the individual and the team fail to reach their potential. Teams become outstanding only by serving individual achievement. Building a successful team means learning how to meet expectations of the team members while ensuring that the team’s goals are achieved. In the final analysis we must all understand a fundamental principle of human behavior: what is good for the individual worker is good for the organization. However, we must also recognize that even though we may have a team in our work environment, we may still have a failure in the selected project. How can this be? Primarily because: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Shifting objectives by management Unrealistic expectations (cost, time, resources) Ignoring routine issues and project tasks Unrealistic time schedules Ignoring development time 311

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6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance

Not providing adequate training Overloaded people Multiple number one priorities Not tracking the project regularly Not working with customer satisfaction issues and/or the critical path of the project

In the next volumes we will address specific issues, concerns, and tools that the six sigma methodology demands for excellent breakthrough results. We will start that journey with basic discussions on concepts and tools and we will progressively introduce the reader to some very advanced tools that may be at your disposal for efficient analysis of your data to resolve your organization’s problems.

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Key Questions



To identify the customers and their CTQs (Critical to Quality) To define the project scope and team charter To map the process to be improved

Customers identified Data to verify customers needs collected Team charter Problem statement Goal statement Project scope/ timeline Financial Benefits High level process map — “as is”

Who is my customer? What matters? What’s the scope? What improvement am I trying to induce? Am I realistic and appropriate about my goal? How much of an improvement am I expecting? What’s the current cost of defects (poor quality)?

Team dynamics Project management Process mapping CTX matrix


To develop process measures — Y’s (the dependent variable) that will enable you to evaluate the performance of the process To determine the current process performance and entitlement and assess it against the required performance To identify the input variables that cause variation in process performance — Y

Key measurements identified Rolled throughput Yield Defects identified Data collection plan Completed measurement capability study (GR&R) Completed baseline measures of process capability Defect reduction goals established

What’s my “real” process? How does it function? Do I understand my process? How is my process (now) functioning? Do I understand the relationship of Y = f(X) Which outputs (really) affect CTQs the most? Which inputs seem to affect outputs(CTQs) the most? Is my ability to measure and/or detect “good enough”? How’s my current process doing? What was my process designed for? Is it performing accordingly?

Process mapping Cause-and-effect FMEA Gage R&R Graphical techniques


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Key Questions



To prioritize the input variables that cause variation in process performance — Y To analyze the data to determine root causes and opportunities for improvement To validate the key process input variables with data

Detailed “as is” process map completed All sources of variation identified & prioritization initiated SOP’s reviewed/revisited Use and display of data to identify and verify the “vital few” factors (KPIV’s) Refined problem statement reflecting the increased understanding of the problem Estimates of the quantifiable opportunity represented by the problem

Which inputs actually affect my CTQs most? By how much? Do combinations of variables affect outputs? Do interactions of variables affect outputs? If I change an input, do I really change the output? If I observe results (outputs) from the same process, different locations, and results appear to be different … are they really? How many observations do I need to draw for conclusions? What level of confidence do I have regarding my conclusions?

Process mapping Graphical techniques Multivariable studies Hypothesis testing Correlation and regression


To generate and Alternative solutions Once I know which inputs Process mapping validate to the problem are most affect my outputs, design of improvements by generated, and the how do I properly experiments setting the input best one that implement them? Simulation variables to achieve addresses the root How many trials do I need optimization the optimum output cause is selected. to run to find and confirm To determine Y = f(x) “Should be” process the optimal map developed setting/procedure of these Key behaviors key inputs? required by new process identified Cost/benefit analysis of proposed solution completed Solution validated Implementation plan developed Communication plan established

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Appendix A

DMAIC Model Control


Purpose To institutionalize the improvement and to implement ongoing control To sustain the gains


Key Questions

Control plan Once I’ve reduced the completed defects, how do the Evidence that the functional team and I process is in control keep them there? Documentation of How does the functional the project team keep it going (on a Translation daily basis)? opportunities What do I do to keep it identified going even when things, Systems and i.e., customers, 5M&P, structures changes and technology, change? to institutionalize the improvement? Audit plan completed

Tools Control plans Statistical process control Gage control Plan preventive maintenance Poka Yoke/mistake proofing

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Appendix B THE CORE COMPETENCIES OF THE SIX SIGMA METHODOLOGY CUSTOMER FOCUS • Provide a definition of the term customer satisfaction. • Understand the need–do interaction and how it relates to customer satisfaction and business success. • Provide examples of the Y and X terms in the expression y = f(x) • Interpret the expression y = f(x)

BUSINESS METRICS • • • • • • • • • •

Define the nature of a performance metric. Identify the driving need for performance metrics. Explain the benefit of plotting performance metrics on a log scale. Provide a listing of several key performance metrics. Identify the fundamental contents of a performance metrics manual. Recognize the benefits of a metrics manual. Understand the purpose and benefits of improvement curves. Explain how a performance metric improvement curve is used. Explain what is meant by the phrase six sigma rate of improvement. Explain why a six sigma improvement curve can create a level playing field across an organization. • State some problems (or severe limitations) inherent to the current costof-quality theory. Identify and define the principle categories associated with quality costs. • Compute the cost-of-quality (COQ) given the necessary background data. Provide a detailed explanation of how a defect can impact the classical cost-of-quality categories.


Recognize the need for change and the role of values in a business. Recognize the need for measurement and its role in business success. Understand the role of questions in the context of management leadership. Provide a brief history of six sigma and its evolution.


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• Understand the need for measuring those things which are critical to the customer, business, and process. • Define the various facets of six sigma and why six sigma is important to a business. • Identify the parts-per-million defect goal of six sigma. • Define the magnitude of difference between 3, 4, 5, and 6 sigma. • Recognize that defects arise from variation. • Define the three primary sources of variation in a product. • Describe the general methodologies which are required to progress through the hierarchy of quality improvement. • Define the phases of breakthrough in quality improvement. • Identify the values of a six sigma organization as compared to a four sigma business. • Understand the key success factors related to the attainment of six sigma. • Understand why inspection and test is nonvalue added to a business and serves as a roadblock for achieving six sigma. • Understand the difference between the terms process precision and process accuracy. • Provide a very general description of how a process capability study is conducted and interpreted. • Understand the basic elements of a sigma benchmarking chart. • Interpret a data point plotted on a sigma benchmarking chart. • Understand the difference between the idea of benchmark, baseline, and entitlement cycle time. • Provide a brief description for the outcome 1 – Y.rt • Recognize that the quantity 1 + (1 – Y.rt) represents the number of units that must be produced to extract one good unit from a process. • Describe how every occurrence of a defect requires time to verify, analyze, repair, and reverify. • Understand that work-in-process (WIP) is highly correlated to the rate of defects. • Describe what is meant by the term mean time between failure (MTBF). • Interpret the temporal failure pattern of a product using the classical bathtub reliability curve. • Explain how process capability impacts the pattern of failure inherent to the infant mortality rate. • Provide a rational definition of the term latent defect and how such defects can impact product reliability. • Explain how defects produced during manufacture influence product reliability which, in turn, influences customer satisfaction. • Rationalize the statement: the highest quality producer is the lowest cost producer. • Understand the fundamental nature of quantitative benchmarking on a sigma scale of measure. • Recognize that the sigma scale of measure is at the opportunity level, not at the system level.

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Appendix B


• Interpret an array of sigma benchmarking charts. • Understand that global benchmarking has consistently revealed four sigma as average while best-in-class is near the six sigma region. • Draw first-order conclusions when given a global benchmarking chart. • Provide a brief description of the five sigma wall, what it is, why it exists, and how to get over it. • State the general findings which tend to characterize or profile a four sigma organization. • Explain how the sigma scale of measure could be employed for purposes of strategic planning. • Recognize the cycle-time, reliability, and cost implications when interpreting a sigma benchmarking chart. • Understand how a six sigma product without a market will fail, while a six sigma product in a viable market is virtually certain to succeed. • Provide a qualitative definition and graphical interpretation of the standard deviation. • Understand the driving need for breakthrough improvement vs. continual improvement. • Define the two primary components of process breakthrough. • Provide a brief description of the four phases of process breakthrough (i.e., measure, analyze, improve, control). • Provide a synopsis of what a statistically designed experiment is and what role it plays during the improvement phase of breakthrough. • Understand the basic nature of statistical process control charts and the role they play during the control phase of breakthrough. • Explain the interrelationship between the terms process capability, process precision, and process accuracy. • Explain how statistically designed experiments can be used to achieve the major aims of six sigma from a quality, cost, and cycle-time point of view. • Understand that the term sigma is a performance metric that only applies at the opportunity level.




• Explain the nature of a leverage variable and its implications for customer satisfaction and business success. • Explain what a dependent variable is, and how this type of variable fits into the six sigma breakthrough strategy. • Explain what an independent variable is, and how this type of variable fits into the six sigma breakthrough strategy. • Provide a specific explanation of what is meant by the term blocking variable and explain when such variables should be used in an experiment.

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• Provide a definition of the term opportunity for defect, recognizing the difference between active and passive opportunities. • Provide a rational definition of a defect. • Recognize the difference between uniform and random defects. • Compute the defect-per-unit metric given a specific number of defects and units produced.

CTX TREE • Define the term critical to satisfaction characteristic (CTS) and its importance to business success. • Define the term critical to quality characteristic (CTQ) and its importance to customer satisfaction. • Define the term critical to process characteristic (CTP) and its importance to product quality.

PROCESS MAPPING • Construct a process map using standard mapping tools and symbols. • Explain how process maps can be linked to the CT tree to identify problem areas. • Explain how process maps can be used to identify constraints and determine resource needs. • Define the key elements of a process map.

PROCESS BASELINES • Conduct a complete baseline capability analysis (using a software package), interpret the results, and make valid recommendations.

SIX SIGMA PROJECTS • Interpret each of the action steps associated with the four phases of process breakthrough. Explain why planning questions are so important to project success. • Explain how the generic planning guide can be used to create a project execution cookbook. • Create a set of criteria for selecting and scoping six sigma black belt projects. • Define a six sigma black belt project reporting and review process.

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Appendix B


SIX SIGMA DEPLOYMENT • Provide a brief description as to the nature of a six sigma black belt (SSBB). • Describe the role and responsibilities of a six sigma black belt. • Understand the six sigma black belt instructional curriculum. • Recognize that the six sigma black belt curriculum sequence is correlated to the six sigma breakthrough strategy. • Recognize the importance of, and provide a description for, the plan–train–apply–review (PTAR) learning process. • Provide a brief description as to the nature of a six sigma champion (SSC). • Describe the roles and responsibilities of a six sigma champion. • Provide a brief description as to the nature of a shogun six sigma master or six sigma master black belt (SSMBB). • Describe the roles and responsibilities of a shogun six sigma master or six sigma master black belt. • Provide a brief description of the key implementation principles and identify principle deployment success factors. • List all of the planning criteria for constructing a six sigma implementation and deployment plan. • Construct a generic milestone chart which identifies all of the activities necessary for successfully managing the implementation of six sigma. • Develop a business model which incorporates and exploits the benefits of six sigma.




• Identify the four primary scales of measure and provide a brief description of their unique characteristics. • Explain why survey questions that utilize the 5-point Likert scale must often be reduced to two categories during analysis.

DATA COLLECTION • Provide a specific explanation of what is meant by the term replicate in the context of a statistically designed experiment. • Explain why there is a need to randomize the sequence of order in which an experiment takes place and what can happen when this is not done.

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MEASUREMENT ERROR • Describe the role of measurement error studies during the measurement phase of breakthrough. • Explain how a statistically designed single factor experiment can be used to study and control for the influence of measurement error. • Explain how full factorial experiments can be employed to study and control for the influence of measurement error. • Explain how fractional factorial experiments can be used to study and control for the influence of measurement error.

STATISTICAL DISTRIBUTIONS • Construct and interpret a histogram for a given set of data. • Understand what a normal distribution is, a typical normal histogram, and how it is used to estimate defect probability. • Identify the circumstances under which the Poisson distribution could be applied to the analysis of product or transactional defects. • Understand the applied differences between Poisson and binomial distributions. • Construct a histogram for a set of normally distributed data and locate the data on a normal probability plot. • Construct a histogram for a set of nonnormal data and isolate a transformation which will force the data to a normal condition. • Understand what the t distribution is and how it changes as degrees of freedom change. • Understand what the F distribution is and how it can be used to test the hypothesis that two variances are equal.

STATIC STATISTICS • Provide a qualitative definition and graphical interpretation of the variance. • Compute the sample standard deviation, given a set of data. • Explain why a sample size of n = 30 is often considered ideal (in the instance of continuous data). • Provide a qualitative definition and graphical interpretation of the standard Z transform. • Compute the corresponding Z value of a specification limit, given an appropriate set of data. • Convert a Z value into a defect probability, given a table of areas under the normal curve. • Compute the mean, standard deviation, and variance for a set of normally distributed data.

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Appendix B


• Compute Z.usl and Z.lsl for a set of nonnormal data with upper and lower specifications and then determine the probability of defect. • Provide a graphical understanding of the standard deviation and explain why it is so important to six sigma work. • Compute Z.usl and Z.lsl for a set of normally distributed data and then determine the probability of defect.

DYNAMIC STATISTICS • Compute and interpret the total, between, and within group sums-ofsquares for a given set of data. • Explain what phenomenon could account for a differential between the short-term and long-term standard deviations. • Provide a practical explanation of what could account for a differential between a short-term Z value and a long-term Z value. • Explain the difference between dynamic mean variation and static mean offset. • Explain the difference between inherent capability and sustained capability in terms of the standard deviation. • Describe the role and logic of rational subgrouping as it relates to the short-term and long-term standard deviations. • Explain why the term instantaneous reproducibility (i.e., process precision) is associated with the short-term standard deviation. • Explain why the term sustained reproducibility is associated with the longterm standard deviation. • Recognize the four principal types of process centering conditions and explain how each impacts process capability. • Compute and interpret the within, between, and total sums of squares for a set of normally distributed data organized into rational subgroups.

ANALYZE SIX SIGMA STATISTICS • Identify the key limitations of the performance metric final yield (i.e., output/input). • Identify the key limitations of the performance metric first-time yield (Y.ft). • Compute the throughput yield ( given an average first-time yield and the number of related defect opportunities. • Provide a rational explanation of the differences between product yield and process yield. • Explain why the performance metric rolled-throughput yield (Y.rt) represents the probability of zero defects.

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• Compute the probability of zero defects (Y.rt) given a specific number of defects and units produced. • Understand the impact of process capability and complexity on the probability of zero defects. • Compute the normalized yield (Y.norm) given a rolled-throughput yield (Y.rt) value and a specific number of defect opportunities. • Compute the total defects-per-unit (TDPU) value given a rolled-throughput yield (Y.rt) value. • Provide a brief description of how one would implement and deploy the performance metric rolled-throughput yield (Y.rt). • Construct a benchmarking chart using the product report option in a software package such as the Minitab software. • List at least five separate sources which could offer the data necessary to estimate a sigma capability. • Explain how throughput yield ( and opportunity counts can be employed to establish sigma capability of a product/process. • Illustrate how a system level DPU goal can be flowed down through a product/process hierarchy to assess the required CTQ capability. • Illustrate how a series of CTQ capability values can be flowed up through a product/process hierarchy to establish the system DPU.

PROCESS METRICS • Compute and interpret the Cp index of capability. • Compute and interpret the Cpk index of capability. • Explain the theoretical and practical differences between Cp, Cpk, Pp, and Ppk. • Explain why a Z can be used to measure process capability, and its relationship to indices such as Cp, Cpk, Pp, and Ppk. • Recognize that a 1.5 sigma shift between sampling periods is typical and therefore can be used when quantification is not possible. • Understand the general guidelines for adjusting a Z value for the influence of shift and drift (when to add or subtract the shift value). • Compute the Cp and Cpk indices for a set of normally distributed data with upper and lower performance limits. • Explain why Cpk values will often not correlate to first-time yield information. • Compute and interpret and for a set of normally distributed data organized into rational subgroups. • Compute and interpret Z.shift (static and dynamic) for a set of normally distributed data organized into rational subgroups. • Compute and interpret Cp, Cpk, Pp, and Ppk. • Explain how Cp, Cpk, Pp, and Ppk correlate to the four principal types of process centering conditions. • Show how, Z.1t, Z.shift (dynamic), and Z.shift (static) relate to Cp, Cpk, Pp, and Ppk.

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Appendix B


• Create and interpret the standardized process characterization report using a software package such as the Minitab. • Explain the difference between static mean offset and dynamic mean variation and how they impact process capability.

DIAGNOSTIC TOOLS • Understand, construct, and interpret a multivariable chart, then identify areas of application.

SIMULATION TOOLS • Describe what is meant by the term Monte Carlo simulation and demonstrate how it can be used as a design tool. • Create a series of random normal numbers with a given mean and variance. • Create k sets of subgroups where each subgroup consists of n samples from a normal distribution with a given mean and variance. • Create a series of random lognormal numbers and then transform the data to fit a normal density function. • Explain why the experimental manipulation of a computer simulator will often yield heteroscedastic relationships.

STATISTICAL HYPOTHESES • Explain how a practical problem can be translated into a statistical problem and the benefits of doing so. • Explain what statistical hypotheses are, why they are created, and show the forms they may take in terms of the mean and variance. • Define the concept of alpha risk and provide several examples which illustrate its practical consequences. • Define the concept of statistical confidence and explain how it relates to alpha risk. • Define the concept of beta risk and provide several examples which illustrate its practical consequences. • Provide a detailed understanding of the contrast distribution and how it relates to the alternate hypothesis. • Explain what is meant by the phrase statistically significant difference and recognize that such differences do not imply practical difference. • Construct a truth table which illustrates how the null and alternate hypotheses interrelate with the concepts of alpha risk and beta risk. • Recognize that the extent of difference required to produce practical benefit is referred to as delta. • Explain what is meant by the term power of the test and describe how it relates to the concept of beta risk.

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• Understand how sample size can impact the extent of decision risk associated with the null and alternate hypotheses. • Establish the appropriate sample size for a given situation when presented with a sample size table. • Describe the dynamic interrelationships between alpha, beta, delta, and sample size from a statistical as well as practical perspective. • List the essential steps for successfully conducting a statistically based investigation of a practical real world problem. • Provide a detailed understanding of the null distribution and how it relates to the null hypothesis.

CONTINUOUS DECISION TOOLS • Provide a conceptual understanding of what a statistical confidence interval is and how it relates to the notion of random sampling error. • Understand what the distribution of sample averages is and how it relates to the central limit theorem. • Explain what the standard error of the mean is and demonstrate how it is computed. • Compute the tail area probability for a given Z value which is associated with the distribution of sample averages. • Compute the 95% confidence interval for the mean of a small data set and explain how it may be applied in practical situations. • Rationalize the difference between a one-sided test of the mean and a two-sided test of the mean. • Understand what the distribution of sample differences is and how it can be employed for testing statistical hypotheses. • Compute the 95% confidence interval for the mean of sample differences given two samples of normally distributed data. • Understand the nature of a one and two sample t test and apply this test to an appropriate set of data. • Compute and interpret the 95% confidence interval from a sample variance using the chi-square distribution. • Explain how the 95% confidence interval from a sample variance can be used to test the hypothesis that two variances are equal. • Provide a general description of the term experimental error and explain how it relates to the term replication. • Recognize that when the within-treatment replicates are correlated there is an adverse impact on experimental error. • Provide a general description of one-way analysis of variance and discuss the role of sample size. • Demonstrate how the total variation in single factor experiments can be characterized analytically and graphically. • Demonstrate how the experimental error in an experiment can be partitioned from the total error for independent consideration.

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Appendix B


• Demonstrate how the between-group variation in an experiment can be partitioned from the total error for independent consideration. • Compute the total sums of squares, as well as the within-group and between-group sums of squares for a single-factor experiment. • Define how degrees of freedom are established for each source of variation in a single-factor experiment. • Organize the sums of squares and degrees of freedom into an ANOVA table and compute the mean-square ratios. • Determine the random sampling error probability related to any given mean-square ratio and illustrate the effect of sample size. • List the principal assumptions underlying the use of ANOVA and provide a general understanding of their practical impact should they be violated. • Compute all post hoc comparisons (i.e., pair-wise t tests) in the instance that an F value proves to be statistically significant. • Compute and interpret the relative effect (i.e., sensitivity) of an experimental factor, create a main-effects plot, and set tolerances.

DISCRETE DECISION TOOLS • Construct a 95% confidence interval for a Poisson mean and discuss how this can be used to test hypotheses about Poisson means. • Understand how to calculate the standard deviation for a set of data selected from a binomial distribution. • Compute the 95% confidence interval for a proportion and explain how it can be used to test hypotheses about proportions. • Compute the expected cell frequencies for any given contingency table. • Compute the chi-square statistic for a 2 × 2 contingency table and determine the probability of chance sampling error. • Determine the extent of association for a 2 × 2 contingency table using the contingency coefficient. • Compute the chi-square statistic for an n-way contingency table and determine the probability-of-chance sampling error. • Illustrate how the chi-square statistic and cross-tabulation can be utilized in the analysis of surveys. • List and describe the principal sections of a customer satisfaction survey and how they can be used to link the process to the customer. • Provide a brief explanation of the chi-square statistic and the conditions under which it can be applied. • Understand how the probability of a given chi-square value can be determined. • Recognize that the chi-square statistic can be employed as a goodnessof-fit test as well as a test of independence. • Understand the nature of discontinuity and how to apply Yates correction to compensate for this effect. • Recognize that the square root of a chi-square is equal to Z for the special case where df = 1.

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• Recognize that the cross-tabulation of two classification variables, each with two categories, is referred to as a 2 × 2 contingency table. • Explain how to establish the degrees of freedom associated with any contingency table.

IMPROVE EXPERIMENT DESIGN TOOLS • Provide a general description of what a statistically designed experiment is and what such experiments can be used for. • Recognize the principal barriers to effective experimentation and outline several tactics that can be employed to overcome such barriers. • Describe the two primary components of an experimental system and their related subelements. • Explain the primary differences between a random effects model and a fixed effects model. • Identify the four principal families of experimental designs and what each family of designs is used for. • Outline a general strategy for conducting a statistically designed experiment and the resources needed to support its execution and analysis. • Provide a specific explanation of what is meant by the term confounding and identify several ways to control for this situation. • State the major limitations associated with the one-factor-at-a-time approach to experimentation and offer a viable alternative. • Explain how the settings (i.e., levels) of an experimental factor can significantly influence the outcome of an experiment. • Recognize that the most powerful application of modern statistics cannot rescue a poorly designed experiment. • Explain what is meant by the term full-factorial experiment and how it differs from a fractional-factorial experiment. • Describe the overriding limitations of the classical test plan when two factors are involved and state several advantages of a full-factorial design. • Show at least four ways that a two-factor, two-level, full-factorial design matrix can be displayed and/or communicated. • Understand the added value of a balanced and orthogonal design and the practical implications when these properties are not present. • Explain what is meant by the phrase hidden replication and understand that this phenomenon does not preclude the a priori consideration of sample size. • Construct the vectored columns for a two-factor, two-level, full-factorial design, given Yates standard order. • Explain what is meant by the phrase column contrast and show how it can be used to establish the factor effect and the related sums of squares.

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Appendix B


• Construct and interpret a main effects plot for a two-factor, two-level experiment and display the 95% confidence intervals on the plot. • Construct and interpret an interaction plot for a two-factor, two-level experiment and display the 95% confidence intervals on the plot. • Compute the sums of squares associated with each experimental effect in a two-factor, two-level, full-factorial experiment. • Create an ANOVA table and compute the mean-squares ratios for each experimental effect in a two-factor, two-level, full-factorial experiment. • Determine the random sampling error probability for any given mean square ratio in a two-factor, two-level, full-factorial experiment. • Compute the relative effect for each experimental effect and display the results on a Pareto chart. • Implement center point(s) within a two-factor, two-level, full-factorial experiment and estimate whether there is any statistically significant curvature. • Design and conduct a two-factor, multilevel, full-factorial experiment and interpret the outcome from a statistical and practical perspective. • Provide a general description of a fractional factorial experiment and the inherent advantages which fractional arrays offer. • Understand why third-order and higher effects are most often statistically and/or practically insignificant. • Create a half fraction of a full factorial experiment by sorting on the highest order interaction and then discern the pattern of confounding. • Recognize how an unreplicated fractional factorial design can be folded into a full factorial design with replication. • List the unique attributes associated with fractional factorial designs of resolution III, IV, and V. • Explain what happens to the experimental error term when a factor is collapsed out of the matrix by folding. • Explain how Plackett-Burman experimental designs are used and discuss their unique strengths and weaknesses. • Construct and interpret a main-effects plot for a fractional factorial experiment using the response means as a basis for the plot. • Construct and interpret a main-effects plot for a fractional factorial experiment using the response variances as a basis for the plot. • Compute the sums of squares associated with each experimental effect in a fractional factorial experiment. • Create an ANOVA table and compute the mean-squares ratio for each experimental effect in a fractional factorial experiment. • Determine the random sampling error probability for any given MSR in a fractional factorial experiment. • Compute the relative effect for each experimental effect in a fractional factorial experiment and display the results in a Pareto chart • Utilize Taguchi orthogonal arrays to study the influence of several key process variables on a given response characteristic.

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ROBUST DESIGN TOOLS • Provide a brief description of the term robust design and why/when process capability data must be factored into the design process. • Recognize that such phenomena as heteroscedasticity, variable interactions, and nonlinearities can be used to reduce white noise. • Explain what is meant by the term robustness and explain how this understanding translates to experimental design and process tolerancing. • Illustrate how a main-effects plot, as related to a two-factor, two-level experiment, can be used as a basis for tolerancing. • Illustrate how an interaction plot, as related to a two-factor, two-level experiment, can be used as a basis for achieving robust performance. • Describe what an outer array is in relation to a full or fractional factorial experiment design. • Describe what an inner array is in relation to a full or fractional factorial experiment design. • Utilize an inner/outer array to desensitize the response variable to a selected independent variable. • Illustrate how an independent variable can be manipulated within an inner/outer array design to yield a robust operating condition. • Provide a statistical explanation of the term heteroscedasticity and discuss its practical implications. • Illustrate how heteroscedasticity can be leveraged to achieve robust performance. • Illustrate how a nonlinear effect correlates the mean to the variance and how this effect can be leveraged to achieve robust performance. • Illustrate how a nonlinear effect can be leveraged to reduce the response variance and how a linear effect can be used to center the response mean.

EMPIRICAL MODELING TOOLS • Explain how to use regression analysis. • Explain how to use Monte Carlo methodology.

TOLERANCE TOOLS • Create a graphical explanation of how performance tolerances can be defined using the results of a two-level factorial experiment. • Demonstrate why worst-case tolerance analysis is an overly conservative and costly design tool.

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Appendix B


RISK ANALYSIS TOOLS • Compute the standard deviation for a linear sum of variances, and explain why the variances must be independent. • Compute the system-level defect probability given the subsystem means, variances (of a linear model), and relevant performance specifications. • Describe how RSS can be used as a design-to-cost tool and how it can be employed to analyze and optimize process cycle time. • Demonstrate how the six sigma risk assessment methodology can be applied to engineering, manufacturing, transactional, and commercial problems. • List the disadvantages associated with worst-case analysis and compute the probability of worst case given the process capability data. • Explain what is meant by the phrase root-sums-of-squares (RSS) and apply this principle to a linear series of error sources. • Compute for a linear series of error sources and then optimize to a specific value (using a software package such as the Minitab software).

DFSS PRINCIPLES • Understand the fundamental ideas underlying the notion of manufacturability. • Understand how product and process complexity impacts design performance. • Understand how statistically designed experiments can be used to identify leverage variables, establish sensitivities, and define tolerances. • Explain the concept of error propagation (both linear and nonlinear) and what role product/process complexity plays. • Describe how reverse error propagation can be employed during system design. • Explain why process shift and drift must be considered in the analysis of a design and how it can be factored into design optimization. • Describe how six sigma tools and methods can be applied to the design process in and of itself. • Discuss the pros and cons of the classical approach to product/process design relative to that of the six sigma approach.

CONTROL PRECONTROL TOOLS • Develop a precontrol plan for a given CTQ and explain how such a plan can be implemented. • Describe the unique characteristics of the precontrol method, and compare precontrol to statistical process control charts.

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CONTINUOUS SPC TOOLS • Explain what is meant by the term statistical process control and discuss how it differs from statistical process monitoring. • List the basic components of a control chart and provide a general description of the role of each component. • Provide a conceptual understanding of each step associated with the general cookbook for control charts. • Explain how the use of rational subgroups forces the nonrandom variations due to assignable causes to appear between sampling periods. • Explain how the control limits of an SPC chart are directly linked to the concepts associated with hypothesis testing. • Construct and interpret an Xbar and R chart for a set of normally distributed data organized into rational subgroups. • Illustrate how an Xbar and R chart can be used to study and control for measurement error, and contrast this with the DOE/ANOVA method. • Construct and interpret an Xbar and R chart for a set of data (organized into rational subgroups) that is not normally distributed within groups. • Construct and interpret an individual’s chart for a set of normally distributed data collected over time. • Construct and interpret an individual’s chart for a set of nonnormally distributed data collected over time. • Construct and interpret an exponentially weighted moving average (EWMA) chart and highlight its advantages and disadvantages. • Construct and interpret an X-bar and s chart and highlight its advantages and disadvantages. • Provide a detailed understanding of how to adjust a process parameter using the method of bracketing, and contrast this technique to other methods.

DISCRETE SPC TOOLS • Construct and interpret a p chart and explain how the control limits for this chart are related to the confidence intervals of the binomial distribution. • Construct and interpret a u chart and explain how the control limits for this chart are related to confidence intervals for the Poisson distribution.

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Appendix C CROSS-REFERENCE LIST OF TERMS USED IN THE TEAM ENVIRONMENT In this appendix we provide the reader with a cross-reference list of familiar terms as they relate to teams. Under Terms are some common positive and negative characteristics used to label personal performance. Under dimensions, which can be positive or negative, are characteristics that best define the labeled behavior.

Terms Hard worker Impact Time management Follow up Team player Problem-solver Logical thinker Enthusiastic Mature Diplomatic Negotiator Cool customer Evaluation

Dimensions Work standards, initiative/innovativeness Leadership/influence Planning and organizing, delegation, and control Delegation and control Judgment/organizational sensitivity Analysis, judgment, decisiveness, initiative/ innovativeness Judgment Initiative/innovativeness Judgment, organizational sensitivity, leadership/influence Leadership/influence, organizational sensitivity Leadership/influence, judgment Leadership/influence, judgment Delegation and control, analysis, judgment, development of subordinates Initiative/innovativeness, decisiveness

Action oriented/takes initiative/steps to the plate Willing and able to work overtime/long hours Work standards and so on Smooth/polished Communication, leadership/influence Offensive — quick to attack others Leadership/influence, judgment, organizational sensitivity Let paperwork slide Planning and organizing, work standards Big picture Organizational sensitivity Not tolerant of others’ viewpoints Organizational sensitivity, judgment Lacks self-confidence Communication, initiative/innovativeness, decisiveness, leadership/influence Assertive Initiative/innovativeness, decisiveness, leadership/influence


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Terms Smart Lacks sense of urgency/prioritization People management Conscientious Thorough, precise

Dimensions Professional/technical proficiency, analysis, judgment Planning and organizing, judgment, initiative/innovativeness, decisiveness Delegation and control, development of subordinates, leadership/influence Work standards Work standards

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Appendix D PROBLEM SOLVING/DECISION MAKING In this appendix we offer the reader an explanation of the dimensional terms used in Appendix A. We also provide a short commentary as well as key behaviors.

Analysis: Relating and comparing data from different sources, identifying issues, securing relevant information, identifying relationships and alternative courses of action using an economic and business perspective. Comment Effective teams must be able to evaluate a given situation and identify existing problems and opportunities or, even more importantly, anticipate/visualize potential problems or opportunities. They need to have the ability to gather and analyze the facts needed to determine the critical issues relative to a problem or opportunity and the most likely causes and possible solutions giving due consideration to the business factors involved. Key Behaviors • Considered/obtained appropriate information (sufficient quantity, quality, depth, range). • Used appropriate method of obtaining information (considering type of information available, sources, etc.). • (If appropriate) Used appropriate questioning approach (interactive or written). Asked appropriate type of questions. • Identified both possible cause and effect information. • Recognized need to obtain more quantity/quality information. • Sought information that identified underlying problems/opportunities. • Related different pieces of information, recognized trends and/or associations of data. Judgment: Weighing alternative courses of action and making decisions which reflect factual information; based upon logical assumptions and take organizational resources into consideration. Comment Decisions will often impact upon a major facet of the plant or the organizational unit and represent major commitments of resources. Once all pertinent and available information has been analyzed and alternative courses of action have been developed,


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teams must consider the pros and cons of each alternative and select the one most appropriate. Judgment specifically deals with the quality of decisions based on given or available information. Judgment is therefore strongly related to Problem Analysis. If a poor decision is made because of inadequate or inappropriate information, then evaluate Problem Analysis, not Judgment. If a decision was made not to obtain/consider information, then evaluate Judgment. Key Behaviors • Checked to see if action proposed would satisfy need (problem or opportunity). • Considered pros and cons before making decision. • Appropriately considered risks involved. • Appropriately considered both short- and long-term impact. • Took overall organization and senior management views into appropriate consideration. • Kept appropriate people involved/informed (management, peers, co-workers, subordinates, customers). Decisiveness: Readiness to make decisions, render judgments, take actions, or commit oneself. Individuals are required to not only analyze problems, but also to reach a conclusion and make a recommendation or decision. Individuals, given available information, must make timely decisions and not inappropriately seek or wait for further information or guidance. Comment Decisiveness deals with the quantity of decision made and the time delay in reaching conclusions. It does not deal with the quality of the decision/conclusion. (This is covered by Judgment which is an independent variable.) A quick decision (high decisiveness) may be a sound decision (good judgment) or a poor decision. Key Behaviors • Proposed a course of action or recommendation. • Reached a conclusion based on information available. Avoided “analysis paralysis.” • Committed to a course of action without delay. Organizational sensitivity: Perceiving the impact and the implications of decisions on other components of the organization. Acting in a manner that minimizes negative impact of action on other organizational elements.

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Appendix D


Comment Teams must see how decisions and actions in one department affect the rest of the organization; they must be aware of the goals of other units and the organization, and make their decisions accordingly. This is a special subset of Judgment dealing with an awareness of the needs of other parts of the organization. Appropriate behavior for this dimension requires not only a willingness to consider other parts of the organization, but the knowledge and experience to be able to be aware of the needs, expectations, or viewpoints of other functions. Key Behaviors • Consulted (possibly impacted) other functions or departments before action/decision. • Included views of other functions in balancing pros and cons prior to decision. Work standards: Setting high goals or standards of performance for team, self, subordinates, others, and the organization. Dissatisfied with average performance. Comment These positions require people who will do a good job for the sake of a job well done, who will set high standards for the team, themselves, and their subordinates and do more than what is expected. Key Behaviors • • • •

Critiques own performances as a means of self-improvement. Sets high standards as an example for others. Dissatisfied with “second best.” Keeps looking for a better way. Seeks out and accepts new challenges.

Delegation and Control: Using others (subordinate[s]) effectively. Allocating decision making and other responsibilities to the appropriate person. Taking action to monitor the results of delegated assignments and monitoring the performance of subordinate units. Comment Teams and individuals must have a full awareness of the need to delegate. Without this awareness, they overload themselves or refer matters to higher levels which should be handled by them and their staff. To be effective, these delegations must provide the appropriate decision-making authority and latitude of action; clearly state tasks, responsibilities, and controls; provide the necessary guidance and

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resources; “sell” the subordinate on the importance of the tasks and be compatible with subordinates’ skills and developmental needs. Key Behaviors • Does not complete tasks that are/should be part of a subordinate’s position responsibilities. • Has ensured “role clarity” with subordinate — clear definition of each subordinate’s position accountabilities in output terms (Key Results Areas and Management Methods). • Assigned accountabilities are clear — output (end results) not inputs (tasks to complete). Authority for decisions and control of resources matches accountabilities. • Delegated assignments are to the appropriate individual (related/part of the individual’s Position Profile) and individual is capable of successful performance. • Follow-up, feedback, and review methods, dates, deadlines are established and used. • Mechanism set up to manage by exception — picking up on things that are off track. Development of Team Members and/or Subordinates: Developing the skills and competencies of all team members and subordinates through training and development activities related to current and future tasks. Comment Team members must not only ensure that the corporate/organizational unit has a pool of qualified candidates to assume top level positions, but must also work to develop their staff in their current positions. Key Behaviors • • • • • • •

Diagnosis and feedback of strengths and developmental needs. Coaching and reinforcement when and as needed. Periodic and annual Dimensions and Performance reviews. Training and/or development actions identified and implemented. Delegation for development reasons. Assignment to special projects, task team participation. On-the-job follow-up modeling, coaching, and reinforcement of training program attended by subordinate.

Leadership/Influence: Use of appropriate styles and methods, which take into consideration the feelings and needs of others, in guiding individuals and teams toward accomplishment of challenging goals; maintaining team cohesiveness and cooperation; facilitating team process, and gaining agreement/commitment to an idea, plan, or course of action.

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Appendix D


Comment Individual team members must be able to influence and be influenced by others and, in doing so, must accurately assess the skills, feelings, concerns, and needs of others. They are called upon to explain the rationale for corporate policies, procedures, and business objective. They must model the enthusiasm, hardworking attitude, competence, and commitment to quality and growth that they expect from others. During interactions with their own staffs, individuals must be able to build a cohesive and cooperative team while, at the same time, honestly confronting issues at all levels of the organization when they occur. In situations where they do not have a direct line of authority (staff dealing with line or past co-worker interactions), it is necessary to obtain agreement and commitment to courses of action through appropriate influence and persuasion. Key Behaviors • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Maintains and enhances self-esteem. Listens and responds with empathy. Seeks information and ideas. Communicates a vision of challenging goals, growth, progress. Models commitment, energy, and interactions. Builds trust and support. Honors commitment. Provides focus, guidance, and direction. Establishes measurable and achievable Goals and Standards. Coaches for result(s) and on behavior. Provides feedback. Counsels others. Shows sincere interest in individuals.

Communications: Effective oral expression in individual or team (group) situations (includes organization or thoughts, gestures, and nonverbal communication), clear expression of ideas in writing (includes format and organization, not content). Comment Individuals frequently meet with people with varying backgrounds and interests. They frequently inform superiors and upper management of important problems and issues. They must be able to instruct employees on new tasks and answer employee questions. They make presentations to management, union and employee groups, professional societies, and customers. Individuals also communicate their ideas in writing, typically in the form of formal letters, replies to claims and complaints, technical descriptions of projects and programs, justifications or requests for resources and personnel actions, etc. Some written materials must be well organized, clear, and concise, and in good grammatical form as well as written in a way that is understandable to their audience.

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Key Behaviors • Able to explain/make a point in a meeting or conversation clearly and concisely. • Able to make a prepared presentation to a group that maintains interest and motivates those listening. • Able to present a written report that is well organized and easy to read. Initiative/Innovativeness: Active attempts to influence events to achieve goals; selfstarting rather than passively accepting. Generating and/or recognizing imaginative, creative solutions in work-related situations. Comment Team members have considerable discretionary control over resources and their own and others’ activities and time. It is not possible for senior management to specify all that needs to be done to achieve goals of the unit. Thus, team members must continually evaluate, select, and act on various methods and strategies for meeting their goals. Key Behaviors • Proactively seeks creative solutions to problems before being asked or directed. • Comes up with unusual/creative alternatives when solving a work problem. Planning and Organizing: Establishing a course of action for self and/or others to accomplish a specific goal; planning proper assignments of personnel and appropriate allocation of resources. Comment The scope of the team member’s responsibility places extensive demands on his/her time. Decisions concerning how he/she uses time often affect what does and does not happen in the units they manage. Thus, team members must be able to plan and use their own and other’s time effectively, attending to day-to-day operations, yet realizing long-range improvements. In addition, tasks must get done with optimum resource use for production and cost effectiveness. Key Behaviors • Has ensured “role clarity” for own position accountabilities (key result areas and measurement methods). • Has ensured “role clarity” for each subordinate’s position. • Has documented an Annual Results Agreement for self and each subordinate.

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Appendix D


• Has documented task plans, indicating major tasks or activities with priorities involved in achieving required Results for Goals and Standards. • Schedules own time and tasks throughout the year by constant reassessment of priorities. • Meets deadlines. • Has contingency plans for probable/possible events that could impact on results. • Provides appropriate advance notice to meeting participants indicating agenda/topics and preparations needed. • Establishes realistic deadlines for self/others considering size of task(s) and resources available.

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Glossary Acceptable Quality Level (AQL): When a continuing series of lots is considered, a quality level that, for the purposes of sampling inspection, is the limit of a satisfactory process average. Acceptance Sampling: Inspection of a sample from a lot to decide whether to accept or not accept that lot. There are two types: attributes sampling and variables sampling. In attributes sampling, the presence or absence of a characteristic is noted in each of the units inspected. In variables sampling, the numerical magnitude of a characteristic is measured and recorded for each inspected unit; this involves reference to a continuous scale of some kind. Acceptance Sampling Plan: A specific plan that indicates the sampling sizes and the associated acceptance or nonacceptance criteria to be used. In attributes sampling, for example, there are single, double, multiple, sequential, chain, and skip-lot sampling plans. In variables sampling, there are single, double, and sequential sampling plans. Accuracy: A characteristic of measurement which addresses how close an observed value is to the true value. It answers the question, “Is it right?” Action Plan: The detail plan to implement the actions needed to achieve strategic goals and objectives (similar, but not as comprehensive as a project plan). Active Listening: Paying attention solely to what others are saying (for example, rather than what you think of what they’re saying or what you want to say back to them). Activity-Based Management: Managing with an accounting system that allocates costs to products based on resources employed to produce the product. Activity Network Diagram (AND): (see arrow diagram) Adult Learning Principles: Key issues about how adults learn, which impact how education and training of adults should be designed. Affinity Chart (Diagram): Brainstorming tool used to gather large quantities of information from many people; ideas usually are put on sticky notes, then categorized into similar columns; columns are named giving an overall grouping of ideas. Analyze: DMAIC phase where process detail is scrutinized for improvement opportunities. Note that: 1. Data is investigated and verified to prove suspected root causes and substantiate the problem statement. See also Cause and Effect. 2. Process analysis includes reviewing process maps for valueadded/nonvalue-added activities. See also Process Map; Value-Adding Activities; Nonvalue-Adding Activities. 343

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Balanced Scorecard: Categorizes ongoing measures into four significant areas: finance, process, people, and innovation. Used as a presentation tool to update sponsors, senior management, and others on the progress of a business or process; also useful for process owners. Baseline Measures: Data signifying the level of process performance as it is/was operating at the initiation of an improvement project (prior to solutions). Bathtub Curve: Also called “life-history curve.” A graphic demonstration of the relationship of life of a product vs. the probable failure rate. Includes three portions: early or infant failure (break-in), a stable rate during normal use, and wear out. Benchmarking: An improvement process in which a company measures its performance against that of best-in-class companies (or others who are good performers), determines how those companies achieved their performance levels, and uses the information to improve its own performance. The areas that can be benchmarked include strategies, operations, processes, and procedures. Benefit-Cost Analysis: Collection of the dollar value of benefits derived from an initiative and the associated costs incurred, then computing the ratio of benefits to cost. Bias: A characteristic of measurement that refers to a systematic difference. Big Q, Little q: A term used to contrast the difference between managing for quality in all business processes and products (big Q) and managing for quality in a limited capacity, traditionally in only factory products and processes (little q). Black Belt: A team leader, trained in the DMAIC process and facilitation skills, responsible for guiding an improvement project to completion. They are technically oriented individuals held in high regard by their peers. They should be actively involved in the organizational change and development process. Candidates may come from a wide range of disciplines and need not be formally trained statisticians or engineers. Six sigma technical leaders work to extract actionable knowledge from an organization’s information warehouse. Successful candidates should understand one or more operating systems, spreadsheets, database managers, presentation programs, and word processors. As part of their training they will be required to become proficient in the use of one or more advanced statistical analysis software packages. Blemish: An imperfection that is severe enough to be noticed but should not cause any real impairment with respect to intended normal or reasonably foreseeable use (see also defect, imperfection, and nonconformity). Block Diagram: A diagram that shows the operation, interrelationships, and interdependencies of components in a system. Boxes or blocks (hence the name) represent the components; connecting lines between the blocks represent interfaces. There are two types of block diagrams: a functional block diagram, which shows a system’s subsystems and lower-level products, their interrelationships, and interfaces with other systems; and a reliability block diagram, which is similar to the functional block diagram

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except that it is modified to emphasize those aspects influencing reliability. Also known as Boundary diagram. Boundaryless Organization: (Also known as a network organization, a modular corporation, or a virtual corporation.) An organization without the internal or external boundaries limiting the traditional structures. Brainstorming: A problem-solving tool that teams use to generate as many ideas as possible related to a particular subject. Team members begin by offering all their ideas; the ideas are not discussed or reviewed until after the brainstorming session. Breakthrough: A method of solving chronic problems that results from the effective execution of a strategy designed to reach the next level of quality. Such change often requires a paradigm shift within the organization. Business Processes: Processes that focus on what the organization does as a business and how it goes about doing it. A business has functional processes (generating output within a single department) and cross-functional processes (generating output across several functions or departments). Cause-and-Effect Diagram: Also known as a “Fishbone” or “Ishikawa Diagram” or “feather diagram”; categorical brainstorming tool used for determining root-cause hypothesis and potential causes (the bones of the fish) for a specific effect (the head of the fish). Champion: An individual who has accountability and responsibility for many processes or who is involved in making strategic-level decisions for the organization. The champion ensures ongoing dedication of project resources and monitors strategic alignment (also referred to as a sponsor). Change Agent: The person who takes the lead in transforming a company into a quality organization by providing guidance during the planning phase, facilitating implementation, and supporting those who pioneer the changes. Changeover: Changing a machine or process from one type of product or service to another. Characteristic: A property that helps to identify or to differentiate between entities and that can be described or measured to determine conformance or nonconformance to requirements. Charter: Team document defining the context, specifics, and plans of an improvement project; includes business case, problem and goal statements, constraints and assumptions, roles, preliminary plan, and scope. Periodic reviews with the sponsor ensure alignment with business strategies; review, revise, refine periodically throughout the DMAIC process based on data. Check Sheet: Forms, tables, or worksheets facilitating data collection and compilation; allows for collection of stratified data. See also Stratification. Coaching: A continuous improvement technique by which people receive oneto-one learning through demonstration and practice and that is characterized by immediate feedback and correction. Common Cause: Normal, everyday influences on a process; usually harder to eliminate and require changes to the process. Problems from common

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causes are referred to as “chronic pain.” See also Control Charts; Run Chart or Time Plot; Special Cause; Variation. Conflict Resolution: A process for resolving disagreements in a manner acceptable to all parties. Conformance: An affirmative indication or judgment that a product or service has met the requirements of a relevant specification, contract, or regulation. Consensus: Finding a proposal acceptable enough that all team members can support the decision and no member opposes it. Constancy of Purpose: Occurs when goals and objectives are properly aligned to the organizational vision and mission. Constraint: A constraint may range from the intangible (for example, beliefs, culture) to the tangible (for example, posted rule prohibiting smoking, buildup of work-in process awaiting the availability of a machine or operator). Constraint Management: Pertains to identifying a constraint and working to remove or diminish the constraint, while dealing with resistance to change. Construct: A formally proposed concept representing relationships between empirically verifiable events and based on observed facts. Consultative: A decision-making approach in which a person talks to others and considers their input before making a decision. Consumer Market Customers: End users of a product or service (customers and not customers alike). Consumer’s Risk: For a sampling plan, refers to the probability of acceptance of a lot, the quality of which has a designated numerical value representing a level that is seldom desirable. Usually the designated value will be the lot tolerance percent defective (LPTD). Also called beta risk or type II error. Continuous Data: Any variable measured on a continuum or scale that can be infinitely divided; primary types include time, dollars, size, weight, temperature, and speed; also referred to as “variable data.” See also Attribute Data. Control: 1. DMAIC phase C; once solutions have been implemented, ongoing measures track and verify the stability of the improvement and the predictability of the process. Often includes process management techniques and systems including process ownership, cockpit charts and/or process management charts, etc. See also Cockpit Charts; Process Management. 2. A statistical concept indicating that a process operating within an expected range of variation is being influenced mainly by “common cause” factors; processes operating in this state are referred to as “in control.” See also Control Charts; Process Capability; Variation. Control Charts: Specialized time plot or run chart showing process performance, mean (average), and control limits; helps determine process influences of common (normal) or special (unusual, unique) causes.

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Control Plan: A document that may include the characteristics for quality of a product or service, measurements, and methods of control. Core Competency: Pertains to the unique features and characteristics of an organization’s overall capability. Corporate Culture: (While the word “corporate” typically appears, the culture referred to may be that of any type of organization, large or small.) Relates to the collective beliefs, values, attitudes, manners, customs, behaviors, and artifacts unique to an organization. Corrective Action: Action taken to eliminate the root cause(s) and symptom(s) of an existing deviation or nonconformity to prevent recurrence. Correlation: Refers to the measure of the relationship between two sets of numbers or variables. Correlation Coefficient: Describes the magnitude and direction of the relationship between two variables. Cost of Poor Quality (COPQ): Dollar measures depicting the impact of problems (internal and external failures) in the process as it exists; it includes labor and material costs for handoffs, rework, inspection, and other nonvalue-added activity. Crawford Slip Method: Refers to a method of gathering and presenting anonymous data from a group. Criteria Matrix: Decision-making tool used when potential choices must be weighed against several key factors (e.g., cost, ease to implement, impact on customer). Encourages use of facts, data, and clear business objectives in decision making. Criterion: A standard, rule, or test upon which a judgment or decision can be based. Critical Incident: An event that has greater than normal significance, often used as a learning or feedback opportunity. Critical Path: Refers to the sequence of tasks that takes the longest time and determines a project’s completion date. Critical Path Method (CPM): An activity-oriented project management technique that uses arrow-diagramming techniques to demonstrate both the time and cost required to complete a project. It provides one time estimatenormal time. Cross-Functional Team: A group consisting of members from more than one department that is organized to accomplish a project. CSR: Customer service representative. Culture: A system of values, beliefs, and behaviors inherent in an organization (also see corporate culture). Cumulative Sum Control Chart: A control chart on which the plotted value is the cumulative sum of deviations of successive samples from a target value. The ordinate of each plotted point represents the algebraic sum of the previous ordinate and the most recent deviations from the target. Current Reality Tree: A technique used in applying Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints.

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Customer: Any internal or external person/organization who receives the output (product or service) of the process; understanding the impact of the process on both internal and external customers is key to process management and improvement. Customer Requirements: Defines the needs and expectations of the customer; translated into measurable terms and used in the process to ensure compliance with the customers’ needs. Cycle Time: All time used in a process; includes actual work time and wait time. Defect: Any instance or occurrence where the product or service fails to meet customer requirements. We prefer the use of nonconformity. Defect Opportunity: A type of potential defect (nonconformity) on a unit of throughput (output) which is important to the customer; example: specific fields on a form which create an opportunity for error that would be important to the customer. Defective: Any unit with one or more nonconformities (defects). See also Defect. Define: First DMAIC phase defines the problem/opportunity, process, and customer requirements; because the DMAIC cycle is iterative, the process problem, flow, and requirements should be verified and updated for clarity, throughout the other phases. See also Charter; Customer Requirements; Process Map; VOC. Discrete Data: Any data not quantified on an infinitely divisible scale. Includes a count, proportion, or percentage of a characteristic or category (e.g., gender, loan type, department, location, etc.); also referred to as “attribute data.” DFSS: Acronym for “Design for Six Sigma.” Describes the application of six sigma tools to product development and process design efforts with the goal of “designing in” six sigma performance capability. DMAIC: Acronym for a process improvement/management system which stands for define, measure, analyze, improve, and control; lends structure to process improvement, design, or redesign applications. Downstream: Processes (activities) occurring after the task or activity in question. DPMO, or Defects per Million Opportunities: Calculation used in six sigma process improvement initiatives indicating the amount of defects in a process per one million opportunities; number of defects divided by (the number of units times the number of opportunities) = DPO, times 1 million = DPMO. See also DPO; Six Sigma; Defect Opportunity). DPO, or Defects per Opportunity: Calculation used in process improvements to determine the amount of defects per opportunity; number of defects divided by (the number of units times the number of opportunities) = DPO. See also Defect; Defect Opportunity. Effectiveness: Measures related to how well the process output(s) meets the needs of the customer (e.g., ontime delivery, adherence to specifications, service experience, accuracy, value-added features, customer satisfaction level); links primarily to customer satisfaction.

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Efficiency: Measures related to the quantity of resources used in producing the output of a process (e.g., costs of the process, total cycle time, resources consumed, cost of defects, scrap, and/or waste); links primarily to company profitability. External Failure: When defective units pass all the way through a process and are received by the customer. Force Field Analysis: Identifies forces/factors supporting or working against an idea; “restraining” factors listed on one side of the page, “driving forces” listed on the other; used to reinforce the strengths (positive ideas) and overcome the weaknesses or obstacles. Goal Statement: Description of the intended target or desired results of process improvement or design/redesign activities; usually included in a team charter and supported with actual numbers and details once data have been obtained. Green Belt: Green belts are six sigma team leaders capable of forming and facilitating six sigma teams and managing six sigma projects from concept to completion. Typically, green-belt training consists of five days of classroom training and is conducted in conjunction with six sigma team projects. Handoff: Any time in a process when one person (or job title) passes on the item moving through the process to another person; potential to add defects, time, and cost to a process. Heteroscedasticity: Is a condition where the variance of Y changes as the independent variable changes location. Another way to say it is that the variance of Y is correlated to the mean of Y. This is an observed condition generally when the independent variable of interest interacts with some other independent variable. As the interaction increases, so does the heteroscedasticity. Histogram or Frequency Plot: Chart used to graphically represent the frequency, distribution, and “centeredness” of a population. Hypothesis Statement: A complete description of the suspected cause(s) of a process problem. Improve: DMAIC phase where solutions and ideas are creatively generated and decided upon. Once a problem has been fully identified, measured, and analyzed, potential solutions can be determined to solve the problem in the problem statement and support the goal statement. See also Charter. Input: Any product, service, or piece of information that comes into the process from a supplier. Input Measures: Measures related to and describing the input into a process; predictors of output measures. Institutionalization: Fundamental changes in daily behaviors, attitudes, and practices that make changes “permanent”; cultural adaptation of changes implemented by process improvement, design or redesign including complex business systems such as HR, MIS, Training, etc. ISO-9000: Standard and guideline used to certify organizations as competent in defining and adhering to documented processes; mostly associated with

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quality assurance systems, not quality improvement. A quality systems orientation. Judgment Sampling: Approach that involves making educated guesses about which items or people are representative of a whole, generally to be avoided. Management-by-Fact: Decision making using criteria and facts; supporting “intuition” with data; tools used include process measurement, process management techniques, and rational decision-making tools (e.g., criteria matrix). Master Black Belt: This is the highest level of technical and organizational proficiency. Because master black belts train black belts, they must know everything the black belts know, as well as understand the mathematical theory on which the statistical methods are based. Masters must be able to assist black belts in applying the methods correctly in unusual situations. Whenever possible, statistical training should be conducted only by master black belts. If it’s necessary for black belts and green belts to provide training, they should only do so under the guidance of master black belts. Because of the nature of the master’s duties, communications and teaching skills should be judged as important as technical competence in selecting candidates. Measure: DMAIC phase M, where key measures are identified, and data are collected, compiled, and displayed. A quantified evaluation of specific characteristics and/or level of performance based on observable data. Moment of Truth: Any event or point in a process when the external customer has an opportunity to form an opinion (positive, neutral, or negative) about the process or organization. Multivoting: Narrowing and prioritization tool. Faced with a list of ideas, problems, causes, etc., each member of a group is given a set number of “votes.” Those receiving the most votes get further attention/consideration Nonvalue-Adding Activities: Steps/tasks in a process that do not add value to the external customer and do not meet all three criteria for value-adding; includes rework, handoffs, inspection/control, wait/delays, etc. See also Value-Adding Activities. Operational Definition: A clear, precise description of the factor being measured or the term being used; ensures a clear understanding of terminology and the ability to operate a process or collect data consistently. Output: Any product, service, or piece of information coming out of, or resulting from, the activities in a process. Output Measures: Measures related to and describing the output of the process; total figures/overall measures. Pareto Chart: Quality tool based on Pareto Principle; uses attribute data with columns arranged in descending order, with highest occurrences (highest bar) shown first; uses a cumulative line to track percentages of each category/bar, which distinguishes the 20% of items causing 80% of the problem.

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Pareto Principle: The 80/20 rule; based on Alfredo Pareto’s research stating that the vital few (20%) causes have a greater impact than the trivial many (80%) causes with a lesser impact. Pilot: Trial implementation of a solution, on a limited scale, to ensure its effectiveness and test its impact; an experiment verifying a root cause hypothesis. Plan–Do–Study (Check)–Act, or PDS(C): A basic model or set of steps in continuous improvement; also referred to as “Shewhart Cycle” or “Deming Cycle.” Precision: The accuracy of the measure you plan to do. This links to the type of scale or detail of your operational definition, but it can have an impact on your sample size, too. Preliminary Plan: Used when developing milestones for team activities related to process improvement; includes key tasks, target completion dates, responsibilities, potential problems, obstacles and contingencies, and communication strategies. Problem/Opportunity Statement: Description of the symptoms or the “pain” in the process; usually written in noun–verb structure; usually included in a team charter and supported with numbers and more detail once data have been obtained. See also Charter. Process Capability: Determination of whether a process, with normal variation, is capable of meeting customer requirements; measure of the degree a process is/is not meeting customer requirements, compared to the distribution of the process. See also Control; Control Charts. Process Characterization: Is concerned with the identification and benchmarking of key product characteristics. This is done by way of gap analysis. Process Design: Creation of an innovative process needed for newly introduced activities, systems, products, or services. Process Improvement: Improvement approach focused on incremental changes/ solutions to eliminate or reduce defects, costs, or cycle time; leaves basic design and assumptions of a process intact. See also Process Redesign. Process Management: Defined and documented processes, monitored on an ongoing basis, which ensure that measures are providing feedback on the flow/function of a process; key measures include financial, process, people, innovation. See also Control. Process Map or Flowchart: Graphic display of the process flow that shows all activities, decision points, rework loops, delays, inspection, and handoffs. Process Measures: Measures related to individual steps as well as to the total process; predictors of output measures. Process Optimization: Is aimed at the identification and containment of those process variables which exert undue influence over the key product characteristics. Process Redesign: Method of restructuring process flow elements eliminating handoffs, rework loops, inspection points, and other nonvalue-adding activities; typically means “clean slate” design of a business segment and accommodates major changes or yields exponential improvements (similar to reengineering). See also Process Improvement; Reengineering.

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Producer’s Risk: For a sampling plan, refers to the probability of not accepting a lot, the quality of which has a designated numerical value representing a level that is generally desirable. Usually the designated value will be the acceptable quality level (also called alpha risk and type I error). Project Rationale (a.k.a. “Business Case”): Broad statement defining area of concern or opportunity, including impact/benefit of potential improvements, or risk of not improving a process; links to business strategies, the customer, and/or company values. Provided by business leaders to an improvement team and used to develop problem statement and Project Charter. Proportion Defective: Fraction of units with nonconformances (defects); number of defective units divided by the total number of units; translate the decimal figure to a percentage. See also Defect; Defective. Quality: A broad concept and/or discipline involving degree of excellence; a distinguished attribute or nature; conformance to specifications; measurable standards of comparison so that applications can be consistently directed toward business goals. Quality Assurance (QA): Discipline (or department) of maintaining product or service conformance to customer specifications; primary tools are statistical analysis, inspection, and SPC. Quality Council: Leadership group guiding the implementation of quality or six sigma within an organization; establishes, reviews, and supports the progress of quality improvement teams. Random Sampling: Method that allows each item or person chosen to be measured to be selected completely by chance. Reengineering: Design or redesign of business; similar to process redesign, though in practice usually at a much larger scale or scope. Repeatability: Measurement stability concept in which a single person gets the same results each time he/she measures and collects data; necessary to ensure data consistency and stability. See also Reproducibility. Reproducibility: Measurement stability concept in which different people get the same results when they measure and collect data using the same methods; necessary to ensure data consistency and stability. See also Repeatability. Revision Plans: A mechanism (process) for updating processes, procedures, and documentation. Rework Loop: Any instance in a process when the thing moving through the process has to be corrected by returning it to a previous step or person/organization in the process; adds time, costs, and potential for confusion and more defects. See also Nonvalue-Adding Activities. Right the First Time: A term used to convey the concept that it is beneficial and more cost effective to take the necessary steps up front to ensure a product or service meets its requirements than to provide a product or service that will need rework or not meet customers’ needs. In other words, an organization should engage in defect prevention rather than defect detection.

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Risk Assessment/Management: The process of determining what risks are present in a situation (for example, project plan) and what actions might be taken to eliminate or mediate them. Robustness: The condition of a product or process design that remains relatively stable with a minimum of variation even though factors that influence operations or usage, such as environment and wear, are constantly changing. Role-Playing: A training technique whereby participants spontaneously perform in an assigned scenario. Root Cause Analysis: A quality tool used to distinguish the source of defects or problems. It is a structured approach that focuses on the decisive or original cause of a problem or condition. Rolled Throughput-Yield: The cumulative calculation of defects through multiple steps in a process; total input units, less the number of errors in the first process step number of items “rolled through” that step; to get a percentage, take the number of items coming through the process correctly divided by the number of total units going into the process; repeat this for each step of the process to get an overall rolled-throughput percentage. See also Yield. Run: Consecutive points on one side of the centerline. Run Chart or Time Plot: Measurement display tool showing variation in a factor over time; indicates trends, patterns, and instances of special causes of variation. See Memory jogger and Volume III for construction/use tips. See also Control Chart; Special Cause; Variation. Sampling: Using a smaller group to represent the whole; foundation of statistics which can save time, money, and effort; allows for more meaningful data; can improve accuracy of measurement system. Sampling Bias: When data can be prejudiced in one way or another and do not represent the whole. Scatter Plot or Diagram: Graph used to show relationship, or correlation, between two factors or variables. See also Correlation Coefficient. Scope: Defines the boundaries of the process or the process improvement project; clarifies specifically where opportunities for improvement reside (startand end-points); defines where and what to measure and analyze; needs to be within the sphere of influence and control of the team working on the project — the broader the scope, the more complex and time-consuming the process improvement efforts will be. Should-Be Process Mapping: Process-mapping approach showing the design of a process the way it should be (e.g., without nonvalue-adding activities; with streamlined workflow and new solutions incorporated). Contrasts with the “as-is” form of process mapping. See also Process Redesign; Value-Adding Activities; Nonvalue Adding Activities. Sigma (σ): Is a statistical unit of measure which reflects process capability. This capability may be measured from either short- or long-term perspective. The conversions are as follows:

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Short Term Short term Long Term

No action (z value) Subtract 1.5σ

Long Term Add 1.5σ No action

SIPOC: Acronym for suppliers, inputs, process, outputs, and customer; enables an “at-a-glance,” high-level view of a process. Six Sigma: Level of process performance equivalent to producing only 3.4 defects for every 1 million opportunities or operations. The term is used to describe process improvement initiatives using sigma-based process measures and/or striving for six sigma level performance. The sigma value indicates how often defects are likely to occur. The higher the sigma value, the less likely a process will produce defects. As sigma increases, costs go down, cycle time goes down, and customer satisfaction goes up. Solution Statement: A clear description of the proposed solution(s); used to evaluate and select the best solution to implement. SPC: Statistical Process Control; use of data gathering and analysis to monitor processes, identify performance issues, and determine variability/capability. See also Run Charts; Control Charts. For a lengthy discussion see Volume III. Special Cause: Instance or event that impacts processes only under “special” circumstances, i.e., not part of the normal, daily operation of the process. See also Common Cause, Variation. Sponsor (or Champion): Person who represents team issues to senior management; gives final approval on team recommendations and supports those efforts with the Quality Council; facilitates obtaining of team resources as needed; helps Black Belt and team overcome obstacles; acts as a mentor for the Black Belt. Storyboard: A pictorial display of all the components in the DMAIC process, used by the team to arrive at a solution; used in presentations to sponsor, senior management, and others. Storyboarding: A technique that visually displays thoughts and ideas and groups them into categories, making all aspects of a process visible at once. Often used to communicate to others the activities performed by a team as they improved a process. Strategic Fit Review: A process by which senior managers assess the future of each project to a particular organization in terms of its ability to advance the mission and goals of that organization. Strategic Planning: A process to set an organization’s long range goals and identify the actions needed to reach the goals. Stratification: Looking at data in multiple layers of information such as what (types, complaints, etc.), when (month, day, year, etc.), where (region, city, state, etc.), and who (department, individual) Stratified Sampling: Dividing the larger population into subgroups, then taking your sample from each subgroup.

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Supplier: Any person or organization that feeds inputs (products, services, or information) into the process; in a service organization, many times the customer is also the supplier. Symptom: An indication of a problem or opportunity. System: A network of connecting processes that work together to accomplish the aim of the system. Systematic Sampling: Sampling method in which elements are selected from the population at a uniform interval (e.g., every half-hour, every twentieth item); this is recommended for many six sigma measurement activities. Systems Approach to Management: A management theory that views the organization as a unified, purposeful combination of interrelated parts; managers must look at the organization as a whole and understand that activity in one part of the organization affects all parts of the organization (also known as systems thinking). t test: A method for testing hypotheses about the population mean; the t statistic measures the deviation between the sample and population means, in terms of the number of standard errors. Tacit Knowledge: Unarticulated heuristics and assumptions used by any individual or organization. Tactical Plans: Short-term plans, usually of one- to two-year duration, that describe actions the organization will take to meet its strategic business plan. Tactics: The strategies and processes that help an organization meet its objectives. Taguchi Loss Function: Pertains to where product characteristics deviate from the normal aim and losses increase according to a parabolic function; by merely attempting to produce a product within specifications doesn’t prevent loss (loss is that inflicted on society after shipment of a product). Takt Time: The available production time divided by the rate of customer demand. Operating to takt time sets the production pace to customer demand. Tally Sheet: Another name for “checksheet.” Tampering: Action taken to compensate for variation within the control limits of a stable system. Tampering increases rather than decreases variation, as evidenced in the funnel experiment. Team: A set of two or more people who are equally accountable for the accomplishment of a purpose and specific performance goals; it is also defined as a small number of people with complementary skills who are committed to a common purpose. Team-Based Structure: Describes an organizational structure in which team members are organized around performing a specific function of the business, such as handling customer complaints or assembling an engine. Team Building/Development: The process of transforming a group of people into a team and developing the team to achieve its purpose. Team Dynamics: The interactions which occur among team members under different conditions.

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Team Facilitation: Deals with both the role of the facilitator on the team and the techniques and tools for facilitating the team. Team Performance Evaluation, Rewards, and Recognition: Special metrics are needed to evaluate the work of a team (to avoid focus on any individual on the team) and as a basis for rewards and recognition for team achievements. Team Structure: A type of organization based on teams. Theory of Constraints (TOC): Goldratt’s theory deals with techniques and tools for identifying and eliminating the constraints (bottlenecks) in a process. Theory of Knowledge: A belief that management is about prediction, and people learn not only from experience but also from theory. When people study a process and develop a theory, they can compare their predictions with their observations; profound learning results. Theory X and Theory Y: A theory developed by Douglas McGregor that maintains that there are two contrasting assumptions about people, each of which is based on the manager’s view of human nature. Theory X managers take a negative view and assume that most employees do not like work and try to avoid it. Theory Y managers take a positive view and believe that employees want to work, will seek and accept responsibility, and can offer creative solutions to organizational problems. Theory Z: Coined by William G. Ouchi, refers to a Japanese style of management that is characterized by long-term employment, slow promotions, considerable job rotation, consensus-style decision making, and concern for the employee as a whole. Throughput Time: The total time required (processing + queue) from concept to launch or from order received to delivery, or raw materials received to delivery to customer. Tolerance: The variability of a parameter permitted and tolerated above or below a nominal value. Tolerance Design (Taguchi): Provides a rational grade limit for components of a system; determines which parts and processes need to be modified and to what degree it is necessary to increase their control capacity; a method for rationally determining tolerances. Top-Management Commitment: Participation of the highest-level officials in their organization’s quality improvement efforts. Their participation includes establishing and serving on a quality committee, establishing quality policies and goals, deploying those goals to lower levels of the organization, providing the resources and training that the lower levels need to achieve the goals, participating in quality improvement teams, reviewing progress organization-wide, recognizing those who have performed well, and revising the current reward system to reflect the importance of achieving the quality goals. Commitment is top management’s visible, personal involvement as seen by others in the organization.

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Total Productive Maintenance (TPM): Aimed at reducing and eventually eliminating equipment failure, setup and adjustment, minor stops, reduced speed, product rework, and scrap. Total Quality Management (TQM): A term initially coined by the Naval Air Systems Command to describe its management approach to quality improvement. Total quality management (TQM) has taken on many meanings. Simply put, TQM is a management approach to long-term success through customer satisfaction. TQM is based on the participation of all members of an organization in improving processes, products, services, and the culture they work in. TQM benefits all organization members and society. The methods for implementing this approach are found in the teachings of such quality leaders as Philip B. Crosby, W. Edwards Deming, Armand V. Feigenbaum, Kaoru Ishikawa, J. M. Juran, and others. The concept of TQM is based on (1) planning and (2) communication. To support this concept there are six principles. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.


starts on top requires total involvement focuses on the customer uses teams requires training for everybody uses tools to measure and follow progress

In total, they will transform the organization if applied appropriately. The fundamental steps of implementing TQM are • • • •

Create a steering committee to oversee the implementation Develop measures of quality and quality costs before the improvement program begins Provide support to the teams Reward success

Traceability: The ability to trace the history, application, or location of an item or activity and like items or activities by means of recorded identification. Traditional Organizations: Those organizations not driven by customers and quality policies. Also refers to organizations managed primarily through functional units. Training: Refers to the skills that employees need to learn in order to perform or improve the performances of their current job or tasks, or the process of providing those skills. Training Evaluation: The techniques and tools used and the process of evaluating the effectiveness of training. Training Needs Assessment: The techniques and tools used and the process of determining an organization’s training needs.

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Transactional Leadership: A style of leading whereby the leader sees the work as being done through clear definitions of tasks and responsibilities and the provision of resources as needed. Transformational Leadership: A style of leading whereby the leader articulates the vision and values necessary for the organization to succeed. Transition Tree: A technique used in applying Goldratt’s Theory of Constraints. Tree Diagram: A management and planning tool that shows the complete range of subtasks required to achieve an objective. A problem-solving method can be identified from this analysis. Trend: Consecutive points that show a nonrandom pattern. Trend Analysis: Refers to the charting of data over time to identify a tendency or direction. Type I Error: Alpha error. An incorrect decision to reject something (such as a statistical hypothesis or a lot of products) when it is acceptable. Also known as “producer’s risk” and “alpha risk.” Type II Error: Beta error. An incorrect decision to accept something when it is unacceptable. Also known as “consumer’s risk” and “beta risk.” Upstream: Processes (tasks, activities) occurring prior to the task or activity in question. Value-Adding Activities: Steps/tasks in a process that meet all three criteria defining value as perceived by the external customer: (1) the customer cares; (2) the thing moving through the process changes; and (3) the step is done right the first time. Value-Enabling Activities: Steps/tasks in a process enabling work to move forward and add value to the customer but not meeting all three of the valueadding criteria; should still be scrutinized for time and best practices — can it be done better? Variation: Change or fluctuation of a specific characteristic which determines how stable or predictable the process may be; affected by environment, people, machinery/equipment, methods/procedures, measurements, and materials; any process improvement should reduce or eliminate variation. See also Common Cause; Special Cause. Voice of the Customer (VOC): Data (complaints, surveys, comments, market research, etc.) representing the views/needs of a company’s customers; should be translated into measurable requirements for the process. Generally, the VOC is identified as a functionality that the customer is seeking. X: Variable used to signify factors or measures in the input or process segments of a business process or system. It appears as part of the Y = F(X). It is the independent factor that can control and/or predict the F(Y). The X must be directly correlated with the customer’s needs, wants, or expectations. Is also known as: cause, control, and problem. It is the basis for identifying the projects for the black belts. Y: Variable used to signify factors or measures at the output of a business process or system. Equivalent to “results.” A key principle of six sigma is that Y is a function of upstream factors; or Y = f(x). It is the dependent variable

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that the predictors of F(x) are trying to define. It is also known as output, effect, symptom, and monitor. Yield: Total number of units handled correctly through the process step(s). Zero Defects: A performance standard popularized by Philip B. Crosby to address a dual attitude in the workplace: people are willing to accept imperfection in some areas, while, in other areas, they expect the number of defects to be zero. This dual attitude has developed because of the conditioning that people are human and humans make mistakes. However, the zero-defects methodology states that if people commit themselves to watching details and avoiding errors, they can move closer to the goal of zero. Zero Investment Improvement: Another name for a Kaizen blitz.

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Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance

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Selected Bibliography


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Hoffher, G. D. and Reid, R. P. (August 1995), Achieving a highly effective organization, Qual. Dig., 26. Holpp, L. (December 1993), Self directed teams are great, but they are not easy, J. Qual. Participation, 64. Holpp, L. (September 1993), Five ways to sink self-managed teams, Training, 45. Hopkins, E. J. (December 1994), Effective teams: Camels of a different color?, Training Dev., 35. Hou, W. C., Sheang, L. K., and Hidajat, B. W. (1991), Sun Tzu: War and Management, Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA. Hume, J. H. (January 1994), The requirements of real organizational change, Performance Instruction, 33(1), 25. Irwin, D. and Rocine, V. (September 1994), Self-directed work teams, CMA Mag., 10. Isgar, T., Ranney, J., and Grinnell, S. (April 1994), Team leaders: The key to quality, Training Dev., 45. James, S. (1994), Recent advances in management development: Self-directed, continuous development through ‘smart software,’ J. Manage. Dev., 13(7), 35. Jessup, L. M. and Valacich, J. S., Ed. (1993), Group Support Systems: New Perspectives, MacMillan, New York. Jesup, H. R. (September 1992), The road to results for teams, Training Dev., 65. Johansen R., Ed. (1991), Leading Business Teams: How Teams Can Use Technology and Group Process Tools to Enhance Performance, Addison-Wesley, Reading, MA. Johnson, P. R. (1994), Brains, heart and courage: Keys to empowerment and self-directed leadership, J. Managerial Psychol., 9(2), 17. Kaczmarek, P. (September 1994), Empowerment philosophies and practices in business and educational settings, Performance Instruction, 33(8), 26. Kaeter, M. (March 1993), Cross training: The tactical view, Training, 35. Katz, A. (December 1993), Seven guides for facilitation, Qual. Dig., 24. Katzan, H., Jr. (1989), Quality Circle Management: The Human Side of Quality, Tab Professional and Reference Books, Blue Ridge Summit, PA. Katzenback, J. R. and Smith, D. K. (1993), The Wisdom of Teams: Creating the HighPerformance Organization, Harvard Business School Press, Boston, MA. Kepner, C. H. and Tregoe, B. B. (1965), The Rational Manager, McGraw-Hill, New York. Kerzner, H. (1995), Project Management: A Systems Approach to Planning, Scheduling and Controlling, 5th ed., Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York. Ketchum, L. D. and Trist, E. L. (1992), All Teams Are Not Created Equal: How Employee Empowerment Really Works, Sage Publications, Newbury Park, CA. Kinlaw, D. C. (1992), Continuous Improvement and Measurement for Total Quality: A TeamBased Approach, Pfeiffer and Company, San Diego, CA. Kinlaw, D. C. (1991), Developing Superior Work Teams: Building Quality and the Competitive Edge, Lexington Books, Lexington, MA. Kinni, T. B. (April 1993), Apple grows self directed work teams, Qual. Dig., 28. Koonce, R. (February 1994), One on one, Training Dev., 34. Kramer, C. E. (May 1993), Improving team meetings, Qual. Dig., 74. Lathin, D. (July–August 1994), Overcomming fear of self-directed teams, J. Qual. Participation, 16. Lazega, E. (1992), The Micropolitics of Knowledge: Communication and Indirect Control in Workgroups, A. de Gruyter, New York. Lipnack, J. and Stamps, J. (1993), The teamNet Factor: Bringing the Power of Boundary Crossing into the Heart of Your Business, Oliver Wight Publications, Essex Junction, VT.

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Thompson, G. and Pearce, P. F. (May 1992), The team trust game, Training Dev., 42. Tjosvold, D. (1991), Team Organization: An Enduring Competitive Advantage, John Wiley & Sons, New York. Torres, C. and Spiegel, J. (1990), Self -Directed Work Teams: A Primer, University Associates, Inc., San Diego, CA. Tuckman, B. W. and Jensen, M.A. (1977), Stages of small group development revisited, Group Organ. Stud., 2(4), 419. Tuckman, B. W. (1965), Development of sequence in small groups, Psychol. Bull., 63, 384. Uhlfelder, H. F. (June 1994), Why teams don’t work, Qual. Dig., 46. Van Matre, J. G. TEAMusic: A new exercise for demonstraiting teamwork principles, Qual. Manage. J., 7(2), 55. Varney, G. H. (1989), Building Productive Teams: An Action Guide and Resource Book, Jossey-Bass, San Francisco, CA. Vogt, J. F. and Murrell, K. L. (1990, Empowerment in Organizations: How to Spark Exceptional Performance, Pfeiffer and Company, San Diego, CA. Weaver, C. N. (December 1993), How to use process improvement teams, Qual. Prog., 65. Wellins, R. S. (December 1992), Building a self-directed work team, Training Dev., 24. Wellins, R. S., Byham, W. C., and Wilson, J. M. (1991), Empowered Teams: Creating SelfDirected Work Groups That Improve Quality, Productivity and Participation, JosseyBass, San Francisco, CA. Wernick, S. (July–August 1994), Self-directed work teams and empowerment, J. Qual. Participation, 34. Westcott, R. (June 1995), The work redesign team handbook: A step-by-step guide to creating self-directed teams, Qual. Prog., 108. Wheatley, M. J. (1992), Leadership and the New Science, Berrett-Koehler Publishers, San Francisco, CA. Wheeler, D. J. (1990), Advanced Topics in Statistical Process Control, Statistical Process Control, Inc., Knoxville, TN. Wilson, J. and Ross, A. (July–August 1994), Self-directed teams in one-on-one work, J. Qual. Participation, 20. Wilson, P. F., Dell, L. D., and Anderson, G. F. (1993). Root Cause Analysis: A Tool for Total Quality Management, Quality Press, Milwaukee, WI. Woltuck, B. A. (July–August 1994), Working together to improve serving our customers, J. Q. Participation, 74. Worchel, S., Wood, W., and Simpson, J. A., Eds. (1992), Group Process and Productivity, Sage Publications, Newbury Park, CA. Yeatts, D. E., Hipskind, M., and Barnes, D. (July–August 1994), Lessons learned from selfmanaged work teams, Bus. Horizons, 11. Zemke, R. (November 1993), Rethinking the rush to team up, Training, 55. Zenger, J. H., Ed., Leading Teams: Mastering the New Role, Business One Irwin, Homewood, IL. Zuidema, K. and Kleiner, B. H. (October 1994), Self-directed work groups gain popularity, Bus. Credit, 21. Zuidema, K. R. and Kleiner, B. H. (1994), New developments in developing self-directed work groups, Manage. Decision, 32(8), 57.

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Index 10% rule, 80 1.5 sigma shift, 95–96, 100 3.4 ppm failures, 98, 100 4P&2M, 119 5/3 status system, 83 5M&P, 119 5S approach, 266–267 80/20 rule, 351 8D problem-solving model, 223

A ABB (Asea Brown Boveri), 104 Acceptable quality level (AQL), definition, 343 Acceptance sampling, definition, 343 Acceptance sampling plan, definition, 343 Accountability and gender differences, 193–194 Accountability gaps, 35 Accuracy, definition, 343 Action plan, 225 definition, 343 Active listening, 276 definition, 343 skills, 276–277 Activity-based management, definition, 343 Activity network diagram (AND), definition, 343 Act phase of TQM, 46–50 Adult learning principles, definition, 343 Affinity chart (diagram), 303 definition, 343 Aggressive behavior, 190, 191 Aid Association for Lutherans, 200 Aiming low, 78–79 A.isl, 323 Alexander the Great, 140 Alignment between organizations, 167 in organizations, 169 of team purpose and goals, 287 Alpha risk, 325–326 Analysis, 6 behaviors, 335 of details, 10 levels, 71–72 tools, 15

Analyze (DMAIC phase), 124–125, 314, 323–324 definition, 343 AND (Activity network diagram), definition, 343 ANOVA table, 327, 329 Antecedent conditions, 183 and change, 144–145 Anti-team behaviors, 226 A. O. Smith, 200 APQP, 101 AQL (Acceptable quality level), 343 Architecture of teams, 201 Armstrong,Lance, 10 “As is” flowchart, 37, 38 Assertive behavior, 190, 191 rights, 178 Attitude, 10, 89, see also Management, attitude adjustment, 236 organization, 5 Attribution, 291–292 A.usl, 323 Authority in teams, 246, 247 Automotive markets, American vs. Japanese, 137 Autonomous work teams, 66

B “Bad luck”, 46 Balanced scorecard, definition, 344 Balance of work and personal needs, 89 Baldridge awards, 50–51 Band-Aid solutions, see Short-term solutions Baseline information, 37 Baseline measures, definition, 344 Bathtub curve, definition, 344 Beginning-growth-fading out, 66 Behavior in displaying power, 190 problems in teams, 204–205 styles in teams, 269 Behavioral change, measurement, 65 Benchmarking, 58, 87, 304 definition, 344 matrix, 53–54 Benefit-cost analysis, definition, 344


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Beta risk, 325–326 Bias, definition, 344 Big Q, Little q, definition, 344 Binomial distribution, 327 Binomial distributions, 322 Black belt, see also Master black belt, Shogun six sigma master candidate qualifications and training, 105–106 as coaches, 85 compensation, 93 definition, 344 place in organization, 93 in six sigma deployment, 321 training, 73–74 Blame, 90 assigning, 23, 26 Blemish, definition, 344 Block diagram, definition, 344–345 Body language factors in communication, 188–189 Boeing, 200 “Boss” approach, 294 Bottom line result focus, 100 Boundaryless organization, definition, 345 Box plots, 124 Brainstorming, definition, 345 Breakthrough, definition, 345 Bullseye model, 236–237 Bureaucratic layers, 140 Business acumen in leadership, 151 Business case definition, 352 proof of value of six sigma concept, 200 Business metrics, 317 Business processes, definition, 345

C Canon, 167 Capability, 304 Caterpillar, 200 Cause-and-effect analysis, 37, 38, 126 diagram, 39, 40 Cause-and-effect diagram, 303 definition, 345 Causes common, 45, 46, 121 changes to address, 47–48 choosing to change, 46 definition, 345–346 trial periods for changes, 48 incorrect identification of, 46 root causes and problems, 91

special, 45, 46, 121 choosing to change, 46 stabilizing a process, 47 c-Chart, 303 Champion definition, 345, 354 training, 73, 106, 107 Champion International, 200 Change antecedent conditions, 144–145 consequent conditions, 144–145 defined in outcomes, 36 difficulty of cultural, 235 evaluating effects of, 48–50 factors for, 266–267 fear of, 113 individual resistance to, 147 levels of, 143–144 managed, 235 not forced, 235 permanent behavior alteration, 143 personal, 235–236 process for, 234–235 reactions to, 22–23, 80 recognition of, 113 resistance, sources of, 147 social influence, 143 stages of individual, 144–145 strategies for, 266–267 strategy, 148 understanding of for team approaches, 233–234 Change agent, definition, 345 Changeover, definition, 345 Characteristics, definition, 345 Chartering of teams, 284–287 definition, 345 meeting to, 286 Charts used in problem solving, 303, see also Specific chart types Check phase of TQM, 43–46 Check sheet, 303 definition, 345, 355 Chi-square statistic, 327 Chronic waste, reduction of, 11 Churchill, Winston, 90 Coaching, 85–86, 293 definition, 345 men coaching women, 192 by mid-level leaders, 22 skills, 86–88 stagnation as a result of poor, 88–89 Collective decision, 271–272 Collective thought, 26 Commando team leadership, 293

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Index Commitment definition, 279 as ownership of process, 265 Commitment, by top management, definition, 356 Common cause, see Causes, common Common causes, definition, 345–346 Communication, 283–284 attentiveness, 179 blockers, 180–181 body language, 188–189 communicating significance of issues, 183 and cultural diversity, 195 digression, 289–290 discounts, 289 effective, 178–179 emotional factors, 181 and employee morale, 177 environment, 190 eye contact, 189 gender themes, 190–194 importance of, 24 individual styles, 281 by leaders, 149 listening skills, 179 nonverbal language, 187–190 messages, 186 open, 24, 141–142 personal space, 188 plops, 289 between quality personnel and operators, 184–186 receiver factors, 179 relationship with sender, 178 response types, 180–181 sender factors, 177–178 relationship with receiver, 178 tangents, 289–290 in teams, 165, 204 training, 182–184 vocal dimensions, 189 Communications, in problem-solving, 339–340 Complaint resolution, 82 Compliance, 146, 182 with influence, 143, 144 Concern analysis, 304–305 Concurrent design, 29 Concurrent engineering, 58, 66 Conflict resolution definition, 346 in teams, 262 Conformance, definition, 346 Confucius, 141

371 Consensus decision making, 271–272 definition, 346 reaching, 273 recognizing, 273 Consequent conditions, 183 and change, 144–145 Constancy of purpose, definition, 346 Constraint, definition, 346 Constraint management, definition, 346 Construct, definition, 346 Consultative decision making, definition, 346 Consumer market customers, definition, 346 Consumer six sigma, 95 Consumer’s risk, definition, 346 Continual improvement, 9, 10, 20, 49, 209–210 commitment to, 79–81 use of disciplined methodology, 55–56 Continuous data, definition, 346 Continuous learning, 77 Continuous decision tools, fundamentals checklist, 326–327 Control, 337–338 of project, 128–129 Control charts, 303 cause identification using, 46 definition, 346 in process analysis, 44–45 Control (DMAIC phase), 315 definition, 346 fundamentals checklist, 331 Control of process, definition, 346 Control plan, definition, 347 COPQ (Cost of poor quality), 114 definition, 347 Core competency, definition, 347 Corporate culture, definition, 347 Correction vs. prevention, 11 Corrective action, definition, 347 Correlation chart, 303 Correlation coefficient, definition, 347 Correlation, definition, 347 Cost-benefit analysis, definition, 344 perspective and six sigma methodology, 114 Cost of poor quality (COPQ), 114 definition, 347 Cost of quality, 65–66, 304 Cost-reduction initiative, 92 Courage of leaders, 149 Cp, 95, 98, 324 Cpk, 95, 98, 324 CPM (Critical path method), definition, 347 Crawford slip method, definition, 347

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Creativity in jobs, 140 in teams, 165–166 in upper management, 140 Criteria matrix, definition, 347 Criterion, definition, 347 Critical incident, definition, 347 Critical path definition, 347 method (CPM), definition, 347 Critical to process characteristic (CTP), 320 Critical to quality characteristic (CTQ), 320 Critical to quality (CTQ), 96 requirements, 96 Critical to satisfaction characteristic (CTS), 320 Cross-functional team, see also Teams definition, 347 Cross-functional thinking, 79 CSR (Customer service representative), definition, 347 CTP (Critical to process characteristic), 320 CTQ (critical to quality), 96, 324, 331 characteristics measurement, 121 CTQ (Critical to quality characteristic), 320 CTQ (Critical to quality) requirements, 96 CTS (Critical to satisfaction characteristic), 320 CTX (process) tree, 96–97, 320 CTY (product) tree, 96–97 Cultural change, 51, 52, 104 difficulty of, 235 to support teams, 234 Cultural diversity and communication, 195 Cultural variations in training approaches, 183, 187 Culture, definition, 347 Cummins Engine, 200 Cumulative sum control chart, definition, 347 Current reality tree, definition, 347 Customer alignment of expectations and requirements, 11 defines quality, 116 definition, 348 delighting, 91 focus, 6 loyalty, 201 requirements, 11 satisfaction, 6 and front-line workers, 22 satisfaction study, 13–14 voice of, see Voice of the customer (VOC) Customer driven, 81 Customer focus, 116–117, 317 Customer loyalty, 69–70

Customer needs, 117 project conformance to, 61, 62 Customer requirements, 58 definition, 348 determining, 117–118 Customers external, 116 internal, 116 types, 116 Customer service representative (CSR), definition, 347 Cycle time, definition, 348

D Data analysis, 124–125 fake, 14, 16–17, 42 types, 123 Data collection, 122–123, 321 baseline information, 41–42 on causes, 42 process, 122–123 simplicity in, 49 Data entry, 15 Data mining, 14, 14–16, 42 Decentralized organization, 19 Decision collective, 271–272 optimum, 6 Decision making, 81–82 consensus, 271 styles, 273 without consensus, 274–275 Decision procedures in teams, 205 Decision tools, fundamentals checklist, 327–328 Decisiveness in problem-solving, 336 Defect, definition, 348 Defective, definition, 348 Defect opportunities, 320 Defect opportunity, definition, 348 Defects per million opportunities (DPMO), see DPMO (Defects per million opportunities) Defects per opportunity (DPO), 96 definition, 348 Defects per unit (DPU) goal, 324 Define (DMAIC phase), 114–120 definition, 348 fundamentals checklist, 319–321 outline, 313 Define-measure-analyze-improve-control (DMAIC) model, see DMAIC model Degrees of freedom, 327

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Index Delegation, 337–338 Delighting the customer, 91 Deployment time-line, 74, 95 Design, as customer loyalty factor, 69 Design for six sigma (DFSS), definition, 348 Design issues, addressed by six sigma, 102 Design of experiments, 304 Designs, robust, 11, 12 Design tools, 330 DFSS (Design for six sigma), definition, 348 DFSS principles, fundamentals checklist, 331 Dialogue conditions for effective, 25 conducting, 26 definition, 23–24 environment for, 24 importance of, 25 process, 26–27 purpose of, 25 rules for, 26 use of facilitator, 26 Dialogue session, conducting, 26 Differences, valuing, 24 Digital Equipment, 200 Digressions, 289–290 Dimensions and terms, 333–334 Diogenes, 140 Discipline effective application to individuals, 88 signs of lack of in organization, 56 Disciplined methodology, 55–56 Discounts in communication, 289 Discrete data, definition, 348 Discrete decision tools, 327–328 Distribution diagram, 303 Diversity, 194–195 and communication issues, 187 DMAIC (Define-measure-analyze-improvecontrol), 97–98, see also Specific phases definition, 348 model, 71–73, 120–121 factors in, 72–73 outline, 313–315 variation of PDSA model, 72 Documentation, 128–129 of process improvements, 49 DOE/ANOVA method, 332 Dominating team members, 291–292 Do phase of TQM, 37–43 Downstream, definition, 348 DPMO (Defects per million opportunities), 96 definition, 348 DPMO report, 114 DPO (Defects per opportunity), definition, 348

373 DPU (Defects per unit) goal, 324 Driver, definition, 6 Dynamic statistics, 323

E Effectiveness definition, 348 measures, 121 Efficiency definition, 349 measures, 121 Eight sigma, 102 Empirical modeling tools, fundamentals checklist, 330 Employee development, 146–147, 149 Employee involvement, in teams, 255 Empowerment, 17–18, 54–55, 266 ingredients, 266 skills for, 246 of team members, 246 Engineering quality, 32 reliability, 32 Enthusiasm, 89–90 Environmental effects in communication, 190–194 Error propagation, 331 ESC (Executive steering committee), 47 Evolution of teams, 251–252 EWMA (Exponentially weighted moving average) chart, 332 Executive overview training, 107 Executive piracy, 136 Executive steering committee (ESC), 47 Expectations, 78–79 Experimental design, 328 parameter design, 66 tolerance design, 66 Experimentation, in teams, 165–166 Exponentially weighted moving average (EWMA) chart, 332 External failure, definition, 349 Eye contact, 189

F Facilitator for dialogue, 26 duties, 242–243 in meetings, 260–261 process facilitation skill, 238–239

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on quality team, 263 questioning skills, 270–271, 272 role, 28 skills, 239, 240 in team development, 240 team, effective, 270 in teams, 293 use of, 24–25 Factorial experiment, 328, 329 Fads, see Short-term solutions Failure mode and effect analysis (FMEA), 304 Failure, when taking risk, 84 Fake data, 14, 16–17, 42 “Fallen stars”, 86 F distribution, 322 Feedback, 299 definition, 279 managing, 279–280 TIPS test, 87 Feuding between team members, 290 First-time yield (Y.ft), 323–324 Five sigma wall, 319 Flattening the organization, 233 Flexibility, 83–84 Floundering, 287–288 Flowchart, 303 definition, 352 Flow-chart method, 35 “as is”, 37, 38 Flow diagram, 61, 62 FMEA (Failure mode and effect analysis), 304 Focus, 10, 78 on action and results, 78 on bottom line results, 100 Force field analysis, definition, 349 Forces in the manager, 153–154 in the situation, 153, 155 in the subordinate, 153, 154 Ford Motor Company, 167, 200 “Forming” stage of team building, 209 Fractional-factorial experiment, 328, 329 Frame error, 14 Frequency plot, definition, 349 Friendship between genders, 193 Front-line workers, and customer satisfaction, 22 Full-factorial experiment, 328, 329 F value, 327

G Gainsharing, 66 Gaps, 120

Gauge R and R (Gauge reproducibility and repeatability), 304 Gender factors accountability, 193–194 in communication, 190–194 intimacy and sexuality, 192–193 power, 190–191 support, 191–192 friendship between genders, 193 reactions to power, 191 General Electric, 200 General Mills, 200 General Motors, 200 Goals, 10 (addressed by) TQM, 33–35 communicating, 20 driven by customer requirements, 60 for improvement, 59–60 measurable, 34 of project effort, 115 realistic, 59–60 relevant, 34 Goal statement, definition, 349 Gordian knot approach, 136, 141–142 Graphical presentations, 124–125 Green belt, as coach, 85–86 Green belt, definition, 349 “Griping and grasping” stage of team development, 207–208 “Grouping” stage of team development, 208 Groups, see also Teams development into teams, 158, 163, 170–171, 206–208 transition to teams, 174 Group-think, avoiding, 295–296 GROW, 85 GRPI model, 236–237 Guidance team improving process, 216 obligations of, 216 responsibilities during process improvement, 257–258 Gurus, 99

H Haig, Douglas, 137 Handoff, definition, 349 Herschel, Abraham, 9 Heteroscedasticity, 330 Heteroscedasticity, definition, 349 Hewlett Packard, 167 Hidden factory, 96 Hindsight analysis, 181

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Histogram, 303 definition, 349 in process analysis, 44 Human resources, 6 Hypothesis statement, definition, 349

I Identification, 182 Identification with influencer, 143, 144 Image, professional, 256 Imagineering, 35 Implementation planning, 127–128 Improve (DMAIC phase), 314, 328–329 definition, 349 Improvement continual, 9, 20 evaluating, 64–66 goals, 59–60 level of change, 126 measurement in evaluating, 64 opportunities, 63 ranking, 63 plan, 203 problem indicators, 203 projects, 60–61 Improvement cycle, continuous, 49 Improvement methodologies, projects using, 61–64 Individual, relationship to organization, 218 Inference, Ladder of, 28 Influence, acceptance of, 144–145 Influencer, sources of power, 183 Information analysis, 6 baseline, 37 outcome, 36 output, 36 Initiative, in problem-solving, 340 Innovation encouraging, 17 importance of, 10 in leadership, 149 in problem-solving, 340 Input, definition, 349 Input measures, definition, 349 Inspections overuse, 35 by quality control, 29–30 Institutionalization, 128–129 definition, 349 “In-Sync-Erator”, 82 Integrity, 89–90 of leaders, 149

Interdependencies of teams, 158 Interfaces, managing, 29 Internal auditing, 31 Internalization, 144, 146, 182 Interpersonal communication in teams, 165 Interpersonal skills, 184 Intimacy and sexuality and communication issues, 192–193 Involvement levels, 279 Involvement of people, 54–55 ISO-9000, definition, 349–350

J Joint leadership, 167, 168 Joint performance, 56–57 Judgment behaviors, 335–336 Judgment sampling, definition, 350

K Kaizen approach, 255–256 Kaizen blitz, definition, 359 Kano model, 11, 116

L Ladder of Inference, 28 “Large rocks first” anecdote, 107–108 Leader/servant, 150, 153–154 Leadership, see also Forces, Management attributes, 149–151 “boss” approach, 294 business acumen, 151 characteristics, 20–21 communication by, 20, 150 continuum, 293–294 core values, 18–19 effectiveness, 148 elements, 148 employee development, 150 executive, 6 forces in the manager, 153 innovation, 151 joint, 167, 168 leader/servant, 150, 153–154 maintenance aspect, 151 mid-level, 22 outputs, 155–157 persistence, 150 personality traits, 148 principles, 19 in problem-solving, 338–339

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as process, 148 quality methods understanding, 151 responsibilities, 154 senior, 21 service orientation, 150 situational leadership, 173–174 styles, 20, 145–146, 148, 151 effectiveness of, 157 continuum, 151–153 subordinates role in, 151 system thinking, 150 task aspect overemphasis, 151 teamwork, 150 values, 18–19 Learning continuous, 10, 77 organizational, 23–24 Levels of involvement, 279 Likert scale, 321 Lincoln, Abraham, 77 Listening active, 276 definition, 275–-276 skills, 179 improving, 277–278 Loss function, 65–66, 100 Loss to society, 65–66 “Low fruit”, 78–79 savings, 74 LTV Steel, 200 Luck, bad, 46

M Machiavellian power, 136 Main-effect plot, 329 Malcolm Baldridge, 50–51 Management, 43–46, 50, 227 acceptance of cost and prolonged process, 50–51 in Act phase of TQM, 46–50 attitude, 29, 136, 141 as impediment to process improvement, 49 bean counters, 138 of change, 235 in Check phase of TQM, 43–46 commitment to team success, 228–229 creativity needed in upper levels, 138 duties for teams, 245 effectiveness, and communication, 177 by fact, 20 layers, 140 morale, 140

objectives shifting, 311 patience to see process through, 92 in Plan phase of TQM, 43–46 quality system responsibilities, 50–51 responsibilities, 140 role in team success, 226–228 service to subordinates, 137 short-term profits attitude, 136 style, 20 styles in teams, 293–294 as team champion, 227 team facilitation tools, 303 tools for facilitating teams, 303 Management-by-fact, definition, 350 Management, systems approach to, definition, 355 Market share, increasing, 102–103 Maslow's hierarchy of needs, 171, 172 Master black belt as coach, 85 definition, 350 training, 106 Matrix chart, 303 Matrix data analysis, 303 Matrix management, 253 Maturity stages, 146 Maximization model, 139–140 Mean time between failures (MTBF), 318 Measure (DMAIC phase), 313 definition, 350 fundamentals checklist, 321–323 Measurement, 13–14 consistency, 123 of process, 120–121 of progress, 20 for project implementation, 61, 62 scales, 321 Measurement error, 317, 322 Meeting process check, 278–279 Mental models, 28 Mentoring, see Coaching Methodology, structured, 29 Metrology, 31 “Middle stars”, 86 Mission of organization components, 58–59 Mission statement for teams, 284 unique to each team, 265 Modeling tools, fundamentals checklist, 330 Models, mental, 28 Moment of truth analysis, 125 definition, 350 Monitor, watchful, 18 Monte Carlo methodology, 330 Morale and communication, 177

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Motorola, 95–96, 98–99, 104 Moving range chart, 303 MTBF (Mean time between failures), 318 Multiculturalism, 194–195 Multivoting, definition, 350 Myers-Briggs categories, 280, 282–283

N NGT (Nominal group technique), see Nominal group technique (NGT) Nominal group technique (NGT), 62, 63 Nonconformity, 138–139 Nonresponse error, 14 Nonvalue-adding activities, definition, 350 Nonverbal language, 187–190 messages, 186 Normalized yield, 96 Norming, 171 Null distribution, 326 Null hypothesis, 326

O Open door policy, 82 Operational definition, definition, 350 Opinions as facts, 288 Opportunities criteria for selecting, 224–225 quantifying, 125 Opportunities for defects, 320 Opportunity statement, 225 definition, 351 Optimization model, 139–140 Organization component's missions, 58–59 decentralized, 19 flattening, 233 relationship to individual, 218 Organizational cultures, 100 Organizational learning, 23–24 Organizational sensitivity, 336–337 Organizational values, 90 Organizations, traditional, definition, 357 Outcomes, evaluating effects of changes on, 48 Output definition, 350 measures, 121 Output measures, definition, 350 Overbearing team members, 290–291

P Paradigm change, 5 Paradigms, 233 Paralanguage, 189 Paraphrasing and active listening, 276 definition, 278 Pareto analysis, 124 of baseline data, 42–43 Pareto chart, 43, 303 definition, 350 Pareto principle, definition, 351 Participation, 24, 55 levels of, 293 in teams, 203–204 Participation philosophy, 199 Participative management, 135–136, 295 Parts-per-million tolerances, 12 Patience importance, 17 vs. rush to “do something”, 288–289 by senior management, 92 PAT (Process action team), 216 in act phase of TQM, 46–50 in check phase of TQM, 43–46 data collection function, 38–43 definition, 37, 217 role in improvement projects and plans, 61 Pay considerations, for SDWTs, 268 p chart, 332 p-Chart, 303 PDPC( Process decision program chart), 303 PDSA, 66 PDSA (Plan-Do-Study-Act) model, see Plan-DoStudy-Act PDSA (Plan-Do-Study (Check)-Act), definition, 351 People involvement, 54–55 People problems, 298–299 Percent defective, 12 Perfomance improvement cycle, chart, 61 Performance evaluations, 140 expectations, 87 Performance improvement, of teams, 256 Persistence, 10, 149 Personal change, 235–236 Personal needs and work needs, 89 Personal space factors in communication, 188 PERT (Program evaluation and review technique), 303 Pilot, definition, 351 Pilot program steps, 127

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PIM (Project improvement methods), see Project improvement methods (PIM) Plan-Do-Study (Check)-Act (PDSA), definition, 351 Plan-Do-Study-(Check) and Act methodology, TQM-based, 33 Plan phase of TQM, issues addressed, 33–36 Plan-train-apply-review (PTAR), 321 Plops, 289 PM (Project management), see Project management (PM) PMS (Process management structure), 253 in work environment, 252 Pogo, 69, 141 Poisson distribution, 322, 332 Power base principle, 264 Power, displaying, 190 Pp, 324–325 Ppk, 95, 98, 324 Precision, definition, 351 Precontrol tools, 331 fundamentals checklist, 331 Preliminary plan, definition, 351 Presentation skills, 256 Prevention vs. correction, 11 Preventive maintenance, 137 Principle of complementarity (duality), 141 Prioritizing, 10 Problem defining, 300 forces in, 155 identification, 297–298 types, 297–298 Problem definition, 302–303 Problem identification, 302–303 Problem indicators, 202–203 Problems people-caused, 298–299 team approach to easy and major, 254–255 Problem solving, definition, 297 Problem-solving methodology, 29 analysis behaviors, 335 communications, 339–340 control, 337–338 decisiveness, 336 delegation, 337–338 effectiveness, 82–83 initiative, 340 innovativeness, 340 judgment behaviors, 335–336 leadership in, 338–339 and organizational sensitivity, 336–337 organizing, 340–341 planning, 340–341 planning by teams, 299

principles, 299–300 steps in, 301–302 team member development, 338 tools, 303 work standards for, 337 Problem-solving process, use of, 301–302 Problem statement, 115, 301 definition, 351 Process, 36, see also Causes analysis, 125 baseline information collecting, 41–42 capability, 123–124 consultants, 46 defining, 61, 62 departmentalizing, 35 facilitation, 238–239 flow-chart method, 35 focus, narrow, 35 improvement, 29 improvement sequence, 64 mapping, 35 measurement, 65 measures, identifying, 40–41 monitoring, 49, 129 not centered, 123 output baseline development, 37–38 stabilizing, 47 streamlining, 35 variables, 36, 39 categories of, 38–39 variation, 121 voice of, 123–124 Process action team (PAT), see PAT (Process action team) Process awareness by teams, 205 Process baselines, 320 Process capability, definition, 351 Process characterization, definition, 351 Process decision program chart (PDPC), 303 Process definition, 119 Process design, definition, 351 Process drift, 331 Process facilitation, definition, 240 Process flow, 34–35 Process flowchart, definition, 351 Process improvement definition, 351 documenting, 49 Process improvements, standardizing, 49 Process management definition, 351 evolutionary process, 251 Process management structure (PMS), in work environment, see PMS (Process management structure)

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Process map, definition, 351 Process mapping, 118, 119–120, 320 Process measures, definition, 351 Process metrics, fundamentals checklist, 324–325 Process optimization, definition, 351 Process quality, improving, 64 Process redesign, definition, 351 Process shift, 331 Process team management, definition, 251 Procter & Gamble, 200 Procter and Gamble, 200 Producer's risk, definition, 352 Program evaluation and review technique (PERT), 303 Progress measures, 6 Project failure warning signs, 88–89 implementation plan example, 73–74 leader's duties, 241–242 lead person's responsibilities, 90 measurement, 65 scope, 115 Project champion, training, 73 Project improvement methods (PIM), 36 Project leader duties, 241–242 on quality team, 263–264 Project management (PM), areas of concern, 127 Project rationale, definition, 352 Projects, 320 control, 128–129 facilitator duties, 241–242 factors in, 109 failure to adhere to process, 312 generating solutions, 126 implementing, 61–64 management duties, 245 problem signs, 140 recorder's duties, 243–244 selecting solutions, 127 selection, 107–109 selection criteria, 110 signs of problems, 140 steps in, 110–111 timekeeper's duties, 244 Project selection, business case, 115 Proportion defective, definition, 352 PTAR (Plan-train-apply-review), 321

Q QA (Quality assurance), definition, 352 QC (Quality circle), definition, 217

QFD (Quality function deployment), 116 in analysis of problem, 304–305 applying to problem solving, 306–307 scoping of project using, 304–305 Quality as added task, 141 causes of, 37 components, 10–11 customer defined, 11, 116 definition, 9, 352 function of parameters, 69 measures, 12 misconceptions, 32–33 supplier, 32 Quality assurance, 31–32 Quality assurance (QA), definition, 352 Quality board, role in improvement projects and plans, 60 Quality boards, 56–57 Quality circle (QC), definition, 217 Quality circles, 66 Quality control, functions, 29–31 Quality council, 262 definition, 352 Quality department, functions, 32–33 Quality engineering, 32 Quality function deployment, 304 Quality function deployment (QFD), see QFD (Quality function deployment) in analysis of problem, 305–306 applying to problem solving, 306–307 scoping of project using, 304–305 Quality improvement cycle, 257 Quality improvement process, definition, 256–257 Quality initiatives, bogus, 9 Quality loss function, 65–66 Quality methods and leadership, 151 Quality officer, 262–263 Quality of work life (QWL), see QWL (Quality of work life) Quality personnel communication with operators, 184–186 submissive behavior undermining message, 185–187 Quality planning, strategic, 6 Quality professional opposition to use of, 23 role, 23, 24, 26 Quality system establishing, 50–58 steps in starting, 57 Quality team environment, focal participants, 262–263 Questioning skills, 270–271, 272

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Quick fixes, see Short-term solutions QWL (Quality of work life), 136 QWL (quality of work life), 138

R Random sampling, definition, 352 R chart, 303, 332 Rebels, 139 Recognition, 84 phase of six sigma implementation, 113–114 Recognition generating repetition, 81 Recorder's duties, 243–244 Reengineering, 35, 304 definition, 352 Reliability engineering, 32 Reluctant team members, 292 Repeatability, definition, 352 Reproducibility, definition, 352 Resource allocation for teams, 286 Responsibilities, 90 Revision plan, definition, 352 Rework loop, definition, 352 Right the first time, definition, 352 Risk, alpha, 325–326 Risk analysis tools, fundamentals checklist, 331 Risk assessment, definition, 353 Risk, beta, 325–326 Risk equation, 264 Risk management, definition, 353 Risk, producer's, definition, 352 Risk taking, 84 encouraging, 17 Roadblocks, 254 Robust designs, 11, 12 Robust design tools, fundamentals checklist, 330 Robustness, definition, 353 Role definition in teams, 203–204 Role-playing, definition, 353 Rolled throughput-yield (Y.rt), 96, 323–324 definition, 353 Root cause, 297, 299 analysis, 125 Root cause analysis, definition, 353 Root sums of squares (RSS), 331 RSS (Root sums of squares), 331 Run chart, 48, 124–125, 303 definition, 353 in process analysis, 44, 45 Run, definition, 353

S Sampling, 13, 123 definition, 353 error, 14 formula, 14 guidelines, 124 sample size testing, 16–17 Sampling bias, definition, 353 Sampling, random, definition, 352 Sampling, stratified, definition, 354 Scales of measure, 321 Scatter diagrams, 125 in process analysis, 44, 45 Scatter plot, 303 definition, 353 Scientific approach used by teams, 206 Scope, definition, 353 SDWT (Self-directed work team), 217–218, see also Team building, Teams environment for, 229 implementation model, 232 pay considerations, 268 payoffs, 267–268 preparations for, 230–232 requirements for success, 229–230 SDWT (Self-directed work team), stages of, 232, 233 Self-development, 77 Self-directed work team (SDWT), see SDWT (Self-directed work team) Self-fulfilling prophecy, 78 Self-managed teams, see SDWT (Self-directed work team) Service industry as-is flowchart, 37, 38 baseline information, 38 contingency guidance, 119 Service quality, keys to, 103 Serving as a leader, 149 Seven sigma, 102 Seven-step sequence model, 50 Sexual harassment, 193 Sexuality and intimacy, in communication issues, 192–193 Shenandoah Life, 200 Shogun six sigma master, 106 Short-term profits attitude, 136, 137 Short-term solutions, 46, 56 Should-be process mapping, definition, 353 Sigma, and standard deviation, 95 Sigma scale of measure, 3 Sigma (σ), definition, 353–354 Significance testing, 16

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Index Simulation tools, 325 Simultaneous engineering, 29 SIPOC definition, 354 model, 97, 118, 119–120 Situational leadership, 173–174 Six sigma definition, 354 goal, 3, 4 Six sigma methodology, see also Black belt, Green belt, Master black belt, Shogun six sigma master areas of application, 94 business metrics, 317 case proof of value, 200 and consumer six sigma, 95 core competencies outline, 317–323 cost/benefit perspective, 114 costs, 114 customer focus, 317 definition, 3 deployment, 321 deployment time-line, 74 elements, 75, 76–90 executive overview training, 107 as fad, 91 failures of application, 100 focus, 71 fundamentals checklist, 317–319 implementation plan example, 104 innovative implementation, 5 loyalty as focus, 71 measurement error, 322 model, 75, 76 for nonproduction functions, 94 and older methodologies, 99–100, 101–102 origin, 98–99 and other programs, 94 paradigm change, 5 as paradigm shift, 187 (possible) resource addition for, 93 speed of results, 92 static statistics, 322–323 statistical distributions, 322 team orientation, 83 timing of implementation, 113–114 and TQM, 94 Social influence, 143 Socialization, 191, 192 Solution-Plus-One Rule, 82 Solution statement, definition, 354 SPC (Statistical process control), 13, 66 definition, 354 in project control, 129 SPC chart, 332

381 SPC tools, fundamentals checklist, 332 Special causes, see Causes, special definition, 354 Specifications, accuracy, 11 Sponsor, definition, 354 Sponsor of quality team, 263 SSBB (Six sigma black belt), 321 SSC (Six sigma champion), 321 SSMBB (Six sigma master black belt), 321 Stacking of tolerances, 12 Stages of SDWT (Self-directed work team), 232, 233 Stagnation, 88–89 Standard deviation, and sigma, 95 Standardization, 182 Star catcher, 84 Static statistics, 322–323 Statistical distributions, 322 Statistical hypotheses, 325–326 Statistical process control (SPC), see SPC (Statistical process control) Statistician consultants, 46 consulting, 16 Statistics tools, 12 Steering group, role in improvement projects and plans, 60 Stereotypical characteristics, 280, 283 Storming, 174 “Storming” stage of team building, 209 Storyboard, definition, 354 Storyboarding, 308–309 definition, 354 Strategic architecture of teams, 201 Strategic fit review, definition, 354 Strategic planning, definition, 354 Strategic quality planning, 6 Stratification, definition, 354 Stratified sampling, definition, 354 Streamlining, 35 Structured methodology, 29 Style, 20 Submissive behavior by quality personnel, 185–187 Suboptimization, 35 “Super stars”, 86 Supervisors, role in teams, 246–247 Supplier, definition, 355 Supplier-organization-customer feedback loops, 59 Supplier quality, 32 Support, 191, 192 behaviors, 191 systems, 56–57

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Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance

Survey instruments, construction and application, 307–308 Symptom, definition, 355 Systematic sampling, definition, 355 System, definition, 6, 355 Systemic thinking, 149 Systems approach to management, definition, 355 Systems, organizational, 5 Systems thinking, 79–80

T T-account approach, 28 Tacit knowledge, definition, 355 Tactical plans, definition, 355 Tactics, definition, 355 Taguchi loss function, definition, 355 Taguchi orthogonal arrays, 329 Takt time, definition, 355 Tally sheet, definition, 355 Tampering, definition, 355 Tangents, 289–290 Task leader, on quality team, 264 t distribution, 322 TDPU (Total defects per unit), 324 Teaching, see Coaching Team definition, 355 effectiveness, 155 orientation, 83 recognition, 84 Team-based structure, definition, 355 Team building, 158–161, 172–173, see also Teams concerns during different phases of, 210–212 conditions for, 209 definition, 355 development sequence, 209–210 facilitator use, 240 goals, 158 goals defined after team formation, 236–237 group development, 206–208 grouping stage, 208 GRPI model, 236–237 initial, 286–287 and leadership style, 172–173 norming stage, 171 obstructions, 159 phases of, 210–212 steps in, 160 storming stage, 209 Team concept, proof of value, 200 Team development, see Team building definition, 355

Team dynamics, definition, 355 Team environment 5s approach, 266–267 people handling, 280, 281 Team facilitation, definition, 356 Team implementation, 221–222, see also Teams criteria for opportunity selection, 224–225 eight-step model, 222–223 schedule, typical, 247–249 Team improvement, definition, 251 Team leader addressing floundering, 287–288 discounts, handling, 289 handling of unfocussed communication, 289–290 handling problem individuals, 291, 292 plops, handling, 289 styles, 292–293, 294–295 Team meetings facilitator role, 260 operating procedures, 284 planning, 259–260 rules for, 260 Team members attribution by, 291–292 characteristics, 261 development of, 338 dominating, 291–292 duties, 244–245 effective, 269 effectiveness factors, 265 feuding, 290 overbearing, 290–291 problem individuals, 290–292 reluctant, 292 role in team leadership, 264–265 selection of, 286 Team operating procedures, mechanics, 280–281, 283–284 Team performance evaluation, definition, 356 Team players, 168 Team recognition, definition, 356 Team rewards, definition, 356 Teams, 163, 173, see also Groups, Other team topics alignment of purpose and goals, 287 authority within, 246, 247 behavior problems, 204–205, 226 behaviors in successful, 215–216 behavior styles in, 269 beneficial behaviors, 204–205 benefits of, 267 building trust in, building, 166–168 bullseye model, 236 championed by management, 227

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Index characteristics of best and worst, 212, 214–215 chartering process, 284–287 commitment to, 265 communication issues, 165, 204 conflict management, 170–171 conflict resolution, 164, 170–171, 262 consensus failure and floundering, 287–288 creativity in, 165–166 criteria for creating, 268 critique of, 166 cultural changes in support of, 234 decision making in, 165, 205, 271, 274-275 definition, 158, 199 development process stages, 170 distrust of, 139 dynamics, 226 dysfunctional activity, 287 effectiveness, 164, 166, 253 reduction of, 254 critique, 163–166, 169 measurement, 258 questionnaire, 169–170 eight-step model, 222–223 emotional reactions, 5 employee involvement, 255 empowerment of team, 266 of members, 246 evaluation of, 166 evolution of teams, 251–252 expectations of, 212, 213 experimentation in, 165–166 failure of, 5 fear of, 135 feuding in, 290 floundering, 287–288 forming stage, 209 functioning of, 162–163 goal-setting process model, 237–238 ground rules, 205–206 group-think, avoiding, 295–296 guidance team responsibilities, 257–258 implementation facilitation, 237–238 implementation schedule, typical, 247–249 influence in, 207–208 as innovative approach, 5 interdependencies of, 158 interpersonal communication in, 165 kaizen approach, 255–256 leader's duties, 241–242 maintenance functions in, 164 management commitment, 227–228, 228–229 management role in success, 226–228 management's duties, 245

383 for managing interfaces, 29 and Maslow's hierarchy of needs, 172 member's duties, 244–245 member selection, 286 mission statement, 265, 284 morale, 173 Myers-Briggs categories of members, 282–283 need for, 199–200 opinions as facts, 288 organizational expectations, 135 orientation, 207 ownership of process, 265 participation, 203–204 participation levels, 293 patience vs. rush to “do something”, 288–289 performance improvement, 253-254, 256 phases of, 210–212 post-objective motivation, 269 power in, 207–208 problems, 245, 261 addressing “easy”, 254 indicators of, 202–203 major, 254–255 problem-solving in, 165 process awareness, 206 productive, 161 reasons for, 201–202, 221-222 recognition, 209 recorder's duties, 243–244 resource allocation, 286 rewards, 209 role definition, 203 problem indicators, 203–204 roles in, 115, 242 shared goals, 163–164 single purpose, 168–169 size of, 209 strategic architecture, 200–201 successful, 202–203 and supervisors, 246–247 termination, 174 tools, 304 transition from groups, 174 trust within, 164 unproductive, 161–162 unsuccessful, causes of, 311 Team success, built on individual achievement, 311 Teamwork and leaders, 149 Technical knowledge, 77 Technical training plans and six sigma, 92 Tektronix, 200 Terms and dimensions, 333–334 Texas Instruments, 104

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Six Sigma and Beyond: Foundations of Excellent Performance

TGR (Things gone right) evaluation, 83 TGW (Things gone wrong) evaluation, 83 Theory of constraints (TOC), definition, 356 Theory of knowledge, definition, 356 Theory X, definition, 356 Theory-X manager, 145–146 Theory Y, definition, 356 Theory-Y manager, 145–146 Theory Z, definition, 356 Thing gone right (TGR) evaluation, 83 Things gone wrong (TGW) evaluation, 83 Throughput time, definition, 356 Throughput yield (, 323–324 Timekeeper's duties, 244 Time line, deployment, 74 Time plot, definition, 353 Time pressure, 155 Time schedules, unrealistic, 311 TIPS test, 87 TOC (Theory of constraints), definition, 356 Tolerance design (Taguchi), definition, 356 Tolerances definition, 356 stacking, 12 Tolerance tools, fundamentals checklist, 330 Tolerancing, 330 Tools for teams, 304 Tools, statistical, 330 Top-management commitment, definition, 356 Total defects per unit (TDPU), 324 Total productive maintenance (TPM), definition, 357 Total quality management), see TQM (Total quality management) Total quality management (TQM), definition, 357 TPM (Total productive maintenance), definition, 357 TQM (Total quality management), 33 definition, 357 Traceability, definition, 357 Trade-off experiments, 71 Traditional organizations, definition, 357 Training, 57–58, see also Employee development but not allowing application, 141 cultural variations, 183, 187 definition, 357 importance of proper, 137–138 inadequate, 312 in interpersonal skills, 182–184 role of trainer, 172–173 Training evaluation, definition, 357 Training needs assessment, definition, 357 Transactional leadership, definition, 358 Transformational leadership, definition, 358 Transition tree, definition, 358

Tree diagram, definition, 358 Trend analysis, definition, 358 Trend, definition, 358 Trial periods, determination of, 47 Trust, importance, 17 t test, 327 t test, definition, 355 Type I error, definition, 358 Type II error, definition, 358 Type two errors, 16

U UAW, 167 Unit sizes, 139–140 Upstream, definition, 358

V Value-added analysis, 125 Value, as loyalty driver, 70–71 Value-enabling activities, definition, 358 Value to customer, 102–103 Variability reduction programs, 66 Variables, 319 Variation definition, 358 eliminating, 3 identifying sources of, 45–46 measurement, 121 reduction, 12 reduction methods, 12–13 sources, 12 types, 121–122 Vertical functionality, 253 Vocal dimension effects in communication, 189 Voice of the customer (VOC), 117 analysis, 117–118 definition, 358 and QFD, 306 Voice of the process (VOP), 123–124

W Waber, Max, 140 “Walk the talk”, 3, 18, 79 Waste items categorized, 12 reduction, 11 Watchful monitor, 18 WIP (Work in progress), 318 Worker obsolescence, 202 Work in progress (WIP), 318

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Work process, see Process Work safari, 78 Work standards in problem-solving, 337

X X-bar chart, 303, 332 Xerox, 200 X (variable), definition, 358

Y Y.ft (First-time yield), 323–324 Yield, definition, 359

Y.rt (Rolled-throughput yield), 323–324 definition, 353 (Throughput yield), 323–324 Y (variable), definition, 358–359

Z Zero defects, definition, 359 Zero investment improvement, definition, 359, 331, 95, 324 Z.shift (dynamic and static), 324, 95, 324 Z transform, 322 Z value, 322, 323, 326

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