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The Five Kinds of Six Sigma Projects: Quick Win

Six Sigma, Lean Six Sigma, Consulting, Practitioner, Professional, Project, Quick Win

The key to success in mastering your understanding of Six Sigma is by completing projects. For most, specific projects will be a part of certification course work. Additionally, employers may view employees’ work habits before promoting them to higher Six Sigma professional roles by completing such projects. However, not every Six Sigma project is alike. Moreover, not every professional will work on the same project. Similar to the levels of Six Sigma certification, there are multiple types of projects. In this article, we will discuss the first project type, Quick Win. We will look at what a Quick Win is, who works on it, and who manages it.

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What is a ‘Quick Win’?

By definition, a Six Sigma Quick Win project has a single problem and a single solution. Likewise, the outcome and how to achieve it is relatively straightforward. Basic Six Sigma tools, specifically Root Cause Analysis, help locate the source of the problem and provide a simplistic way to resolve it. This specific type of Six Sigma project solidifies the basis of future process improvement. Given that the methodology of Six Sigma focuses on solving multiple problems by a small degree, Quick Win projects are perfect for improving the entire process flow, quality, and efficiency. For example, finding ways to speed up production time along a conveyer belt would constitute as a ‘Quick Win’. Whereas, managing the Value Stream Flow for a cross-functional project would not.

Who Works on Quick Win Projects?

Because Quick Win projects require little analysis and are relatively short-lived, younger, less experienced Six Sigma professionals will work on them. Notably, Yellow Belts and new Green and Black Belts may have the opportunity to work on a Quick Win project. These assignments typically coincide with larger, more advanced projects. Additionally, they require less than a few weeks of time, little financing, and other resources. For these reasons, resolving Quick Wins quickly and orderly benefits the entire project team greatly. Similarly, it gives aspiring Six Sigma professionals the chances to manage their own projects independently and with little room for error. How quickly and effectively they complete Quick Wins, using Six Sigma tools, can accurately predict how they will manage larger, more complex projects.

Who Manages Quick Wins?

Another key point about these specific projects is their central location. Usually speaking, Quick Wins are isolated to a specific department, which is managed by a single leader. This allows the project to be easily controlled and without affecting other functionalities or processes at the same time. Therefore, Green and Black Belts are first in line to manage Quick Win projects. Beside them, Yellow Belts will offer assistance and complete additional aspects of the project. Senior managers, engineers, and project leaders are usually “hands off” for Quick Wins, allowing younger professionals to take the lead and progress their skillsets.

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