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The Six Sigma Revolution: How General Electric and Others Turned Process into Profits (Business) [Hardcover]

George Eckes
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Book Description

29 Nov 2000 Business
Applying this revolutionary management strategy to drive positive change in an organization Currently exploding onto the American business scene, the Six Sigma methodology fuels improved effectiveness and efficiency in an organization; according to General Electric′s Jack Welch, it′s the "most important initiative [they] have ever undertaken." Written by the consultant to GE Capital who helped implement Six Sigma at GE and GE′s General Manager of e–Commerce, Making Six Sigma Last offers businesses the tools they need to make Six Sigma work for them––and cultivate long–lasting, positive results. Successful Six Sigma occurs when the technical and cultural components of change balance in an organization; this timely, comprehensive book is devoted to the cultural component of implementing Six Sigma, explaining how to manage it to maintain that balance. The authors address how to create the need for Six Sigma; diagnose the four types of resistance to Six Sigma and how to overcome them; manage the systems and structures; and lead a Six Sigma initiative. This book applies the Six Sigma approach to business operations across the organization––unlike other titles that focus on product development. Plus, it provides strategies, tactics, and tools to improve profitability by centering on the relationship between product defects and product yields, reliability, costs, cycle time, and schedule. George Eckes (Superior, CO) is the founder and principal consultant for Eckes & Associates. His clients include GE Capital, Pfizer, Westin, Honeywell, and Volvo. Eckes has published numerous papers on the topic of performance improvement and is the author of The Six Sigma Revolution: How General Electric and Others Turned Process into Profits (0–471–38822–X) (Wiley).

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons; 1 edition (29 Nov 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 047138822X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0471388227
  • Product Dimensions: 24.9 x 15.7 x 2.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 909,280 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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"Eckes has turned this cutting edge management approach into easy–to–understand language..." (The TQM Magazine, Vol.14, No.1, 2002)

From the Inside Flap

THE SIX SIGMA REVOLUTION It boosted productivity and increased profits for such top–shelf companies as General Electric, AlliedSignal, and Motorola. It is a way of life for managers driven to create world–class organizations. Its quantitative approach fuels effectiveness and efficiency––and has made it the most popular quality improvement methodology in history. How can you put the awesome power of Six Sigma to work for your organization? The Six Sigma Revolution shows managers and implementers how to create and sustain a Six Sigma initiative in any organization. This hands–on resource explains how and why Six Sigma is superior to other quality improvement methods. Unlike other books on this topic, it lays out the strategic component of Six Sigma and demonstrates how to create the infrastructure for its successful implementation in any company of any size. Simple but detailed Six Sigma tactics drive improved effectiveness, efficiency, and profits. This easy–to–use, step–by–step guide describes these powerful tactics and shows managers how to: ∗ Create charter teams to work on processes that directly impact strategic objectives ∗ Calculate sigma at the process level ∗ Create specific, measurable problem statements for project teams to solve ∗ Use analysis and improvement tools to optimize sigma performance ∗ Transfer an improved process and sustain it over time Recognizing the need to manage cultural change connected with the initiative, this book helps you make the transition to managing with facts and data; diagnose and overcome four major types of resistance; and create a business quality management counsel to ensure the success of the initiative. Finally, you′ll discover the ten ways in which Six Sigma initiatives can fail and how to avoid or overcome them to become another Six Sigma success story. Filled with real–world case studies that illustrate the right and wrong ways to implement Six Sigma, as well as dozens of helpful charts and tables that help you track your progress, this practical guide makes for fast, easy reading that will help you transform your organization from an also–ran to the leader of the pack.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
6 Sigma is made easy to understand by this author. It is also an enjoyable read with examples from a wide range of situations besides the usual production line examples. However, like many other 6 Sigma books, the editing is not up to 6 Sigma standards! You will need to do some additional reading if your interest is in the statistical side of 6 Sigma. This book is a great general introduction, but not an in depth manual.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good overview & introduction to Six Sigma 5 April 2002
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Bought this book to understand what Six Sigma was about, and achieved this and more. Well written and structured and clear explanation of Six Sigma with interesting examples and anecdotes. Although, this is a 'dry' subject, I never had to push myself to continue reading it!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Highly Recommended! 1 Mar 2004
By Rolf Dobelli TOP 500 REVIEWER
George Eckes’ experience in quality control includes an instance where he had the temerity, just out of college, to ask W. Edwards Deming, then an octogenarian, to elaborate on his views about quality. “Those are the most stupid questions I have ever heard! Go read some of my books,” the cantankerous quality czar responded. No one reading this volume can doubt that Eckes has done his homework ever since. His blend of experience, theoretical expertise and common sense make this a very effective Six Sigma manual, although it is a little light on case studies. One of the book’s most valuable elements is Eckes’ keen analysis of the pitfalls that can flush all your best Six Sigma intentions down the tubes, even as a row of consultants tell you it is a panacea for all your woes. We recommend this book to anyone who is about to call a consultant and venture into the Rasputin world of Six Sigma.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.6 out of 5 stars  18 reviews
43 of 44 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Insider's Look at the Six Sigma Revolution 20 Jan 2001
By Jeffrey A. Veyera - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Having graduated from Jack Welch's School for Wayward Boys, I found George Eckes' "The Six Sigma Revolution" to be a revelation.
I left GE some months ago quite frustrated with the company's application of Six Sigma. Even though all salaried employees were trained as Green Belts, even though all managers took great care to spout the proper nostrums at the proper times, nothing really changed much in how we operated.
I worked on a new product program which served more as salve to the egos of engineers than to improve our product for our customer. I and a few others fought valiantly to ensure that the voice of the customer was injected into the process, and that the design capability was measured and reported through Six Sigma scorecards. This was all deemed to be unimportant in the rush to get the product to market.
Eckes' book reveals why this was so.
Early on, he had counseled Jack Welch that Six Sigma rests on two pillars: customer satisfaction and process capability. It's quite simple: ask the customer what he wants and fine tune your process to efficiently deliver it. Thus you both increase revenue (through customer loyalty and product quality) and decrease costs (by eliminating the hidden factory and focusing only on customer CTQs). Welch being Welch, he completely ignored the former and focused on the latter, to great effect.
In 1999, Welch realized that this was a mistake, as customer after customer inquired why they didn't notice a change in GE's products and services after the Six Sigma introduction. While shareholders realized double-digit growth year after year, customers saw the same old mixed bag of products and services. Welch immediately launched a major initiative to reduce customer span and inject the voice of the customer into GE processes.
Eckes, to his credit, indulges in a bit of well-deserved "I told you so." After all, it's not often one proves the most admired CEO in the world to be wrong.
This is an excellent book covering the whys and wherefores of a Six Sigma introduction. For those of us in the trenches trying to effect lasting change in our companies, this is an indispensable resource. If you're looking for an in-depth guide to the tools employed in Six Sigma project execution, grab "Implementing Six Sigma" by Forrest Breyfogle instead.
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Intriquing Application for Business & Beyond! 19 April 2001
By Roderick Smith, Ph.D - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I read the Six Sigma Revolution because of my facination with exploring ways to improve the quality of life, both as it relates to business as well as to relationships and life generally. Every now and then an author comes along who not only has technical expertise but also has both feet on the ground. George Eckes has painted a picture that illustrates not only mastery of Six Sigma content, he also exemplifies giftedness by communicating profoundly detailed concepts and principles with clarity and simplicity. And he paints his picture with splashes of fun and humor.
I believe that anyone who is committed to improving effectiveness and efficiency in their world, whether in their business or in their personal lives, can benefit significantly by reading the Six Sigma Revolution. I'm looking forward to getting a copy of his next book, Making Six Sigma Last.
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Balance at last! 2 Jan 2001
By A Customer - Published on
As a newbie to the world of Six Sigma, the first thing I did was to order every book I could off a Amazon to get a broad view of what is out there, and to (hopefully) garner enough understanding to help navigate our company through our Six Sigma initiative.
I've looked through 8 books, and Six Sigma Revolution has finally found it's way into my #1 spot. I'm ordering a copy for all of our Black Belt candidates, as I found it much more useful than the Mikel Harry book (the one that our Executive Team had us all read) and for sure, better for the typical uninitiated person than one of the $100 Six Sigma resource "Bibles" (though once I have completed the Black Belt training, I'm guessing a book like Bryfogles' will come in handy).
So if you are looking for a book that clearly explains how to set up a Six Sigma initiative (something most of the books do), while also introducing many of the Six Sigma tools (which most of the books do not) this is your book.
The other book that has impressed me is "The Six Sigma Way."
Regardless of which book you read, your still going to need to find a consultant to run the trainings and work with the executive team...but this book will help give you the big picture overview, with enough of the details to be able to deal with the consultants with more confidence (at least that has been my role in the Six Sigma initiative).
22 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Six Sigma without hyperbole & mysticism 20 Nov 2000
By A Customer - Published on
Most of the Six Sigma books seem to fall into two camps. The first camp creates a mystical, magical program that promises results on the order of GE and Motorola if you only believe. The second camp repeats the promise in the intro and maybe the first chapter then serves up a repackaged statistics 101 course (and 201 if the book weighs more than 5 pounds). This book doesn't make promises - it explains, it illuminates, and even entertains in places.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful and Understandable 1 Mar 2001
By Jeffrey D. Honaker - Published on
This book was not only helpful in understanding what Six Sigma is, but how to practically implement the initiative. George Eckes takes what could be a cumbersome and difficult concept of quality improvement and makes it understandable and down right exciting. The "Six Sigma Revolution" is certainly a must read for anyone who desires to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their organization.
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