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For Forward-Thinking Companies, Black Belts Are Key Employees to Have on Board 

For Forward-Thinking Companies, Black Belts Are Key Employees to Have on Board

Employees are an essential part of your daily success, as they carry out your mission and have influence over customers. What you need is people who can get the job done the first time. You can have an extraordinary product or offer a fantastic service, but if your employees have performance issues, it undermines your efforts. Investing time in your employees pays off in the long run. Noticeable benefits include keeping people engaged, developing an internal talent pipeline, and boosting your retention rate. 

An ever-increasing number of enterprises have started to implement Six Sigma. In case you didn’t know, it’s a quality-control process that allows businesses to improve current processes by identifying and eliminating defects. The program is primarily for the manufacturing sector, though in recent years, it has been applied in service-related industries, such as finance, healthcare, education, logistics, and so on. Motorola pioneered Six Sigma. It was copyrighted in 1993. Not long after, Fortune 500 companies followed in Motorola’s footsteps, and Six Sigma has been popular ever since. 

It’s possible to obtain different levels of certification, including White Belt, Yellow Belt, Green Belt, Black Belt, and Master Black Belt. Black Belts are agents of change. They tend to be senior managers and mentor aspiring Green Belts. It’s important to recognise that there are certain roles that need to be filled in the organisation. Successful companies have good leaders who actively contribute to the organisation’s goals. Six Sigma Black Belts get the right people focused on the right tasks. 

Training Vs. Hiring Black Belts: What’s the Best Strategy? 

So, you know what you want in terms of results. Now, you must decide how to move forward. Should your organisation foot the bill to train its own people as Black Belts? Or should you hire Black Belts and have them take charge of projects? With deadlines looming, you should promote from within the company and upskill one of the existing team members. External recruiting still plays an internal role but it’s not always a one-size-fits-all solution. Experienced employees have already proven their commitment to the enterprise’s mission and culture. By training them in the same occupation in a new way, you guarantee they can compete with external experts. 

On the whole, it would be best to have a program for training internal Black Belts. Six Sigma Black Belt certification programs are offered through businesses, universities, professional associations, and for-profit training organisations. Certification holders use statistics to find solutions to insurmountable problems. Nonetheless, the Lean philosophy calls on people to work together to find solutions and reduce waste in a particular process. Non-value-added processes and procedures are completely eliminated. Anything that doesn’t create value for the end customer is regarded as a waste. 

A Black Belt Brings All their Skills to the Company 

To be a successful Six Sigma Black Belt practitioner in an enterprise, it’s necessary to have the right skills. The most important skills a Black Belt can bring to the job are: 

Leadership 

A Black Belt is expected to play a strong leadership role. It’s up to them to channel the organisation and all its departments towards identifying and improving processes. Leadership commitment and support matter in terms of process improvement initiatives. The Black Belt identifies the processes they believe are a high priority for improvement. Next, they set targets for improvement efforts. During times of reorganisation or corporate restructures, a Black Belt can prove to be useful. 

Communication 

Communication throughout a project is paramount because Six Sigma requires a significant commitment from everyone in the company. A Black Belt needs to think with clarity, express ideas, and share information with multiple audiences. Especially today, when the need for connectivity between a leader and employees is in high demand, effective communication is a cornerstone to business success

Technical Understanding 

A Black Belt takes advantage of statistics and data analysis to pinpoint errors. It goes without saying that they have some sort of technical understanding. A technical or engineering degree is beneficial but not mandatory. A Black Belt has to take in a large volume of information and organise teams to solve problems. To think critically, it’s essential to have a technical understanding. There’s no such thing as too much technical understanding when leading a team. 

Trust 

As a Black Belt, one earns trust the same way anyone does: by keeping promises and aligning one’s behaviour with the expectations of others. If the employees don’t place faith in the initiatives of the leader, no progress can be achieved. A lack of trust erodes teams to the point that people feel that their working environment is too toxic. Therefore, employees should respect management and trust that progress can be made. 

Black Belts Can’t Support Their Teams If They Don’t Have Support Themselves 

Having at least one Black Belt on board can bring positive results. Their expertise isn’t limited to one department or area. As a matter of fact, Six Sigma Black Belts have a broad expertise base behind them, so they can quickly establish solutions. Everyone in the organisation is expected to support the leader who will be working on priority projects to improve and grow the business. Great Black Belts don’t do it alone. Even the strongest person needs support. The pursuit of success is a group effort rather than a personal accomplishment. Team members should be willing to go to extraordinary lengths to help the Black Belt succeed. 

Success in business is built on the foundation of a team mindset. Even if it can be challenging for teams to work together in an efficient manner, it’s vital to make an effort. People understand the work they must complete, but they don’t understand how that work might affect other team members. Six Sigma Black Belts use a five-step process called DMAIC, which is a team effort. It can be anyone’s go-to problem-solving tool. Once the team gets the hang of it, they’ll become comfortable with it. Working together towards a common goal, employees secure great achievements. It’s not about competing for personal glory. 

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