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Power of Six Sigma Hardcover – March 16, 2001

4.0 out of 5 stars 53 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Using a format similar to that in Spenser Johnson's Who Moved My Cheese?, Chowdhury (Management 21C) has created a fictional story that exemplifies the benefits of the business philosophy called Six Sigma. In Chowdhury's rendering, Joe, a middle-aged manager unexpectedly laid off from his position at a fast-food franchise company, is depressed and uncertain about his next move. He calls Larry, an old friend and former co-worker whose career is thriving. Over lunch, Larry explains how he has practiced Six Sigma, both to advance his career and to increase profits for his employer, and he teaches the program's basics to an initially skeptical, then wildly enthusiastic Joe. At the crux of this strategic program, advanced by GE's Jack Welch and instituted at many other major corporations, is a renewed focus on eliminating mistakes, waste and rework. Six Sigma is based on designated teams ("people power") that focus solely on solving a specific problem ("process power"), which may lead to efficiencies that please consumers and, by saving the company money, enhance the bottom line. What distinguishes Six Sigma from other popular quality management techniques, such as Total Quality Management and ISO9000, is that each team has a clear goal; moreover, employees benefit because companies usually tie a financial incentive to a team's goal. While Chowdhury's is not the first book about Six Sigma, what makes his stand out is its engaging and simple approach intended for a broad audience, from the assembly line worker to middle managers and CEOs of smaller companies. (Apr.)Forecast: Given the attention paid to Six Sigma, and Dearborn's ambitious 50,000-copy announced first printing, this book has a reasonable chance of hitting business bestseller lists if Dearborn can jump-start word-of-mouth and find ways to encourage managers to make the book required reading for employees.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.


“This book will become a source code for those who want to understand and execute Six Sigma successfully.” -- Dave Ulrich, Professor of Business, University of Michigan

”… will do for your customer centered, profit driven defect reduction efforts what The Goal did for cycle time reduction and supply chain improvement.” -- Steve Gunther, Vice President, Six Sigma Deployment, Seagate Technology

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Kaplan Business; 1 edition (March 16, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0793144345
  • ISBN-13: 978-0793144341
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.4 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #598,630 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I just finished reading "The Power of Six Sigma" and enjoyed it more than I had expected. My company is starting to implement Six Sigma and I wanted to get a jump on my other fellow employees. I read it over the course of a week during my lunch break, and because it is not overly technical enjoyed doing so. I always hated textbooks back in school because it seemed they were written by experts for experts and not for real people. I'm not a mechanical engineer and I'm no statistics expert but I have used statistics software before in school and now have a working knowledge of the concepts of Six Sigma. In addition to learning the basics such as what greenbelts, blackbelts, and executive champions are, I now understand terms such as DPMO, Critical to Quality, DMAIC, Standard Deviation, and the importance of assigning numbers to measurements. The explanation of the DMAIC process was also helpful, and although we don't make pizza or burgers we can apply the main concepts and adapt them to our business and develop our own strategy for how Six Sigma will work for us. We have recently chosen our first project and because I had read the book I could explain the main concepts to my line workers. Once they knew what we were doing they opened up to us and we quickly found the cause of the problem. Our shop guys always seem to get nervous whenever someone from the office comes out to the plant to examine a defect. But if they all knew about Six Sigma and understood that we were not out their to challenge their job, but instead to improve quality, things would go a lot smoother and quality would be better. I am now a big fan of the book!
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Format: Hardcover
I was looking for a book that would explain Six Sigma, and how i works in a simple way. I didn't want read about statistics and all the tools in Six Sigma, just how the statistics and tools apply in a "real" Six Sigma project. This book was just what i was looking for! The way that the book is written is very good. It's a story about two old friends that have been in the same company for a long time. One of them very successful, the other one not. The successful one has been working as a Black Belt for some time. He explaines a Six Sigma project over lunch, there is always a dialogue between them, the non successful one is asking questions, just the questions I would have wanted to ask, and he is getting more convinced about The Power of Six Sigma the more he gets to know. This is a great book to start with if you want to know more about Six Sigma!
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Format: Hardcover
I am an officer in a small corporationand read this book for possibly distributing across the company. So it was important to find a book that stays at the '30,000 foot level' and remains generic enough to apply to any company. The discussions abot REWARD and CAREER PROGRESSION and use of CONSULTANTS were too specific to the point of quoting dollar figures on rewards, and this did not reflect the aproach we have chosen given our culture and finances. The Black belts are said to be rewarded by 2-3% of a projects savings which is estimated to be 10k per project. In our opinion such decisions should be left to each company. It is stated " matter of factly " that the best green belts will become black belts and best black belts will become master black belts and the best master black belts will be executives. What about companies with a flat structure?. In addition it is stated that master black belts are hired consultants that come in and lead the black belts. All that is presented as standard procedures and that is not the way we see it best for our business. Also we will have many more green belts than black belts or Master black belts. Oddly there is a jeering directed at GB's which is not directed at BB's or MBB's not that there should be any at all. The Gb's are referred to as worker bees and that they can work themselves up to BB's. It is important to promote team work in the company. I do not want to create a Caste system instead. This definitely WILL NOT work for distributing across our company. I am glad I read it carefully before we created a huge problem.
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Format: Hardcover
Six Sigma is a NEW management initiative which has been successful in GE, Allied Signal etc. I always wanted to learn about the subject; and bought 2 previously published books on Six Sigma and all are DIFFICULT to understand as I am not from Quality field. I always embrace any book which explains in a simple tone.
The Power of Six Sigma is an EXCELLENT book that explains the complex subject in a non-threatning way for anyone to understand. The book reminded me 3 books: "THE GOAL", WHO MOVED MY CHEESE" or "FISH". If someone wants to understand what is the true power behind Six Sigma, please READ THIS BOOK. This is a STORY BOOK, which is for blue collars to white collars - for everyone.
All the organizations which are implementing Six Sigma MUST ADOPT THIS BOOK and MUST DISTRIBUTE THIS BOOK to EVERY EMPLOYEE. I mean every employee. I emphasize EVERYONE - because successful implementation of any major initiatives depend on everyone's acceptance. This Book WILL work as A CATALYST.
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