History of Six Sigma

Every great idea starts somewhere. Before the Six Sigma concept was adopted as the go-to method for organizations looking to maximize their potential, it was a mere idea in the head of one Bill Smith, an engineer at the Motorola Corporation.

The history of Six Sigma starts there, in the 1980s, when Bill Smith needed a more efficient way to employ statistics as a means of improving the company’s operations. Six Sigma history is rather fascinating; with an evolution over the past couple of decades that has adapted to today’s data-heavy environment and continued recognition as a beneficial methodology for businesses in almost every single industry.

The articles on this page explore the history of Lean Six Sigma, a look at where it is now, and the future of the Six Sigma management system. One of the most valuable aspects of Lean Six Sigma is its adaptability. It doesn’t look exactly the same today as it did when Bill Smith first came up with the idea, but it carries all of the same principles and applies them to our ever-changing corporate world. Knowing the basics of the system is important in order to have a deep understanding of the method that all Six Sigma professionals utilize. On this page, we provide an overview of Six Sigma’s history with an eye toward how and why it has evolved and will continue to evolve.

To learn more about the Aveta Business Institute and how we’ve used our knowledge of Six Sigma to assist companies of all types, visit Our Clients page.

Six Sigma in Sight

  • Six Sigma Article

When DuPont discovered that some employees applying for long-term disability had along wait for an answer–up to six months–the human resources team turned to a familiar process to solve the problem: Six Sigma. Similarly, HR professionals at Motorola, Dow Chemical, General Electric, Ford and others apply Six Sigma to fix, improve and sustain HR processes. “It’s the way we do work,” says Steve Constantin, global HR director for Dow.

The Six Sigma Primer

  • Six Sigma Article

Communications consultant Stephen Manallack looks at the technique and philosophy of the Six Sigma process to build a customer focused culture…

Six Sigma Certifications & Training’s Impact on Quality

  • Six Sigma Article

Six Sigma Training has received considerable attention in the public press.  Much of this discussion has been fueled by the huge successes of Six Sigma at Allied Signal, General Electric (GE) and Motorola. These successes have encouraged many other companies to undertake Six Sigma initiatives. Clearly, any application of statistical thinking and methods that produces billions of dollars for major corporations is important, cannot be ignored and is not likely to go away anytime soon.

The Benefits of Six Sigma Training

  • Six Sigma Article

The Six Sigma Training concept grew out of various quality initiatives at Motorola in the mid-80s. The company’s land mobile products sector established a single matrix for quality (total defects per unit) which dramatically changed the way management measured and compared the quality improvement rates of all divisions. Because all operations used the same measurement, the goal for defect reduction was uniformly applied to all activities.

Six Sigma Defined – The History of Six Sigma

  • Six Sigma Article

Six Sigma is a quality management program used to measure and improve the operational performance of a company by identifying and fixing defects in the company’s product/processes.

Originally, Six Sigma started out strictly as a process variation that would produce no more than 3.4 defects per million opportunities. However today, Six Sigma is basically the art of producing a product that satisfies the customer in the most cost economical way.

Six Sigma Survey

  • Six Sigma Article

Judging by the amount of press it’s garnered, the millions of books sold by dozens of authors and the general buzz it continues to generate, Six Sigma–the process improvement methodology introduced by Motorola in the mid-1980s–is going strong. Whether you believe it’s here to stay or simply today’s program du jour waiting to be replaced by tomorrow’s blue plate special, there’s no doubt that Six Sigma has greatly affected the businesses that have embraced it, producing incredible cost savings and waste reduction.

Note: All resources contained in this section express the views of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Aveta Business Institute and/or its administration.