Six Sigma and Lean Compared and Ranked

Six Sigma and Lean have emerged as the two leading efficiency and variation control programs for the modern business environment.  And yet, those new to these technologies are often at a loss as to which alternative to choose.  Based on recent evidence, however, it appears that far more business users are choosing Six Sigma over Lean.  A recent report by The Avery Point Group indicates that the book sales of Six Sigma far outpace those concerning Lean, search engine keyword searches for Six Sigma, outpace Lean by a margin greater than 2 to 1, and Internet job postings searching for Six Sigma professionals are over 50% greater than those looking for Lean experts.  The Avery Point Group has pointed to the fact that Six Sigma has made the transition from its original use, manufacturing, to encompass many other business disciplines.  The same cannot be said to be true for Lean, which is consistently regarded as a purely manufacturing related process. YahooFinance reports:

“This perception is changing as more and more businesses across the board are looking to blend the best of each methodology to accelerate their continuous improvement efforts,” says Noble.  “Companies are increasingly realizing that these are truly complementary tool sets and not necessarily competing philosophies.”