Lean Six Sigma Training Cost Considerations

Lean Six Sigma Training cost for on-site training is a question that is often asked. A Lean Six Sigma training provider might then respond to the request and they either get or don’t get the training job. Or, the company decides to conduct the training using their internal resources because they think that this will save them money.

Lean Six Sigma Belt Training is to provide the mechanism for improving processes. However, when organization have their employees simply take a Lean Six Sigma course (either internally designed or using an external provider), leadership is typically disappointed with the effort′s results. Demonstration of business benefit from the investment of time and monetary expenditures will typically not occur with this training-implementation methodology. Because no training gains are observed, future process improvement tasks through Lean Six Sigma or any other means is then usually either significantly reduced or abandoned.


Lean Six Sigma Green Belt Training Costs


It is very important before responding to a Lean Six Sigma Belt training cost question that the ″why″ behind the lean six sigma training request is determined. To answer this ″why″ question, the provider (or internal consultant) needs to have a conversation with the person who is making the inquiry, along with their leadership. The purpose of having this discussion is to better understand the true need for the request.

When such a dialog is arranged and the ″why″ question asked, one often uncovers that reason for the question is that the organization wants to initiate an effort for process improvement (for various reasons). If this general process-improvement need is uncovered, simply conducting of a Lean Six Sigma Belt training class will typically lead to disappointment.

For success, Lean Six Sigma training efforts need to be a part of an effective Operational Excellence system.

Lean Six Sigma Training Cost Considerations

To answer the cost question relative to Lean Six Sigma Belt training, one can confidently state that there should be no costs associated with high quality Lean Six Sigma Belt training.  Benefits from the training should help the organization improve key performance indicators (KPIs). This enhancement in performance metric outcomes should far outweigh any training′s investment cost. However, simply conducting a Lean Six Sigma Green Belt or Black Belt course typically will not provide a desirable return on investment (ROI).

Lean Six Sigma Training Cost Considerations for a Successful Lean Six Sigma Deployment

What is needed for Lean Six Sigma training to be successful is that the training be a component of an operational excellence system. The last nine words for a past Wikipedia’s definition for operational excellence is very important for a successful Lean Six Sigma training effort; i.e., ″tools toward the sustainable improvement of key performance metrics.″

To accomplish a key-performance-indicator improvement desire, one needs to first determine what metrics are to be improved. These metrics then need to be tracked from a 30,000-foot-level process point of view. An owner of a determined key performance indicator (KPI) then needs to be asking for the timely completion of an improvement project. Why? Because this process owner should be reporting on a monthly basis to their ″boss′ boss″ the status of this strategic metric improvement objective and its associated process enhancement effort; e.g., Lean Six Sigma improvement project execution.

Lean Six Sigma Training Cost Considerations: Issues with Traditional Lean Six Sigma Training Efforts

Traditional Lean Sigma Belt training alone does not provide a metric-improvement focus. Setting Lean Six Sigma training objectives with monetary goals from improvement projects sounds good but has many difficulties. An organization may find some benefits from initial improvement projects, but this approach to making process improvement is not typically sustainable.

In the real world, others fires to fight will typically occur in the Green or Black Belt trainee’s day-to-day work. Because of this reoccurring work demand, process improvement project efforts typically ″fall off their plate″ and any training improvement project often gets significantly delayed or is never completed. Or, if there is a project completion, there is no honest demonstration of how a performance metric actually improved and its true business benefit realized; e.g., we reported a savings of 100 million dollars from Lean Six Sigma efforts but nobody can seem to find the money. In addition, there is often not a true structural control mechanism for maintaining any gain that might have been achieved from projects.

Lean Six Sigma Training Cost Considerations: Operational Excellence Linkage

In the book 7 Habits of Highly Effectively People, Steven Covey states: ″begin with the end in mind″  . This end-in-mind approach should be used by organizations when considering process improvement efforts and training. If this does not occur, process improvement work made through Lean Six Sigma training or other process enhancement efforts (e.g., Lean kaizen events) typically result in silo efforts where the big picture does not experience benefits.

A ″begin with the end in mind″ approach for Lean Six Sigma process improvement training and its execution should have alignment with the methodology described in the article ″Operational Excellence″.  This approach for making process improvement can later include the structural linkage of automatically updated performance metric tracking (from a process point of view) with the processes that created them.

An approach for implementing conducting Lean Six Sigma training Operational Excellence also needs to be aligned with the achievement of Peter Senge’s learning organization, as described in The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization  .

An approach that addresses the how-to’s of not only the statements of Steven Covey and Peter Senge but Dr. Edwards Deming philosophy as well is described in the article on how to achieve Operational Excellence .

Lean Six Sigma Training Cost Considerations: Integrated Enterprise Excellence (IEE) Lean Six Sigma Deployment

The 9-step Integrated Enterprise Excellence (IEE) system deployment structurally addresses all the above issues:


lean six sigma training cost and iee roadmap


IEE addresses all the scorecard and process improvement issues that are discussed in a 1-minute video:


lean six sigma training cost video



Contact Us to set up a time to discuss with Forrest Breyfogle how your organization might gain much from an Integrated Enterprise Excellence (IEE) Lean Six Sigma deployment. 

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