Although Lean manufacturing and Six Sigma have been practiced for several decades now, Lean Six Sigma itself is a relatively new initiative being followed by companies worldwide. Whereas Six Sigma is focused on reducing variation and improving process yield using statistical tools, Lean is primarily concerned with eliminating waste by following a defined approach to implement various Lean principles. Lean brings action and intuition to the table; Six Sigma uses statistical tools to uncover root causes and provide metrics; Lean Six Sigma is a combination of both and provides the tools to create ongoing business improvement (Smith, 2003). The synergy of Lean and Six Sigma bring in the advantages of both, achieving results consistently superior than what either system could achieve alone.
Lean Six Sigma is different from Six Sigma in the sense that it marries the principles of both Lean manufacturing and Six Sigma concepts to produce a much enhanced system. Six Sigma is a process for eliminating defects and variation through the development of a disciplined data driven approach. However Six Sigma alone cannot dramatically improve process speed or reduce invested capital. ...Show more