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Publisher's Summary

What is Six Sigma? It is a business process that enables companies to increase profits dramatically by streamlining operations, improving quality, and eliminating defects or mistakes in everything a company does, from filling out purchase orders to manufacturing airplane engines. While traditional quality programs have focused on detecting and correcting defects, Six Sigma encompasses something broader: It provides specific methods to recreate the process itself so that defects are never produced in the first place.

When GE reduced its costs from 20 percent to less than 10 percent, it saved a billion dollars in just two years - money that goes directly to the bottom line. This is the reason Wall Street and corporations as diverse as Sony, Ford, Nokia, Texas Instruments, Canon, Hitachi, Lockheed Martin, American Express, Toshiba, DuPont, and Polaroid have embarked on corporate-wide Six Sigma programs. Six Sigma should be of paramount importance to every forward-thinking executive and manager determined to make their company world-class in their industry.

©2000 by Mikel Harry, Ph.D., and Richard Shroeder (P)1999 Random House, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"[Six Sigma] is the most important initiative GE has ever undertaken...it is part of the genetic code of our future leadership." (Jack Welch, CEO, GE)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Sort by:
  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Tom
  • Harrison Twp., MI, USA
  • 12-04-03

Not happy

When I read the review "Simply put, this book's content is strictly marketing the importance of six sigma without ever getting to the content. It read like the advertising for the next Ronco device and never gave any useful information for driving improvement or change." I should have listened...

21 of 21 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • John
  • Ramsey, NJ, USA
  • 12-11-03

OK Reading for an Introduction

I will agree with the other 2 reviewers there doesn't seem to be a lot of content behind the book but this book is the only one available via audio book, Jack Welch talks a good six sigma game too but in this book you would expect more. Maybe the subject matter is too complicated to properly document in a 5 hour businees book? I am currently listening to it for a second time and find it more interesting than the first

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • CVW
  • Fairway, KS, US
  • 09-05-05

Just call it One Sigma

Six Sigma is the latest management theory to hit the big time. Starting at Motorola, it has moved throughout the manufacturing world, making converts and strongly influencing business practices. It is now moving into the service world, most notably in health care. And Heaven knows we need improvement in health care. It's an important theory, but more than that, it's a coherent set of practices for process improvement. Unfortunately, you won't learn much from this book, which is written in the classic "let's all get on the bandwagon" style often found in bad management books. It's more appropriate to advertising copy than to a serious examination of the theory and practice of Six Sigma. In short, the book doesn't come close to doing justice to Six Sigma. And in the audio format, it's impossible to skip over the extensive amount of fluff to get to the good stuff. If you have to get it, buy the book. At least, you can skim the book. Don't waste your money on the audiotape, unless you need something to get to sleep at night.

16 of 17 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Steven
  • Stevenson Ranch, CA, USA
  • 05-11-03

Introduction looking for content

Simply put, this book's content is strictly marketing the importance of six sigma without ever getting to the content. It read like the advertising for the next Ronco device and never gave any useful information for driving improvement or change.

58 of 64 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Tina
  • Bear Creek, United States
  • 11-07-09

Not for beginners.

Professional speaker did a great job. The content is not for anyone in the beginning phase of exploring Six Sigma; you will need a manufacturing and mathematical background to be able to follow along.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Not the best candidate for an audiobook

Probably a good discussion of Six Sigma, but a bit math heavy to follow as an audiobook.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The witty quips kept me interested

Listened twice so far! Really enjoying it. It has helped me suggest a qualifying change at work that can now offer a promotion!

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • KalEL
  • indianapolis, IN, United States
  • 03-04-15

great overview of Six Sigma

a great over view of Six Sigma and its impact to an organization and individuals within. If you are expecting a How To Manual you probably should get into a training program. Great read would recommend to anyone involved with Six Sigma companies. great insight into desired results of initiatives.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A must reading for Six Sigma

What made the experience of listening to Six Sigma the most enjoyable?

confortable when listening

Who was your favorite character and why?

the author.

What does James Lurie bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

easy comprehension of the most important aspects of Six Sigma methodology

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

since the beggining to the end

Any additional comments?

A perfect reading for all people involved in Six Sigma methodology

0 of 5 people found this review helpful