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The Lean Six Sigma Model

A Quick Look at the Lean Six Sigma Model

There are many aspects, approaches, and techniques involved in utilising the Lean Six Sigma model.

It takes several days of lean six sigma training to really get into detail about the Lean Six Sigma Model, but this page is intended to give you a quick overview of what’s involved.

The simplest, clearest way to give some detail of how Lean Six Sigma works, is to talk about the DMAIC Cycle, which is at the heart of the Lean Six Sigma model.

The DMAIC Cycle

When implementing Lean Six Sigma for a process, business or product implementation, you must address each stage in the DMAIC Cycle.

DMAIC stands for:

  • Define
  • Measure
  • Analyse
  • Improve
  • Control



In the first stage, you will define what needs to be done, or what the problem is.


Once you have successfully completed the define stage, you can begin to measure the current state of the process and productivity.


You then take the data from the Define and Measure stages, and begin to analyse it, to fully understand what causes problems or low productivity.


Using all of the data you have gathered, you’ll begin to come up with ideas and strategies for improving how things are done. That’s where the Improve stage kicks in. Improve is the stage where you actively start to implement change and improvement.


Equally important to Improve is the Control Phase. It’s not enough to implement improvements – you need to maintain the new level of productivity and efficiency. Using the techniques within the Control Phase enables you to do this on an ongoing basis.

Lean Six Sigma Guide