The class project was designed to help us have practical experience of the six sigma techniques in improving business operations. The six sigma process follows a defined sequence that enables any organization to identify specific value targets and make appropriate changes. In our class project, the professor gave us stickers that were of color green, pink, orange, and yellow. She also gave us a paper that had shapes with letters P, G, O, and Y. These letters symbolized color pink, green, orange, and yellow respectively. The class activity was simply to match the stickers with their appropriate symbols.
In this activity, the professors did not issue us with guidelines on how we were to carry out the task. As a result, we simply stuck the stickers to the shapes that were thought were the most appropriate. Unfortunately, our group’s strategy was inappropriate in enabling us to place our stickers correctly. In particular, we were disorganized, and the members were not assigned specific duties. Additionally, we had not established a strategy on how this work would be done. This mix-up and lack of order resulted in us the group being inefficient in its work. In the first round, 4 stickers became defective, 25 stickers were work in progress, and we had not successfully placed any sticker by the time of evaluation.
From this round, we were able to learn to learn the main causes of our problem. In particular, we observed that we could use the six sigma model to make an appropriate strategy. In this case, we would first define the problem, measure the challenge, analyze the current strategy, improve on the method being used, and enhance the new control measures. Overall, we learned that the inability to organize the team when placing the stickers was the primary cause of our failure.
In our second round, we improved our performance and managed to match all the shapes with the stickers that had the appropriate color. To ensure that we followed all the procedures necessary to match the stickers correctly, we had appointed a supervisor. This individual had a duty of providing that the group matched the labels to the correct shape. Despite the improvements on how we conducted our activities, we still got a bad score. We had 3 defects, 4 work in progress stickers, and only 9 completed labels. We were concerned about this score, and we requested for guidance from the professor. Her advice was enlightening since it made us realize that we should have matched each sticker with a shape that had the appropriate color code. Additionally, were learned that the labels should fit perfectly into the provided shapes.
From our analysis, we realized that we were on the right track. However, we needed to improve our quality control process by inspecting the process of placing stickers. To ensure that we improved our process, we added another supervisor. We also agreed that the labels would be set by the individuals who were the most precise in this task. This method was an improvement from the previous method of just inspecting the process of setting stickers.
In the third round, the team significantly improved its score. In this round, the group only had three defects. It had no work in progress, and eleven stickers were completed. The improvement of the group’s performance was because we had two inspectors who ensured that all the stickers were correctly matched with the appropriate shapes that had their color codes. Also, the inspectors ensured that the labels fitted perfectly into their respective shapes.
From our analysis, the three defective stickers were because the persons placing them had been in a hurry. In our opinion, the individuals who had resulted in the defects were to enhance their skills by practicing on placing stickers. In addition, they were to reduce excess speed but still be first enough to avoid cases of some work being in progress when the deadline for the work was reached. Finally, the supervisors should increase their skills of inspecting placed labels. This will enable them to detect damaged stickers and request for their replacement.
Given that the team has a duty of striking a balance between speed and accuracy, it can introduce a schedule to evaluate the performance of every individual. In this case, there will be an allocation of the appropriate time needed for a person to remove and place a sticker in the correct shape. Similarly, supervisors should have a time frame within which they should inspect each completed paper and ensure that all the stickers have been properly placed. In addition, there should be a specialization of work. From the previous steps, it is clear that all the individuals’ improved on the quality of their work through repeated practice. Therefore, a work specialization would enable them to enhance their skills and increase their skills, in turn, this would help them avoid cases of defects or delays in completion of the placement of stickers.