First, training projects are just that — a part of the overall training scheme. Generally speaking, Six Sigma projects are selected based on their potential to yield a business result that is tangible and significant. Seldom are projects selected on their educational worthiness. Even rarer is the instance where a project is selected on its potential to drive business benefits and educational worthiness.
For example, suppose you have two Black-Belt trainees that have successfully completed the classroom portion of their journey toward certification. Now imagine that both trainees are given a training project that has a high-value expectation. Let’s further suppose that trainee A’s project is successfully competed using only a hand-full of standard quality tools, like a Pareto chart, fishbone diagram and a control chart.
On the other hand, trainee B’s project only realized 50% of the expectation, but he/she had to use a great many of the curriculum’s tools to get that level of benefit. In our example, we shall say that trainee A was certified, but trainee B was not (owing to not realizing 100% of the expected result).
However, what if a high-quality project simulation was made to be a part of the curriculum and; in order to successfully complete that project, the trainee must utilize a large number of the tools, methods, principles and procedures that were taught in the classroom? What if the project exam was based on the progressive analysis of simulated data?
We might also ask what would happen if the project exam was constructed in such a way as to interrogate a trainee’s capability and capacity to make sound decisions and judgment’s (based on data)? Of course, the answer to these questions would be that a simulated project would put trainee A and B on a level playing field (in terms of qualifying for certification).
For a moment, just imagine stepping on a commercial airliner and discovering that its the pilot’s first flight. Further imagine the pilot was not checked out in a flight simulator for the type of aircraft you’re in. No doubt, you might have some deep thoughts and concerns on the subject, to say the least. In this day and age, flight simulators are an essential part of the pilot’s preparation for “real world experience.” The same logic holds when it comes to the preparation and certification of a Six Sigma Black Belt.
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