Six Sigma is a quality management approach that seeks to minimize defects and errors in processes by identifying and eliminating their root causes. It was developed by Motorola in the 1980s and has since been widely adopted by many organizations, including General Electric and Toyota.

The term “Six Sigma” refers to the statistical concept that a process will have a maximum of 3.4 defects per million opportunities (DPMO) if it operates at a Six Sigma level of quality. In order to achieve this level of quality, organizations use a data-driven approach that involves the following five phases:

  1. Define: In this phase, the project team defines the problem or opportunity and identifies the stakeholders.
  2. Measure: The project team collects data and measures the current performance of the process.
  3. Analyze: The team analyzes the data to identify the root cause(s) of the problem.
  4. Improve: The team identifies and implements solutions to address the root cause(s) and improve the process.
  5. Control: The team develops and implements controls to sustain the gains achieved in the improvement phase.

Six Sigma is often associated with the use of various statistical tools and techniques, such as statistical process control (SPC), design of experiments (DOE), and hypothesis testing. However, Six Sigma is not just a set of tools, but a systematic approach to problem-solving and continuous improvement that can be applied to any process or industry.

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