The most effective six sigma teams are comprised of qualified people with the right expertise.

Six Sigma Team Member Roles

  • Team Leader: responsible for getting the team to go. Sometimes a facilitator. Sometimes the project manager.
  • Facilitator: usually a black belt or master black belt. A coach.
  • Scribe: records the team activities.
  • Sponsor: business leader who sponsors the six sigma engagement. Most likely to set the project objectives, obtain resources for the team, and be a liaison between the team and senior management.
  • Champion: executive who sponsors a specific Six Sigma project and makes sure that  resources are available. Resolves any cross-functional team issues. (Sometimes this is the same as the sponsor. Different companies sometimes have different titles.)
  • Six Sigma Leader: executive who is responsible for six sigma culture in the company.
  • Process Owner: Professional responsible for the business process that is the target of a Six Sigma project.
  • Team member: professional who brings relevant experience or expertise to a particular project.
  • Gatekeeper: Sometimes filled by all of the above roles.
  • Management: Management can best support a six sigma team by providing the resources needed. Management is vital to the success of a six sigma project because if they do not dedicate the necessary resource, the project will likely fail.
  • Also see Six Sigma Roles and Responsibilities.

Six Sigma Team Make Up

There are many different types of Six sigma teams. See Types of Six Sigma Teams.

Six Sigma Team Dynamics and Mechanics

Regardless of the makeup of the team, team dynamics and mechanics are more important than individual rank. See Team Dynamics and Mechanics.

Also See

Stages of Team Growth

Team Conflict Prevention & Resolution

Six Sigma Team Performance

Why Six Sigma Teams Fail

•Examine the five reasons project teams fail

The number one reason project teams fail is poor team dynamics.

•Discuss the difference between process and content

•Discuss the importance of an agenda and assigning roles and responsibilities

•Define a parking lot

•Understand the importance of ground rules

•Understand the importance of providing feedback

Poorly-Functioning Six Sigma Teams

-members act independently without inter-dependency
-have poor team mechanics
-poor communication
-displays a lot of conflict

High-Performing Six Sigma Teams

Good Team Members
-Don’t miss meetings
-Encourage participation by all.
-Objectives are realistic
-Objectives are jointly-agreed upon and met
-Team members listen to each other
-Team members can distinguish between fact and opinions
-Team members can act both inter-dependently and independently.
-Have the support of management
-Have good team mechanics
-Believe in the team process. eg teams multiply the efforts & abilities of the individual into a force greater than the sum of it’s individual members.
-Work to achieve & build consensus
-Have good conflict resolution practices

Six Sigma Team Videos

Six Sigma Black Belt Certification Six Sigma Teams Questions:

Question: The process of having a six sigma team develop a problem statement helps the team: (Taken from ASQ sample Black Belt exam.)

(A) agree on key dates associated with completing major project phases
(B) achieve consensus and ownership of the process
(C) determine solutions
(D) determine how often it should meet

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Questions, comments, issues, concerns? Please leave a note in the comments below!

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Question: Typically, which of the following activities is done earliest in the formation of a project team? (Taken from ASQ sample Black Belt exam.)

(A) Select the team
(B) Identify the objective
(C) Identify the sponsor
(D) Allocate the resources

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Comments (6)

At the top there’s a section that says why Six Sigma teams Fail (Examine 5 Reasons): But it only listed the top reason they fail as being is poor team dynamics & further down we have the 4 reasons? (See Below) –

Poorly-Functioning Six Sigma Teams
-members act independently without inter-dependency
-have poor team mechanics
-poor communication
-displays a lot of conflict

What is the 5th reason or did I miss something?

Hi Cheryl,

You didn’t miss anything. This page needs to be reworked.

I originally made this site for my own use – preparing to pass several black belt certifications. The pages were all originally my own study notes. They weren’t intended for instruction. Over the years I’ve been replacing my notes (which apparently made more sense when I made them originally!) with more helpful, expansive items.

I’ve tagged this page to be reconstructed soon.

Best, Ted.

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