Black Belts are the fully fledged ninjas of the Six Sigma world, honorable warriors who wander round companies solving waste issues wherever they go. Leaders of men and women, they have a band of Green and Yellow belts following them in their quest to make companies lean, efficient and profitable.
Black belts are chosen out of the ranks of Green Belts, and undergo more training (around 200 hours to the Green Belts’ 40 hours), meaning they have a lot more Six Sigma knowledge than the other practitioners. Just as to become a Karate Black Belt you can’t just learn the theory, to become a Six Sigma Black Belt you have to have already completed at least one project before they can be certified, which will usually follow the DMAIC framework. Once fully qualified, they complete around 5-7 projects a year, usually leading or working in teams.
Black Belts will often work full time on Six Sigma projects, whereas the other belts are more likely to have ‘day jobs’ and just be called on to help on projects when needed.
Master black belt
Some organizations go a step further than Black Belt, and make a small number of the more experienced and knowledgeable black belts into master black belts. There are generally 1 master black belt to each 10 black belts, and can lead bigger projects, or advise black belts on more difficult or unusual situations. This is optional though and many organizations operate with only Black Belts.
What will you learn?
By the end of your Six Sigma Black Belt course, you will have:
- Learnt all the tools and processes required to run Lean Six Sigma projects
- Led a project to completion, using Lean Six Sigma tools
- Passed a series of exams to show that you have full understanding
- Should be comfortable taking part in and running all types of Lean Six Sigma project