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Save Time and Money By Using StatStuff For Your LSS Training Program

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That's right, by using the StatStuff training resources in your organization's training program, you can not only save time and money, but it's much more flexible for your students too.  Besides, it's the perfect way to demonstrate the value of Lean Six Sigma (LSS) by applying the LSS concepts to your own LSS training program.

The Bottomline Upfront:

Save Time and Money By Using StatStuff For Your LSS Training ProgramIn a blended training format you assign your students to watch certain StatStuff videos before your class meets.  Then when you meet for your class, your students will have already learned the fundamentals of the LSS tools/concepts you want to cover in the class.  Then you can dedicate your entire class time to using examples of how to apply those tools/concepts in the real-world. In this blended format, the instructors save time from having to plan each class and the students have flexibility of watching the videos at a time or place that best fits their schedule.  

As well, the actual class time can either be shortened (to save time for the instructor and students) or you can use the same amount of class time to squeeze in many more real-world example of applying the tools and concepts. In addition to all the time saved, StatStuff's LSS training content is completely FREE and can save you from paying thousands of dollars that most other training organizations charge.  Instructors can access StatStuff's training slides in a PowerPoint format as a quick reference to the training material, and the book "Lean Six Sigma the StatStuff Way" can be used as a coursebook that references all of the training content from the StatStuff videos.

What's wrong with the traditional classroom training style?

The traditional classroom training environment (whether students are meeting online or in a literal classroom) typically involves the instructor 1) building and writing course content before the class, then using the class time to 2) introduce the tools and concepts, and 3) use examples to reinforce or apply those concepts.  I've taught and have been a part of many classes myself and learned about the amount of time and imparted knowledge to the student as outlined below: 

  STEP 1:
Course Content
Tools & Concepts
Reinforce & 
Apply Concepts
Amount of Pre-Class Time: High None None
Amount of Actual Class Time: None Medium Medium
Amount of Knowledge Student Learns: None Medium High 

Why are we doing training in the first place?  Isn't it to help our students learn?  But in my experience, students learn the most effectively when there are practical examples of the tools and concepts so they can see them used in the real-world.  We see this in many areas of life such as people (at least in the United States) who pursue a driver's license or to be certified in Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) - the instructions for these classes and the requirements for passing involve a hands-on application of driving in a real car or practicing CPR on a dummy.  So the problem in our classroom training seems to be that we don't spend enough time in class on the primary area where students can learn the most, i.e., step 3 in applying the tools and concepts. 

But we can't improve step 3 by skipping steps 1 & 2, can we?

Of course not. Every training requires time to build the content that will be taught.  As well, there has to be an introduction to the fundamentals of the tools and concepts in order for the application of those tools and concepts to make sense in step 3.  So if we can't avoid these first two steps, then the key here is to understand how we can lean those steps to exploit the advantages of step 3.

Normally step 1 involves a lot of time for the instructor in order to plan the content that will be taught. But once this plan is finalized, that amount of time is rarely repeatable, although it may require some fine-tuning in the future.  Does this sound familiar?  It sounds like setup time for a process.  Setup time is often unavoidable, however, if we can replicate the setup of another similar relevant process, then it should expedite this setup process too.

Likewise Step 2 should sound familiar.  It's a repeatable process.  Every new training class with new students typically requires the same repeatable instruction about the fundamentals of the tools and concepts. Again, it's a necessary step in this overall process, but if the student isn't learning as much during this step as when they reach step 3, then it seems step 2 has a low return on investment (ROI).  That is, there's not as much value from step 2 as we could gain from step 3.

How do I lean steps 1 & 2 and maximize the value of step 3?

The key is to create a blended training format - and this is where StatStuff's LSS training resources come in.  StatStuff already has the course content built for you, so the amount of time in step 1 should be significantly reduced.  As well, with the free StatStuff training videos, they're designed to teach the fundamentals and even include many working examples where the LSS tools and concepts can be applied.  So they can become the repeatable process of step 2.  So all you need to do is spend your classroom time on step 3 and therefore maximize the learning for your students.

For example, suppose you normally have a 12 week class that meets 5 hours per week (60 hours total). In that format your instructor and each student is dedicating 60 hours of time to this class.  But as described earlier, you can assign the students to watch certain StatStuff training videos in advance to class.  This saves the instructor from having to teach these fundamentals before diving into the application of the tools/concepts.  So the instructor can actually spend the normal 5 hours/wk reviewing many more real-world examples of applying the tools and further reinforce the concepts to the students, or the instructor can cut the class time in half to only cover the portion he would've normally spent reviewing those examples.  So either the students learn more effective ways to apply the tools or the instructor saves significant time in training.

Is StatStuff's training sufficient for LSS certification?

Absolutely!  Many companies and schools are already using StatStuff as their primary LSS training resource.  Likewise, many leaders from Fortune 500 companies have used StatStuff's training content and claimed it helped them pass their LSS certification exams.  The key toward certification is learning and successfully applying the LSS tools and concepts.  Unfortunately, there are many problems that exist when pursuing certification.  For more detailed information, check out my article "Straight Answers About Lean Six Sigma Certifications".

If you're looking to implement your own LSS training program, one of the most simple ways is to rely on a LSS expert (like a Master Black Belt, or MBB) who can mentor your students through the learning and application of the LSS tools.  That expert can use StatStuff's training content in a blended training format as described above.  When that expert is confident the student had effectively learned and applied the LSS tools and is worthy of a certification, then that expert can certify the student directly, or the student can pursue a LSS cert through any of several organizations that will certify folks without requiring them to attend their formal training class.

A summary of advantages from using StatStuff in a training program

  • Saves Preparation Time for Instructor
    • The instructor doesn't need to spend a lot of time preparing the training content or slides; it's all available in StatStuff's resources.

  • Saves Class Time for Instructor
    • The instructor doesn't need to review the fundamentals, but can either reduce the class time or spend more time demonstrating how to apply the LSS tools.

  • Adds Flexibility for Students
    • Students can watch the videos at a time or place that's convenient for them.

  • Saves a Lot of Money
    • StatStuff's training videos are all free - no need to pay a separate training organization to provide the training content.
    • StatStuff's training slides are all free - no need to build from scratch nor pay for training slides to present in the class.
    • StatStuff's coursebook is affordable - each book is far less than you'd pay for any organization's training materials, plus there are options to reduce the cost through bulk ordering or the affiliate program.

If you represent a company or school that's considering using StatStuff for your training program, then feel free to contact me if you have any other questions about this.

Matt Hansen

Matt is a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt who has led and consulted on hundreds of process improvement initiatives for 20 years across several industries such as Government (Dept. of Defense), Insurance, Telecommunications, and Transportation.  He has developed and led an enterprise Lean Six Sigma Training and Mentoring Program as well as a one-day crash course on "Dangerous Analytics" using the most critical Lean and Six Sigma tools and concepts. The savings from the projects he has led well exceed $100 Million.

For more details about Matt's experience, you can check out his profile and connect with him on LinkedIn.  If you'd like to use Matt for consulting or speaking engagements, please contact him here.

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