Gulf War Veteran Shares Six Sigma Story
I am a Continuous Improvement Professional and a Gulf War-era United States Veteran. I had the privilege of serving from 1988 to 1992 in the United States Marine Corps, where I worked in the supply chain management and physical distribution/logistics fields.
Reflecting back, I would say my continuous improvement days started in my youth on the farm where I would try to be the best farmer I could be, whether that meant finding better, more efficient and effective ways to plant & harvest crops, eliminate waste and effectively and humanely raise pigs and cattle. Our intention was always to improve! If we created effective solutions, the operation cost us more money to run and the end result—crop yields, daily rate of gain on livestock, mortality rates, equipment utilization and efficiency—were not where we needed them to be for us to grow, keep farming, be competitive and stay in business.
Throughout my career, I have served on process improvement teams in leadership, individual contributor roles and managed and led supply management efforts, operations and technology teams. I have consulted at companies like John Deere, Cargill, Syngenta, Cabela’s, Allianz, and worked in full-time roles for Land O’ Lakes, Best Buy, Medica and other enterprise companies.
One commonality I have discovered is that most organizations, want to take better care of their customers and execute their daily business processes better. Not many organizations initially know how to efficiently identify, target and promote the vital few critical to value, quality and process characteristics, that which will change their business for the better, create significant breakthrough and make them robust to risks of all kinds including defects, data, people and material variances, wastes in operations, changes in environment, inefficient processes, ineffective practices and many others.
The lean six sigma body of knowledge, properly understood and executed, will create the sustainable breakthrough change we see in leading world-class companies today. The Six Sigma Management Institute (SSMI) is the top organization of its kind in the world and they will show you how to do this in a practical and applicable way so that you can use it every day on the job, for you and your employers benefit.
On a scale of 1-10, I give the SSMI & Team a rating of 1,000,000. This is the best program of its kind on the planet, it has the best value and highest reward and you can progress at a pace that works for you. The MindPro learning system is the best I have ever seen.
I turned 50 this summer and looking back at over 22 years in the business world and 4 years serving in the military, enrolling in the SSMI Wings for Heroes/ Six Sigma Blackbelt program in 2014 is the best decision I have ever made! I successfully completed the academic program and certification training project. The black belt program is designed to help you learn and understand the lean six sigma body of knowledge at a level I never thought possible. Now I can take this real-world, pragmatic, very applicable skill set and use it daily in any business or organization, to help them improve and take better care of their customers, benefiting stakeholders and employees.
I can’t emphasize this point enough. If you enjoy quality and continuous improvement, helping organizations to improve their processes on a daily basis, then please do yourself a favor and apply to this program. The SSMI has many programs available to fit your needs and where you are on your lean six sigma journey.
I am fortunate to have been accepted into the SSMI Military Program and like I said before, pursuing my black belt with Dr. Mikel Harry and his team, is the best thing I have ever done throughout my professional working career.
Thank you to Dr. Harry, Sandy, Don and the entire team at SSMI. You are the best!
— UPDATE SINCE RECEIVING THIS STORY FROM TODD EGGERS —
“Thanks to Dr. Harry and Team for the opportunity to complete the Six Sigma Management Institute Lean Six Sigma Black Belt certification and for all of their leadership with that process.
Within weeks of completing the certification and working with you, I accepted an offer of employment today for a full-time permanent supply chain project manager position. My starting salary is $100,000.00 per year and a $5000.00 signing bonus, plus full-time excellent benefits. The bar is very high and now it is time to get to work.”
Thank you to you all.