Six Sigma


DEFINITION of 'Six Sigma'

A quality-control program developed in 1986 by Motorola. Initially, it emphasized cycle-time improvement and reducing manufacturing defects to a level of no more than 3.4 per million. Since then, Six Sigma has evolved into a more general business-management philosophy focused on meeting customer requirements, improving customer retention, and improving and sustaining business products and services. Six Sigma is applicable to all industries.


A number of vendors, including Motorola itself, offer Six Sigma training. Special certifications include yellow belt, green belt and black belt. According to Motorola, companies that have used Six Sigma include Bank of America, Texas Instruments, Toshiba, American Express and Fidelity, among hundreds of others.

  1. Total Quality Management - TQM

    The continuous process of reducing or eliminating errors in manufacturing, ...
  2. Quality Control

    A process through which a business seeks to ensure that product ...
  3. Acceptable Quality Level - AQL

    A statistical measurement of the maximum number of defective ...
  4. Asset Quality Rating

    A review or evaluation assessing the credit risk associated with ...
  5. Master Of Business Administration ...

    A graduate degree achieved at a university or college that provides ...
  6. Supply Management

    A broad term describing the various acts of identifying, acquiring ...
Related Articles
  1. Active Trading Fundamentals

    Evaluating A Company's Management

    Financial statements don't tell you everything about a company's health. Investigate the management behind the numbers!
  2. Options & Futures

    Putting Management Under The Microscope

    We tell you where to find the telltale signs of corporate misdeeds.
  3. Bonds & Fixed Income

    Trademarks Of A Takeover Target

    These tips can lead you to little companies with big prospects.
  4. Investing Basics

    What Does In Specie Mean?

    In specie describes the distribution of an asset in its physical form instead of cash.
  5. Economics

    Calculating Cross Elasticity of Demand

    Cross elasticity of demand measures the quantity demanded of one good in response to a change in price of another.
  6. Fundamental Analysis

    Emerging Markets: Analyzing Colombia's GDP

    With a backdrop of armed rebels and drug cartels, the journey for the Colombian economy has been anything but easy.
  7. Fundamental Analysis

    Emerging Markets: Analyzing Chile's GDP

    Chile has become one of the great economic success stories of Latin America.
  8. Investing

    Watch Your Duration When Rates Rise

    While recent market volatility is leading investors to look for the nearest exit, here are some suggestions for bond exposure in attractive sectors.
  9. Economics

    What Do Central Counterparty Clearing Houses Do?

    A central counterparty clearing house facilitates trading in European derivatives and equities markets.
  10. Economics

    Explaining Capital Flows

    The movement of money for investing, trade or business production, is commonly referred to as capital flows.
  1. How historically valid is the 80-20 rule?

    While there is a lack of scientifically stringent statistical analysis either proving or disproving the validity of the 8 ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. What is operations management theory and how can it help a business?

    Operations management is concerned with controlling the production process and business operations in the most efficient ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. What is the difference between Lean Six Sigma and Six Sigma?

    Six Sigma and Lean Six Sigma are two forms of business process and production inspired by Kaizen philosophies to improve ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. Does working capital include inventory?

    A company's working capital includes inventory, and increases in inventory make working capital increase. Working capital ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What is the utility function and how is it calculated?

    In economics, utility function is an important concept that measures preferences over a set of goods and services. Utility ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. How can I use a regression to see the correlation between prices and interest rates?

    In statistics, regression analysis is a widely used technique to uncover relationships among variables and determine whether ... Read Full Answer >>

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Term Deposit

    A deposit held at a financial institution that has a fixed term, and guarantees return of principal.
  2. Zero-Sum Game

    A situation in which one person’s gain is equivalent to another’s loss, so that the net change in wealth or benefit is zero. ...
  3. Capitalization Rate

    The rate of return on a real estate investment property based on the income that the property is expected to generate.
  4. Gross Profit

    A company's total revenue (equivalent to total sales) minus the cost of goods sold. Gross profit is the profit a company ...
  5. Revenue

    The amount of money that a company actually receives during a specific period, including discounts and deductions for returned ...
  6. Normal Profit

    An economic condition occurring when the difference between a firm’s total revenue and total cost is equal to zero.
Trading Center
You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!