Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Operational Sciences

First Advisor

Stanley E. Griffis, PhD


Lean and Six Sigma are recent developments in continuous improvement methodology that have been popularized by several high-profile companies. The success and complementary nature of these methodologies has led to their combination into a single methodology, commonly called Lean Six Sigma or Lean Sigma. Although there is considerable literature available and many consultants involved with Lean Six Sigma, very little published research addresses the practical experiences of companies that have implemented Lean Six Sigma. The research question for this research is: How and why are certain private sector implementations of Lean Six Sigma successful or unsuccessful? The investigative questions further focused the research question and identified several factors that appeared to significantly contribute to implementation success. These factors are: Fusing business strategy with continuous improvement strategy; Leadership commitment and involvement in the deployment and implementation processes; The use of consultants that are proficient and experienced; and A defined organizational model that links the continuous improvement efforts with the performance measurement system and senior leadership Defined and standardized personnel selection criteria .This research's purpose is to assist the Air Force structure a continuous improvement program that abates or eliminates the negative effects caused by deployment barriers and implementation challenges.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number