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Six Sigma MBB - The Master of the Game

Aug 17, 2007
The born leaders belonging to personality types INTJ and ENTJ are the most likely people to be selected to become Master Black Belts. This can be by design or can be pure coincidence. But what one can not disregard is the truth that they are in their positions because of their enviable character that separates them from the crowd. Characteristically, INTJs and ENTJs are strong in intuitive and judgmental abilities which make them stand up for all the right things and know when to act because of their impeccable sense of timing.

Who Are Master Black Belts?

Master Black Belts are experienced trained professionals bestowed with the responsibility of strategic implementation of projects. Their responsibilities encompass the whole gamut of Six Sigma implementation, which includes training the other belts and strategizing on projects within an organization. This unambiguously means that a Mater Black Belt also acts as a watchdog of deployment processes by keeping tabs on integrity issues such as measurements, tollgates etc. Revising and improving training methodology and tools fall under the purview of a Master Black Belt.

A Master Black Belt qualifies for that position through virtues such as problem solving abilities at strategic levels. This calls for qualities such as being forward looking, leadership by self-indulgence and thorough expertise in the intricacies of business processes, Six Sigma implementation techniques and statistical tools. What assumes utmost importance is his or her brilliant analytical abilities to identify problem areas, tackle bottlenecks and other obstacles. Alertness to issues such as integrity misuse and misrepresentation of authority and facts by down line support and line employees is also emphasized.

A Master Black Belt is disposed to train other facilitators of Six Sigma in aspects such as the tools, methodologies, and applications in all functions of the organization. (He/she is assumed to be a resource for employing statistical process controls but typically outside of Black Belt's purview).

MBB And Upstream Responsibilities

A Master Black Belt occupies an unenviable position within the organization. He or she is the key link between the Black Belts and the Champion. He participates in the project selection by contributing to the company in terms of strategic business point of view.

Briefly, other responsibilities are listed here. The Master Black Belt works in coordination with the Champion to:

1. Create commitment to achieve team and project goals
2. Break down barriers to implementation,
3. Make sure upper management supports team's endeavors through DMAIC
4. Ensure team leaders are focused appropriately
5. Help transition to process owner once project is complete
6. Acknowledge progress, success, and accomplishments.

A Master Black Belt's position is not connected to his ranking. Master Black Belts, who are mostly chosen from the middle management, are Black Belts of extraordinary abilities. A MBB trains, coaches and builds the team as a business planner. But at the core of it all, he moves from a focus on "doing" to "working" on the holistic picture of bringing about an entire change of the organization.

Ensuring sustainability, even after transfer from project ownership to process ownership made possible through weaving the visions of management and stakeholders together with the strategic business process is not possible without the essential contributions of the Master Black Belt.
About the Author
Tony Jacowski is a quality analyst for The MBA Journal. Aveta Solution's Six Sigma Online offers online six sigma training and certification classes for lean six sigma, black belts, green belts, and yellow belts.
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