Google Understands Lean Six Sigma
How many of you have called your Internet or cell phone providers, spent countless hours on the phone with them, and thought, “If only this person understood the Voice of the Customer and Lean Six Sigma?” If you speak to an operator about a billing error or other issue, chances are you will be bounced around from one department to another, continually needing to repeat your account information and the nature of the call. Finally, when you do reach the operator who is supposed to assist you, the agent tells you he or she does not have the authority to solve your issue.
Google Understands Voice of the Customer
Have you ever called Google? Yes, you can call Google (certain areas). I did, and let me tell you, it gets Lean Six Sigma and Voice of the Customer. When I called, it seemed the reception was not too great. The usual response I would hear from other telecommunication companies would be, “I can’t hear you,” (in a very frustrated tone). But with Google, I got, “We appear to have a bad connection, but that is OK—I will take care of you.” We proceeded with the phone call, and I could tell by speaking with the agent at Google that she loved working there and was focused on my needs. She understood Voice of the Customer (VOC). In the end, she provided me with viable options to solve my problem.
At the end of the call, I was given a customer survey. Even the automated voice used to conduct the survey was friendly and chipper. The survey covered those areas that for consumers were clearly important and was quite different from other customer surveys I’ve completed. I was asked such things as whether my problem was resolved during the first call, in two calls, etc. I was also asked whether the agent completely resolved my issue to my satisfaction. The design of the survey was clearly focused on what is important to me and demonstrated Google’s understanding of tying everything back to the customer’s requirements.
Google Understands Value Stream Optimization
Aside from the experience with a live agent, have you had the opportunity to use some of the collaborative tools produced by Google? Google’s social collaborative tool is called Google Plus. Google Plus is an integrated and collaborative social networking tool. With Google Plus, I can have a complete Internet experience all tied to one account and am able to share information seamlessly across multiple platforms. For example, if I write a blog, I can put in a type of signature called Google Authorship. This means that when people share my blog through the Google Plus icon, not only do their circles (Google’s term for network) have access to my blog, in the search ranking, my profile shows up with my picture and tag lines.
If you use Blogger and mention an individual @person’s name, if that person is on Google Plus, he or she will be notified. In addition, you can integrate your Google Plus account with YouTube, Google Webmaster Tools, Google Analytics, Google AdWords, Google AdSense, etc. This allows you to maintain multiple accounts, share information, and manage all relationships across those platforms seamlessly. Google can even suggest videos, blogs, and so on based on my search history.
Whether Google calls this value stream optimization or not, it has or has come close to optimizing a user’s experience across the Internet.
Although this short article may seem like a plug for Google and its products, it is not. I simply wanted to share with you some of the ways I believe Google is utilizing Lean Six Sigma. If you have some examples of how Google is demonstrating great practices in Lean Six Sigma, please share them.
My first of two books has been completed and is in the final stages of formatting and editing. I hope the book will be coming to a bookshelf close to you soon.
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About the Author
Kyle Toppazzini is the president of Toppazzini and Lee (T&L) Consulting, and an international leader and consultant in lean Six Sigma. He publishes blogs and articles in Bloomberg Business Week, Digital Journal, Quality Digest Magazine and Social Media and is the author of the CFO Scorecard published in Exchange Magazine. (A global magazine produced by the Association of Financial Professionals). Kyle is currently working on a book that will bring new innovations in Lean Six Sigma and Quality Management.
Kyle is a six sigma master black belt and lean six sigma black belt receiving his training from the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College, a certified Balanced Scorecard Trainer, and a member of the Palladium Executive Group founded by David Norton founder of the Balanced Scorecard.
Kyle has conducted more than 30 performance and process improvement projects across the public and private organizations in government and health care yielding millions of dollars in cost savings and 80% improvement in performance.
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