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Six Sigma control charts and variances in a legal process – is this for real?

If the Six Sigma methodology intrigues you, read the recent piece in Of Counsel, Vol. 26, May 2007 at 7. The article explains how Tyco purportedly used Six Sigma techniques in deliberations that led to its hiring Eversheds (See my post of April 22, 2007 about the arrangement.). Being possessed of no colored belts or six Sigma training, I can’t critique the piece competently. I can say that the senior associate at Eversheds who wrote it poured into it an impressive number of methodological concepts (See my post of March 7, 2006 for explanations of some terminology.).

One step stupefied me. The article mentions that Tyco’s law department focused, among other steps, on the creation of a “Control Chart: a continuing monitor of the variance in the Tyco legal process over time. The results create an alert when there is an unexpected variance that may lead to and eventually cause process defects.” What sense can you make of that pottage?

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