Why they fail



In this book you will learn the reason why 90% of Continuous Improvement Efforts (like Lean and Six Sigma) either Fail or Quit within 18 months. I will show you how companies fail to build a sustainable effort and what the ensuing failure looks like.  Then I will show you the Simple Key to Success. If you want to build a sustainable continuous improvement culture in your organization, read this book!

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  • You have been tasked by your company to implement a continuous improvement program and you have no idea how. Don’t worry, we will show you HOW NOT TO FAIL.

  • You have implemented a continuous improvement program and it has failed. We will show you where you went wrong and how to fix your deployment
  • You are interested in how to implement a continuous improvement program for your organization and had the epiphany “I have little experience and may need some help”.

What’s inside


Statistics on Failed Continuous Improvement Efforts


How they Have Failed

Six (6) real world scenarios from multi million dollar companies that led to failure 


Why they Failed to Build a Sustainable Continuous Improvement Effort

I will give you the five (5) top reasons companies fail 


I will show you How Not to Fail

The Seven (7) Steps to Build the Foundation for a Sustainable Continuous Improvement Culture


I will show you the Most Important and Simple Key to Success!


You will Learn How to Capture the Voice of the Organization (not just the Leaders of the Organization)


“Our executives don’t have time for an ‘Executive Training’.  They support the effort, so do we really need the training?”

I can’t tell you how many times I have heard this statement when discussing a Lean Six Sigma deployment proposal with a potential customer. This is the first clue that the company’s efforts will most likely fail.

I also hear other excuses for not formally training the executives like:

  • “One of our executives is a ‘Black Belt’ and will support our efforts so we don’t see the need to educate the other executives”
  • “I (the newly trained Green Belt Contiguous Improvement Manager) have been chosen by our company to champion the efforts and report to the executives, so we don’t really need an executive training”
  • “We have given the executives a brief (less than 1 hour) overview of Lean Six Sigma so we can skip the executive training”

My team has one key metric to gauge the success of a deployment and that metric is the engagement of the Company Leaders. The more the leaders are engaged, supportive and accountable the better the chance of a sustainable deployment.

A Fortune magazine article stated, “… of 58 large companies that have announced LEAN and/or Six Sigma programs, 91% have trailed the S&P 500.” 

My team and I have been engaged with 100’s of companies and have seen a plethora of epic failures in their attempts to start a continuous improvement program. I use the saying in my classes “common sense is not very common” and I rarely see common sense when building the culture of continuous improvement. In this book, I am going to show you how companies fail (and most do) and I am going to show you the simple key to success.

In this book, Kevin gets in your face and says "Stop Taking Shortcuts!!." If you want to build a healthy continuous improvement culture, then you have to change your habits. You have to build the "build the foundation."

Chris Pensen, Quality Director QMT


I started a LEAN effort at my facility and failed miserably. Most of the scenario's in the book about "how not to do it", I did. Then, I read Kevin's book (in about 1/2 hour), and was surprised at the few simple steps that i missed,

Timothy Danielson, Facility Manager LMNTI


Kevin Clay, President and CEO of Six Sigma Development Solutions, Inc., is a Six Sigma Master Black Belt and a Lean Master Practitioner. He has over 15 years of experience working with companies all over the globe implementing operational excellence into their organization. Kevin and his family live in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico where his three young daughters have become not only bi-lingual but also bi-cultural. When Kevin is not training in some location around the globe, he spends his time watching his daughters (the Archer, the Gymnast and the Yoga Queen) as he totes his laptop to their events to multi task. You might catch Kevin and his wife at night on a date in the Malecon at Devil’s Bar or Cafe de Olla. He and his family like to spend time on their boat watching the Humpback Whales, Dolphins and giant Sea Turtles that roam Banderas Bay.