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Hi! I’m Pete Abilla. Trained at Toyota Technological Institute at Chicago and learned Lean first-hand at Toyota's Supply Parts Distribution Division. I’ve led Lean and Six Sigma deployments at some of the most respected brands such as Amazon.com, eBay, and Kaiser Permanente. A Lean and Six Sigma practitioner since 2002 and writer at shmula.com, one of the most visited sites on continuous improvement.

High level executives from today's top brands have joined Shmula.com to
become trained Lean Six Sigma Black Belts, and you should too.

“One of the best collections of well written tutorials and training material on lean six sigma on the web for beginners through advanced operational excellence practitioners.”

— Mark Roenigk
COO Rackspace & Advisor to the Bill and
Melinda Gates Foundation

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Shmula.com Pro Membership Benefits

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Who Should Join Shmula.com Pro?

Shmula.com Pro Membership is for practitioners of all levels - from beginning to expert

If any of these statements describe you, then we've designed this program especially for you.

i have not lean six sigma training

I Don't Have any Training in Lean and Six Sigma, but I'm a believer in Lean and Six Sigma and I want to learn parts of it that make sense. I'm interested in application, not theory.

I've heard good things about it and my colleagues at work recommend that I look into learning it.

I believe that Lean and Six Sigma can help me add more value to my employer and to my customers.I want to learn and apply the practical tools that will help me excel in my employment.

i have some training in lean and six sigma

I have some training either as a Yellow Belt or a Green Belt in Lean and Six Sigma.I've read blog articles and books and I have a strong interest in learning even more.

I don't have a lot of spare time, but I know that learning some of Lean and Six Sigma will help me be more effective at work.

I know very little, but I am desperate to learn even more. I love this stuff, but just need more.

not interested in a lean six sigma black belt

I want to become Black Belt Certified, and I need really good preparation material for the Black Belt Certification Exam.

And, I don't have all the time in the world. I need the right information, taught in a simple way, so that I can get certified quickly.

i'm a lean six sigma black belt already

I have a lot of training, but I need continuing education and I'm a little rusty. I especially want to understand how Lean and Six Sigma is applied at other organizations.

I'm also interested in deep diving into topics in Lean and Six Sigma such as Kanban, Jidoka, and Hypothesis Testing.

And, because I already apply some of Lean and Six Sigma to my work, I need templates and tools that are high quality and readily available and I don't want to create them myself. I want to save time and focus on solving problems.

Once You Join, This Is What You Can Expect

We're constantly growing our library of eBooks, Templates, and Videos (as of 5/20/2014).


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Student Testimonials

Don't take my word for it. Read a few student testimonials below.

"I can credit a good part of my business success to the six sigma training I received from Pete Abilla. I have made customers and coworkers happier, while saving the companies I worked for millions of dollars. With lean six sigma it becomes easy to know where to invest and make changes in your business. Pete is an excellent teacher, who knows how to explain complex ideas in simple ways and clearly explain, how and why, a certain technique is going to help your business. It is one of the best things I have done to further my career."

— Michael Sherwood
VP Operations Fridom.com.br

"Pete is my lean mentor. He has taken the time to guide me to learning for myself and suggested directions when I am stuck. I trust Pete because of his skills and his heart."

— Eric Myers
Private Attorney in California

"Pete does a great job of breaking down complex principles into easy to learn blocks. At first all of this can be quite overwhelming but Pete makes it easy to understand. I contribute much of the success that I have had in my career with teachings that I learned from Pete."

— James Grant
Change Management Leader Kaiser Permanente Hospitals

"Traditional Lean Six Sigma training can cost thousands of dollars and will still leave you wanting the practical experience you need to use the information. This is what I value most about working with Pete, he doesn’t just blow Toyota Way smoke, he knows what works best in real environments. Whether you decide to go for your black belt or not, his training prepares you to start making effective, measurable changes at your company."

— Cole D. Lehman
Strategy Director at Magic-Science.com

lean six sigma training online, pete abilla, rico jensen testimonial

In the healthcare industry, there is plenty of room for improvement. I have studied healthcare operations for the last 8 years and have found that there is a lot of excess and not a lot of improvement or innovation. For example, in 2011, Medicare spent $549.1 billion on health care coverage (about 15% of the national budget) for 48.7 million beneficiaries. One could easily argue that Medicare is one health care organization that has a lot of excess/burdensome processes with not a lot of solutions for its stakeholders. Not to mention the VA, who most recently shocked Americans when it was discovered that 731 VA facilities were operating wait lists of roughly 57,436 veterans awaiting scheduled care and another 63,869 who enrolled in VA benefits (over the last 10 years) and have never been seen for an appointment (CNN.com).

Healthcare, and operations management, is my preferred career. News of inefficient health care processes not only keeps me employed but also motivates me to seek tools to protect my organization from burdensome business practices.

For roughly two years I had been searching for a Six Sigma training program that met my needs as a professional in the healthcare industry. After a recent job transfer, I had the pleasure of meeting Pete Abilla, founder of Shmula.com. I was impressed with his wealth of knowledge and I quickly became a member of Shmula.com. I continue to be blown away at the knowledge, tools, and experiences that I’ve gained. Shmula’s training model is unique, clear, and concise. The learning modules are filled with content that help drive concepts and encourage real-world application. The videos presented in each module are professionally produced and further illustrate the quality of the knowledge found in each learning module. My current job role has drastically improved as I’ve learned to apply the lean strategies and tools into real organizational problems to streamline work processes.

I highly encourage operational leaders to invest their time into Shmula.com’s program. As Albert Einstein once said, “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” This program will inevitably add value to your organization and increase your marketability as a leader.

- Rico Jensen, MHA

Here's What to Expect - Shmula.com Pro Video Snippets

Here are a few of our HD Training videos, with Kanban Cody as your training partner.

What is Six Sigma

Measurement System Analysis

Standard Pork Exercise

What is Standard Work

Course Outline

Let me show you what you get at each membership level.

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Distilled. You get the material you need, no wasted time with access to whatever you want to learn.

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30% Discount on SigmaXL Software and In-depth video and written training from leaders in your industry.

Powerpoint Library

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Over 100 downloadable templates and eBooks worth way more than your monthly membership.

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New videos, templates, and eBooks will be added as it becomes available for the lifetime of your membership.

Six Sigma Curriculum

The DMAIC Curriculum will allow you to quickly apply the Six Sigma method and tools.

Overview
TopicDescription
video of what is six sigma

What is Six Sigma

The various definitions of Six Sigma is explained in this 5:42 video. We specifically discuss 6 definitions of "Sigma", ending with the most relevant definition which is related to the DMAIC Method of Problem Solving.
video of the DMAIC framework

The DMAIC Framework

In this 4:17 video, we explain the DMAIC framework and give an introduction to each phase in DMAIC. We specifically show the storyboard for each phase in the DMAIC framework.
DMAIC versus PDCA

DMAIC versus PDCA

Article describes how PDCA is used in Lean and the similarities and common history between PDCA and DMAIC.
History of Six Sigma and Lean

History of Six Sigma and Lean

In this video, we go through the various contributors of Six Sigma, their contribution, and why it's important in the practice of modern Six Sigma. We also go into the history of the Toyota Production System and how the term "lean" was coined. Video is 7:36 long.
Lean History and Timeline

Lean History and Timeline

This article shows a comprehensive history and timeline of Lean and of continuous improvement beginning in the 1600's.
Black Belt Certification

Black Belt Certification

In this article, we provide various resources where you may take the Black Belt exam should you choose to do so. We also discuss the positive and negative of Black Belt certification.
Define
The Define Phase Storyboard

The Define Phase Storyboard

We introduce the Define Phase and show the Define Storyboard, a high level map of what the phase is about and the expected outputs.
Business Needs Assessment

Business Needs Assessment

In this video, we discuss how to identify business needs of an organization and how to take that knowledge and transform it into a formal DMAIC project that will get the backing and support from top management
Project Charter

Project Charter

In this 5:37 minute video, we explain the role of the project charter and its importance in Six Sigma DMAIC projects.
Project Selection Matrix

Project Selection Matrix

In this short 2:51 minute video, we learn a simple and effective method for prioritizing between competing priorities. This method is important for the selection of an improvement project.
Problem Statement

Problem Statement

Articulating the problem well gets you much closer to a solution. In this video, we show you how along with several real world examples of effective problem statements. Video length is 5:42.
Stakeholder Analysis

Stakeholder Analysis

Identifying stakeholders and their needs is one of the most important steps in Define. This is especially crucial if there are any influential stakeholders that are resistant to your message.
Affinity Diagram

Affinity Diagram

Affinity Diagram is a tried and true method for brainstorming and coming up with ideas. Learn how to apply this technique in this video.
SIPOC

SIPOC

Identifying the key spots where measurements can be taken in crucial. This video will show you how to do it.
Voice of the Customer and CTQ

Voice of the Customer and CTQ

In this video spanning 5:11, we explain Voice of the Customer and how Six Sigma is rooted in the customer. We explain how to translate Voice of the Customer into Critical to Quality Metrics.
Critical to Quality Tree

Critical to Quality Tree

Article explaining the critical to quality tree, with examples, and a template to download so you can create your own for your six sigma projects.
Value Stream Map

Value Stream Map

In this 4:42 video, you will learn understand the value stream map symbols and learn how to design your own value stream map. We provide a zip file of VSM Symbols for you to download.
Kano Model

Kano Model

We explain the Kano Model to identify service and product characteristics that should be "satisfiers" and the ones that be "good enough" and don't need to go any further.
Measure
The Measure Phase Storyboard

The Measure Phase Storyboard

We introduce the Measure Phase and show the Measure Storyboard, a high level map of what the phase is about and the expected outputs.
Role of Data

Role of Data

In this article we explain the various types of data, how they're different, and what they tell us about process behavior. We will also learn how to collect data.
Descriptive Statistics

Descriptive Statistics

In this module we learn various data measures that tell us key characteristics of a data set. We also begin the foundation for our discussion on distributions in a later module.
Distributions

Distributions

This is a brief introduction to statistical distributions and what inferences we can draw from them.
Distributions

Graphical Representation of Data

Graphically representing data effectively is required to effectively communicate meaning. In this module we learn various graphical methods and how to do them.
7 Quality Tools

7 Quality Tools

We briefly introduce each of the 7 quality tools. We follow this video several videos where we focus on the detailed of each of the 7 quality tools.
Check Sheets

Check Sheets

In this HD video, we explain the checksheet, what it is used for, see various examples of checksheets, how to create one, and be able to download a checksheet template from the Shmula content library.
Pareto Chart

Pareto Chart

In this 4:48 minute video, you will learn the history of the Pareto Principle, why it's important, and how to apply the Pareto Principle in your lean and six sigma efforts using excel.
Histogram

Histogram

This video on the Histogram explains what it is, when to use it, and how to use it.
Scatter Plot

Scatter Plot

In this 4:27 short video, we introduce the Scatterplot, what it is, why use it, and how it can be helpful in your six sigma projects.
Cause and Effect Diagram

Cause and Effect Diagram

This 5:21 minute video explains the cause and effect diagram - what it is, when to use it, and how to create one.
control charts in six sigma

Control Chart

In this video, we introduce you to the control chart - what it is, where to use it, when to use it, and how it's used. Video length is 7:05.
Run ChartIn Progress
Process Cycle EfficiencyProcess Cycle Efficiency is a more modern tool that looks at processes from the perspective of value and waste. We show you how to do it and why it's important.
FMEA

FMEA

Failure Mode Effects Analysis is a tried and true method and technique for quickly identifying ways where process problems can occur and how to quickly mitigate them.
Basic Statistics

Basic Statistics

In this article, we go in depth to explain basic data types, scales, and the language of six sigma.
Using Z Values

Using Z Values

We learn about Z Values or the Z Score with applications in Six Sigma projects.
Using Z Values

Sample Size Calculations

In this module we learn the underpinnings of sample size calculations and how they are used in six sigma. We provide a sample size calculator in the template section also.
Introduction to Variation

Introduction to Variation

This article introduces the learner to the concept of variation and how it impacts the customer experience.
Measurement System Analysis

Measurement System Analysis

In this video we discuss variation and how it impacts our methods of measuring. Video length is 5:28 and we show examples along with tips on how to deal with bad metrology.
Gauge R&RIn this video we explain the Gauge R&R Test and provide various examples of where and how it may be applied in industry.
Analyze
The Analyze Phase StoryboardWe introduce the Analyze Phase and show the Analyze Storyboard, a high level map of what the phase is about and the expected outputs.
BrainstormingWe introduce various methods of brainstorming. Some conventional and some not very and more modern. Some of these methods are taken from Design Thinking and have been found to be very effective in identifying innovative and simple solutions to problems.
5 Whys and Fishbone DiagramIn this video we explain the 5 Why exercise and show many examples. We extend the 5 Whys and show how it naturally leads to the Fishbone Diagram.
Verifying Root CausesWe introduce hypothesis testing and various methods for doing so including the Regression, T Test, Chi Square, and ANOVA.
Hypothesis TestingIn Progress
RegressionIn Progress
T TestIn Progress
Chi SquareIn Progress
ANOVAIn Progress
Improve
The Improve Phase StoryboardWe introduce the Improve Phase and show the Improve Storyboard, a high level map of what the phase is about and the expected outputs
Change ManagementWe introduce you to several change management models that have been found to effective in practice. We show what they are, how to do them.
Solution Selection MatrixThe Solution Selection Matrix is a simple tool that helps a team vote and decide on which solution makes the most sense to put resources behind in improvement projects.
Process CapabilityWe discuss process capability and how it's different from a process not in control. We discuss its importance.
Cost / Benefit Analysis/td>We introduce the concept of Cost and Benefit Analysis and provide several ways at showing cost savings from Six Sigma Projects.
Poka YokeAs part of the Improve Phase, we introduce the concept of Poka Yoke, or error proofing, as a way to prevent defects before they even occur. We show may examples and teach the principles behind Poka Yoke.
Control
The Control Phase StoryboardWe introduce the Control Phase and show the Control Storyboard, a high level map of what the phase is about and the expected outputs
Before / After ParetoWe show ways to visually see before and after results of your project
Standard Pig Game

Standard Pig Game

In this 4:55 minute video, we show you a simple and effective game that teaches the importance of Standard Work. This video should be watched prior to the video on Standard Work
Standard Work

Standard Work

Standard Work is a foundation of Lean and Six Sigma. In this 5:36 minute video we explain Standard Work and show its role in continuous improvement
Control ChartsWe discuss the various control charts, why they're important, and how to create them given your process and given your data type

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Lean Training Topics

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  3. 5S Visual Workplace
  4. Point Kaizen and Error Proofing
  5. How to Eliminate Waste
  6. Abnormality Management
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Lean Templates

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  5. 5 Why Worksheet
  6. A3 Template
  7. Kaizen Planning Form
  8. Motion Observation Checklist
  9. Point Kaizen Worksheet
  10. Poka Yoke Worksheet
  11. Red Flag Conditions
  12. Time Observation Form
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