One observation I would like to share is the convergence of practices into a single collection of knowledge. ASQ has compiled a QBok (Quality Body of Knowledge) from which practitioners can draw and apply their expertise to help companies achieve new levels of performance, quality, cost, delivery, and assurance. This convergence is evident in the Lean Six Sigma domain.
In the recent (2009) ASQ Press publication, The Public Health Quality Improvement Handbook by Ron Bialek, Grace Duffy, and John Moran, there is an excellent visual display showing how what we call Lean Six Sigma evolved from various influences.
This document reflects a convergence of practices into a common category. This viewpoint is corroborated in similar peer-reviewed publications.
Juran is cited as one of the early influences of the Quality profession. The prolific and pertinent contributions from Juran have been a cornerstone of our profession, and predated the concepts of both Lean and Six Sigma. The passage below is from page 748 of Juran’s Quality Handbook, 6th Edition, and expresses the high-level distinctions between what we term as Lean and Six Sigma. This reference aligns with the diagram above.