Thus this paper will identify the weaknesses and strengths of both Six Sigma and lean and the ways in which they compliment each other.Six Sigma and lean are among the two most commonly used continuous improvement tools (Mousa, 2013, p. 1137). Lean originated out of the Toyota Production System and its focus is on the elimination of waste in production which begins from the time an order is placed and ends when the order is delivered (Pojasek, 2003, p. 85). Six Sigma was introduced by the Motorola Corporation and is designed to eliminate variations in production and services and their processes so that defects are reduced and customer satisfaction is improved (Desai, 2006).In other words, lean focuses on reducing waste, while Six Sigma focuses on reducing defects. Therefore, it has been suggested that when lean and Six Sigma philosophies are combined an organization may benefit from significant improvements in a short period of time at a significantly reduced cost (Mousa, 2013, p. 1137). This paper will compare and contrast Six Sigma and Lean with a view to demonstrating their compatibility and differences for continuous improvement. The paper is divided into four parts. The first part of this paper presents a review of literature on lean and Six Sigma. The second part of this paper provides a comparison of the two philosophies. The third part of this paper will discuss the implications for practice and the final part of this paper will make suggestions for further studies.Lean is a philosophical approach to managing production and consist of facilitating a system for eliminating or reducing waste and any activity that does not add value for the end customer (Dora, Kumar, Goubergen, Molnar, amp. Gellynck, 2013). At its core, lean is a continuous improvement technique focused on just-in-time (JIT), quality systems and team works (Wong, Wong, amp. Ali, 2009, p.
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