Role of Project Champion in Six Sigma Project

The Project Champion is the person responsible for identifying the Six Sigma Project and making it an organization reality. The role of this kingpin in the conception and execution of the Six Sigma project has been detailed in this article.

Stage at Which Required

The Project Champion is required at very early stages of the Project. In fact, the Project Champion is the only member of the team that exists when there is no project. The intervention of the Project Champion at the later stages is limited to setting up and reviewing tollgate meetings. However active participation is required at the earlier stages.

Job Description

The duties that a Project Champion is expected to fulfil are as follows:

  • The Project Champion needs to identify Six Sigma projects.

  • The Project Champion must check whether the Six Sigma projects meet the strategic objectives of the organization.

  • The Project Champion must negotiate with the top management and get appropriate resources sanctioned for the successful completion of the project.

  • The Project Champion must select the Project Lead and Finance Certifier. The selection of the rest of the team can be delegated to the Project Lead however Finance Certifier must always be an unbiased person selected by the Project Champion to ensure objective financial reporting.

  • The Project Champion has the final say so or say no when it comes to conducting tollgate reviews. Therefore he/she has the responsibility to critically analyse the results obtained by the team.

  • The Project Champion is the person ultimately responsible to the top management for the results obtained by the Six Sigma project after the efforts by the team has been completed.

Job Specification

  • The Project Champion must belong to the senior management of the firm. This not only brings along tremendous experience, but also some bargaining power to the table. The Project Champion must be able to negotiate and get sufficient resources allotted to the Six Sigma team.

  • The Project Champion must have experience in conducting prior Six Sigma Projects. Experience in the role of Project Lead in prior Six Sigma projects is desirable. This is because it will allow the Project Champion to empathise with the Project Lead, who will deal with the Project Champion on behalf of the Project Team. An experienced Project Champion can differentiate between legitimate demand for resources and wasteful expenditure on the project.

  • The Project Champion must also be well versed with the quality tools that are used in the Six Sigma process. This is because, at the end of every stage, he/she will be the person making the final call as to whether the tollgate deliverables have been met and whether the Project should move forward.

  • The Project Champion must also understand the strategic goals of the organization. It is only then that he/she can ensure that they are selecting projects and allocating resources in a manner that is consistent with the long term view of the organization.


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