What is the Six Sigma Black Belt?

In the Six Sigma program there are multiple different levels that one can attain. These levels follow a similar standard as one would find in martial arts, with different colored belts. For most people, the highest level that they will need to attain is going to be the black belt. There is also a master black belt level, but that is beyond the scope of what most people pursue. The black belt, however, is an excellent accomplishment that can provide many benefits to the person who gets it, those who they mentor, and the company for which they work.

How to Become a Six Sigma Black Belt

In order to attain the Six Sigma black belt, one must complete a number of different objectives. First, they must have completed two Six Sigma projects, and have signed affidavits that they were done. Another option for this requirement is to complete one project and have three years of experience in an area of Six Sigma. The individual will then have to take and pass a Six Sigma black belt exam. This is a 150-question exam that takes up to four hours. It is a common misconception that one must be a Six Sigma green belt before becoming a black belt. This is not actually required, though many people do take that route.

What do Black Belts Do?

Once someone has earned a Six Sigma black belt, they will have essential roles in many different projects for their company. As a black belt they will be leaders of projects, typically reporting only to high level management or a master black belt. In addition, they will train and coach their project teams to make sure everything goes smoothly. Finally, black belts are typically responsible for mentoring other individuals who are seeking green belts, or those who want to become black belts themselves.


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