Littlewoods Shop Direct Group embarked upon a long term business improvement programme designed to transform the way the company approached its customers, and its approach to tackling process improvement and performance.

The group decided to base its approach on the Six Sigma methodology, incorporating elements from other related approaches - such as Lean – as appropriate. The programme was entitled 'Customer 1st' to reflect the priorities of the time and the cultural shift in thinking required.

Paloma Consulting were engaged to support a 'diagnostic' exercise and following proposals and comparisons with other leading Six Sigma and Lean consultancies, was selected to support the deployment of Six Sigma practitioner training across the group. The bulk of this activity has centred around a 3 ½ week customised training course providing skills near to Black Belt standard, with the training spread over 4 months and including 1 to 1 mentoring sessions by Paloma. Formal certification was provided to rigorous standards regarding technical competency and the delivery of projects during the training. Over 150 practitioners have completed the training in 9 waves spread over approx.. 18 months. Additionally, Paloma have lead 2 day 'Foundation' Training, and facilitated Executive sessions which have greatly increased the leadership's understanding of how to leverage the capability for results.

During the period, Paloma have exhibited high professional standards, with a flexible approach to match the needs of the business, and have produced many high calibre practitioners who have impressed senior executives with their ability to achieve results and present their projects in a clear and precise manner. Paloma bring a wealth of experience from a wide range of organisations, with an ability to draw relevant parallels with best practice in practical problem solving. This has greatly assisted the uptake and application of the techniques to an industry sector relatively new to this type of approach. I would have no hesitation in recommending Paloma to anyone looking for a high standard of knowledge transfer, adopting a collaborative and flexible approach to match the needs of the organisation.

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Pete Winterton
Customer 1st Group Deployment Leader