Applying Lean Six Sigma to NGOs and SMEs in Developing Countries with Andrew Parris

Andrew Parris shared “A Vision of Process Excellence and Seven Habits for the Journey” in a Lean Frontiers webinar in August 2023.

In the webinar, he explains how he merged the approach of Lean Six Sigma and other improvement methods from the corporate world with the vision, mission and values for a humanitarian organization into one consolidated approach.

He describes the five elements of process excellence: effective, efficient, appropriate to the stakeholders (respectful and flexible), empowering (local solutions) and continuously improving.

He goes through the 7 habits of process excellence, which are:


  • Organize the area
  • Make work visual
  • Standardize work


  • Eliminate waste (8 forms of waste)
  • Prevent mistakes (FMEA, mistake proofing)
  • Make work flow (single piece flow, kanban, level loading)

Scientific and Creative Approach

  • Solve problems (PDCA, DMAIC, Toyota Kata)

He shares examples of NGOs and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) applying Lean to their organization.

He also has a call to action to those interested in volunteering with NGOs, nonprofits and SMEs in developing countries.

Watch the video below, or go to

You can also access an article he wrote about the 7 habits for ASQ’s Quality Progress magazine.