Faculty in Lean Six Sigma Program, College of Professional Studies
As an industrial performance engineer at Nestle Foods just a year out of college, Tina Agustiady used the skills and knowledge she gained from her first Lean Six Sigma certification to save the company $400,000. Over the last decade, she has used these principles to enhance operational excellence and save millions of dollars for many other leading corporations, such as Tyco Healthcare, MetLife and Philips Healthcare.
The American Society for Quality presented Professor Agustiady, an adjunct professor and course designer of professional certification programs in Villanova’s College of Professional Studies, with its Feigenbaum Medal in 2016. The award recognized the substantial ways in which she has applied her Lean Six Sigma expertise as an educator and leading practitioner in industry.
A combination of two gold-standard approaches to process improvement—Lean and Six Sigma—this methodology improves quality and efficiency in any industry by minimizing variation in processes and eliminating defects and waste. “It’s about the pursuit for perfection—always striving to get better, often through small, incremental improvements that build on one another and lead to transformational changes,” Professor Agustiady explains.
In 2021, she took on a new role as vice president of Learning and Development at JPMorgan Chase & Co. Leading training efforts for the multinational investment giant, she serves as an expert trainer to executive and front-line leaders and deploys Lean tools, methodologies and principles to a workforce of more than 270,000 financial-service employees.
Since joining the College of Professional Studies in 2015, Professor Agustiady has shared this knowledge and expertise with thousands of professionals in a wide range of industries. She has seen her students use Lean Six Sigma to drive significant business impact—from major manufacturing corporations and financial-service firms to the US government and nationally recognized health care facilities.
“The applications are endless,” says Professor Agustiady. “It starts with knowledge transfer and building a leadership culture that empowers and encourages people to identify areas for improvement. Then you can implement the methodologies and tools to put systems in place that can transform the way you do business.”
Attaining the highest designation of expertise in the field as a Certified Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt, Professor Agustiady literally wrote the book on the subject—seven, in fact, including her most recent, Building a Sustainable Lean Culture: An Implementation Guide, which was published in July.
Design for Six Sigma: Practical Approach through Innovation, a book that she co-authored with Elizabeth Cudney, received the Crosby Medal from the American Society for Quality in recognition of its impact in advancing the application of quality methodologies and principles. It’s an implementation guide for creating a Lean Culture from the ground up while gaining buy-in from key stakeholders, and it includes a full set of case studies to demonstrate real-life applications.
“I’ve taught people from Abbott to Boeing to Toyota to Target, as well as students in all industries at Villanova,” Professor Agustiady says. “The sky’s the limit with Lean Six Sigma—it has always had a strong foothold in manufacturing and engineering, but the methodology has just evolved so much that people from all sorts of industries want this training.”
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Pritpal Singh, PhD
Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering