When you are researching Lean Six Sigma training there are so many options; White Belt, Green Belt, Yellow Belt, or Black Belt. Understandably, the most common question is, which belt level is right for YOU?

All of the belt levels are designed to teach the DMAIC business performance improvement methodology. Where they differ is the depth of knowledge and skills. Here is a simple guide for navigating belt level is appropriate for you.

White Belt

This is an introductory level belt for people that are looking to learn the basics of Lean Six Sigma.

  • If your company is deploying Lean Six Sigma, this is the belt for learning what it is and the key tools and concepts that are going to be introduced at your company.

Yellow Belt

This belt is designed to prepare you to serve as a team member on Lean Six Sigma projects.

  • If you are looking to learn more than the basics introduced in White Belt, but not ready to commit to Green Belt or Black Belt, this is the belt for you.
  • If you are a team member on a Green Belt or Black Belt project, then this is a great belt for you. Yellow Belts are equipped to be effective team members on Lean Six Sigma projects.
  • If you are looking to lead simple continuous improvement projects, the tools and techniques introduced to Yellow Belts will assist in solving basic business problems.

Green Belt

This belt is designed to prepare you to lead comprehensive Lean Six Sigma projects.

  • Most Green Belts manage projects on a part-time basis.
  • At this level, you will learn and apply various tools and techniques at a greater depth than Yellow Belt. In addition, statistical analysis software and other analysis tools and techniques are introduced. These tools are the foundation for leading comprehensive projects.

Black Belt

This belt is designed to prepare you to lead complex Lean Six Sigma projects.

  • Most Black Belts manage projects on a full-time basis.
  • If you are looking to lead projects and can afford the time and cost to earn your Black Belt, this belt level provides the most robust training.
  • Black Belts are proficient in achieving business performance improvement success through the utilization of a comprehensive suite of tools and techniques. At this level, your training incorporates even more statistical tools, change management and leadership skills.
  • Black Belts often coach Yellow Belts and Green Belts in business performance improvement.

Master Black Belt

This is not the same as the other belt levels.  Master Black Belt is a designation for Lean Six Sigma Professionals that are trained in several business performance improvement methodologies such as:  Six Sigma, Lean, Design for Six Sigma, Advanced Statistics, Presentation Skills, and Change Management.  In addition, Master Black Belts have has many years of experience in leading projects, coaching other belts, and facilitating training.


pdficon_largeUnderstanding the Various Lean Six Sigma Belt Levels_Published by Acuity Institute


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