Showing posts with label Thinking Hats. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Thinking Hats. Show all posts

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Applied Psychology series (1/4): Wear Your Thinking Hats

critical thinking
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The ability to 'THINK', is possibly the greatest skill possessed by we humans.

Ironically, thinking through all aspects, taking into account the time perspective, collateral implications, balancing emotions & rationality does not come natural to us.

In most cases, we end up with 'not so good decisions' & in the hindsight we uncover the judgement errors we made.

If these lessons learned were embedded in our cognition & next time around we were better off in our thinking & decision making, it would mean we are progressing & getting better.

For some of us, this does happen [wiser folks :)], but then there are majority of us who end up 'herding' to our old thinking pattern & decision making.

Edward de Bono's 'Six Thinking Hats' is a very powerful yet simplistic model, which can help in enhancing our thinking ability & facilitate better decision making.

Six Hats method is synonymous to 'Parallel Thinking'.

Parallel Thinking, is holistic approach, multi-dimensional view, putting all views on the table & choosing the best alternative keeping aside ego & bias.

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The colour of each hat is related to a function:
  • White hat: White is neutral & objective
The white hat is concerned with objective facts & figures.
  • Red hat: Red suggests anger, rage & emotions.
 The red hat gives the emotional view.
  • Black hat: Black is sombre & serious.
 The black hat is cautious & careful. It points out the weakness in an idea.
  • Yellow hat: Yellow is sunny & positive
The yellow hat is optimistic & covers hope & positive thinking.
  • Green hat: Green is grass, vegetation & abundant, fertile growth.
 The green hat indicates creativity & new ideas.
  • Blue hat: Blue is cool, & it is also the colour of the sky, which is above everything else.
 The blue hat is concerned with control, the organisation of the thinking process & the use of the other hats.

Advantages of Six Thinking Hats concept:
  • Power: Intelligence, experience & knowledge (in a group setting) are fully used.

  • Time Saving: Divergent point of views are put alongside (in parallel) & based on merit, a decision is made. (This is different from being argumentative).

  • Removal of Ego: Six hats, put asides confrontational & adversarial thinking, which feeds into ego issues. (Six hats method provides a neutral & objective exploration of a subject).

  • One thing at a time: Processing information, managing feelings, exploring options, walking the line of caution etc all happening at same time leads to confusion, which adversely affects good thinking. Six hats model, helps us to entangle these threads & take one aspect of thinking at a time.

For a detailed understanding of the concept, one can refer to the book 'Six Thinking Hats', by Edward de Bono.

Psychology Today had quoted in it's review - "We owe de Bono a debt for constantly reminding us that thinking is a skill & can be improved".

It is indeed a great book, to invest our time, if one seeks to improve their thinking & decision making skill.