The concept of Six Thinking Hats basically provides a secure environment to everyone at a meeting for giving ideas, expressing positive or negative aspects, as well as sharing emotions.
The perception of making efficient use of six different colored hats was first developed and introduced by Edward De Bono. It can effectively be used to get the participants to both think logically and creatively about generating as well as assessing different ideas. Six thinking hats can be used in a creative session in the following process sequence.
Let’s see what is it that each one of these colored hats stands for:
1. Blue Hat: This hat is worn by facilitator of the meeting who ensures that an effective process for the ‘six thinking hats’ is adhered to. He opens the meeting by issuing a purpose statement regarding what the meeting is to cover. He then proceeds to define each of the other hats as well as the best possible order available for progressing through them systematically.
2. White Hat: This hat is worn by the participant who reviews the available data on the topic under discussion. Every participant who wishes to contribute any real data related to the topic, whether positive or negative, should present it without any interpretation or bias.
3. Green Hat: This hat is worn by the participant who initiates the generation of workable ideas. He employs creative methods for generation of ideas, such as creative thinking or brainstorming methods like random words that initiate the process. He reminds all participants to provide ideas only and not express their own opinions about them till all appropriate hats which follow do so.
4. Yellow Hat: This hat is worn by the participant who ensures that all other hats see the positive side of the items generated by the process of the green hat. He must be constructive when he discusses the opportunities and benefits that each one of the ideas potentially offers.
5. Black Hat: This hat is worn by the participant who allows each of the other hats to put across their respective negative assessment about the idea in a manner that is non-argumentative. He further discusses risks, errors, or faults related to items that are under discussion. All hats can freely ask questions that help to clarify the potential processes or ideas which can be followed.
6. Red Hat: This hat is worn by the participant who follows up the process to determine the best ideas that can be pursued from the yellow hat as well as the creative solutions for problems which the black hat identified.
The Red Hat offers an opportunity for expressing emotions or feelings attached to best available option or options chosen.
The affecting discussion of specifically what each participant of the meeting experiences, or the reactions which they believe the others to have, helps to resolve the issues. This process can result in better plans for several contingencies expected.
Using this sequence in a Six Thinking Hat creative session allows every member of the meeting to feel extremely comfortable while sharing ideas.