Six Thinking Hats – Perhaps Seven!

Six Thinking HatsHave you ever thought about thinking styles? The book Six Thinking Hats may be a good read to get you started in understanding your own style as well as how you participate in a group. Beyond this, it is a wonderful definitive way to add thinking dimension to group work.

Six Thinking Hats was written by Edward De Bono in 1985 and revised in 1999.

De Bono’s concept of hats and specific focused thinking styles is very helpful when brainstorming or approaching something difficult or new. This book and concept is great for the classroom and the boardroom.

Hats can be used singly to request a type of thinking or they can be used in a sequence to explore a subject or solve a problem.

  • White Hat Thinking: Facts, Truths and Philosophers
  • Red Hat Thinking: Emotions and Feelings
  • Black Hat Thinking: Careful and Cautious
  • Yellow Hat Thinking: Speculative and Positive
  • Green Hat Thinking: Creative, Lateral thinking, Alternatives
  • Blue Hat Thinking: Control

Let me put forth a Seventh Hat – The Orange Hat. This would be the Zig Zag Hat that performs all other hat functions. It’s purpose is to create some creative chaos and perhaps spark a new direction or strengthen a quiet hat’s viewpoint or soften a noisy hat’s enthusiasm. The Orange Hat is energy and chaos. The Orange Hat participates only in the middle of the planned conversations and group work. The Orange Hat would have limited time and interruption parameters and can be overridden by The Blue Hat.

For those of you that have read the book, let me know what you think about it as well as my proposed “Orange Hat”. If you haven’t read this book, I highly suggest you add it to your reading list.

This is a best of post from 2009.



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Filed under Books to Read, Business Marketing Strategies, Client Management Strategies, Communication, Communication Strategies, Creativity, Knowledge, Philosophy, Productivity, Terms, Thinking

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