Traditional argument is totally useless for such a design process. Instead, we need Parallel Thinking, where each thinker puts forward his or her thoughts in parallel with the thoughts of others-not attacking the thoughts of others. The Six Thinking Hats method is a practical way of carrying out Parallel Thinking. This method is of fundamental importance because it provides us, with a practical method of constructive thinking. The Six thinking Hats method allows the brain to maximize its sensitivity in different directions at different times.
It allows an individual to think in different perspectives on a subject matter. Six thinking Hats method is an example of lateral thinking. In an argument, an individual acts as an adversary in a confrontational manner where each party deliberately takes an opposite view. In an argument, if two people disagree, an argument happens where both of them tries to prove each other wrong. In parallel thinking (Six Hats Method), both views, no matter how contradictory, are put down in parallel.
At a later stage, if it becomes essential to choose between different positions, then an attempt to choose is made at that point. If a choice cannot be made, then the design has to cover both possibilities. At all times, the emphasis in Six hats method is on designing a way forward whereas in an argument, the end conclusions yields no results, confrontational too. Six Hats helps in constructive criticisms but in an argument, talks are not constructive and objective is to just to take a contrarian view and demolish the opponent’s views.
The colour of each hat is related to its function: 1) White Hat : The white hat is neutral and objective. The white hat is concerned with objective facts and figures. 2) Red Hat : Red suggest anger, rage and emotions. It gives an emotional view. 3) Black Hat : Black is sombre and serious. The black hat s cautious and careful. It points out the weakness in an idea. 4) Yellow Hat : Yellow is sunny and positive. The yellow hat is optimistic and covers hope and positive thinking. 5) Green Hat : The green hat indicates creativity and new ideas. ) Blue Hat: Blue is cool and it’s also the colour of the sky, which is above everything else. The blue hat is concerned with control, the organization of the thinking process and the use of the other hats.
The management personnel in an organization can adorn different hats as mentioned above at the initial point of discussion. An organization if it adopts the Six Hats method in discussions and all those involved in discussions if they adorn different hats , it is pretty sure that a good decision can be made. ) How it helps an organization to explore a subject: The Managing Director of the organization can ask his key personnel to adorn different hats. For example to start with a blue hat should or always be used both at the beginning and the end of the session and mostly a blue hat is adorned by the MD. Wearing a blue hat, the MD can ascertain the background to the thinking or problem; decide what needs to be achieved with the discussions, the final outcome and the solutions thereafter.
What follows after a blue hat depends on the nature of the thinking. The hats can also be used one after the other in a certain sequence and by following this method, different opinions on a subject evolves. ii) Make decisions: The first purpose of the six thinking hats is to simply thinking by allowing a thinker to deal with one thing at a time. Instead of having to take care of emotions, logic, information, hope and creativity all at the same time, the thinker is able to deal with them separately.
Switching roles using different hats, decision making becomes easier since there is a consensus approach. Today in business, as elsewhere, there is a huge need to be constructive and creative. There is a need to solve problems and to open up opportunities. There is a need to design new possibilities, not just to argue between two existing possibilities. Parallel guides thought processes in one direction at a time so we can effectively analyze issues, generate new ideas, and make better decisions. ii) Reduce the time taken for project discussions: Six Hats method allows a switch in thinking. For example: If an individual in a team has persistently negative thinking, he can be called to remove his black hat and wear a yellow thinking hat, which is a positive request. Yellow hat will force the individual to think positively on a subject matter. Also, occasionally the team in discussions can go-in for a formal structured sequence of wearing hats, which will reduce the response time for project discussions.