Use ‘6 thinking hats’ to bring-out divergent thinking and solutions

6 thinking hats (by Edward de Bono)

It is a role-playing model for effective decision making and problem solving. This methodology is based on the premise that different personality types (optimist/pessimist/analytical etc.) think differently and therefore provide different perspective to the same problem/challenge.


  • Assign a specific hat (colour) to each member
  • Each member looks at the problem as per their assigned personality traits and provide ideas/suggestions or ask questions
  • One member will note/record all the inputs to capture all perspectives

As an alternative approach to this method, same colour hats could be assigned to all the members at a time and then rotate with different hats subsequently. Everyone wearing a same color hat could encourage all members thinking together in the same direction the same time.  

Use: The method is effective in bringing out divergent thinking and varied options for an otherwise homogeneously thinking group 


  • You can choose to use all or few of the colours (hats).
  • Don’t ask who needs which colour hat, just assign.
  • Also, you don’t need an actual hat to perform this exercise, just write on a paper or use coloured post-its to provide a visual reminder of the personality.

Have you tried ‘6 thinking hats’ with your team? I will be happy to hear about it.


Piyush Singh

#innovation, #problemsolving, #ideation, #brainstorming,

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