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Greg chappel was coach for indian cricket team in 2005-2007He recounts an incident in South Africa where a minerals company was having a problem handling a vast army of unlettered and unruly miners who would often fight against each others, resulting in large-scale casualties and even deaths. "I had some lateral thinking sessions with the miners and the officials who worked alongside them, and in a month's time the number of incidents had dropped from more than 300 to just four."
Becoming the Devil’s Advocate
OPV: Other People’s view
Central black point is the focus.
What and how to improveReview current processOther viewWhat is working wellWhat is not working wellGenerate ideas to overcome weaknessChoose most appropriate ideas
Six thinking hats
Federal Express Hewlett-Packard
American Express Motorola
Barclays Bank Citibank
Du Pont British Airways
What is Common ?
The Problem ?
AUTHORITY suppresses discussions or questions –
no free flow of ideas
Arguments - leads to aggression, selection of facts to
support MY POINT
Facts are selectively used, (reinforcing point of view)
Thinking involves taking too many different paths at
one time – Emotions, Information, Logic, Creativity
Everyone thinks in the same direction at
any given point
Directions can be changed – but everyone
changes direction at the same time!
The Solution !
Dr. Edward de Bono
M.D., Ph.D., (philosophy,
medicine & psychology),
World-renowned consultant to
schools and industry
Author of 62 books in 40
Now 80 years old, came to
India in 2007.
Greg Chappell was using this method to improve
INDIAN CRICKET TEAM’S Performance
A division of Siemens reduced product
development time by 50%. A must for 3,70,000
ABB was able to reduce a series of multinational
project meetings from 30 days to 2 days.
Sri Lanka Govt stipulates all aid agency must
learn this method.
Basics of the Hats
Six (imaginary) hats that you can put on or
Each is a different color and represents a
different mode of thinking.
When we change hats - we change our
Look at all the weak points in our thinking.
Try to see why it might not work.
Reasons must be given
The skeptical view
Black Hat thinking -make planning 'tougher'.
Best, when done after Yellow Hat
Think positively, logical way
What are the benefits?
What is the value?
Reason must be given
Best done after Green hat
Stands for Creativity.
This is where you can develop creative
solutions to a problem.
It is a freewheeling way of thinking, in
which there is little criticism of ideas.
What are the possibilities?
What will overcome our black hat issues?
Focus on the data / information available.
This is where you analyze past trends ;
What do we know?
What we need to know?
Where can we get this information?
What view others have?
What info we need from them?
How could we get missing information?
Look at problems using intuition/emotion.
To think- how others will react emotionally.
Try to understand the responses of people
who do not fully know your reasoning.
No need to justify or give reasons for the
What are the feelings?
What is my gut reaction?
Which are most interesting?
Which ideas are most potential?
This hat is worn by people Chairing meets.
FOCUS (using active verbs)
TECHNIQUE (which hat after what hat)
TIME (how much time on which hat)
Managing The Thinking
Setting The Focus
New Ideas New Concepts
Overcome Black Hat
Problems & Reinforce Yellow
Why It May Not Work
Must Be Given
Why It May Work
Values & Benefits
(Both Known & Potential)
The Good In It
Must Be Given
Feelings & Intuition
Emotions Or Hunches
“At This Point”
No Reasons or Justification
Keep It Short
Information & Data
Neutral & Objective
Checked & Believed Facts
Missing Information &
Where To Source It
Rules of the Game
Each hat – 4 min,
Red Hat – max 1 min
Never use black hat after GREEN HAT
BLUE HAT•Every round begins and ends with
Using Sequence of Hats
Blue Hat: Decide Agenda and Sequence
White Hat: State facts
Green Hat: Brainstorm
Yellow Hat: List Advantages
Black Hat: List Pitfalls and Disadvantages
Red Hat: See how people feel
Blue Hat: Take final decision, assign Action Items
I am unhappy with the merger.
Retooling will take a minimum 3 months.
Our offer is most expensive on the market.
Low staff morale is causing high attrition.
We tried that and staff was not supportive.
It will increase our profile in the community.
I am concerned about staff morale.
Are we ready to commit to a decision
We could offer 2 for price of one.
Exercise- Which hat is this?
Meeting moves to a controversial subject.
Everybody overly enthusiastic about an idea.
Same old ideas keep coming up.
Key competitors are offering our most popular product
There is a need to find value in new idea
Meeting is running overtime.
There is no meeting agenda.
A new transfer policy is being framed.
An idea is perceived negatively.
Exercise- Which hat will you call for?
Guidelines for use of HATs
1. What and how to improve
2. Review current process
3. Other view
4. What is working well
5. What is not working well
6. Generate ideas to overcome weakness
7. Choose most appropriate ideas
8. Decide on next step
Guidelines for use of HATs
1. Generate new ideas about………..
2. Share background information
3. Generate ideas
4. Prioritize based on feedback
5. Manage evaluation process of ideas, one at a time
6. What is the benefit of this idea
7. What is the weakness
8. Generate ideas to overcome the black hat
9. Summarise the evaluated idea
10.Select ideas to move forward
11.What to do next