One of the interesting problem-solving and decision-making techniques for you to try to practice is the “Six Thinking Hats” method or technique.
This technique puts forward a parallel thinking approach which in a general sense conditions people working in teams thinking in the same direction or the same line of thinking, in accordance with the flow of how the brain works. The benefit of thinking in the same flow in the problem-solving and decision-making process is for an optimal decision outcome.
Through parallel thinking , decision makers can focus more. “Six Thinking Hats” was created by Edward de Bono and published in his book, under the same title, in 1985 and is continually being updated.
“Six Thinking Hats” may help you to see the problem from a different perspective, the continuous one by one, to avoid confusion due to too many angles that meet the person’s thinking. It is also a great decision-making technique to use in group situations, as everyone can explore situations from different perspectives at the same time.
The perspective of “Six Thinking Hats” and examples of its application
- White Hat:A hat that focuses on existing data. Look at the information you have, analyze past trends, and see what you can learn from them. For example, the problem of a bank with a low approval rate for working capital loans so that many prospective borrowers move to other banks. With animation like wearing a white hat, direct the conversation of the whole team to find and discuss supporting data. For example, what is the percentage approval rate each month in a year. How many prospective debtors have resigned because the process was slow? How much is the bank loss due to the decrease in income from throwing credit, etc.
- Red Hat:Seeing problems using your intuition, your heart’s reactions and your emotions. Also, think about how other people might react emotionally. After stopping talking about data, get into your intuition, feelings and emotions. What was felt by AOs, credit analyst officers, officers at the Head Office, even the complaints of potential borrowers.
- Black Hat:Using thought patterns by looking at the results of potentially negative decisions or the worst possible outcome. This is important because it highlights the weaknesses of a plan. This allows you to eliminate, modify, or prepare contingency plans to address them. If you are going to solve the problem by speeding up the SLA (Service Level Agreement) so that it is fast and competitive with other banks, what is the worst possibility? Banks will incur a lot of costs that can threaten to decrease annual profits, for example.
- Yellow Hat:this hat helps you think positively or view problem solving from an optimistic point of view which helps you to see all the benefits of the decision and the value in it. These thoughts help keep you going when things seem difficult. Even though it may cost you money, if it makes employees motivated, the image of the bank will get better, why not do it?
- Green Hat:It represents creativity. This is where you develop a creative solution to a problem. This is a free way of thinking originating from a condition where there are few ideas. Find ideas from all participants about possible alternative solutions, by changing the system, and other brilliant ideas.
- Blue Hat:this hat represents process control. This is the hat worn by people who chair decision-making meetings. For example, when faced with adversity because ideas are drying up, it can lead activity into Green Hat thinking. When a contingency plan was needed, they would ask Black Hat for thoughts, until a summary of the decisions was reached. It is necessary to narrow the discussion to the best possible decision.
Edward De Bono’s “Six Thinking Hats” technique is very useful for looking at decision making from multiple perspectives. This technique also provides a “room” to enter emotions or feelings into a process that opens opportunities for creativity in decision making. Decisions made using the Six Thinking Hats technique are generally quite sensible and are not difficult to do.