What Are The Six Thinking Hats? – Their Roles And Objectives

Edward De Bono’s Six Hats Method is a powerful and creative approach to communication, if you design your communication efforts such as speeches, meetings, dialogues, posters and announcements, according to this model, you will increase the chances that your message is conveyed in an original, clear and effective way. After reading, you will understand the basics of this powerful decision-making method .

What are the six thinking hats?

It is a system designed by Edward de Bono that describes a tool for group discussion and individual thinking with six colored hats, which together with the parallel thinking of the associated idea provide a means for groups to plan processes in a detailed and cohesive way. , and in doing so think together more effectively.

It is a simple but powerful technique, which can be used by individuals or groups , and has a dramatic impact on the situation under consideration, is easy to learn and implement, and produces immediate results. By incorporating principles, it enables collaborative, focused, and directed thinking.

What are the six hats to think about?

There are six imaginary hats, each one is a different color representing a different style of thinking and direction. Only one is worn at a time: everyone in the group wears the same hat, this means that everyone is now thinking in parallel in the same direction. In this way, a joint and objective exploration of a topic is done, each person is free to focus on doing their best to explore the topic objectively rather than simply presenting a case.

In addition to placing individual hats, we can use sequences of more than one hat. The sequence will vary from topic to topic and the objective of the thought, there are certain guidelines regarding the configuration of sequences, but there is no fixed “ideal sequence”. Sequences provide tools to perform more complex thinking operations.

White hat

It is the information hat, the user is required to search for specific and objective information related to the project or question in question. Look at the information you have, analyze past trends and see what you can learn from it, look for gaps in your knowledge and try to fill in or take them into account. The white hat is objective and does not imply any judgment on the value of the information.

The role

The metaphorical role of the white hat is the detective.

A detective looks for clues, evidence and facts to help them solve a case, they openly acknowledge that evidence can be misleading, therefore they maintain a neutral stance and do not jump to quick conclusions. Instead, they wait for all the facts to be presented before reaching a conclusion.

In precisely the same way, a white hat collects data and statistics that help you gather the information you need to reach logical solutions based on facts, that is essentially its main role. Collect this evidence to help other Thinking Hats overcome the problem more effectively.

The white hat should, however, avoid making conclusions or judgments about the information it has collected, as jumping to conclusions or making unwarranted assumptions could derail the problem-solving process.


Throughout the problem-solving process, the white hat has a predefined set of goals that it seeks to achieve and by achieving this , it is better able to synchronize its habitual thought patterns with the other hats, which subsequently leads to a more efficient process. and cash that brings to light a greater variety of solutions and opportunities. These goals include:
  • Provide statistics, facts, and data that can be used to solve the problem.
  • Prioritize facts over opinions and beliefs.
  • Highlight gaps in knowledge, perspective, and awareness.
  • Provide logical solutions to the problem in question.
The main objective is to collect relevant data, statistics and information about the problem . This is designed to help open up new avenues for brainstorming potential solutions, these facts are based on questions that address the what, when, where, and how of problem solving.

Red Hat

Invite the user to focus on their intuition, gut reaction and emotion, think about how others might react emotionally, although emotions and intuition are not easy to explain, feelings play an important role and decision making too. Try to understand the responses of people who do not fully know your reasoning.

The role

The metaphorical role of the red hat is the heart.

A heart is a very intuitive organ that perceives subtle changes in feelings and emotions when circumstances change.

In precisely the same way, a red hat brings out your intuitive feelings and opinions to help guide the problem-solving process – that’s essentially the primary role. Intuitively presents solutions and effective directions for further action based on your personal feelings and hunches.

You should avoid rationalizing or trying to justify your feelings, there is no logic here. You must primarily follow your instincts.


These goals include:

  • Bring out intuitive ideas.
  • Look for other people’s feelings and hunches.
  • Explore the emotional point of view.
  • Reveal hidden forces behind ideas.
  • Identify weaknesses based on hunches.
  • Discover hidden internal conflicts.

The main objective of the red hat is to intuitively remember proposals and action plans based on your personal feelings and hunches.

Our feelings are very interesting and somewhat mysterious chemical processes that stimulate mental activity in the brain, when they are pure and far from emotions and personal prejudices, they can guide us in unexpected directions towards solutions that, logically, we would never have considered. The red hat is very open and seeks to identify and clarify the feelings of other people. Then, intuitively, they relate that to the problem at hand.

The black hat

It is to judge, to see the possible negative results of a decision. It is an opportunity to be critical or skeptical without inhibition, a useful technique to avoid mistakes and guard against over-optimism, this is important because it highlights the weak points of a plan. It allows you to eliminate them, alter them or prepare contingency plans to counteract them.

The role

The metaphorical role of the black hat is the reaper .

A reaper is a mythical creature that brings death and destruction to the living, it is not necessarily good or bad. Yes, its nature is dark and gloomy, however, like everything in life, it has a purpose and plays a critical role in the cycle of life.

In precisely the same way, a black hat is pessimistic and gloomy by nature, always seeking to identify holes, flaws, weaknesses and dangers in ideas. He doesn’t do this to be spiteful or destructive, but to remind himself of worst-case scenarios that may not have been considered.

Sharing these scenarios helps the other hats put appropriate contingency plans in place to overcome potential problems.

The main role of the black hat is to evaluate, judge, notice and analyze the solutions and plans that have been presented by the other thinking hats.

But you should avoid remembering personal biases tinged with fear, jealousy, anger, or any other harmful emotion that may prevent a solution or magnify the problem.


These goals include:

  • Bring out potential faults and hazards.
  • Highlight inappropriate resources.
  • Eliminate weaknesses and bad ideas.
  • Question inadequate contingency plans.

The main objective of the black hat is to expose all the possible failures and dangers that could derail the objectives that you are looking to achieve. Every solution you can think of may look wonderful on the surface, but below the surface, it could be fraught with dangers.

The black hat is great for finding fatal flaws in potential plans and solutions before jumping headfirst into a pool full of hungry sharks and eliminating all weaknesses and ill-thought-out ideas. It does so indirectly through its pessimistic and critical nature.

Yellow Hat

Dedicated to benefits, it helps users think positively about potential outcomes, seek the merits of an idea, and come up with an optimistic assessment of how it can work. This hat helps maintain momentum and a positive spirit in the face of a challenging situation.

The role

The metaphorical role of the yellow hat is the sun.

A sun is bright, happy and powerful, it helps bring life to everything it touches. In exactly the same way, a yellow hat produces a positive, welcoming and radiant energy that brings every idea to life.

It seeks to instill positive ideas in the problem solving process that improves motivation and opens doors to new opportunities and understandings.

The main role is to move through the myriad of obstacles to find a solution in a realistic and positive way. He sees no limits or limitations and believes with all his heart that if there is a means, then they will find the way.

The yellow hat should avoid getting caught up in pessimistic thoughts and avoid remembering hopeful solutions based on hypothetical facts, feelings and opinions.


These goals include:

  • Explore the benefits of each scenario that is presented.
  • Look for possible opportunities that may exist.
  • Do a positive risk assessment.
  • Evaluate the feasibility of ideas.
  • Infuse the problem solving process with positive energy.

The yellow hat persistently seeks benefits, sees a problem, and brings to mind effective contingency plans and solutions that help pave the way. Your main goal is to find answers that lead to a greater variety of opportunities.

Another main objective is to evaluate the feasibility of the ideas based on the resources (skills, knowledge, time and support) that you have available.

The ultimate goal is to instill a sense of positive expectation that moves the problem-solving process forward . Therefore, approach each challenge with optimism, patience, determination and resolve.

Green hat

Representing creativity, exploring possibilities, alternatives and new ideas, this hat can be intimidating, because many people tell themselves that they are not creative. Like a muscle, creativity can develop and strengthen with practice, giving people a safe space to think creatively.

The role

The metaphorical role of the green hat is the seed.

A seed sprouts from the ground and grows persistently over time, spreading its leaves and branches in many unexpected directions. In exactly the same way, a green hat instills a growing and growing sense of unpredictability in the thought process.

The green hat is not controlled by rules or limitations, it knows and understands that it is free to think beyond the rules and limits of reality. With this in mind, generate a host of mind-blowing and creative ideas that expand the possibilities and reveal unique and seemingly unexpected solutions.

The main role of the green hat is to open the doors to unique creative ideas and perspectives that break the limits of reality and open new understandings and opportunities, you  should avoid criticizing or judging the ideas that it brings to mind.


These goals include:

  • Expand thinking and awareness of potential ideas and solutions.
  • Think outside the box and bend conventional rules and practices.
  • Provide creative ideas and solutions.
  • Install new perspectives through creative ideas and ideas.

The main role of the green hat is to expand the possibilities of reality in surprising and unexpected ways beyond methods.

It seeks out new strategies, tactics, and methods for thinking about problems, then twists them into multidimensional ways that lead to new ideas, answers, and understandings.

You are not bound by standard rules of thinking about a problem, you understand that rules are made to be broken. And so it completely ignores all the rules and guidelines, instead, it is always thinking, expanding, analyzing, daydreaming and manifesting crazy and outlandish ideas that sometimes make no logical sense.

Blue hat

It is the organizing hat, it controls the process of using others and clarifies the objectives, it can also be used to explore the process of implementing an idea.

The role

The metaphorical role of the blue hat is the film director.

A film director manages actors, cameramen, filming angles, props, and scripts that are critical to creating a successful movie experience. In precisely the same way, a blue hat manages the thought process, allowing a better synergy between the thought patterns and habits of the other hats.

Here’s a breakdown of the roles it plays:

  • Gather global perspectives on the problem and the solution.
  • To manage the other thinking hats.
  • To manage time.
  • To manage the flow of ideas.
  • Manage the implementation of ideas.

The main role of the blue hat is to think in the process of thinking.

Every thought you have is focused on improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the process, this is subsequently filtered through the other five hats. The smoother, faster and more efficient the process, the greater the probability of finding a practical solution.

However, the blue hat must clearly describe the problem in writing, if you do not clearly define the problem, you will waste precious time directing your energies to irrelevant thoughts, activities and tasks.


These goals include:

  • Improved efficiency and effectiveness of the thinking process.
  • Ask appropriate questions to help direct thought.
  • Outline of an agenda, rules, objectives and tasks for problem solving.
  • Organize ideas and develop action plans.

The main objective of the blue hat is to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the thought process. The better you are able to handle the “thinking” of the other hats, the more easily you can identify the key ideas and insights needed to speed up the problem-solving process.

The Blue Hat understands that asking the right kinds of questions can generate useful ideas and possible solutions. However, you should ask these questions with caution, you should ask questions that help stimulate the thought process, and you should do so in a way that minimizes the personal biases and limitations that each hat brings to the table.

The ultimate goal of the blue hat is then to collect all the ideas, facts, and opinions presented by the other thinking hats. You then use that information to structure a practical action plan to solve the problem. The more thoroughly you are able to reconstruct these scattered thoughts and ideas, the more ammunition you have to carry your plans to fruition.

Website | + posts

Hello, how are you? My name is Georgia Tarrant, and I am a clinical psychologist. In everyday life, professional obligations seem to predominate over our personal life. It's as if work takes up more and more of the time we'd love to devote to our love life, our family, or even a moment of leisure.