Lateral Thinking and Six Thinking Hats Essay

Lateral Thinking and Six Thinking Hats Essay

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If training and application of Edward de Bono’s Lateral Thinking and Six Thinking Hats strategy were to be adopted by American corporations, countless hours of “paralysis by analysis” could be eliminated. The groans are palpable when yet another meeting request arrives in the Outlook Inboxes of mid-level managers on a daily basis. And, while the participants are perpetually extolled to “think outside the box”, it is done so without really giving them the cerebral tools to do so. Even just providing today’s working intellectuals with one – defined – “thinking hat” would be helpful, but arming them with all six and how to apply them would work wonders.
De Bono offers that based on the way the mind works; we are hardwired to be un-creative and cautious. Therefore, formal tools and training are necessary for breaking out of our limited thinking patterns and methods. Lateral Thinking is his solution. Lateral Thinking is deliberately using specific steps and techniques to think creatively. Instead of linear or vertical thinking, which rely solely on logic, Lateral Thinking is a deliberate, systematic process of using cognitive ability to think in a different way. He opines that these proven methods make insight, creativity and innovation happen and by using these, he suggests that everyone can learn at least a basic level and proficiency on how to be more creative. Lateral Thinking provides the power to create ideas on demand (de Bono, 2007a).
De Bono developed his concept of the Six Thinking Hats in order to provide an illustration of the various means of thinking utilized by individuals within the problem solving process. Each hat represents a “mode” of thinking commonly used. The intent is to provide some definition ...

... middle of paper ... Is Not Enough. Educational Leadership, 42(1), 16.
De Bono, E. (2006, July 8a). Business Thinking Methods: Learning the skill of thinking with the help of formal methods and training. Retrieved November 14, 2007, from
De Bono, E. (2006, July 8b). Challenges in Business: Meet one of the biggest challenges in business and tackle the sacred cows of accepted practice. Retrieved November 14, 2007, from
De Bon, E. (2007a). Lateral Thinking. Retrieved November 14, 2007 from
De Bono, E. (2007b). Six Thinking Hats. Retrieved November 14, 2007, from
Quantrill, M. (1989). An Emmenthal Cheese Theory. Journal of Architectural Education (1984-), 43(1), 58-60.

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