Systematic, Deliberate Thinking is not Easy to Do
Your friend Joe calls you to say a recruiter from another company has unexpectedly called and presented him with a very attractive offer to head up a new department. He almost said yes right away, but he replied "Let me think this over and I'll get back to you."
In the afternoon you meet with Joe during a 15-minute coffee break:
"I'm so excited! This is the job I've dreamed about! But I am going to hurt a few people I'm working with now. How do I break the news to them? Then there's my wife and her job. She'll be happy with my bigger salary but will she want to move? What about the kids? I'm sure they'll be happy when we put them in private school. Selling the house will be a pain but looking for a new one should be fun. I know, we'll make it a family affair! Yah! Wait a minute, I'll have to negotiate a new mortgage. Perhaps I should ask about mortgage loans for employees. If they want me, I'll make that part of the deal. Hmm, maybe not. I need to appear humble, not arrogant. Uh oh, I have a meeting tomorrow about starting a new project. Hey, it's my chance to make some serious demands. If I don't get them, I'll tell them to find someone else to lead it. I can do this now with this offer in my back pocket. Then again, I don't have it writing yet. Gosh, I'm so confused. Can you help me think this through?"
The first step is to make Joe aware of his current thinking process which is random, unorganized, a free for all. No wonder he's confused! In terms of Hats, his mind is quickly jumping from hat to hat in a random, disordered way.
You believe the best way to help him isn't with more ideas and suggestions to add to his already cluttered head but to improve his thinking process. Joe is aware of Six Thinking Hats but so far he just uses it for classification: "Oh, that's a Green Hat idea" or "Why are you wearing a Black Hat?"
He's ready for the next step - thinking in a deliberate, systematic manner. With the remaining time left in the coffee break, what Hat sequence would you propose to Joe?