Learn how to structure your thinking to deliver high-quality insights that support fast and effective decision making.
Life's too short to be reworking drafts. Get fast decisions instead.
Too many of my clients tell me they spend their nights and weekends reworking important communication multiple times and still don't get the results they need..
Our Express course offers 11 compact modules that will help you clarify and communicate your message no matter how complex.
It introduces structured thinking techniques developed by top-tier consultants and recontextualised for executives in business and government.
Taught by Davina Stanley, author of The So What Strategy. Davina has introduced structured thinking techniques to professionals globally for 25+ years, having been approved by Barbara Minto to teach the Minto Pyramid Principle (R) in 2009.
Clarity First Express provides practical ideas and examples at every stage
Gain a high-level perspective with the first 3 modules
The first 3 modules introduce our So What Strategy structured communication approach including
- Our high-level approach and how to use it for all kinds of communication
- Thinking strategies to use when communicating (and solving problems)
- Hacks to help you employ the ideas within corporate templates such as business cases, board papers and other corporate communication frameworks.
Watch the remaining 8 videos and complete the exercises
Each module includes a short video with notes and exercises. We explain how to
Design your strategy – clarify your purpose, understand your audience (deeply!) and plan your working process.
Develop your storyline – create context with your introduction, articulate your single ‘so what' message, build logical and engaging case using either a grouping or deductive structure.
Deliver your communication – how to communicate your ideas verbally, in prose or PowerPoint.
Download and use the notes, templates and tools
We drip feed tools and templates alongside each concept, eg
- our storyline planner to help implement the ideas immediately
- prose templates and PowerPoint samples so you can ‘flip' your storyline into a deck or a doc asap
- our 7 favourite storyline patterns to short-cut lengthy writing processes and deliver clear and compelling communication more quickly
- practical examples in every module drawn from my 25+ years' experience in helping executives of all stripes to engage their stakeholders.
Register now for 3 digital bonuses valued at $99 …
♦ A copy of our book, The So What Strategy (your choice of digital or physical)
♦ A desk reference highlighting our Ten Point Test to help you evaluate your storyline structure as well as our 7 storyline patterns
♦ A bundle of 7 annotated PowerPoint decks illustrating how a storyline translates into a PowerPoint
300+ EXECUTIVES HAVE COMPLETED THIS COURSE SINCE JUNE 2021
Learn from an expert
I began helping others clarify and communicate complex ideas professionally at McKinsey in the mid 1990s. I trained in the Minto Pyramid Principle® under some of the best and was approved to teach others by Barbara Minto in 2009.
Since then I helped Boston Consulting Group in Australia design and deliver their structured communication program and have helped thousands of people globally to communicate better at work.
Mixed with education and business creds
My skill-building approach blends my corporate experience with my background as a professional communicator and educator who runs her own business.
Despite not practicing as a kindergarten teacher for long, the skills I learned are invaluable when helping adults.
Running my own business has given me greater understanding of leadership and its challenges, as well as greater business acumen. It has also given me opportunities to put structured problem solving techniques to work in the real world.
To help experts engage others in complex ideas
In thinking about where I can help the most, I consciously oriented my programs toward helping those who know a lot about something to engage others who know less.
This can be a tricky bridge to cross but worth doing if we think that truly good ideas only have real value when they are understood.
It is also incredibly satisfying to see experts not only succeed at their communication, but to lift their confidence in their professional abilities and in themselves.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who is Express for?
Express is designed for professionals who need to communicate at work.
The techniques can be applied to everything from emails that are more than about three lines long to those wanting to write a book. For example when communicating
To superiors: You may need to put a proposal to your superiors about a change to a project, inform them of your progress or ask for funding.
To your team: You may need to communicate with your team to explain something you need from them or perhaps cascade down a message from people elsewhere in the organisation.
To outsiders: The techniques are also helpful in communicating with people outside your organisation such as customers, suppliers, regulators or others.
The techniques are useful anywhere you need to be confident you are understood.
What is structured thinking?
Structured thinking is a technique developed at McKinsey & Company during the 1960s by a team led by the Firm’s first female consultant, Barbara Minto.
The team leveraged universal thinking techniques to develop a highly structured way to distil the essence out of complex material and convey it clearly and convincingly.
The structure itself becomes a ‘thinking machine’ that helps not just tidy ideas so they are neatly organised, but to actually identify what they are.
By knowing the techniques, you can see when ideas don’t belong and then work out what to do about that. Do you move them, remove them or modify them to give the structure integrity?
Knowing the techniques enables you to make these decisions quickly and intelligently.
What is the difference between Express and the Clarity First Program?
The name says it all: If you want to learn to communicate better quickly and independently, then Express is for you.
If you want a deeper route supported by small group coaching and potentially also a series of practical workshops, then you may enjoy the Clarity First Program.
If unsure, start with Express and then enjoy the 20% discount we offer for registering in the more detailed program.
What is the difference between Express and Basics?
Basics includes the first three modules of this course.
You might see it as being a ‘taster', which you can try to see whether the approach is for you.
Does my access expire?
Access to the modules does not expire. As long as our website exists, you can revisit the course.