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Brain circuits

PACK: Four steps for effective communication

Published 10 July 2021 in Brain circuits • 1 min read

We all communicate, all the time. And yet, most people have never really been trained in how to construct their messages to have maximum impact. By following the PACK model, leaders can practice delivering clear and credible communications more consistently.

The P stands for purpose: it answers the question: why this, why now? Why are you communicating and what is it you are trying to influence? What do you want people to think, feel and do as a result of your communication?

The A stands for audience: who is your audience, what is unique or specific about them? How might you need to tailor your communication to meet their needs?

The C stands for channels: what channels will you use to communicate? Which is your main medium and which support channels will you use? For example, your main channel may be face-to-face or virtual, followed up by an email or link to a site where the detail of the message is available to read.

The K stands for key messages: what are your three (maximum) key messages? What are your supporting facts and examples that give credibility to each of your messages and bring them to life?

One of the beauties of the PACK model is its versatility: it can be used whether you are creating a speech or whether you are planning an important conversation. Remember, the key is to practice as neurons that fire together, wire together. Enjoy the greater impact you will have from effective use of the PACK model.


Susan Goldsworthy - IMD Professor

Susan Goldsworthy

Affiliate Professor of Leadership and Organizational Change at IMD

Susan Goldsworthy OLY is an Affiliate Professor of Leadership, Communications and Organizational Change at IMD. Co-author of three award-winning books, she is also an Olympic swimmer. She is a highly qualified executive coach and is trained in numerous psychometric assessments. She is Director of the IMD Executive Coaching Certificate.

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