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Say It Shorter Say It Better: Communicating With Impact

“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”
Albert Einstein

We’re grateful to our expert speakers, Claire Fry and Janine MacLachlan, for sharing their wisdom and empowering us with specific and easy-to-implement strategies to refine our messages.  Our words and how we deliver them should resonate with our audience, captivate and engage them while delivering an impact that aligns with our intentions and drives us toward our desired outcome!

Here is the replay, and below are key takeaways, including content and links to resources from our speakers.


The Rule of Three

Janine MacLachlan, kicked off the program by explaining how our thoughts and thinking patterns manifest in threes: think, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  Once we add more than three points to our messaging, we lose our audience because our brains don’t process much past that.

Say It Shorter | Janine’s H Three C Framework

  1. Headline. Start with what’s important.  Don’t start with the evidence or the research.  Start with why this message is important, THEN give the evidence. This can sometimes also be your call to action.
  2. Three Points. Give three points, the essence of what will help your audience get to that call to action.  Keep it to three points, not ten.
  3. Call to Action. What do you want them to do with this information?  Go back to your intention and think about the action you want people to take after hearing your message.

Finally, TEST the framework!  Many people think, “I understand what I’m saying, so I don’t have to try it out.” Don’t skip this step!  Try it out with different audiences first to test the clarity and impact of your message. Did it achieve the desired outcome? If not refine it.

Say It Better | Claire’s Three W’s Framework

The science is very clear: we trust someone’s tone over the actual content of their message.

Claire shared her three-part framework to answer this question: How do we, as women, support the voices that we have, in an authentic way, to make sure our message gets heard the way we want it to get heard?

  1. Wind. Take a deep breath! It’s good for your brain and nerves and helps prevent vocal creak! Vocal creak occurs when we are not fully on our breath, not fully resourcing our voice. Wind does not mean yelling but rather anchoring our voice. And, always take a breath during a transition.
  2. Weight. What Claire means by weight is terminal downward inflection, or better said, landing the end of your sentences.  This is especially important when we are brought in as a subject matter expert. Repeatedly ending sentences with an upward inflection compromises your credibility.
  3. Wit.  Don’t play it safe by staying in the middle of your voice.  Show some personality. This also projects authenticity – and helps us build trust and influence our audience.


Claire Fry is a voice actor, corporate trainer, and executive coach. She has voiced thousands of projects for companies like Google, Anthem, and Cisco.  She believes that the essentials of voice training for actors – training in quality, connection, and authenticity – should be taught to everyone in every profession where communication matters. Claire has brought Vocal Confidence training to students at Stanford, top executives at Fortune 500 companies, and client-facing teams across multiple industries, from tech to healthcare.

Learn More

HERE are some additional materials from Claire, including a two-minute warm up (with video), a list of five techniques you can practice every day to improve your Vocal Confidence, microphone recommendations, and the C.L.E.A.R. Communication Card.  You can also sign up for her monthly newsletter and check out her YouTube Channel.


Janine MacLachlan is a communications strategist with deep experience in brand building and business storytelling. Janine has trained hundreds of executives and spokespersons to elevate their delivery on television, at the podium, and in high-stakes meetings. Her philosophy is that being a confident presenter stems from “what you say” and “how you say it,” breaking down each into actionable steps that enhance clarity and forge an emotional connection. Her “Say It Shorter” framework particularly resonates with knowledge professionals eager to share their expertise but are challenged with sifting through all their knowledge to determine what will influence and inspire their audience. MacLachlan honed her skills by advising iconic brands, including Procter & Gamble, Quaker Oats, California wine, and Sargento cheese, through leadership positions at global agencies. She contributes to Forbes on leadership strategy and to Fast Company magazine.

Learn More:

HERE is a list of Janine’s articles, videos, and books to support you on your communications journey!  Janine is a keynote speaker and workshop designer.  Her 2024 Topics are included in this downloadable PDF.

A Final Message:

We hope this program empowers you to manage your message, fine-tune your voice, elevate your presence, and communicate with impact!  And be sure to check our Claire and Janine’s other resources!

Please reach out to us to learn more about our firm, CAP STRAT, and if we can help talk through your financial life to ensure the approach and resources you have in place are creating the success and outcomes you desire.

Here’s to moving forward with clarity and confidence!

Please let us know if you would like to have a conversation with us. Email the CAP STRAT Women’s Forum with any questions at! Or call us at 630.320.5100.

Barbara Best

Barbara Best, AIF® is a Founder and Principal of CAP STRAT, and Founder of the CAP STRAT Women's Forum


Nancy is a Principal and founding partner of CAP STRAT, and Founder of the CAP STRAT Women's Forum

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