This paper deals with the design methodology of multi-variable flight control systems through a H
∞ loop-shaping technique. A new procedure for the design of non-diagonal pre-and post-compensators is described. In particular, important improvements over existing methods are introduced to both make the selection of weights easier and to contain the order of the resulting controller. The new procedure can be easily managed through suitable Matlab commands and functions, thus simplifying the whole algorithm implementation and providing an effective control system design with a minimum effort. Two typical design problems are addressed: a pitch pointing control system and a lateral controller for coordinated turns. In both cases, a good decoupling between existing channels is obtained by means of a non-diagonal pre-compensator which shapes the plant transfer function, and provides the desired response settling time. The design approach is particularly effective even for nominal plants with strong cross-coupling between channels. The design procedure is illustrated with the aid of a Matlab/Simulink model of a single seat fighter aircraft. We show that a trade-off between the conflicting requirements of fast response and moderate use of control surfaces can be easily managed by varying the constant terms of the diagonal post-compensator.