Tips for Physician Speakers at Community Events

Attire

Wear something you are comfortable in.  If you don’t normally wear a tie or high heels, don’t.  Wear business attire or pressed scrubs.  Consider wearing a lab coat, especially if wearing scrubs.  It looks both “doctory” and professional.  Well-groomed fingernails and clean shoes are a must – as they are typically two areas people tend to notice.  Ladies, wear a little foundation and be sure to put on powder.  Mascara and lip color will enhance your face.  Men, be sure to be clean shaven and have a fresh haircut.

Presentation

Keep the prepared talk about 20 – 30 minutes long, allowing time for questions.  Consider using PowerPoint, rather than notes.  Keep slides simple and don’t put everything you plan to say on the slide.  Only use pictures where they enhance the concept, not just to look nice (i.e.: picture of cancerous lungs for smoking cessation).  Be sure to speak in layman’s terms or explain medical terms, such as using the phrase high blood pressure in place of hypertension. 

Take care not to be salesy about yourself or the practice.  Let your presentation, engagement with the audience and knowledge be the sales tool. 

Handouts

Participants usually appreciate anything they can have as a take away.  Develop a one page “pearls of wisdom” on the topic that they can take and be sure it has your logo on it.  Bring business cards.  If additional literature is available on the topic or about the practice, feel free to have available.