Managing Mic-asuras!

I was an invited speaker for a conference, 1-year post-MS. I demonstrated a FESS surgery as an invited faculty, 2-year post-MS. I was an invited international speaker in a phoren (!) country, 3-year post-MS, and speaker for an instructional course for our national conference 4-year post-MS. That was purely due to my AGILITY or aggressiveness. (AGILITY is one of the critical factors for a good presenter – remember ABCDEF!). However, I always faced a drawback. Being a youngest invited faculty, I got the left-over timings during the initial days. For my bad luck, it always happened, there was always a senior co-faculty who got all the prime pampering speaking or performing slots! While some of our senior faculty had a great sense of time, most others did not. Once they were on the stage, they took control of the stage, irrespective of the attention status of the audience. The time they stretched from the allotted time was directly proportional to their stature! They loved the microphones! I call them Mic-asuras! All Indians know asuras! The organizers were helpless, as they were students of this faculty, or they thought the success of their event was solely dependent on this personality. It’s a catch-22 situation. You can’t stop someone who has contributed immensely to the growth of our specialty and pouring their heart out there.  

During the early career of my life, most of the time, I was asked to cut down my presentation, sometimes by one-third of the time allotted initially to me! There is a great saying, “You cannot change the event, but you can change how you respond to it.” As a junior, I didn’t have any other alternative. That is when I developed a concept of a three-tier presentation technique.  

One of the great values I have inculcated from my alma mater, the PGIMER, Chandigarh, is the importance of time. I have never crossed my allotted time in any event. Rather, I have always ended my presentations a few minutes earlier, because I am always prepared with 3-tier presentations. A little extra time provided an opportunity for a Q & A session, an excellent opportunity for great speakers to prove their metal. I got all gold medals (17 medals) for paper presentations at the state, zone, and national level mainly because of time management during my presentations. More than that, it gives you an excellent photo opportunity! You get sufficient time to get clicked with the chairpersons, and while getting your certificate and memento, blah blah blah… (Rewards and Celebrations are part of a success cycle!). It hurts me when some good presenters with excellent content, cross their time limits during paper competitions in conferences. 

Three-tier presentations involved, preparation of three versions of the same presentation fitting different time scales. The first full presentation for the allotted time. The second one for 2/3rd of the time allotted and the third one for 1/3rd of the time assigned. I prepared these versions in such a way that the core message I wanted to convey was not last, and the audience remembered your core message, not the presentation. We have the option of jumping the slides. However, it’s difficult to judge which one to jump when you are on stage. (It also hurts to jump when you have prepared something painstakingly). You also have risk leaving a poor impression (as un-prepared, non-confident, or man-in-hurry) in the audience’s mind. Your core message gets lost.     

In our country, we can beat the mic-asuras only that way. If you cannot convey your core message in one single slide, a slide-arrhea will not help you. Did you wonder why the famous TED talks are limited to 18 minutes only?   

These are some tricks and tips about presentation and public speaking skills I got in a hard way. I will be giving away more secrets at our “Presence & Present 2020,” webinar series.  

Embryology is often a neglected topic by most otorhinolaryngologists. But, the management of congenital ear problems is still a virgin area, and there is a big vacuum. It is an essential topic for all Otologists, specifically those with keen interests in implantology! We will be discussing embryology and the gross anatomy of the temporal and lateral skull base during our Otology Ninja program today.  

I take this opportunity to invite you for our tomorrow’s guest session on, “Voice rehabilitation of post-laryngectomy patients,” Dr. Vishal Rao, Regional Director of HN Oncosurgery and Robotic surgery of HCG Cancer Center, Bangalore. This event has a great motivational value for junior colleagues as he will be demonstrating his innovation – an economical voice prosthesis, a Make-in-India product. 

Date: May 12, 2020. 

Time: 04.00 – 05.00 PM. Indian Time (+5.30 GMT). 

Topic. Post-laryngectomy voice rehabilitation. 

Speaker: Dr. (Prof.) U.S. Vishal Rao. M.S., FRCS (Glasgow). 

Regional director for HN Oncosurgery & Robotic Surgery, HCG Cancer Hospital, Bangalore. 

With warmest regards, 

Dr. Prahlada N.B  

Read More

Breathe life into life-science presentations

Brochure update of Otology Ninja program.
Program brochure of PNS Imaging
brochure update of Presence & Present 2020 program.

Dear all,

I pray this message of mine finds you all at the best of your health and cheers.

Presentation and Public skills are crucial for all doctors. Presentations are not just for presenting clinical/research work. Presentation and public speaking help us in creating a brand image for ourselves. Multinational companies invest millions of rupees and appoint celebrities as brand ambassadors to drive their brand image. Unfortunately, we doctors cannot do that as we are bound to ethical values. Our best investment in creating brand value is our presentation and public speaking skills (PPS Skills). We are our brand ambassadors! PPS skills not only create a brand; they a personality for ourselves. I attribute my referral base for my clinical practice to my PPS skills.

Medical or life science presentations are unique. But, unfortunately, many medical presentations are dead or dull. We must breathe life into them. For that, we need six essential skills – ABCDEF. A – Agile, B – Body language, C – Candid, D – Design & Delivery, E – Evidence & F – Flexibility & fluctuation. We will be teaching how to hone those skills in our program “Presence & Presence 2020.”

Our Webinar series on Temporal bone radiology is coming to an end tomorrow. We had more than 800 participants from all over the world who logged into this Masterclass. Rather than teaching, it was an excellent learning experience for me. I take this opportunity to thank everyone who participated in those programs. Next Thursday, we are starting Masterclass on PNS Imaging (C.T. & MRI). We are developing the HRCT Temporal Bone app, instructional videos with animations, and a dedicated website on a war footing. Here is the first look of a 2-D animation (without voice-over and music).

On Tuesdays, we will have guest faculty from diverse backgrounds, speaking on different topics related to us. This Tuesday, on May 12, 2020, Dr. Vishal Rao, a celebrated HN Onco-surgeon, shall speak on “Voice Rehabilitation in Post-laryngectomy Patients.” He will also introduce his innovation – “Most economical voice prosthesis.”

Many friends expressed an interest in participating in the “Automate: Automating research article writing process” program. Unfortunately, the price of one of the essential software, the endnote, has been raised to nearly 25K. An endnote is a critical software that helps in easy referencing. It is a 30k investment for all software provided you have a licensed version of Microsoft Office or Office 365. Anyway, it is a good investment. However, it works out significantly cheaper for institutions. If colleagues, still interested in investing and taking part in this program, please write to me.

We have got an equally good response for two new programs – Otology Ninja, and Presence and Present 2020. As we are still at the beginning stage, registrations are still open. Interested colleagues, please write to me for registrations.

I have a firm belief that you are taking good care of yourself and your families during these testing times.

With warm regards,

Dr. Prahlada N.B.

Read More


Otology Ninja brochure about deconstruction.

One of the Japanese principles of management is Deconstruction. That is, if there is a difficult task to perform, break it down to its constituent parts. It’s also known as chunking. Deconstruction is also a popular time management method. We can also call it as divide and rule, which the English successfully used to rule India for more than 300 years, and now our many of our politicians are using!

Nevertheless, “Deconstruction” is a useful technique I have used to master the most challenging surgeries successfully. When we divide the whole surgical process into several individual steps, the task becomes more manageable. For example, I have demonstrated the endoscopic DCR surgery by dividing it into individual phases in the picture enclosed. When we carefully study the steps and execute them, the whole surgical process becomes more manageable. East step is akin to a single pearl, and together we can make into a beautiful pearl chain!

I have developed more than 20 such techniques to teach and perform surgeries. And I will be sharing those techniques in our “Otology Ninja” program starting tomorrow. I thank all colleagues from all over the world for an overwhelming response. Our objective is to make you the best Otological and lateral skull base surgeons. And together, we can achieve it.

Our other program, “Presence and Present 2020,” is also starting tomorrow. Other than the presentation and public speaking skills training, the participants will also get 100 great medical PowerPoint slides, 1000 icons, graphics, pictures and animations designed by our team, as a gift and only one day left. Interested colleagues, please contact me ASAP.

With best regards,

Dr. Prahlada N.B
(Please write to me only on email).

Read More