Powerful Words Produce Powerful Results


At the Institute of Podiatric Excellence and Development (IPED), one of our primary strengths is our diverse membership. Our mission is to help individual podiatric professionals from students to new physicians, all the way up to veteran podiatrists getting ready to retire. We all learn from each other. Those fresh out of school can share the latest and greatest teaching tools and techniques and experienced practitioners have a wealth of experience to draw on when mentoring those just starting out. One of the tips we’ve heard from these seasoned podiatric doctors is, “Say it like you mean it!”

A good physician needs to see things from the side of the patient. It’s important to understand how your message is being perceived. In situations where the practitioner seems vague in their communication the patient may doubt the correctness of the treatment and not adhere to it. It’s critical to hone your presentation skills to the point that you come across and confident, reassuring and understanding. Strategic words can be a tool that helps you reach that goal.

Words to Use:

The words below are ones that will help get your point across succinctly and with confidence, and will hopefully lead your patient to a place of understanding and compliance.

  1. “important”

  2. “critical”

  3. “very important”

  4. “necessary” 

  5. “significant” 

  6. “vital” 

  7. “essential”

  8. “you need”

Words to Avoid:

These words can come across as “gray” and confuse your patient, causing them to feel unsure about their treatment and/or diagnosis.

  1. “we can’t”

  2. “maybe”

  3. “probably”

  4. “possibly”

  5. “perhaps”

  6. “most likely”

  7. “likely”

Practice your delivery to patients with colleagues and even family or friends, working in strategic words when appropriate. It will soon become obvious what makes a patient feel more confident in what you are saying and more willing to follow the treatment plan.

In addition to colleague-to-colleague sharing at meetings, IPED offers several other ways for members to get the information they need to stay current with regulations, improve their practices, and most importantly, provide their patients with the best possible care and outcomes. If you’d like to learn more about membership and its many benefits, contact our Executive Director, Ruth Ann Donahue, by calling 978-296-7634 or emailing us at: RADONAHUE@PODIATRICEXCELLENCE.ORG.