A Little Out of Practice (nervous)
In the early years of my career speaking in front of large group was not that uncommon. It started with new business pitches when I worked for a few large public relations and marketing firms and then included internal education efforts as I “grew up” within the agencies.
When I started my own business almost 20 years ago in Washington, DC – having to do the a song and dance for new business or current clients was not uncommon. In fact I kind of liked standing in front of a room and doing the talking.
However, let me tell you: running a small “website support” business offers a lot less regular speaking opportunities. Today most my meetings are held via video conference or old fashioned telephone. I still get on a plane fairly regularly and meet with clients, partners and vendors but rarely am I asked to “speak”… Let’s rephrase that… just about never am I asked to prepare a presentation.
Who Would Say “No” to San Diego?
When a long time client, American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, asked me to meet them in Dan Diego, CA and present a large project we have been developing at their board meeting, I jumped at the opportunity. So on October 4th of this year I presented FaceForward a new online medical board certification application that we have been planning and developing for just about a year now and will launch in 2020.
A Custom Medical Board Certification Examination Platform
The application itself is a fully custom built examination platform. The complexity is in building it in such a way that it meets industry requirements for medical examinations and ease of maintenance for years to come.
The examination platform allows plastic surgeons looking to maintain their board certification the opportunity to choose between 3 modules (Reconstructive, Cosmetic or Combined), each module contains about 5 surgical protocols and each protocol has about 10 multiple choice questions. The protocols (or surgical cases) are presented in text, image and video format and contain references. Because this tool has not yet been released, I’m not going to include detailed screenshots in this post.
We had to build in some features to ensure that an examinee could not traverse back to change answers, was allowed two chances to get each question correct and that scores were cumulative across all protocols within a module. The exam is only available for 10 months a year so we also had to build it so that exams could not be started or finished outside of the active dates and that reminder emails are sent to examinees that have incomplete exams at certain points prior to exam expiration.
I am happy to say that the presentation was a big success and spurred a lot of good conversation from the medical board. Of course hanging out in San Diego for a few days is never a bad thing.
“We are all over the moon about the presentation yesterday!”
– Laurie Wirth, ABFPRS Executive Director
It Wasn’t All Work, But Then Again it Wasn’t all Play
It wasn’t all business in San Diego. My daughter who is in the 10th grade now has shown interest lately in attending a California university. So like my father did when I was kid, I brought her along on a business trip and we had some fun on the side.
We toured University of California, San Diego and the University of San Diego. After the first tour she looks at me as says “that wasn’t as stressful as I thought it would be.” My response was just the opposite, application criteria and tuition costs had me feeling like I just climbed a high altitude mountain!!