Some years ago I administered the Birkman Behavioral Assessment® to a group of high level members of a national physician executive organization. What differentiated them most from my control group was their elevated interest in “persuasive behavior.” Note, the Birkman assessment interprets “persuasiveness” with an orientation towards direct, persuasive communications.
While interests may or may not translate into actual behaviors, those results showed a heightened awareness in the need to convince others of their message. Most physicians don’t place a high degree of interest or actual behaviors on persuasiveness. And, in clinical practice, patients offer physicians a deferential level of persuasion based on experience and the simple credibility of, “being my doctor.”
Outside of practice, in pursuit of a nonclinical career transition as well as in nonclinical work, physicians, like everyone else, need to be selling their ideas, their recommendations and their results constantly.
While starting your sentence with, “As a physician,” may turn heads and gain initial
attention, it won’t guarantee you’ll get your way.
Persuasiveness is a skill, and a skill that can be learned. Learn to make a case for your point and presently it knowledgeably, logically and cogently, and you’ll find many more opportunities for success await you.
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