Feedback from ‘Making an impression’

Feedback is important for any speaker. More importantly the results should be shared otherwise how do we reflect?

This was the first of a new series of talks to podiatrists. If you wish to book a talk please contact me. I can provide my own visual equipment, and this will help to save on costs. Please write to for further information

David Tollafield was a former University Senior lecturer, examiner and clinical tutor. He is now a foot health journalist and author and provides selected professional talks. Talks are offered to lay and professional audiences

Read more below about my own self-critique. 

Venues and different talking periods

The target audience included podiatrists in England; Poole, Dorset and Shrewsbury, Shropshire and Newton Abbott, Devon,  with podiatrists. A modified version of this talk was also provided to podiatric foot surgeons at Daventry as a TED talk in March 2019. TED talks are much shorter and highly focused on narrower themes. The length of a talk is usually 45-60. TED talks are around 18 minutes.



My talk, ‘Making an Impression’, focused on communication with patients and delivering information. We had plenty of audience discussion and touched on interviewing skills and dealing with a specific topic called interdigital neuroma. An information pack accompanied the talk supported by my 2017 publication Morton’s Neuroma.

Feedback was analysed and considered six areas.

  1. Audience sensitivity
  2. Message clarity
  3. Relevance to occupation
  4. Visual material
  5. Balance between speaking and visual
  6. Sufficient time for questions

Ninety-two percent thought the talks were good or excellent, 7% about right and 1% poor.



Analysing – ‘Making an Impression’

What were the strong aspects found in this talk?

  • ‘Love the way you present, the emphasis Is so refreshing – we need more of this type of presentation’.
  • ‘Everything’
  • ‘Reassurance for the patient and info!! Therefore image of our perfection and care.’
  • ‘Spend time listening to the patient. All very good.’
  • ‘I liked the concept of training about a condition via the patient’s journey’
  • ‘Ideas around leaflets & U-tube video’
  • ‘Use of personal anecdotes’
  • ‘Excellent. Learned a lot about our skills’
  • ‘Promoting profession’
  • ‘Knowledge excellent’
  • ‘Interaction and interview communication’
  • ‘Very rounded – bringing together and updating many aspects of my profession consolidating and highlighting skills – often taken as granted and not always valued.’

For 2019-20 I shall be presenting a new talk based on my latest book,
Bunion. Behind the Scenes.

Please note that talks are not directly taken from the book which is based on patient access. Clinical information is used to support the book. Whilst stocks last all books are offered at a discounted price to attendees. 

If you want to engage David for a talk please contact me through my e-mail address and book now. This article was updated October 2019.

The illustration at the top of this article is the author speaking to an audience of podiatrists at the University of Johannesburg in 2015

(C) Un. Johannesburg