Adam Kinakin is the Managing Director and founder of ILET Network, a community-based training platform for international Law Enforcement. A former Infantry Officer with the Canadian Armed Forces, he held various roles and was awarded instructor qualifications from many Canadian and international organizations. In July 2020 he created the International Law Enforcement Training Summit with annual attendance of over 10,000 from 75 countries. ILET Network has partnered with Federal, State/Provincial and Municipal agencies worldwide to support the evolution of training for Law Enforcement and First Responders. Adam attended the University of Saskatchewan majoring in Psychology and is beginning a Masters/Ph.D. program in Forensic Psychophysiology.
A common misconception about podcasting is that you need to be an expert on the topic. However, this is not necessary and you can draw from experts in the field to create content. You can also take a viewer perspective to ask questions that they would be interested in. Transcript: "All right, so we have a question. What are some common misconceptions about podcasting and how would we correct them? Well, one of the biggest misconceptions I think that people have is that I have to be an expert at what my podcast is about. And I tell you this right now, that is not the case. I started my podcast, Tactical Breakdown, in 2019, and it is built on my ability to draw information and expertise from the experts in their respective fields. So my entire podcast, I'm not the expert. I don't frame myself as the expert. I take the position of the viewer or my average viewer, and in our case, which would be a police officer, and I ask questions that I feel that those people would be asking those experts if they had the chance. And so the biggest misconception I see is that people think that they have to run the show, they have to know everything. And the fact is you do not. Find the people that are experts in your space, reach out, talk to them, let them share the information you just facilitate."
When looking for a good guest, it is important to ensure they are an expert in their field and have experience with public speaking. Transcript: "What do I look for in a good guest for my show? I guess there's a couple things. One is if I'm bringing them on as an expert, that they're actually a vetted expert in that field. You have to do a little bit of research if you don't know them extremely well and make sure that they actually know what they're talking about. There's nothing that's gonna hurt your podcast or your reputation more than bringing somebody on who has already been discredited in what they're gonna be talking about. The second thing, and this is a nice to have because you can do interviews with experts that are very uncomfortable doing interviews if you're a good interviewer and you can draw out answers that you need. But a nice to have is if that person is experienced and has been on podcasts or does guest spots on news channels or does anything publicly speaking related and has done that before. So if you can get a guest that is comfortable speaking on camera or on audio recording, that's gonna give you your best chance. Highly vetted guest with experience, get after it."
To keep content relevant and engaging, focus on making sure the evidence, information and content given is relevant and actionable so that the listener can get something out of it. Transcript: "This is an interesting question, and I was trying to think about how I was gonna answer this about keeping content relevant and engaging. Sometimes it's very difficult. It depends on what your space is, what you're talking about, and how you formatted your podcast. For me, it's a little bit simpler because I don't do a daily show. If you do a daily show, that can be very difficult because you have to have something new each and every day. For us, because we talk about training and we talk about the public safety space and we talk about law enforcement, we can pick on a topic and we may not touch on that topic again for six months. And so we just hyper-focus in making sure that all the evidence, all of the information, all of the content that we're giving is relevant, it's actionable, and so that the listener actually gets something out of it. I think of it like a training class. If someone's gonna take time to listen to me, I want it to be worthwhile for them. I want them to walk away with something that they feel like they got everything out of me on that day. That keeps them engaged over time. That keeps you relevant. Good luck."
The most important thing I've learned in podcasting is that no matter how good or bad your content is, you should be comfortable with it being good enough and put it out there to the world without worrying. Transcript: "Okay, what is the most important thing I've learned in podcasting? I'm going to give you one answer because I think this is the most important for me. The answer is that no matter how good or bad your content is, you're right. Because nobody is going to be more critical of what you put out than you are. And that's just a fact. You can sit there, you can nitpick your audio, you can fiddle with gain, you can fiddle with your equalizers, you can do all of those things. If you do video, you can say, I didn't like that take, I want to do it again. At the end of the day, nobody is going to be more critical than you. So don't worry about it. When you think something's good enough, you have to be comfortable with good enough. Put it out there to the world. I guarantee you, nobody's going to pick up on those minor, tiny details that you do. And you've got to let a little bit of that go."
Leadership, critical thinking, and decision-making are important skills for crisis management. Leaders must be able to think critically, understand their environment, and make decisions quickly in order to have a favorable outcome. Transcript: "So what types of skills were necessary for crisis management? This is an interesting question, and I think there's a few different ways you could take this. I'm going to go for like the overarching view, and there's a few key traits that I believe a person has to have in order to run a crisis situation, whether you're an OIC, whether you take incident command, leadership is one. I'm not going to break down the tenets of leadership, but leadership is one. Critical thinking is massive. Critical thinking and understanding the current operational environment and the tactical understanding of the environment is absolutely paramount in making the right decisions. And then that turns into another piece and another skill set, which is decision making. And the biggest problem is that you can have the best idea in the world, and if you're not willing to make a decision and live by it, nothing happens. We always say in combat, good or bad, just make a decision. That's really what this comes down to. So in crisis management, it comes down to being able to lead by example, think critically, and make decisions in a timely manner so that hopefully we come out with a favorable outcome. Good question."
I incorporate audience feedback and comments into my podcast by giving updates, information, and calls to action in the introduction. I also make sure to acknowledge and thank those who have left comments or feedback, as this encourages others to do the same. Transcript: "So incorporating audience feedback into my podcast, I don't do this very often, but when I do, usually it's framed out in the introduction to the episode. So I have a 15 second podcast intro that's standard. And then I usually take one to five minutes and give updates or information that I feel is relevant or pertinent to the episode, including maybe even an introduction to the speaker, or if you have any calls to action, you put them in there as well. So I like to incorporate that in there. If I do have them, so you give a shout out to the person who left the comment, you say where they came from, how much you appreciate it, and encourage others to do the same, because it shows them that you're willing to take their information and their comments to heart. You bring it back, you share it, and you'll get more people doing it. It'll be cool."