10 questions for our podcast supremo, Wayne Wallgren, CIS, CITP

The man behind the mellifluous voice:

10 questions for our podcast supremo, Wayne Wallgren, CIS, CITP

Wayne Wallgren is a true legend of SITE and of the incentive travel industry at large. He started the MICE360 podcast as a chapter initiative with SITE Texas and quickly came to our attention at SITE HQ as a great broadcaster with a great knack for finding a great story. He has already created a wonderful repository of great podcast content featuring themes, topics and personalities that’re purposeful, relevant and truly engaging. These can all be accessed on the MICE360 platform (access here) and via our regular links on SITESource. For 2021, SITE HQ is partnering with Wayne to develop a podcast series under the “Build Back Better” presidential theme.

Wayne Wallgren Podcast.jpg

Here are the 10 questions we asked Wayne.

1. Was there always a hidden broadcaster in there somewhere? Did you DJ as a student?

I think a lot of kids have that thought run through their head, but I never felt like I had the voice or focus to do anything like that. When I started the podcast, I realized it was really just talking.


2. What Podcasts do you listen to yourself?

Most are travel / destination related or cooking. Rick Steves for its “from the ground regular traveler" inside perspective for travel and Special Sauce, Serious Eats for cooking. Kenji Lopez-Alt has a great way of laying out food and how-to so you can give it a try. There are others, but these two are my regulars. 


3. Podcasts have been around for more than a decade. Why the sudden rise in popularity? 

I initially thought podcasts were dying, then I started one. I think, with so many people looking for a quick story fix while working out, cooking, relaxing, etc., the time allocation, the ability to jump in and out, the no cost nature of it, all make it attractive. And topics are endless.


4. 3 - 5 people, living or dead that you'd love to interview?

Anthony Bourdain, Tom Petty, Barack Obama, My Grandmother - Alice Kelley (that’s where the Irish side of me comes from), Vince Flynn - author


5. What makes a good podcast subject? Is it the topic or the interviewee?

It can be a little of both. If the interviewee can relax and treat it as a regular conversation between two friends, it seems to flow better. Asking the right question helps set that up.


6. What can we do with a podcast that we can't do with any other medium?

You can tell a story or create a mental picture that someone can sit in the dark and listen to, and let it take them away.


7. We're about to start a Take 5 Podcast on "Build Back Better". What's your own Build Back Better story?

Every setback primes you for a better result the next time you’re “at bat”. It’s just part of what we, as an industry, do.


8. If it were in the public domain and free to use, what musical sting / riff would you select for MICE360?

Easy - "I won’t back down" by Tom Petty. That’s my personal anthem.


9. I want to start a podcast. What's the min investment to get myself up and running? What equipment do I absolutely need to buy?

You need the software to record and edit. I use a Mac laptop and it comes with an app called GarageBand that does what I need there, and you need a decent microphone. I use the Blue Yeti, which, depending, will run $90 - $135. You can get by with just those two items if money is really tight. And you need a host. There is some free out there, but the host puts ads on it. Pay to host (as low as $7 a month) and the ads are your own.


10. What's on the docket for MICE360 in 2021?

Wow! More things than I’ll be able to get out this year. More Chapter to Chapter, Women in Leadership, International leadership and members, Legacy Leaders, A Family Affair, Experts Say. These are some of the topics / series titles that will be part of 2021 and beyond for me. As I meet people or have conversations with folks I already know, topics, people and ideas keep getting in my head. Like I said - more than I can get out this year. 

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