How I Grew This

Director, Growth Product @ The Athletic: Caitlin Roman- Rewards of the Unknown

Episode Summary

Caitlin Roman brings her collective experiences in consulting at McKinsey and Product at Linkedin & Medium to the world of sports news at The Athletic. Having come up in these subscription powerhouses, Caitlin has a potent combination of high level business strategy experience along with the tactical ability to work side by side with her teams to execute. All of these elements were crucial for a subscription business like the Athletic during a tumultuous 2020 in sports. Caitlin and her team released a number of initiatives during this time including different content formats like short format commentary and breaking news, and pricing strategies to keep users tuning in even when sports weren’t in play. If there’s a word we would use to describe Caitlin it would be resilient! Far before she was leading her team through the bumps of the pandemic, she had two keystone experiences that she shared on the show that shaped her. The first is her passion for media at a young age. Working as a newspaper editor in both high school and college, Caitlin sought out the challenge of the daily deadline for her daily newspaper. She talks about the late nights and stress but attributes this as the reason why she loves working in the trenches with her teams today, drawing similarities to product management. Before Caitlin found her way to Linkedin, she lived and worked in Ethiopia as a part of a Gates Foundation initiative in agriculture. During a solo trip in a gorge in Kenya, she fell and broke her back and had to self-rescue. After this grueling experience she recovered, but Caitlin didn’t only not fly home but continued her work at the time setting up microfinance systems for farmers. To hear more about Caitlin’s amazing story about how she found her way into product in subscription powerhouses, how she thinks about leading her teams, and her adventures in Ethiopia, take a listen to this episode of How I Grew This.