How Gear Patrol's Product Manager, Caitlyn Shaw, Grows Our Audience, Platform and Revenue

A core member of the team, Caitlyn Shaw is Gear Patrol's Product Manager and focuses on building products that contribute to our platform, audience and revenue growth. To say that she's worn many hats is an understatement — Caitlyn has been a part of the team since 2015 where she's worked on all facets of the business: editorial, social, marketing and now product. We sat down with Caitlyn to talk about GP, her role as the company's first Product Manager and what she's been up to in our new normal.

Hey Caitlyn! So tell us a little bit about yourself. When did you join the team, what roles have you held and what do you do at Gear Patrol?

My time at Gear Patrol began with a summer internship in 2015. After the internship, I was able to contribute to the Style Desk and some other projects while finishing my Master’s. I eventually held the full-time roles of Social Media Coordinator and Associate Audience Development Editor before actually leaving the company for a role at another publication. While it was formative to work in a new environment with such smart and talented people, I ultimately returned to Gear Patrol as Consumer Marketing Manager in 2019. My role is now Product Manager, Growth, and my job is to nourish and cultivate products that contribute to Gear Patrol’s platform, audience and revenue growth.

In moving from editorial to social, marketing and now product, what is one of the most challenging or rewarding projects that you’ve worked on?

It's hard not to mention the most recent project I’ve been a part of, which was Gear Patrol’s CMS migration. Our CEO, Eric Yang, described the project well when he said it was like removing Gear Patrol’s digital backbone and replacing it with another one. The project had many moving parts and challenges — working from home, mobilizing teams across timezones — but seeing our team rise to the challenge and knock it out of the park was certainly rewarding.

Having been on so many different teams at GP, what’s something that you’ve learnt or taken with you at each role?

Understanding what drives my professional decisions early on has helped me make better decisions as I grow in my career. I’ve learned that my diligence, a traditionally positive quality, can become less positive if I’m acting from a place of stress or anxiety. I like to work under pressure and enjoy putting in long hours to take a project to the finish line, but if the pressure becomes anxiety, my decision making isn’t as sound. I understand what it feels like to put 100 percent into a project only to discover that something unexpected has been overlooked, so knowing this about myself has also helped me compassionately relate to other team members and find solutions.

How do you see product evolving at Gear Patrol? What’s next?

Great question! The future is pretty exciting right now. With a few months of working from home under our belts and a brand new CMS with capabilities that we’re still unearthing, the possibilities for iteration and innovation feel endless. My focus for the rest of the year is to balance fine-tuning the products we already have with also launching new ones where there’s a demand for them.

With our new normal, what have you been up to outside of work? Any fun hobbies or projects that you’ve been working on?

One of my favorite parts of working from home has been mornings sans-commute. On weekday mornings, I do a 30-minute workout via Zoom with my mom and sister, then settle down with a bit of reading and reflection.

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