Director, Consumer Insights & Innovation

Posted 5.6.24
Seattle, WA
Who We Are:
At Brooks, we believe a run can change a day, a life, the world. Everyone who works here is a key part of our obsession to make the best running gear on the planet. We want our business — which also happens to be our passion — to be a place where everyone feels welcome and comfortable being themselves. Our company culture defines us, bonds us together, and drives our success. We live this culture daily through our brand values: Runner First, Word is Bond, Champion Heart, There is no “I” in Run, and Keep Moving. This means we always solve for the runner, do what we say we will, give it our all, are generous with our humanity, and find a way to keep moving every day, because joy is kinetic.
Are you ready to help create something extraordinary?
Your Job:
The Run-Sight Lab (RSL) is the Consumer Insights ‘engine’ of Brooks. The team applies design thinking and a mixed-method research approach to unlock a deep understanding of the key wants and needs of all who run and are active. That understanding is used to anticipate future needs of consumers, empower internal teams with deep insights and recommendations to transform how we create innovative products and strategies.
As the Director, Run-Sights Lab, you will lead and manage the RSL, including Design Research, Qualitative Research, Quantitative Research and Program Management teams along the insight journey harnessing collective wisdom and perspective to uncover the most meaningful consumer insights. You’ll oversee all research and consumer innovation projects and collaborate cross-functionally with other departments and leaders throughout the organization to determine the enterprise consumer research needs and prioritization.  You will own the development of a 3-year research roadmap and vision that articulates the strategy (including RSL capabilities) that will bring us closer to our consumers, uncover more meaningful insights, and translate them into more actionable outcomes and initiatives.
You and your team will curate travel to key global markets to conduct deep empathy and ethnography research with consumers in their environment and explore and utilize innovative methods and tools to facilitate effective research with those who are active in virtual environments. Through their eyes you will uncover key motivations, aspirations, challenges, and triumphs along their fitness journey. Armed with these powerful insights you will empower your teams to dream big and generate game-changing ideas that will make their journey better than it is today. You will utilize creative synthesis techniques to distill ideas into the most impactful propositions that can be prototyped. You will create collaborative environments where teams can be fearless to build, test and learn quickly as they refine the prototypes into game changing concepts for the brand to bring to consumers. You will cultivate relationships and conversations with other leaders across the company to understand their consumer and business challenges that can be explored and solved through insights-based research. Outside the walls of Brooks, you’ll be the external face of our consumer research, spreading and evangelizing our insights outside of our walls to our partners in the industry.
As the RSL Team continues to mature, you’ll oversee the development and expansion of RSL program management practice, processes, and tools, to accelerate the work and capabilities of the team. This includes standing up a new consumer innovation practice that unlocks insights to transform how we use them to create game-changing outcomes that impact consumers and the way they think, feel, and interact with the brand.
Your Responsibilities:
    • Innovative Thinking Practice
    • Bring an innovation spirit to our research process by pushing our techniques, approach, and research design to the next level
    • Champion innovating for the consumer across the company by leveraging design thinking to build a new framework for identifying innovation concepts and a process the vet and execute them. In year-one in role, stand-up a new research pod to test out the framework and develop plan to support three to ten-year growth drives and unlock innovation across long-term horizon
    • Lead cross-functional teams through the consumer innovation process, teaching and modeling behaviors that produce the desired result in each phase with simultaneously challenging norms and expectations
    • Create and maintain an environment of harnessing collective wisdom by facilitating productive discussion with multiple points of view, and perspectives. Championing looking at things through different lenses that push the work and conversations to new territories
    • Strategy & Planning
    • Lead development of 3-year Strategic Roadmap that articulates the long-term vision for the Run-Sight Lab, including project strategy, capabilities, innovation roadmaps and regional practices
    • See the big picture to dots between the consumer, the brand, the business and use strategic thinking to guide the team in generating big ideas and recommendations
    • Leadership
    • Manage and mentor functional leaders who oversee qualitative research, quantitative research, program management and design research teams to become the ‘expert’ on consumer desires and behaviors and distill ideas and large sets of data into actionable insights
    • Lead the Run-Sight Lab cross functional Steering Co with apparel, footwear, and marketing business leaders to achieve maximum alignment on project prioritization, content, and timing of projects
    • Serve as the face of the RSL, internally and externally
    • Play an integral role in leading change management and resourcing to scale RSL team
    • Consumer Segmentation
    • Collaborate with SVP, CMO and VP, Global Brand Strategy & Marketing to build and evolve our brand wide consumer segmentation framework
    • Work closely with VP, Global Brand Strategy & Marketing and Quantitative Research Team to update our Global bi-yearly Brand Equity Study with the latest consumer logic and methodology and present results to key stakeholders throughout the organization
    • Project Leadership
    • Guide and consult on Run-Sight Lab projects at a macro level to ensure maximum impact for the consumer and organization
    • Support broader marketing organization by overseeing all external marketing research agencies on all outsourced qualitative and quantitative projects
  • Training
  • Lead the vision and strategy of our internal consumer innovation bootcamps and training and oversee our external outreach to key universities, retailers, and partners via consumer innovation bootcamps, project partnerships, and research presentations
  • Bachelor’s degree in Marketing, Business or a related field preferred
  • 12+ years’ experience conducting and leading consumer research projects
  • 7+ years management experience leading a strategy, planning, creative or consumer insights team
  • Experience leading or being heavily engaged in enterprise-level innovation projects or workstreams
  • Working knowledge of the sportswear and/or fitness industry is desired
  • Excellent oral and written communications skills – skilled presenter (using MS Presentation tools)
  • Strong analytical skills and experience
  • Proven ability to influence, persuade and negotiate to achieve progress toward goals – skilled communicator
  • Results-oriented person with the ability to balance numerous tasks and utilize all available resources with a high sense of urgency and self-motivation
  • Demonstrated ability to conceive/create new thinking and ideas pertaining to the consumer and the product line – skilled “product eye”
  • Ability to work professionally and efficiently within the team and across departments
  • Ability to travel at least 20% during year
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