We are thrilled to share the news that Jeremy Yarin has been selected by Front Office Sports as a member of the Rising 25 Class of 2020!!
The Front Office Sports Rising 25 Award, established in 2017, was created to honor up and comers in the sports industry. Now in its fourth year, the award has honored 75 of the brightest young minds from around the world.
Based on the incredible breadth and depth of contributions that Jeremy has made to GumGum Sports since 2017 as employee number 1, we nominated him for this award earlier this year. It was an extremely competitive process, with two rounds of judging by notable industry executives, and he was selected from more than 500 candidates! The judges considered a variety of factors as they made their evaluations:
- Size & scope of work responsibilities
- Accomplishments over their school and professional career
- Leadership roles and ascending levels of responsibilities
- Out of Work Activities – professional organizations, volunteering, etc.
- The scope of influence within their area of expertise
- More specific business results driven by ideas/execution of the nominee
As the Manager of Operations at GumGum Sports, Jeremy is responsible for managing our Data Analyst team and continuously refining our operational processes to focus on improving overall efficiency and data accuracy. Jeremy’s an “original” GG Sports member - as one of the first hires, he played a significant role in building and scaling our organization from scratch, working directly with the founder.
Jeremy let us take a few precious moments out of his busy day to talk about his role, his career and what he loves about working at GumGum Sports.
Maya: Jeremy - first of all, congratulations! Out of over 500 people nominated, you were selected to the top Rising 25 - that’s huge! Well deserved and it’s always an honor and pleasure to work alongside you.
Jeremy: Thanks. It’s an honor to be nominated.
M: Have you won any other awards in your life before?
J: I don’t believe so. I was team captain of my basketball team, but to be honest I don’t believe I have.
M: I don’t believe that! I’m shocked!
J: I won a pie eating contest once when I was younger - actually, I think I got second.
M: We are counting that. Award well deserved. And this makes the FOS award even sweeter! Moving into the FOS award, how do you feel about winning/being selected?
J: It’s exciting to be a part of a class with many hard-working and talented individuals and to have the opportunity to meet and get to know the other members of my class (even if it will be virtual for the time being!).
M: Did you celebrate with your family?
J: Yes, we had a glass of champagne the day I found out.
M: Nice! Moving into your career path, what brought you to GumGum Sports?
J: During my senior year at the University of Southern California, my brother forwarded me a job posting for an entry-level Analyst role with GumGum Sports. At the time, GumGum Sports was a new start-up division within GumGum that only had two dedicated employees and two clients, but I was immediately intrigued by the promising business concept and my initial conversations with founder, Jeff Katz. While a student at USC, I had interned in the Los Angeles Clippers Basketball Analytics department for my first three years of college, and I knew I wanted to continue working for a company at the convergence of sports, business, and data analytics. GumGum Sports fit that niche perfectly, and I was fortunate enough to be offered the Analyst position where I began working full-time in January 2017 while still completing my last semester at USC.
M: What do you like about working at GumGum Sports?
J: For my first two years at GumGum Sports, I would say I was most excited about being a part of a start-up where we had to create a lot of the organizational structure and operational process from scratch and adapt as we grew. I don’t think there is any other job where I could have learned more from in my first two years directly after college because I was able to learn a lot by doing and being thrown into different responsibilities and projects due to our small start-up team. Then, it became exciting to see a lot of our hard work pay off as our client base and internal team continued to grow over the years. Now, I would say I am most excited about getting to work everyday with the team of talented and hard-working individuals that have been critical to GGS success.
M: Where do you see yourself in the next few years? Staying in sports and analytics? Business operations? No need to predict the future, but any thoughts on this?
J: I definitely want to stay in sports and remain on the business side. I’ve always been interested in the convergence of sports, business and analytics which I was able to bridge together initially in my internship with the Clippers during college. Being at GumGum Sports has also let me be involved in that intersection and I see myself continuing to pursue it in my career path.
M: You’ve been in a management role for the last year or so, if I have that correctly. What are some key tips for younger managers?
J: Since I am still early in my management career, I am always constantly looking to learn about how I can improve my management and leadership skills. I was fortunate to be able to complete a manager training that GumGum offered to all managers last year. This year, I have been focused on learning best practices from managers/leaders that I look up to and what allowed them to be successful. This includes picking the brains of the experienced GGS leaders in addition to reading autobiographical or biographical books about successful managers and leaders.
M: Any books stand out?
J: I read “Why the Best Are the Best” by Kevin Eastman, which is written by a previous assistant coach for the Clippers. He essentially whittled it down to, the more alignment you have in your team and the more prepared you are, the more successful you will be.
M: Sounds like a perfect description of life! It’s great how sports is the perfect analogy for life. Speaking of life, any favorite sports memories either playing-wise or observing to round this out?
J: Playing wise - when I studied abroad in Paris my junior year of college, well...I stood out as a basketball player in Paris, let’s put it that way. A fellow student and I tried out for the university basketball team at HEC and we made the team, and played for the season. For my 21st birthday, I spent it at a basketball tournament in Lille with the HEC team where we played against other business schools. It was a lot of fun, and there was a lot of socializing afterwards. I had a very bad game the next day.
M: Sounds like you lived that birthday the way you should have. Thanks for your time, Jeremy! And congrats again!
Interviewed by Maya Herm (Sports - UK)