SBJ/March 25-31, 2013/People and Pop Culture

Adam Grossman, SVP, Boston Red Sox and Fenway Sports Management

PROFESSIONAL

What I Like …
Grossman with daughter Stella at Fenway Park
Photo: MICHEAL IVINS / BOSTON RED SOX

An insight: “Just keep showing up”: Red Sox President and CEO Larry Lucchino, to whom I’ll be forever grateful for helping me get my start in sports, when I asked about my future with the club on the last day of my internship with the Red Sox.

An influential person in my career: My father, Ned Grossman, who taught me that “can’t doesn’t exist,” “there’s no substitute for hard work” and “it’s better having everyone in the room think you’re stupid than opening your mouth and proving it.”

An out-of-the-box idea: Seven-inning baseball games and a fourth-inning stretch.

A timeless idea: Tailgating.

A business deal: The evolution of the StubHub deal with MLB and its impact on the industry is fascinating to watch.

ADAM GROSSMAN
Senior vice president, marketing and brand development
Boston Red Sox and Fenway Sports Management

What I do: Focus on branding, advertising, broadcasting, social media fan clubs and integrated initiatives to strengthen our reach and voice.

Where I'm from: Shaker Heights, Ohio, a suburb outside of Cleveland where people are nice and sports championships are scarce.

Where I Went to School: Duke University (’02), public policy; Harvard Business School Executive Education Program for Leadership Development (’09).

My First Job: Washing cars at age 7 — but realized early that my career was short-lived because I couldn’t reach the middle of the car hood.

A sports facility: Cameron Indoor Stadium. I’m biased, but even Duke haters should experience a game there.
 
A sports event: I saw the Australia-Spain Davis Cup finals while in Barcelona. It was one of the most memorable sporting experiences of my life.

A strategy: 1) Hit ’em straight. 2) Hit ’em where they ain’t. 3) Deliver content on your fans’ terms, not yours.

A hire: Larry Scott becoming Pac-12 commissioner. A progressive visionary who has distinguished and transformed the conference in a short time frame.

A brand: Equinox Fitness. I gained a little insight into the way they approach their business and the market while I was with the Dolphins. They do a great job of defining who they are, building partnerships that augment the customer experience, and providing communication and touch points to solidify relationships with their members.

An innovation: Disney Magic Band. Just another example of Disney leading the way: Magic Band will enhance the Disney experience and provides a
A timeless idea: Tailgating.
Photo by: GETTY IMAGES
“frictionless” spending environment while simultaneously acquiring insightful information on their customers.

An idea or invention I wish I had thought of: The Muppets.

A fantasy job: Product tester for any large-scale athletic/fitness brand to ensure their products are specifically designed to meet the needs of highly mediocre athletes everywhere.


What I Like about …
Cameron Indoor Stadium
Photo by: GETTY IMAGES

My job: The opportunity to work with some of the brightest people in the industry, like Sam Kennedy and Mike Dee, on some of the most iconic brands in all of sport, all wrapped up in a family-oriented environment. It’s a rare combination, and I’m very fortunate.

Sports: I took my grandfather to Fenway Park when he was 85 years old. It will always be one of the most lasting memories of my career.


The Muppets
Photo by: GETTY IMAGES
What I Would Like To …


Change: Restore college basketball to its former glory by increasing the NBA age limit. Go back to old-school college hoops where the majority of stars stay in school for at least three seasons.

More of in sports: Sudden-death opportunities. Game 7’s, overtimes, play-in games. MLB has done a nice job of developing more opportunities for “thriller” games.


PERSONAL

What I Like …

Hero: The highest compliment someone can pay me is that I’m my mother’s son. She approached each day with enthusiasm, love, selflessness and tenacity.

LeBron James
Photo by: NBAE / GETTY IMAGES
Player: LeBron — and it has nothing to do with basketball. I can’t think of many people who had the spotlight starting at age 14 and, despite bumps, challenges and criticism, managed to conquer each phase. The intangibles he possesses go well beyond basketball, and he just keeps getting better.

City: San Francisco — scenery, technology and West Coast start times. Amazing combination.

Memento: Two World Series rings.

Time of year: April — Opening Day, Final Four, Masters, Easter, Passover. There’s something for everyone.

Music: U2, Ray Charles, Rihanna.

Books: “The Art of Racing in the Rain,” by Garth Stein; “The Given Day,” by Dennis Lehane; “Wooden,” by John Wooden; “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” by Roald Dahl.

Authors: David Halberstam, Brad Meltzer.

Gadget: Popcorn machine.

IPad apps: MLB At Bat, HBO Go, Angry Birds, Fruit Ninja.

Chores: The dishes and diaper changing with pit-crew-like efficiency. Jack Roush would be proud.

Hobbies: Running, biking and slowly learning Portuguese one Rosetta Stone at a time.

Trips: My wedding in Rio de Janeiro.

Food: Grilled yellowtail and fries at Garcia’s in Miami.

Dessert: Mint chocolate chip ice cream.

Drink: Glenlivet on the rocks.

Scent: Sex Panther. If it’s good enough for Ron Burgundy, it’s good enough for me.

Singer: I’d like Alicia Keys to sing at my birthday party one day.

Quote: “Eighty percent of success is just showing up,” Woody Allen. He’s right.
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