👋 Hi, I’m Crystal Yan. I help organizations make customer centricity their competitive advantage. I lead product and design teams to build experiences that customers love and that grow the business, and I coach leaders who want to build great teams and team cultures. I also create content and community for product and design leaders.

Here, I share what I’ve learned about building better products & teams - from my own experience, and from people I’ve learned from. Every few weeks, I write about customer development, behavioral science, and management, and share resources to help you become a better leader.

If there’s a topic you’d like me to cover, send me your questions and I’ll cover it in a future issue. To receive this newsletter in your inbox directly, subscribe 👇

If you find this useful, you can support my writing by sharing this newsletter with your friends, or buying me a coffee.

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Who am I?

A bit about me:

  • Teach user experience design at Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) and growth design at School of Visual Concepts (SVC).

  • Founding product manager for Passbook by Remitly, digital bank for immigrants: Built the company's consumer banking business (first new product line beyond the core remittance business). Led 0 to 1 product development to launch a digital bank in 9 months. Named one of TIME 100 best inventions of 2020.

  • Product and design leader at the United States Digital Service, startup within the White House: Launched new products to process immigration benefits faster for 700,000+ asylum seekers. Launched new payments APIs for healthcare providers serving 57 million Medicare patients to transform how healthcare is paid for in the United States.

  • Early (seed stage) business hire, and product and design leader at FiscalNote, enterprise SaaS platform for lobbyists: Sold and closed first tech industry clients (Uber, Lyft, Coinbase), and iterated product to achieve initial product-market fit. Scaled product and design teams as company grew from 15 to 150+ employees and $0 to $XXM ARR. Led product strategy for expanding upmarket to enterprise and internationally; launched a new multimillion dollar product portfolio that tripled average contract value (ACV).

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If you subscribe, you’ll be joining 1030+ founders, product managers, designers, marketers, engineers, students, authors, and more.

What my subscribers have in common is that they’re interested in the topics I write about: product, design, marketing, behavioral science, management, and how to become a better leader.

What you get

You can subscribe for free and get 1-2 newsletter issues a month.

Or you can purchase a paid membership to support my writing, and get early access to upcoming resources I’m developing for leaders.

You can join membership at these levels (there’s no difference between them other than what you can pay):

  • $15 per month

  • $150 per year

  • Supporter, which is pay-what-you-can, suggested at $250+/year

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Not into subscriptions but want to show some support? Feel free to support my work to create content and community for leaders by buying me a coffee.

Why subscribe?

What people are saying about the content and community I create for product and design leaders:

"Loved this! To the point with useful examples. I can’t wait to implement some of these ideas next week with my team.”

"This newsletter was awesome!!! The article you linked really helped me process something that happened yesterday [and] gave me a new way to think about it...Thank you!! I look forward to reading more from you"

“This was the panel I needed 10 years ago and then a follow up every year of my life. Thank you”

One of the most on point, powerful convos I've heard in the design space since maybe ever.”

“Truly one of the best, most inspiring and educational events I've been to in a long, long while…so different from the performative/competitive dynamics you often see at conference panels.”

“Great insights on how to apply design thinking to improve and iterate on hiring process…Not only many takeaways for managers and recruiters but this highlights to non-designers how useful design thinking can be in improving any business process.”

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Subscribe to Discovery by Crystal Yan

A monthly-ish newsletter on building better products & teams. I write about customer development, behavioral science, and management, and share resources to help you become a better leader. Join 1050+ founders, product managers, designers, marketers.


Creating content for product & design leaders.