Data is the holy grail in the digital world, and Kolhatkar oversees customer intelligence and all data and analytics-related efforts at Hulu. With her team of more than 100, Kolhatkar is responsible for implementing strong data governance and a culture of objective, data-driven decision-making across the company—a key function in Hulu’s rapid-fire growth during the past year. She believes featuring more people of color in content, both behind and in front of the camera, would be a positive step for diversity and inclusion. “By giving more opportunities to more people with different types of backgrounds, we can open up an endless world of entertaining and thoughtful storytelling,” she says.
In what areas should the industry step up its efforts with regard to diversity and inclusion?
To keep the industry moving forward towards an inclusive environment, it’s important to have open conversations within companies that engage team members of all different backgrounds.
Another step in the right direction is featuring more people of color in content, both behind and in front of the camera. By giving more opportunities to more people with different types of backgrounds, we can open up an endless world of entertaining and thoughtful storytelling.
What’s your best advice to someone just entering the video content/distribution industry?
My advice is to never stop being curious. This industry is filled with so much knowledge, stories and data to be gleaned and the more curious you are the more doors will open for you.
What’s been the most dramatic change in your sector of the business today vs. three years ago?
Building what is right for the customer—even though it might be harder—invariably results in being right for the business. While I came from the retail space and have moved on to digital media at Hulu, the fundamental goal of the data business has not changed with time. We are always on the hunt for what is best for the consumer, and how to implement that information in a way that constantly improves the business.
If there were a reality show based on your office, what would it be called?
I am a British Royalty fanatic, from the Tudors to the Windsors. Yep, I am one of those folks that get up at an ungodly hour to drink tea, eat scones and watch strangers get married. I think Hulu would be based off “The Great British Baking Show”—“The Great Hulu Baking Show”—we have different teams working together to build a beautiful product.