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Caen Contee: A Driving Force Behind Lime's Global Success

Theo Moret

22 Apr, 2024

2 min read

Leading a startup requires finesse, intuition, and an innovative spirit. Enter Caen Contee, one of the founders behind Lime and a leader in the world of micro-mobility. Learn about his journey to becoming a visionary business leader.

Meet Caen Contee, Lime's Dynamic Founding Executive

From his time as a student at Dartmouth College, to studying Eastern medicine in China, to picking up culinary skills at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, CA, Caen's numerous interests led him to co-founding Lime. Also serving as the VP of Business Development & Marketing, Caen’s passion for connecting people and maximizing human potential helped steer the company to global recognition.

Caen Contee’s Business Trajectory

Caen's career path is a sign of both personal evolution and the rising importance of a customer-driven approach — something he’s advocated for from the start. Here are a few key moments:

  • Dartmouth College and Beyond: Contee attended Dartmouth College as an NSEP Boren Scholar. From there, he went on to study Eastern medicine in China, exhibiting a drive for deeper connections — a throughline of his career.
  • Lime: Now in 30 countries across 130 markets globally, Lime’s massive and rapid expansion is due in part to Caen’s leadership. While at Lime, he championed the importance of customer feedback and advocated for building a community of passionate users.
  • Leading the Impact Team: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) are central to Caen’s values. At Lime, he led the Impact team and pushed for initiatives like employing incarcerated workers.
Caen Contee teaching his Augment class.

3 Highlights from Caen's Augment Class

  1. On the Importance of Hiring Locally: "Having a local team in a market transforms it from being something that's trying to come in and tell a city [or] a market how to do it. [It] organically [creates] something that feels rooted in the very fabric of that city, of that country. And I think part of why Lime succeeded is we always hired locally. We always allowed them to have [the] autonomy to try, fail, risk, roll out new programs. And I think allowing for there to be a sense of ownership and a sense of true integration is what allows for ‘local’ to be not just a term, but really a sense of family — a sense of building something that is rooted in appreciation for wherever you're building."
  2. On Customer Feedback: "Customer feedback is only as valuable as you are open to hearing it. You have to listen not for the answer, but for the unknown in what they're telling you. Ask a second question, ask a third question. Be curious, don't try and get the answer. Try and uncover the gem."
  3. On Crisis Management: "Crisis is fundamentally about humility. It's understanding that you took your best shot, you work with the variables you were given, and you didn't account for everything. That's not a fault or a failure. That's you pushing yourself and living on an edge. The fault of failure is then not embracing that as an opportunity to improve."
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