Sounding Board Blog

Managing Employee Retention in a Post-Pandemic World

Managing Employee Retention in a Post-Pandemic World

Managing employee retention has been a long-standing concern for employers even pre-Covid-19. However, one thing's for sure; employee retention has never been more critical than during these challenging times.
Combine the Benefits of Working from Home and Going Back to the Office

Combine the Benefits of Working from Home and Going Back to the Office

The future of work doesn't have to choose between remote work and fully in office. Organizations should combine the benefits of both, and rethink how employees can better utilize in-office…
The Need for Reskilling: Preparing for AI, Automation and Digital Transformation

The Need for Reskilling: Preparing for AI, Automation and Digital Transformation

Reskilling can plug the gap being left behind by the digital transformation we're in. Leaders must be nimble, agile, and willing to get the training it takes to implement new…
Creating Work-Life Balance in a Virtual World

Creating Work-Life Balance in a Virtual World

Like anything else in life, we have to work actively to create balance in our lives. As business leaders, it is even more imperative that you not only create balance…
It’s Time to Go Beyond Fixed and Growth Mindsets

It’s Time to Go Beyond Fixed and Growth Mindsets

When leaders box themselves and their people into fixed vs. growth mindsets, they can lose sight of the diversity of thought and behaviors that exists in between.
Coaches Corner: July 2021

Coaches Corner: July 2021

“Coaches Corner” shares perspectives from Sounding Board’s global network of coaches on trending and relevant topics, as explored through our leadership capabilities coaching model.
Employee Resilience Starts with Leadership

Employee Resilience Starts with Leadership

Employee resilience starts at the top, with organizational leaders championing resilience at all levels. Without it, businesses stand to lose out on much more than they think.
The Business Case for Diversifying Your Leadership Bench

The Business Case for Diversifying Your Leadership Bench

Diversifying your leadership bench carries more business weight than ever before. Organizations hoping to achieve diversity need to improve all aspects of DE&I.
Kolb’s Model for Experiential Learning: A Theory of How People Learn Effectively

Kolb’s Model for Experiential Learning: A Theory of How People Learn Effectively

Kolb's Model for Experiential Learning honors the fact that people not only learn differently, but that they only learn effectively through a process that begins with a real experience.
Agile Leadership: The Key to Post-Pandemic Success

Agile Leadership: The Key to Post-Pandemic Success

After over a year full of so much uncertainty, there's one reality all company's are facing: business as usual will not be a strategy for success.
Leading in a VUCA World - Changing Conditions and Our Hybrid Work Environment

Leading in a VUCA World - Changing Conditions and Our Hybrid Work Environment

Leading in a VUCA world isn't simple. But, by becoming agile and solutions-focused, leaders can keep their staff engaged and their companies successful.
The Future of Learning and Development

The Future of Learning and Development

The pandemic unveiled new challenges for organizations, including how they develop their people. Now it’s time to discard the old approach to learning & development and embrace agility.
Coaches Corner: June 2021

Coaches Corner: June 2021

“Coaches Corner” shares perspectives from Sounding Board’s global network of coaches on trending and relevant topics, as explored through our leadership capabilities coaching model.
A Word (or several) to Honor Coaches

A Word (or several) to Honor Coaches

Sounding Board has been diligent in gathering an incredible group of individuals. These coaches have a genuine, deep-seated desire to help leaders grow to their full potential and an unrelenting…
Newsletter May 2021

Newsletter May 2021

May's newsletter focuses on the importance of developing leadership capabilities and highlights building an inclusive and diverse leadership bench.
We asked our Coaches "What are the most important Leadership Capabilities?"

We asked our Coaches "What are the most important Leadership Capabilities?"

May 17-23, 2021 is International Coaching Week. In honor of this global celebration of professional coaching, we want to celebrate some of the world-class coaches here at Sounding Board. These…
Newsletter April 2021

Newsletter April 2021

April's newsletter focuses on Women as Leaders and the unique place they find themselves pre and post-pandemic.
Making the Business Case for Leadership Coaching for Women

Making the Business Case for Leadership Coaching for Women

The global pandemic revealed the real crisis. The need for employers to think long-term and do more to prepare women for leadership positions.
Sounding Board Announces the Promotion of Senior Executives Tommy Perkins and Piyush Gupta

Sounding Board Announces the Promotion of Senior Executives Tommy Perkins and Piyush Gupta

One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned as a founder & CEO is that scale is a function of your team. Without a strong team, no matter how hard you…
Announcing our $13.1M Series A at Sounding Board

Announcing our $13.1M Series A at Sounding Board

Today, we’re excited to share that Sounding Board has closed $13.1M in Series A funding led by Canaan Partners. Canaan is joined by Correlation Ventures, existing investors Bloomberg Beta, Precursor Ventures, and…
Time to Get Serious About Leadership

Time to Get Serious About Leadership

The work of leaders in peacetime is to be as prepared as possible for wartime, not just their business but themselves. Leaders participating in Sounding Board coaching have been doing…
5 Strategies for Setting Intentions and Visioning

5 Strategies for Setting Intentions and Visioning

The following are five reasons why setting intentions and visualizing are the most powerful tool you can engage with as we all emerge from quarantine.
COVID-19 Pandemic Pushes Leaders to Evolve Faster and Be Better

COVID-19 Pandemic Pushes Leaders to Evolve Faster and Be Better

What the COVID-19 pandemic has done is expedite this revelation, exposing the default mental habits of many and, in some cases, accelerating the leadership that might have taken months or…
What got us here won’t get us there

What got us here won’t get us there

My first coach was hired for me before I knew anything about coaching. Because I was constantly upsetting the status quo, my bosses couldn’t figure out what to do with…
In honor of International Coaching Day

In honor of International Coaching Day

In honor of International Coaching Day (part of International Coaching Week May 4-10) Sounding Board salutes the integral role that coaches play in the future of work. We thank the…
Accepting Help During a Pandemic

Accepting Help During a Pandemic

As we are all still sheltering-in-place at Sounding Board and working remotely like the majority of the country, the time has given way to team members who are sharing their…
The Cycle of a Pandemic: An opportunity for leaders

The Cycle of a Pandemic: An opportunity for leaders

The cycle of a pandemic - for most of us something we have never experienced - will have devastating effects on our country and our communities for years to come.…
Jamie Dimon Walks the Talk: Leadership Development

Jamie Dimon Walks the Talk: Leadership Development

Jamie Dimon is considered one of the best CEO’s of our time. My guess is that he is walking this talk. 20 years ago when the coaching industry was just…
Resourcing Yourself First Makes You a Better Leader

Resourcing Yourself First Makes You a Better Leader

What is radical about resourcing yourself first? Radical self-resourcing demands that you relentlessly do what it takes to ensure that you are showing up at your best – be it…
Breaking Out of Your Personal Jail: How to Get the Freedom You Crave

Breaking Out of Your Personal Jail: How to Get the Freedom You Crave

When I first started working, I was terrible about setting boundaries. I would work constantly, logging hour after hour to please insatiable bosses. I was convinced that the longer and…
The 4 New Year’s Resolutions to Strengthen Your Company’s Leadership Culture

The 4 New Year’s Resolutions to Strengthen Your Company’s Leadership Culture

The champagne is popped, the ball has dropped, now make some resolutions to empower your leadership teams in the new year.
How HR can Help Turn Managers into Strategic Leaders (Part 2: Challenges of a First Time Manager)

How HR can Help Turn Managers into Strategic Leaders (Part 2: Challenges of a First Time Manager)

The transition into a managerial role for the first time is a tough one. Often times, first time managers experience many of the same challenges. During the fireside chat Christine,…
How HR can Help Turn Managers into Strategic Leaders (Part 3: Tips to be more Strategic!)

How HR can Help Turn Managers into Strategic Leaders (Part 3: Tips to be more Strategic!)

Our last two posts gave a recap and summary of some of the topics discussed during the chat along with some tips. In this post, however, we hope to provide…
How To Succeed As A New Manager

How To Succeed As A New Manager

For many professionals, landing their first job as a new manager seems like the epitome of success. But in my experience, once they get a moment alone in their new…
Event Recap: How Top HR Leaders Partner With The CEO & Board To Drive Business Success

Event Recap: How Top HR Leaders Partner With The CEO & Board To Drive Business Success

Our own Christine Tao led a Redpoint Ventures panel called Building Your Strategic Leadership Muscle, where HR experts explored the crucial role of Chief People Officers in modern business settings.
Is Your Coach a Trillion Dollar Coach?

Is Your Coach a Trillion Dollar Coach?

Leadership is a difficult skill to master, which makes leadership coaching an art in itself. That’s why we were so excited to find out about Trillion Dollar Coach: The Leadership…
Three Mindset Shifts To Help New Leaders Excel

Three Mindset Shifts To Help New Leaders Excel

I often think of promoting an employee to a new executive or managerial position as what it’s like teaching someone how to drive. The driving student might have spent years…
Soft Skills For First Time Managers In The Digital Age

Soft Skills For First Time Managers In The Digital Age

Soft skills have always been critical to leadership success, but in a modern digital work environment, new managers must recalibrate.
Say the Hard Things

Say the Hard Things

VIDEO - While I’ve built global teams before, I’ve learned that leadership is truly a constantly evolving practice. I guess that’s why leading teams can be so fulfilling and also…
From Our CCO: As a Leader, Step Out of Line

From Our CCO: As a Leader, Step Out of Line

Maybe you have just been promoted to a new position and you don’t want to make a mistake in your first 90 days. Maybe you have a Board to report…
Coaching or Mentoring: Arming Leaders with the Support They Need

Coaching or Mentoring: Arming Leaders with the Support They Need

My coach asked me powerful questions, waited to hear what I thought the solutions was, then dared me to go out and do that thing, even if it had never…
What is Leadership Coaching? Debunking 3 Common Misconceptions

What is Leadership Coaching? Debunking 3 Common Misconceptions

Leadership coaching is a highly personalized methodology that cultivates leaders and grows companies from the inside out — but it’s not widely understood.
Bench the Inner Critic: Strategies for Overcoming Self-Doubt

Bench the Inner Critic: Strategies for Overcoming Self-Doubt

I had a day where I felt like a failure. Where my inner critic, on repeat, complained: Look at you, you worthless slug, achieving nothing, failing at every turn.
The 4 KPIs That Explain What Employees Really Think of Your Leadership — And How to Improve Them

The 4 KPIs That Explain What Employees Really Think of Your Leadership — And How to Improve Them

Fostering effective leadership is no easy feat. Balancing business needs with employees’ feelings is an ongoing challenge, but it’s worthwhile to pause every so often and reflect on how you’re…
Now Available: The Definitive Guide to Developing a Successful Leadership Coaching Program

Now Available: The Definitive Guide to Developing a Successful Leadership Coaching Program

According to a report from Oracle, HR will be increasingly challenged to increase its strategic value and drive growth in the coming year. In fact, experts predict that strategic thinking…
From Our CCO: Notes from The Burren Executive Leadership Retreat

From Our CCO: Notes from The Burren Executive Leadership Retreat

The following article was originally published by Sounding Board Co-Founder and Chief Coaching Officer, Lori Mazan on LinkedIn.  I am on a 10-day trip to The Burren, Ireland and I…
Event Recap: How HR can Help Turn Managers into Strategic Leaders

Event Recap: How HR can Help Turn Managers into Strategic Leaders

Last week Sounding Board co-hosted a fireside chat where Christine Tao, our co-founder and CEO, participated alongside Bart Macdonald, co-founder and CEO of Sapling, and Shane Metcalf, Chief Culture Officer…
The 4 Most Valuable Leadership Lessons From Our Panel at QuickBooks Connect

The 4 Most Valuable Leadership Lessons From Our Panel at QuickBooks Connect

QuickBooks Connect 2018 was held in San Jose, California earlier this month, presenting a fantastic opportunity to meet with business owners, developers, and professionals of all stripes. During the event,…
Three Reasons the Modern Workplace Requires Leadership Coaching

Three Reasons the Modern Workplace Requires Leadership Coaching

Developing talent within your modern workplace means more than the feedback given in an annual performance review or building a company culture that nurtures a strong executive team. While these…
Sounding Board is a Stevie Award Winner!

Sounding Board is a Stevie Award Winner!

Sounding Board was named a winner of a Silver Stevie® Award in the Startup of the Year and Tech Startup of the Year categories in the 2018 International Business Awards®!…
Don’t let your own words limit you as as leader

Don’t let your own words limit you as as leader

Our words speak our truth in more ways than we realize – not just the words spoken out loud, but what we continually say to ourselves in our mind as…
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Piyush Gupta

CHIEF PRODUCT OFFICER
Piyush Gupta is VP of Product and Technology at Sounding Board and champions the voice of customers and users with deep empathy. Piyush envisions Sounding Board to be the first window of coaching experience for professionals and leaders worldwide. His approach is deeply rooted in proven scientific research, modeling human behaviors, and data-informed insights to deliver mindset shifts and desired business outcomes for organizations at scale. He believes that a world-class UX is key to drive simplicity that will lead to millions of professionals to access coaching for their development. Piyush co-invented the world’s first ‘landmark intelligent driving directions’ technology that led Google to redesign their routing algorithms for the Asian markets. For the next decade, he led two disruptive FinTech companies to the market leadership positions and delivered two award-winning products that serve more than 70 million users worldwide. His teams filed 20+ patents while he himself authored three patents. He is an active startup investor and advises selected AI-driven startups on business and product strategy. He is the recipient of the World Summit Award, one of the most prestigious international honors for product innovators. In addition, he is a James Swartz fellow, the most prestigious fellowship at Carnegie Mellon University funded by the founder of the iconic venture firm, Accel Partners. Piyush holds an MS in Software Management from Carnegie Mellon University.

Tommy Perkins

SVP OF SALES, PARTNERSHIP & CUSTOMER SUCCESS

Tommy is at his best helping clients think through complex challenges in order to create a positive impact on their organizations. He thrives when interacting with others whether helping his team succeed or working with clients to build long-term partnerships. He has extensive experience consulting with organizations on driving their employee experience, guiding organizations through change, and working to ensure organizations are moving the needle when it comes to their results.

Most recently, Tommy was a Client Services Leader overseeing some of GP’s most prized accounts on a global level. His responsibilities included overall client growth strategy, retention, and satisfaction. He represented all of GP Strategies’ major business lines including leadership, coaching, and engagement, digital transformation, outsourced services, and technology implementation solutions.

Before GP Strategies, Tommy spent several years with TTEC Digital (formerly rogenSI) where he led the sales team,  eventually becoming the regional Learning & Performance practice leader for North America. While managing the P&L and sales team he also led the largest global relationship for the firm (Deloitte Globally). During his time at TTEC, he focused on delivering blended learning solutions that incorporate technology and hands-on training. Before TTEC Digital, he spent several years dedicated to strength-based leadership disrupting the business landscape regarding performance management and employee engagement with thought leader Marcus Buckingham at The Marcus Buckingham Company / TMBC (now ADP).

Tommy has had the privilege of working with some of the most well-known global brands in professional services, retail, technology, and healthcare including Deloitte, Facebook, Microsoft, Bank of America, Novartis, Gap Inc., lululemon, and Intel. Several projects he led for Deloitte were Global GNPS, New Partner Pivot, NextGen Partner Program Deloitte China, Present to Win, the RPM project on performance management, and Unconscious Bias.

Tommy holds a BS in Health Sciences from Texas A&M University, and an MBA from Universidad del CEMA.

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From leading remote workforces, building productive teams, to improving diversity, equity, and inclusion, Sounding Board has virtual and scalable enterprise solutions that are urgently required to adapt to rapidly changing workplace environments.

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Join our coaching team

Our expert coaches combine top notch coaching, business acumen and organizational savvy to truly become your leadership “Sounding Board”. Sounding Board coaches are all industry certified and strongly vetted going through a 3 step qualification process and receiving ongoing supervision and development.

Lori Mazan

Co-Founder & CCO Sounding Board, Inc.
Lori Mazan is the Co-Founder and Chief Coaching Officer of Sounding Board, the preeminent global leadership development enterprise platform changing the face of leadership development through innovative technology for leaders at all levels of an organization. Lori is a seasoned executive coach who has guided hundreds of corporate executives through 1:1 coaching focused on business outcomes and developing critical leadership skills. Client companies advanced by Lori’s expertise include Fortune titans such as Chevron and Sprint as well as high growth and public companies like Intellikine, and Tapjoy, plus 10XGenomics, which became a public company in 2019 while top executives worked with Lori and the Sounding Board team.
Lori has spent the last 25 years coaching C-Suite executives to leadership excellence. Many of those public and private company CEO’s expressed that they would have liked this caliber of coaching earlier in their careers. Inspired by these experiences, Lori joined with Christine to launch Sounding Board as a feedback-driven, cloud-based leadership coaching platform that could maintain best-in-class leadership coaching while lowering costs to make it affordable and scalable for leaders at every level of their careers.
Before founding Sounding Board, Lori received her Masters’ in Adult Educational Psychology/Counseling from the University of San Francisco and a Bachelors’ in Psychology from the University of Virginia. Lori is an educator and has spent over 10 years as a professor of social psychology and group dynamics while acting as the interim Dean of Students at Holy Names University, She is certified by the industry’s gold standard, the Coaches Training Institute, and is a founding member of the Genentech Preferred Network of Coaches. Sounding Board is one of <3% of sole female founded startups receiving venture funding. In 2019 Sounding Board was selected as 1 of 7 startups (out of 100+ applicants) as part of SAP’s HR tech cohort, a group that represents the rising stars of the next-gen HR ecosystem.

Christine Tao

Co-Founder & CEO Sounding Board, Inc.
Christine Tao is the co-founder & CEO at Sounding Board, a Silicon Valley startup redefining how organizations are developing their leaders. Her extraordinarily rapid career growth to executive management in the media, mobile and tech sectors of Silicon Valley became her inspiration for founding Sounding Board. As she began to manage larger teams and be responsible for growing revenues, it became clear that she needed a “sounding board” to coach her on the development of her leadership skills. That’s where her Sounding Board co-founder, Lori Mazan came on the scene. A seasoned executive coach focused on leadership development, Lori coached Christine on real-world leadership skills that had a direct impact on business outcomes. Based on her positive and impactful experience with leadership development, Christine was driven to make leadership development coaching accessible to people at all levels of the organization.
Christine advises several startups, is a budding angel investor and is also a Tory Burch Foundation Fellow, a foundation dedicated to investing in the success and sustainability of women entrepreneurs.
Prior to co-founding Sounding Board, Christine was a Senior Vice President of Developer Relations at Tapjoy, a venture-backed, leading mobile advertising & publishing network. She led the growth of Tapjoy’s publisher advertising business from 0 to over $100 million in revenues in less than 3 years. Prior to that she led e-commerce partnerships and strategy at YouTube. Christine holds an MBA in Marketing & Operations from Wharton and a BA in Business Administration from UC Berkeley.

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