We asked our Coaches “What are the most important Leadership Capabilities?” Pt. 3- July 2021 Coaches Corner

We asked our Coaches “What are the most important Leadership Capabilities?” Here's what they had to say:

“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.

We asked our Coaches "What are the most important Leadership Capabilities?" Pt. 3- July 2021 Coaches Corner 1
Leadership Capability: Promoting Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

"Promoting diversity, equity and inclusion is a daily practice. A practice of the heart and the mind. Humans are creatures of habit. We do what we know until we are introduced to new information, new intelligence. Even then, it's hard to integrate that new information into changes without a stake, our reason why. As leaders, the daily practice of DEI requires a shifting of habits, a questioning of norms, and visibility of biases. It requires intentionally amplifying marginalized voices to create diversity in the field of awareness. Leaders become culturally intelligent by inviting new information in and activating it to a new way of being and doing."

- Michelle H., Texas

We asked our Coaches "What are the most important Leadership Capabilities?" Pt. 3- July 2021 Coaches Corner 2
Leadership Capability: Time Management & Prioritization

“Time-boxing. Pomodoro Technique. Eisenhower’s ‘Important versus Urgent’ matrix. All useful tools and tips for helping someone to better manage their time. But what if I said that the most important time management lesson for a leader to learn was the one about saying no? If you have too much to do, then you need to find a way to have less to do. It’s about knowing what ONLY you can do and delegating the rest; clearly and effectively. Sometimes, it’s just not your job anymore.”

- Nicki L., China

We asked our Coaches "What are the most important Leadership Capabilities?" Pt. 3- July 2021 Coaches Corner 3
Leadership Capability: Leading High Performance Teams

“There are likely as many definitions of “high performing” as there are leaders. Be clear what high performing looks like for you. Share this vision with your team and stakeholders. Focus on what the team can achieve together, that could not be achieved individually. Think future-back and outside in. Inspire the team to think big. The leader’s role is to enable and empower, clearing obstacles from the team’s path. So how do you create this? Start with changing perceptions of failure. The acronym FAIL (For All I Learned) helps. The greatest growth happens outside our comfort zone.”

- Craig H., United Kingdom

We asked our Coaches "What are the most important Leadership Capabilities?" Pt. 3- July 2021 Coaches Corner 4
Leadership Capability: Managing Change

“The pace of change has never been this fast, and it will never be this slow again. Leaders who can “Lead in the Moment” manage change most effectively. Here are the hallmarks of these leaders. They make decisions with the information they have at the time. They communicate what is known even when they don’t have all the answers. They help people solve their problems versus solving everyone else’s problems. Lastly, they have an experimentation mindset embracing failure as a learning opportunity. Get comfortable with the uncomfortable and learn to lead in the moment.”

- Maryanne S., North Carolina

We asked our Coaches "What are the most important Leadership Capabilities?" Pt. 3- July 2021 Coaches Corner 5
Leadership Capability: Time Management & Prioritization

"Time management in leadership is more than putting a to-do list in order. It's about managing your attention as well. As leaders progress in their careers, they must steadily carve out time and space for their own priorities. This is a major shift for those who made their reputations in executing the priorities of others. It's also a challenge for those who like to say yes. So much growth in leadership depends on deciding what to ignore. Your time and attention are the most previous resources you have. It's time to put them to their highest and best use."

- Alan H., Maryland

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We Develop The World's Most Impactful Leaders

Sounding Board offers virtual and scalable enterprise learning solutions that are flexible enough to adapt to rapidly changing work environments. Powered by behavioral science and core leadership capabilities, our proven coaching methodology drives measurable business impact.

Niall MacGearailt

SVP of Finance
Niall MacGearailt leads Sounding Board’s finance division as the SVP of Finance and Operations. Niall earned a solid track record of improving P&L and operational expense management for leading companies such as Whirlpool, Logitech, Avaya and most recently Soraa, where he prepared the business for acquisition by leading hi-tech lighting company, Ecosense. In his role, he is responsible for building and leading the finance & relevant operations functions for the company.

Ron Buell

VP of Engineering
Ron Buell is the VP of Engineering at Sounding Board and an accomplished software professional with extensive experience in leadership, software engineering, project management, and product management. Ron has led the development of highly scalable systems and applications across a variety of technologies for companies including OpenFeint (acquired by GREE), Rdio (acquired by Pandora), Lyris Technologies, and Lotus/IBM Software Group. In his role at Sounding Board, Buell is responsible for all engineering efforts in developing, deploying, and maintaining the enterprise software platform and team for the company.

Tommy Perkins


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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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.