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Put yourself in your favorite quarterback or musical artists’ shoes. You’re the leader — always front and center, all eyes on you. It’s a lot of responsibility. The pressure is high, but you know you’re never alone. You have coaches and managers to help steer you in the right direction. They’re always there on the sidelines, behind the stage, or in the wings. They’re in your ear cheering you on and guiding you when things get tough or when you’re uncertain. 

Sound familiar? It should. Even the best and the brightest need other people to lean on. That is definitely true in business. Most business leaders know how quickly things change in the marketplace and in the workplace, especially these days. Further, they know what it takes to lead a team. But only the best leaders understand the value of leadership coaching and the power of constantly re-elevating your skillset in our fast-paced, change-centric world.

Defining modern leadership coaching

Modern leadership coaching is an active process of guiding leaders to develop competencies that help them lead and work more efficiently, effectively, and symbiotically within their organizations and beyond. It’s about maximizing new and old potential. The best leadership coaches don’t hand over the answer keys to their coachees. No, they help leaders to develop the skills necessary to find innovative, useful answers themselves.

This kind of leadership development is no longer exclusively for the most senior-level executives. Nor are more traditional methods like face-to-face seminars and programs suitable or desirable. Today’s leadership coaching is about democratizing development and ensuring that current and emerging leaders at various levels in an organization have the opportunity to unlock oft-overlooked leadership potential. 

It’s simple: the more inclusive your leadership development efforts are, the farther your reach. These days talent leaders almost have to provide tech-enabled learning solutions that cater to each individual within the context of the larger organization. 

So, whether you’re Tom Brady, Celine Dion, or a business leader charting a path in your particular function, you all have one thing in common: Leadership coaching can help to keep you agile.

The benefits of leadership coaching

Research suggests that leadership is about 30% genetic and 70% learned. In other words, the majority of good leadership is malleable; it can be created or developed. It’s not just about what talents you’re born with. Therefore, leadership coaching can be of immense value as a tool to help leaders develop and grow. Beyond personal growth, for businesses looking to invest in leadership development, the organizational benefits associated with leadership coaching have been proven time and time again.

Leadership coaching can lead to:

New perspectives: As leaders, it can be easy to fall into the same few patterns of thinking, whether you’re faced with a new or a familiar problem. After all, it’s that thought process that got you to this point. But the best leaders must remain agile and able to adapt to new situations, particularly in times of great uncertainty like a pandemic. With things changing so quickly, people need reliable leaders to turn to. Leadership coaching can help leaders see beyond their own limitations, and help them use their resources more effectively to make the best decisions for their teams and organizations. Sometimes, a small shift in perspective can mean the difference between navigating a roadblock and encountering a speed bump on the road to success.

Enhanced individual and team performance: At the end of the day, any investment in an organization’s people is an investment in the bottom line. With coaching, leaders become better at managing people. Because attitudes and work ethic often flows from the top down, this means that more people become more efficient and happier under better leadership. In turn, you can expect an elevation in the bottom line. 

Positive shifts in company culture: According to a 2020 survey from the Society for Human Resource Management, 84 percent of US workers blame poorly trained managers for creating unnecessary stress in the workplace. For those workers, leadership development represents a significant chance to improve their company culture. More than simply identifying leaders’ strengths and weaknesses, leadership coaching promotes greater self-awareness, which in turn, leads to a greater understanding of the impact you have on others. Overall, it can contribute to a positive shift in organizational culture from the top down. 

Greater employee retention: We all have our blindspots. That’s why consistent development is so important. When leadership coaching is done right, leaders attain and enhance key communication skills that they might not have even realized were weaknesses. With improved communication comes improved relationships in the workplace. When managers are engaged and active, workers often reciprocate. It goes without saying that a workplace that is engaging, growth-oriented, and positive is an environment where people are inclined to stay. So, an investment in your people can save on the high costs associated with employee turnover.

Improved diversity, equity, and inclusion: To remain competitive in today’s world, improving DE&I efforts should be a priority. Leadership coaching can help companies improve the diversity in their talent pipelines, and provide underrepresented people opportunities to gain valuable leadership skills. Additionally, as leaders improve their communication skills and identify their blindspots and biases, leadership coaching can help individual leaders develop empathy, compassion, and understanding of things they might not have otherwise.

Transform and scale leadership coaching with technology

The benefits of leadership coaching are boundless, but leadership development solutions can take on many different forms. As a leader, it’s your job to choose the tools best-suited for your organization. 

At Sounding Board, we can help you transform and scale your leadership coaching efforts. We offer a Leader Development Platform and a network of certified coaches that enable you to personalize, manage, measure, and scale complex leadership development programs across your organization. Our AI-powered platform is engaging, agile, and provides measurable insights in one centralized space. 


We understand the challenges of leading in an ever-changing environment. That’s why our coaches are highly trained to help you cultivate your strengths and address any weaknesses with finesse. With great coaches in your corner, no one will catch you off-guard on the field, on stage, or in the boardroom. Request a demo from Sounding Board today.

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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.
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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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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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