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Sounding Board raises money as startups wake up to executive coaching – TechCrunch

In an unprecedented work environment defined by distributed teams and virtual-only communication, two co-founders believe their 2018 bet is truer than ever: mentors also need mentorship.

Christine tao and Lori Mazan, the brains behind Resonance table, want to train any leader within an organization to be a better leader. The San Francisco start-up connects anyone from new managers to C-suite executives with coaches through a marketplace.

Revenue has doubled or tripled each year since 2016, which the company says is in the “multi-million” range. But in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, Sounding Board has seen demand for its platform increase even more. Quarterly bookings have increased 3.4 times from Q2 2020, and over the past five months, monthly revenue has doubled.

In the wake of this growth, the co-founders say Sounding Board’s next step as a startup is to grow beyond coaching services and become a platform that can show executives the impact of this news. skills on business development. The new product is intended to serve as a hub and roadmap where a participant and coach can track ideas, progress and behaviors.

In the platform, a user can schedule sessions with a coach, be matched with someone, as well as view resources and complete their assigned tasks. Beyond that, there is a feature that allows the coach and manager to measure goals on an ongoing basis, similar to software related to OKR.

“The content is great, but unless you can apply that content, it’s not very useful,” Mazan said. “So this coaching is a way to help people apply the knowledge and learning they’ve learned from one type of content and actually use it in the workplace.”

The new product takes the monthly in-person summit that your organization used to call executive coaching and makes it a living, breathing part of a manager’s workflow.

In addition to helping its users to better check the temperature of their progress, the product will help Sounding Board to evolve its services. Now any tutor on the Sounding Board has more power in a user’s mind and workflow, so every call is not synchronous and can be handled more evenly.

The co-founders see their long-term differentiation living in this functionality. Anyone can create a market, but it takes transparent, easy-to-use technology to track the effectiveness of what happens after coaching.

Tao admits the startup is not for everyone. The Sounding Board has been quickly adopted by companies in a late hyper-growth mindset heading towards an IPO. This level of maturity is an ideal point for a third party like her to step in and scale leaders from team to team. Customers include VMware, Uber, Plaid, Chime, and Dropbox.

That said, within organizations, 60% of Sounding Board users are entry-level managers, 30% are mid-level, and 10% are C-suites. The co-founders believe these numbers indicate a broader demand for mentorship beyond what their competition offers, which often sticks to C-suite life coach territory or stress management.

“Everyone’s starting to realize that we’re going to have to offer more coaching than just the C-suite, and sometimes they don’t really know what that means,” Mazan said.

The achievement, along with favorable winds from COVID-19, has helped Sounding Board attract new millions of venture capitalists. The startup tells TechCrunch that it has raised a $ 13.1 million Series A led by Canaan Partners. Other investors include Correlation Ventures, Bloomberg Beta, Precursor Ventures, as well as Degreed founder David Blake and Kevin Johnson, the former CEO of Udemy.




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