Sounding Board Appoints Leadership Development Expert Iyad Uakoub to Head Behavioral Science Research

  • Coaching Platform Provider Helps Companies Develop and Retain Talent Using Scientific-Based Solutions

Sounding Board, Inc. continues its rapid growth as the industry’s most reliable and effective leadership coaching platform with the recent appointment of Iyad Uakoub, Ed.D., as Senior Director, Behavioral Science. Uakoub will lead the company’s behavioral science initiatives, bringing solutions to market that address the most critical challenge facing companies today: How to quickly develop leaders who can drive measurable business impact during times of rapid change. He joins the company during a time of heightened momentum following Sounding Board’s recent Series B funding led by JAZZ Venture Partners.

“I’m excited to have Iyad Uakoub join our team at such a critical time of growth and development,” said Christine Tao, co-Founder and CEO of Sounding Board, Inc. “At Sounding Board, we focus on blending adult learning theory, research, and practical application to create the most impactful leadership coaching experience. Iyad’s experience is unique: He is a researcher who has led large scale learning programs. His expertise will ensure that our clients receive scientifically sound coaching programs that help to build and advance their leadership pipelines.”

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Most recently, Uakoub led Talent, L&D and People programs at global enterprise unicorn companies ThousandEyes (now part of Cisco), JUUL Labs, and Skillz, the first public mobile competition platform. At each startup, he designed and delivered interventions that intersect talent management, leadership development, and coaching, drawing on his background in meaningful work, identities, and multigenerational workplaces.

An engineer by training, Uakoub shifted his interest to leadership and development, with an emphasis on scaling through technology. At the same time, as a volunteer in his native Syria, he launched and led one of the first career and entrepreneurship development centers in the Middle East, serving more than 1,500 future leaders in its first year. This fueled his passion for capacity building, competency mapping and learning transfer, and led to work designing learning and development programs for youth agencies like UNICEF.

He became a Fulbright scholar, which brought him to the United States where he designed nationally recognized coaching and data insights interventions at Purdue and Stanford universities. Most of his research focused on meaningful work and GenZ, findings from which have been adopted by more than thirty-five universities worldwide.

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“Sounding Board is at a vital point in the company’s growth,” Uakoub said. “From the founders Christine Tao and Lori Mazan, and across every single person in the organization, I have found a genuine commitment to developing the world’s most impactful leaders. Through data and research, we will rewrite the path of leadership development through science and cement our impact as a disruptor in the virtual leadership coaching space.”

“With the addition of Iyad to the Sounding Board team, we are tapping into his vast experience to connect science to practice and tell evidence-based stories that evolve from our consistent, high-quality coaching engagements,” said Lori Mazan, Sounding Board’s Co-founder, President and Chief Coaching Officer.

Uakoub is a fellow at Harvard Institute of Coaching, President of the Fulbright Association at Purdue University and an ICF-certified coach.

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