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How TaskUs Used a "System Builder" Approach to Drive Nearly $1 Billion in Sales 


Guest: Jarrod Johnson, the Chief Customer Officer at TaskUs, a publicly traded digital outsourcing company that serves high-growth technology companies to represent, protect, and grow their brands. TaskUs is also a client of CEO Coaching International.

Overview: When Jarrod Johnson joined TaskUs in 2016, the firm had about $70 million in revenue. Today, TaskUs is nearing $1 billion in annual sales and counts world-class companies like Uber and Meta among its clients.

On today’s show, Jarrod explains the “systems building” approach he used to help drive such remarkable growth, including how he recruits and trains top talent, aligns his sales team to goals and best practices, and promotes a culture of positivity.

Jarrod Johnson on the power of the team: “A lot of people believe in what I think is a fallacy of ‘the rainmaker,’ that an individual is just going to walk out and people hand them deals because they’re networked or connected or whatever. I think those days are over. We are big believers in what I would call ‘gang tackling.’ How do you take down a wooly mammoth? It’s a whole tribe surrounding the wooly mammoth to take it down together. We believe in delivering exponential effort on the kinds of opportunities that can have exponential results for the company.”

Jarrod Johnson on identifying top talent: “I look for industry expertise, both in what we sell and having done large, complex, consultative selling to like clients for whatever we’re hiring for. Also, I’m looking for indicators of financial acumen. In complex consultative selling, especially at the average deal sizes that we have, which is multimillions of dollars, you just have to have some basic financial acumen or you’re not going to be able to talk to the buyers. And then we test on ethics. We have very interesting standard interview questions around, ‘Tell me a time when you were asked to compromise your ethics.’ We see what kind of answers we get and where someone’s moral compass is because it tells you a lot about somebody. And then for senior sellers, I’m looking for a proven background of carrying a bag and making a number. For younger sellers, I’m looking for curiosity and passion. I’ve found that if you have someone who’s curious and really wants to learn and really is passionate about the job or the space or the client set, they tend to be the most successful.”

Jarrod Johnson on TaskUs’ culture of continuous improvement: “We have a phenomenal learning management system where we have built computer-based training modules and digital assets: case studies, Salesforce tutorials, sales methodology, the forecasting system. And then we test against that. Some are just pass/fail. But our sales enablement team has done a really nice job giving us an onboarding plan that works. It takes a lot of effort, but it makes a huge difference when you get over a couple of managers. Otherwise, you get too much inconsistency. We do a lot of dry runs. We have a culture of continuous self-improvement, so we thrive on feedback. We do quarterly performance appraisals, quarterly rating systems, and employees are allowed and encouraged to give their managers feedback.”

Balaji Sekar and Jarrod Johnson on the TaskUs Journey to a $3B NASDAQ IPO At the 2022 Make BIG Happen Summit, Balaji and Jarrod spoke with Mark Moses about three keys to the company’s stunning growth.

3 Keys to Finding the Best Talent for Your Executive Team CEO Coaching International’s Gordon Forsythe discusses how to vet and hire talent who will succeed within your culture and execute the tasks that will Make BIG Happen for your firm.

About CEO Coaching International

CEO Coaching International works with CEOs and their leadership teams to achieve extraordinary results quarter after quarter, year after year. Known globally for its success in coaching growth-focused entrepreneurs to meaningful exits, CEO Coaching International has coached more than 1,000 CEOs and entrepreneurs in more than 60 countries and 45 industries. The coaches at CEO Coaching International are former CEOs, presidents, or executives who have made BIG happen. The firm’s coaches have led double-digit sales and profit growth in businesses ranging in size from startups to over $10 billion, and many are founders that have led their companies through successful eight, nine, and ten-figure exits. Companies working with CEO Coaching International for two years or more have experienced an average EBITDA CAGR of 53.5% during their time as a client, more than three times the U.S. average, and a revenue CAGR of 26.2%, nearly twice the U.S. average.

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