Who is Allison?
Allison Pickens is a solo GP investor and independent board director who spends her time supporting CEOs and their teams, including at dbt Labs (on the board), Mux, Tackle, and others. She is a world-recognized expert on how to grow through your existing customers (through better adoption, net retention, and advocacy), having invented, refined, and/or popularized many of the best practices in that area. As the former COO at Gainsight, Allison scaled the customer success SaaS company from $1M to >$80M in ARR. Besides building and leading dozens of functions, she pioneered thought leadership for Gainsight’s community on how to drive recurring revenue growth, which drove the creation of the new category of customer success software.
Allison’s content — hundreds of blog posts and podcasts and ultimately a book called The Customer Success Economy (Wiley, 2020) — became a vehicle for her to advise entrepreneurs. She has served on three private SaaS company boards and is currently on the boards of dbt Labs (backed by a16z, Sequoia, and others) and Commvault (NASDAQ: CVLT), making her one of the youngest public company board directors in the U.S. She decided to leave Gainsight in early 2020 to focus on her passion for working with founders, and she launched a venture fund to formalize those relationships.
Allison is part of the Fortune Most Powerful Women community and was named one of the Top Women in SaaS and Top 50 People in Sales and Business Development. She started her career as a strategy consultant at BCG and later an investor at Bain Capital, and she earned an MBA at Stanford and a BA at Yale.
On weekends you can find Allison hiking in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and daughter, discussing topics that range from gut health to climate change.