Ioanna Mantzouridou Onasi
The career landscape is an ever-evolving tapestry, marked by the ambitions and dreams of its navigators. Few understand this dynamic world as intimately as Ioanna Mantzouridou Onasi, co-founder and CEO of Dextego, Inc.
Born amid the sun-soaked beauty of Greece, Ioanna's aspirations were never limited by geographical boundaries. From a tender age, she was captivated by the allure of the global business realm. By 15, she was on American shores, embracing a rigorous educational journey at St. Lawrence University, a liberal arts college. While summer stints sharpened her grasp of sustainability and the human psyche, it was an internship at Marc Jacobs in the Big Apple that revealed the untenable facets of fashion, pushing Ioanna to champion sustainable alternatives and stand up for Greek women affected by economic turmoil by creating DGRwear, with 100% handmade clothes and accessories.
Notably, it was at Pace University, during her master's program in strategic management, that Ioanna unearthed her true calling - the intricate realm of talent development. Embracing her newfound passion, she ventured into organizational design and human resources, leaving a mark as the VP of People and Chief of Staff at Aptivio. Here, she meticulously wove the Aptivio ecosystem, further establishing her reputation as a talent development strategist.
Amid the forthcoming accolades, including the coveted Young Leader Award at the Education 2.0 Conference, and her co-authored book, Ed. Metadores, Ioanna nurtured an ambition to reinvent how talent development was approached, especially for the Gen Z demographic. Enter Dextego, Inc. Established in 2023, Dextego stands at the forefront of blending advanced AI with soft skills training. At its core lie the Dexters, individuals embarking on an unparalleled journey of self-growth. The platform uniquely curates challenges to reflect real-world experiences, ensuring genuine enhancement. Through video recordings, the AI coach deciphers nuances from tone to body language, creating an unprecedented, tailored learning experience. Within a mere four months of its inception, Dextego's novel approach has already attracted a user base of 700, emphasizing its rapid trajectory of success.
Behind Dextego’s rise is Ioanna's unyielding commitment to her vision. Her narrative emphasizes the convergence of diverse experiences – from sustainable fashion advocate to AI evangelist, to talent development strategist. She stands as a beacon for Gen Z, underscoring the significance of soft skills and holistic development.
As the world stands at the cusp of workplace evolution, figures like Ioanna Mantzouridou Onasi ensure that the transition is not just smooth, but also inclusive. Dextego, under her stewardship, promises a future where talent thrives, and individuals realize their utmost potential. Through her endeavors, Ioanna is not just shaping careers; she's sculpting the very future of global talent development.
We spoke with Ioanna to learn more about Dextego, who benefits by using it, and how it came to be.
Ioanna, who was Dextego designed for, and how do users benefit from it?
Dextego primarily serves B2B markets, catering to high-growth and enterprise companies looking to nurture and retain their top talent. Consider this: a top performer is up to eight times more productive than an average employee. Losing such talent can delay a company's growth and revenue targets significantly. Our platform offers a coachability score to guide companies on talent decisions. Furthermore, Dextego balances AI with human interactions creating a learning community, enabling both individuals and businesses to thrive. In this era where AI is reshaping industries, Dextego stands out by harnessing this technology to enhance human potential.
What sparked the idea for Dextego?
My tenure at Aptivio, a B2B SaaS startup, was an eye-opener, revealing the nuances of managing a startup. A glaring challenge emerged: the need for refined soft skills among young professionals, especially in a remote, post-COVID environment. Current tools lacked the personal touch and engagement essential for Gen Z. This prompted me to conceptualize a platform tailored to individual needs, making learning immersive and impactful. Supported by my Aptivio CEO and my co-founder, Sean Vazquez, I embarked on the Dextego journey. Our mission transcends mere skill enhancement; it's about inclusivity, equity, and creating equal opportunities. As a Gen Z, immigrant female founder, I've infused Dextego with insights from my own experiences, which has resonated with our target demographic. The response has been overwhelming, and this is merely the prologue. The path ahead promises challenges, and I'm geared up to navigate them, propelled by my faith in Dextego's transformative potential.
What are your most notable professional achievements?
The success of a company largely hinges on its team. My crowning accomplishment was recruiting exceptional talent during my tenure at Aptivio, which paved the way to Series A funding and achieving our revenue milestones.
What aspects of your work bring you the most joy?
Throughout my life, individuals have naturally gravitated towards me, seeking guidance on honing soft skills, whether it's building confidence or mastering public speaking. Assisting people globally in cultivating these essential skills, regardless of their chosen profession, feels like making a tangible impact on the world. This aligns perfectly with my childhood vision—not of a particular profession, but of creating significant change. Every day, I'm fulfilling that vision, making a difference in countless lives.
Ioanna Mantzouridou Onasi
Co-Founder and CEO