Providing a Fair Shot at a Great Career — Announcing Strive Talent

Millions of Great Jobs Go Unfilled

There’s an unfortunate paradox in our country’s labor market. While income inequality is historically high and economic mobility historically low, there are millions of open “middle skill” jobs that companies struggle to fill.

Strive Talent – A Fair Shot at a Great Career

Early Traction, Promising Results

To start, we’re focused on filling entry-level sales roles — there are over a million open middle skill sales roles and companies struggle to fill them. Current hiring practices are particularly ineffective for sales — college degrees are not predictive of success, but intrinsic, historically hard-to-measure, traits like empathy and assertiveness are.

Providing Great People Professional Pathways

One of the first people I met in starting Strive was Nija, a mid 30s mother of two managing a gym for a failing franchise. Her work history was checkered and résumé unrefined — at no fault of her own, her last two jobs lasted less than a year, and she lacked a college degree, attending cosmetology school instead.

Raising Money to Expand Our Team and Impact

Competency-based hiring is better for companies, candidates and society as a whole, and today I’m excited to announce our $3.8MM seed round led by Upfront Ventures with partner Kara Nortman joining our board. The round also includes support from great investors at Webb Investment Network, Kapor Capital, University Ventures, NextView Ventures, and Graph Ventures as well as support from angel investors Charlie Cheever, Allison Bhusri, Nimay Mehta, Jonathan Pines, Ken Landis, and Robert Chestnut.



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Will Houghteling

Will Houghteling


Bridging school and work @ Strive, x-Minerva, Google/YouTube, Harvard