Using Your Obstacles as Leverage w/ Sheena Allen

We sat down with Sheena Allen who is not your typical tech success story. She bootstrapped an app company and leveraged her success into her new company, Capway, whose mission is to bridge the gap for financial literacy to lower income populations here in the US. In this podcast, Sheena spoke about her experiences before and after raising capital and here you will find 3 jewels you can take from her experience to make sure your next decisions concerning your startup are wiser than before.

Don’t go in half cocked

Imagine calling in a favor for an introduction to someone critical to your business. Next, you connect with Mister or Miss BigShot and they fire off a volley of questions which you try your best to answer but it’s clear to both parties that you only have an idea and a long way to go to prove the concept. Well, you just wasted Mister or Miss BigShot’s time and yours. You’d be wise to have some level of traction, no matter how small you. Never go into any business related discussion with just an idea. Ideas alone won’t cut it. Have something, anything to show traction.

Don’t call in favors before it’s time

Continuing our example scenario, instead of having an impressive first impression, you now have had a lukewarm one. Mister or Miss BigShot now tells your connection to not do that again unless you or someone like you has more skin in the game. Now your connection is turned off to making more connections for you. Don’t let this happen to you. Use your favors wisely because every bad (read: unprepared) connection you make reflects badly on your connection as well. The tech world is smaller than you may believe so have some patience and make the first conversation be the best one.

Investors invest in you

We get it, patience may not be your strong point. Hold. Think of it this way. Investors invest in you and the idea. You, the person who will execute, is just as, if not more important, than the idea itself. This is the difference between Friendster and Facebook. Same idea, different execution. Big Difference. To make people more willing to bet on you, use previous wins as leverage. If you’ve had some success in the past, leverage the heck of out it. And don’t worry, success comes in all shapes and sizes. Sheena Allen leveraged app downloads and you can do the same. Anything is better than going in empty-handed.

Follow these gems and you’ll be that much closer to your dreams. Happy grinding.

Mentioned in this podcast:

Twitter: Melissa S. Jackson

Sheena Allen