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GirlBoss | Sheena Allen Shares The Biggest Career Mistakes She Made In Her 20s

From choosing love over our career goals to not negotiating, there are so many career mistakes that young women make.

When we are in our 20s, we are at a very vulnerable state in our lives. For some of us, we just finished college, are working at our first “real” jobs, and we are even starting families. Through the midst of it all, we tend to make simple mistakes as it relates to our careers.

Recently, I was able to connect with a few girlbosses in various careers and personal backgrounds. Each woman shared their biggest career mistake and what they learned from it. Whether you are a graduating college senior, just starting out on your own, or a 20-something woman that is already working, you will be able to benefit from the wisdom of each of the girlbosses below. Each woman shared her own career mistake and how they’ve managed to get in formation.

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Sheena Allen (@whoisSheena)

Entrepreneur & Founder of Sheena Allen Apps & Insta Funds

Learn when to ask for help.

“My biggest career mistake in my 20s was thinking that I could do it all on my own. I started my first tech company as a solo founder and actually waited a good amount of time before seeking mentorship or a team to help in growing my company.

I learned that it is important to have a great team in order to build a great company. Trying to do everything on your own will tire and stress you out, which only leads to hurting your company.”

Sheena Allen _Side Hustle Pro
Courtesy of Sheena Allen

Today in the guest chair we have a woman I consider the queen of apps. Her name is Sheena Allen and she is a tech entrepreneur. She started her first company in 2011 as a senior at the University of Southern Mississippi. At the time, she had no tech background and was a psychology and film major. On a whim, she decided to launch a mobile application company.

How App Guru Sheena Allen Earned 3 Million Downloads With No Coding Experience

Giving herself a year to see if she would see any success with her company, Sheena Allen Applications, she eventually found that success with her third app, Dubblen. In fact, three months after launching the app for Android, Dubblen received over 500,000 downloads. That year, 2013, Sheena made the decision to leave Mississippi and move to a tech-hub to find a mentor and increase her knowledge in the tech space.

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Courtesy of Sheena Allen

Since then, she has gone on to experience frustration with raising money in Silicon Valley and decided to return to her hometown of Mississippi. There, she grew concerned with the predatory lending practices in her community and decided to fight back through the launch of a second startup, CapWayCapWay is a financial company that focuses on the unbanked and underbanked. The service offers financial literacy content and onboards unbanked users to get a bank account.

She has been featured in various publications, including Forbes.comBlackEnterprise.com, and EBONY Magazine. In late 2016, Sheena made her premiere in She Started It, a documentary film that follows five women around on their startup journey.

On this episode, Sheena shares:

  • The steps she took to create an app as a non-technical creator
  • Pro tips for working with freelance developers
  • How and why her third app was a major success
  • The challenges of raising money in Silicon Valley as a black women entrepreneur and some tips to overcome it
  • Her secret to building a strong and loyal team
  • How she is setting her business and brand up for success

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