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Vanessa Bell Mumbition the Podcast

Mumbition

The Podcast By Mums & Co

Ep 91: Empower yourself through superannuation and financial well-being with Trenna Probert

Trenna Probert

Founder Super Fierce

May 7, 2024
In today's episode of Mumbition, we chat with Trenna, the founder of Super Fierce. Trenna shares her personal journey of overcoming financial hardship and her mission to close the global gender wealth gap. She emphasises the importance of superannuation, and financial resilience for women, especially single mothers. Trenna’s passion for financial literacy, combined with her innovative platform, aims to make affordable financial advice accessible to every woman. Her story is a testament to the power of resilience, determination, and the audacious hope of living life on one’s own terms. Trenna’s work has been recognized with the Thought Leader of the Year and Excellence Award for Women in Finance 2023. Her story serves as an inspiration for women in the early stages of their business journey, encouraging them to embrace risk, use critical thinking, and to keep “turning up!”.

Links 

Super Fierce - Make your superannuation work harder
Super Fierce (@besuperfierce) •Instagram photos and videos

https://www.facebook.com/SuperFierceAU/
Super Fierce: Overview| LinkedIn

Credits
 
Produced by -
Lucy Kippist 
Edited by -
Morgan Brown 
‍Interviewers - Carrie Kwan and Lucy Kippist 
‍Guest – Trenna Probert
 

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Episode 91 Transcript 

 

00:00:04:22- 00:00:42:15

Trenna

I'mdetermined to harness the power of my professional experiences, and my personallived experiences of financial hardship. Being a single mom, living large,making lots of mistakes, but having a lot of, excitement, adventure and joyalong the way to create products and solutions that make it easier for women tobuild confidence, financial resilience, and to believe that they have the rightand the ability to live life on their own terms.

 

00:00:44:07- 00:01:09:11

Lucy

A friend ofmine posted on Instagram the other day that in Australia in 1974, women wereapproved to apply for credit cards without a male's involvement. And that wasonly 49 years ago. It's a fact I would love to hear today's guest wax lyricalon, because when it comes to empowering women to be more in control of theirfinances, she is both passionate and articulate.

 

00:01:09:11- 00:01:34:12

Carrie

Yes, thebusiness name says it all. Trina is the founder of super fierce finance expertsbehind helping women make smart decisions about their finances, starting withsuperannuation. Trenna’s personal story of overcoming financial hardship andhaving the courage to start again drove the beginnings of Super Fierce and herenergy is infectious too.

 

00:01:36:01- 00:01:55:15

Carrie

Trenna, abig welcome to Mumbition. We are so thrilled that you're here today. And, ofcourse, we love sharing amazing stories from business women around Australia.We invite you to share a little bit about yours. Perhaps you can give us yourbest elevator pitch.

 

00:01:55:15- 00:02:31:15

Trenna

Sure. Look,my goal is a very tiny goal, which is: to close the $30 trillion global genderwealth gap by making appropriate, affordable advice accessible to every womanaround the globe. That's a huge goal. So where we've started is by building aplatform that makes it incredibly easy for women to enter a little bit ofinformation, find out how are on track with their savings to fund a retirementthat they will love, and show them just a very simple step that they can take. Clicka button to see how they can retire with more, all for less than $100.

 

00:02:36:06- 00:02:44:08

Carrie

Yeah. And Ireally do. I feel like this needs to be, amplified. Yes. This is a greatmessage can you give us a little bitmore in terms of, what sparked your journey? Whyis this so important now?

 

00:02:51:13- 00:02:55:15

Trenna

I had areasonably high flying career in my 20s. For allintents and purposes, I looked like I was having a great time and haveeverything together. I worked in financial services and understood many of theaspects of, of finance that maybe don't come as naturally to everybody. I actuallygenuinely think that women are very good at these things, but underestimatethat. But let's pop that to the side for later. But, youknow, like many women, I ended up in a challenging situation. Then at the ageof 34, I had to borrow $3,000 from my parents to leave an unhealthyrelationship in a fancy harbourside mansion here in Sydney. And literally startmy whole life again with an 18 month old under my arm. And so it's really thatexperience which fires me to empower others to make better decisions or tounderstand and to take comfort and believe that there is a way forward when youfeel like there isn't.

And so, youknow, I'm in my early 50s, by now, I thought I would have, you know, earned theright to work in something exciting like fashion or food or travel or a greatpodcast or something like that. But I'm able to get excited aboutsuperannuation because I see it as a hugely powerful tool, which isunderestimated not just by women, but by Australians in general, an incrediblypowerful tool to create greater control over your financial future.

Now, ahorrifying statistic and I have lots of them up my sleeve, but just one for themorning is that on average, we're retiring with 42% less than men here inAustralia. By the time with 23, we're already earning $10,000 less on averagethan the average Australian man. And nobody here thinks where, with, you know,$10,000 at 23 over your lifetime. That meansover our lifetime, on average, we're owning $1 million less than men.

So theseare absolutely critical issues to solve for. And, you know, I was frustrated bythe gender pay gap, and I was frustrated by, you know, the inequality in alllayers of society and in the workforce. But, you know, I kind of like, youknow, smash them apart to find sort of solutions. And when Iwas looking at the gap at retirement, I realized that through an old businessof mine, we'd already built the foundations of a tool that could put a woman ina position in just a matter of minutes to have a massive impact on that. So onaverage, a woman can save $100,000 in unnecessary super fees just by ensuringshe's in an optimal super fund.

Then whatwe've done is we've enhanced our product. We don't just compare every singlesuper fund, every single investment option on a like for like basis and giveyou advice. So we are licensed in Australia to provide personal financialadvice and you have to go through a pretty rigorous process to get anAustralian Financial services license. And that's important to know, so thatpeople can have comfort that we're acting in their best interests.

But what we built as well and released to market earlier this year is a digital investment scenario builder. And so for between, so, for your members, a whole lot less than this. But for under $100 at the moment, $49.95 and we're giving your members 20. Well, our members, sorry, I'm a member of this community too. You actually get personal advice that shows you not just which super fund you should be in, but also a custom investment portfolio that's balancing growth and defensive assets. That is the most optimal portfolio for you to put you in a stronger position.

 

00:06:53:17- 00:07:19:09

Carrie

When you were talking Trenna, I'm also thinking we need to reframe how we think about our finances. We need to use a language that suits us. We need to use the tools that suit us. I'm a very avid follower of you. And, you know, we've had you that you've been at MPowered recently at our annual conference.

I see a lot of your messages around owning, your own interpretation. So a bit like us. You have your own words. you have your own hashtags around #Fiercelove and #audacioushope,which I just think, such powerful, powerful little, tools to help us reframe our relationship and our conversations so we have created Mumbition.

We're creating our own trademarked language because it hasn't suit us, suited women before. so, I love that it's amazing. And I think this leads nicely into our next question and a big congratulations on your recent win, which was Thought Leader of the Year and Excellence Award for the Women in Finance 2023.

 

00:08:10:00- 00:08:10:22

Trenna

Yes. Thatcame as a great shock. I have to tell you. Andit was right at the end of the night, and I was just happily, busily champagneand clapping everybody else, and was definitely not prepared for that moment,even though I did dance up onto the stage.

 

00:08:24:17- 00:08:37:20

Carrie

Well we'renot surprised. and inviting you to share a lesson that you've perhaps learnedas a business owner in that thought leadership space, that could benefit awoman that's in the early stages of her journey.

 

00:08:37:20- 00:08:48:12

Trenna

Yeah. So itwas. It was a pretty surprising moment. And when I was nominated for leader ofthe year, it obviously made me pause and reflect on hmm what does that actuallymean? Because I don't wake upthinking, oh, I'm going to be a thought leader, right? You know, that would beweird and kind of egocentric. And who does that? And so it really did get methinking about what I have done that has led to this pretty, unexpected momentin my personal and professional journey. And that is, I stopped worrying aboutone two what I for a while, I probably wasn't talking up as much as I wantedto, and anybody who knows me would probably find that very surprising because Italk up  a lot.

But Iwasn't talking up as much as I wanted to because I kept worrying that I didn'tknow what people were interested in hearing. Because I have an opinion aboutlots of things. I wonder if it's the opinionated, leader of the year award? I'mnot sure, but, and then eventually I stopped worrying about that and justthought, I'm just going to say what's on my mind. And so Ireally encourage everybody to perhaps think less about that. I think, you know,there's so much content out there saying that you need your pillars of contentand you need to have a particular space that you're going to own and so on.Now, you know, I'm in my 50s. I'm very determined about what I believe and whatI care about. So it's easier for me to havesome clarity around the way those things connect together. So perhaps, youknow, I've done some of that legwork already, but I think that there's atendency to get really hung up on getting it right. And so for me, it's moreabout being just really just keep turning up, you know, I turn up to everyenvironment and I say what's on my mind.

I listen toothers, I try to evolve my thinking, and I try to be a positive contributor.But I don't waste a lot of time worrying about if it's worth saying anymore. It'scertainly helps if you have a big mission. You know, I'm really determined by,I'm really determined to bring together my professional experiences with mylived experiences of life, lived experience of, financial hardship, thechallenges of being a single mum, being diagnosed with ADHD at 40, not beingable to feed my son because, you know, all of these things, you know, all ofthose things create this really rich tapestry of experience that put me in aunique position, like every single human, tobring our own unique perspective and magic to the world.

 

00:11:29:16- 00:11:34:15

Carrie

Ifsomeone's actually about to launch their first business, aspart of their set up of operations, I'd almostbe like, well, absolutely. You need to check, you know, have that list checkedthat you have allocated yourself super because and I don't know if you have asmany stats, but I know as a small business owner that especially with my firstbusiness, I started in 2008, it was Daily Addict. I wasn'tpaying myself super for a while, and I tend to think that this is an area thatgets deprioritized.

 

00:12:12:12- 00:12:42:15

Trenna

It's hugelyimportant. Its hugely important Carrie. So, you know, when you're when you'rebuilding your business, there's only so much money. And so we kind of thinkabout paying our future self is the last of our priorities because we feel likewe can't even pay ourselves today often. Right. And so I absolutely urge womento not fall into that trap.

And it canbe hard because it feels that you don't have the choice. But I'm going to letyou know why this is critical because you are also already mums, so as mothers,we already know there is a reason why there's a 42% gender retirement gap.Women return with 42% less than men. There are lots of them, but the mostcritical ones actually pertain to motherhood and caring roles. Sowe take time out of the workforce to be mothers. And we're not earning superthrough that period. It's changing for some people now, but certainly haven'tbeen. Most people come back part time. We lose pace on our promotions, payrises through that period and the gap gets wider and wider. We often delaycoming back because we think that we it's not worth it, you know, after thecost of childcare.

But theloss of the superannuation is a hidden trap there. So you're already stackedup, you know, you've already got these challenges, got the gender pay gap, allof these things. So this is why even if you're, you know, you must be payingyourself super. It is a tax effective environment. And the earlier you putmoney in there, the earlier you put money into your super it's compounding overtime.

Now,compounding is that concept that a lot of people struggle with. And I don'tthink I do a particularly good job of explaining it. So I have to think of abetter way to do this. But you think about a snowball, right? So when asnowball rolls down a hill, it starts off like this. And so think about eachturn off the ball being a day.

So it's youknow, the snowball takes one turn and it's gathered a bit of snow. Takesanother turn down the hill. That's another day. And, and the extra size thatwas on it the day before is then grown on the next day. So what that means isthe benefit of compounding is the growth that you get, particularly in a taxeffective environment like superannuation, which is an investment. Growingmoney for your future is the longer you have money in there, the bigger it'sgrowing and growing. And you don't have to do a single thing about that otherthan make sure there's money going in there. Now, you may think that yourbusiness is going to be a great success, and I hope it will be. You deserve forit to be great. But you're going to work sohard. You kind of do so much for your family and having the certainty thatyou're going to have sufficient funds so that you can live a great life in yourin your later years is so important. The fastest growing homeless demographicin this country are single women over the age of 55, right?

I'm goingto be 55 soon. I was a single mum. It feels way too close to home for me, andso I just want women to understand that this is a very simple step. Now we allignore our super. So a couple of important things to understand about super.Super is the only financial asset that every working Australian has in someform from the time they start working until the time they retire, really tillthe end of life. So it's very important. Up until recently it was the largest,financial asset after the family home. But we now all see how difficult it isto become a property owner in Australia, but also because superannuation hasbeen in play for so long. If you are 37 today or younger,it will be your largest financial asset over your life. So you think about theimpact of considering how that's how that's building and growing for you. Taxeffective environment. It's hugely powerful. Do not ignore your super. Pleasepay yourself super. If you can't do it for yourself, get your partner to do itfor you.

 

00:16:52:03- 00:17:07:01

Carrie

Now, I'vewanted to know conversation to, the relationship that you have with risk. And,I'm really, really fascinated to hear how you view risk. Andwhat are some of the processes that you've put in place to protect yourself?And also Super Fierce.

 

00:17:13:10- 00:17:41:12

Trenna

Fantasticquestion. Carrie. I mean, I touched on, very briefly before that. I wasdiagnosed late in life with ADHD, not not uncommon for women of my generation.And so, yeah, I think, you know, there's been a lot of blips throughout mypersonal life, in my career that are probably a reflection of a reasonably highappetite for adventure, adrenaline and risk. You know, Iworked at Macquarie, you know, we tend to be wired in that way. I actuallythink that it's more about I just have an insatiable curiosity and excitementabout the world. And so I've always gone hurtling into that headlong,terrifying, my poor mother. Year by year, I've gradually gained awareness. Andso I think one of the powers of being diagnosed late with ADHD was I continuedto live boldly, but so I would build frameworksand tools around me to try and help menavigate things more effectively so that I could have conversations in astructured way with myself to assess the decisionmaking and see if it if my first instinct, you know, stacked up against somedetective thinking around what had happened in the past or, you know, researcharound what I could see.

So I had aconversation with my 11 year old this morning about how I was proud of himbecause I spoke to him a couple of days ago about critical thinking. You know,he was talking about a particular thing he'd seen on YouTube, and I washorrified. And so but I didn't I was horrified. I just said, hmm that's veryinteresting.

And sotalked about how you do fact checking and you lean into your instinct and soon. And this morning in the car, he said, so, mum, I just wanted to let youknow, feminists are not evil. I said, well, that's a great relief. He said, Ithink I've worked out that what's happened is the boys at school are listeningto all of these things on YouTube, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

And, I'dlike to suggest that instead of talking about feminists that you start talkingabout, gender equalists I think was his word. And the reason I bring that up,so is, you know, that I'm encouraging him to use critical thinking as a tool.And that's what I try to use with myself as well. So to guide my thinking, toreference previous experience, to identify risks that I've stumbled into beforeand, you know, like with my businesses.

So my veryfirst business, I was tremendously good at winning business. I used to executereally well, but I was brought up in a conservative country family, and I wastaught that it was rude to talk about money. So I just, I didn't get paid likeI was terrible at getting paid. So I took from that first business, I went awayand I was like, okay, every business moving forward, I will get 50% of myinvoice paid on, commencing a job as an example in the same sorts of, servicethis industry. So what I try to do is to makesure that I'm gathering, those frameworks and reference points from my ownexperiences. But reading widely.

 

00:20:28:15- 00:20:35:05

Lucy

I loved thelittle insight into being in the car with your son. I have a ten year old sonand Carrie. That's two, so close in age there.

 

00:20:37:22- 00:20:39:03

Trenna

Such abeautiful age.

 

00:20:39:03- 00:20:41:11

Lucy

It is. Andthey're really curious about the world and I just liketo take a little bit of a step, I guess, closer towards how you harmonize yourlife as a business owner, because obviously you have some incredible energy,incredible passion for your business. And youalso run super fierce alongside your husband, and you’re also a mum. What wouldyou say is 1 or 2 or just even a philosophy or a tool or a system that you usethat really helps you to harmonise all those aspects of life.

 

00:21:13:00- 00:21:43:08

Trenna

I kind ofthink of myself sometimes. Almost like confetti or, you know, the sparkle ofbubbles that come out of a champagne glass. And that might sound self-absorbed,but it's not really. It's kind of how I like to. I like to use colour andfeelings and visual imagery to shift my energy and how I move through theworld, because we all have difficult moments. And so byimagining, you know, a spray of confetti or the bubbles out of a champagneglass, that's the joyful, exuberant, lively feeling. And so I use those sortsof visualizations to remind me of the impact that I can have on others. And onmyself. You know, I deal with people allthe time who are having a really hard time, and so protecting my energy isimportant. I'm not good at it. I'm all out. So I had a coach many years ago. I'malways surrounded by coaches for different things. That's, you know, veryimportant for me. It took me years to learn that I was worthy of having acoach, to give myself permission to have a coach. I think that's a commonproblem for women. Maybe not. Maybe it's just me. But one of the those peopletaught me to put, a big balloon around me.

And so theballoon enables me still to see and touch, and I can hear everybody, but itjust creates a little bit of space to protect my energy and my heart when it'sgetting old, too much.

 

00:22:52:20- 00:23:13:09

Lucy

Now, finaltwo questions for you. the first one is sort of related to what you justsharing, actually, that concept of harmony for us, which is a triangle ofambition, our livelihood and well-being, which I really feel like you'veexplained there. But if you could describe the shape of what a good life lookslike for you, what would that be?

 

00:23:13:09- 00:23:39:06

Trenna

Probably aflower. So we've been looking at flowers and talking about flowers thismorning. And for me, you know, I really love the richness of the differentpieces that come together in, you know, in non perfect ways. So, you know,looking behind you, Carrie, at those beautiful peonies. Right. They, they looksoft and beautiful. Right.

But there'sreal strength in those as well. You've got the different shades of thedifferent, petals, you've got the vibrancy of the leaves. And so I think that,you know what, I would love people to be able to experience in their lifeseriously is to have the confidence and the comfort, not need to control theform of that so deliberately.

And beaware that, you know, that the wind's going to blow and things are going toturn and shift a little bit, it's not going to look the same, but each view ofthat can be just as beautiful, so long as, you know, keep pouring in the waterand you trim away the edges sometimes and shift them in and out of the sun alittle bit more from time to time, and understand that in certain seasons they aregoing to wilt a little bit more and give you less shade, you know, all thosesorts of things. I think, yeah, just rememberingthat life is not perfect. It's like, you know, like the flowers, they're notperfect, but they're still beautiful in their own form.

 

00:24:44:10- 00:24:45:19

Lucy

Beautiful answer.

And I don't think we've had anyone mention a flower shape before. So that's beautiful. Last question for you is, in the spirit of women supporting women, which you so clearly do. Could you share with us or shout out to some of the Mumbitious women in your life, that is, the women running a business and looking after children unapologetically, that you'd like to say hello to today?

 

00:25:10:13- 00:25:39:10

Trenna

Oh mygoodness. Well, how long do you have? But let me just choose a couple. So Nabi Mariam,Nabi, is the founder of Cover Hero. She has had an incredibly huge year,balancing everything, and has successfully shepherded her beautiful boy throughyear 12. Entering a new stage of life. One of my best, best friends in theworld, Kylie Levitt.

She's downin Launceston, which I can never say. And you know, she is a single mom of,twin four year old terrorists, and running, you know, a huge, M&A advisorybusiness from, like, just incredible, like, mind blowing. She's about this bigand just a powerhouse. Zameen Pavree. If you want to follow someone who is thebest leading, ethical and sustainable expert and investor in the country. Youknow, mum to two incredible young women who are forging their own paths. Wemust talk about Amy and Mel. Amy and Mel, the founders of Wed Shed. They bothhave two little people each. Just, they've just published a book. It's out inmarket. They've launched another business like, mind blown all the time. IfI was younger than them, I would want to grow up to be them. Incredible.

 

00:26:42:15- 00:26:53:05

Lucy

Thanks somuch for joining us on Mumbition, the podcast by Mums and Co. If you'd like toconnect with Trenna, you'll find her on our Mums and Co member directory viathe member platform.

 

00:26:53:14- 00:27:01:09

Carrie

And if youhaven't already, join the thousands of business owning women just like you.Join us at mumsandco.com.au. We havemembership tiers to suit women at all stages of business and motherhood.