We're back with another inspiring and awesome wāhine toa. This week we welcome Maaru Senthil. She joined her husband as co-owner of Vive Financial Advisers two years ago, and hasn't looked back!
She has a story that many are familiar with - being let go during Covid. She turned something that happened to her work for her, and found it a blessing in disguise.
We hope you find her interview as insightful as we did!
What is your business and how did you get into it at the start?
Our business is a financial advisory business, offering advice services in Insurance, Mortgages and KiwiSaver.
What inspired you to start your own business / leave corporate to go into business full time?
I was let go from my 9-5 job at the end of 2020 and it was the biggest blessing in disguise. I wasn’t happy in that role and the long hours didn’t make it easy.
When I was let go, I took a few months off full time work and volunteered at the local women’s refuge - for me, it was a way of giving back to a cause that my mum, siblings and I benefited from, while I figure out what I wanted to it with my life.
In my time at the refuge, I noticed a gap in women’s financial education and hence their ability to make informed decisions when it came to their personal finances. Ironically, the women at the refuge often ended up with the children and with less money and financial literacy. This inspired me to pursue a career in the financial services industry and rebrand Jith. my husband’s existing business at the time, into Vive.
We added a community wing to the business, offering financial education workshops to different groups of our community.
What is the biggest obstacle that you have faced?
The largest obstacle I’ve faced is facing my own fears and limiting belief around what life should be when I hit a certain age.
What advice can you give to other women looking to branch out on their own?
There will never be a perfect time to take that leap of faith. You need to channel out those inner and outer voices that doubt you and go for it. Find a few quality people who love you and support you no matter what, and be sure to be there for them when they need you.
You yourself are an inspiration to many women, who has inspired you?
My mother is an inspiration to me. She taught me forgiveness, kindness and grace. She also became a first home owner, in her own merit, by the age of 55, on a part-time pre-school teacher salary. She taught me the importance of determination, no matter how hard things get.
What is a quote you live by?
The greatest glory in living, lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall. - Nelson Mandela.
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
My alarm clock - I’m not much of a morning person, haha!
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Having helped 10,000 lives financially protect themselves with the right advice and tools.
Quick Fire Favourites
- Favourite food
Sri Lankan rice and curry
- Favourite artist
- Favourite book
Rich Dad Poor Dad
- Favourite tv show
- Favourite movie
The Pursuit of happiness
- Favourite famous person / idol