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The EMEA Recruitment podcast was proud to welcome Olga Miler and Jude Kelly CBE, the Co-Founders of SmartPurse, a financial toolkit to support women in becoming confident with money.

“We want to scale SmartPurse globally, in order to inspire many more women, but also to unite many more women, in a global conversation around money, finance and economic empowerment.”

Paul Toms starts the episode by asking how Olga and Jude – who come from very different backgrounds – met and discovered their shared passion. When they began having conversations with women about money, they were shocked to learn that so many women feel unconfident and embarrassed about their lack of knowledge.

With their drive and ideas, Olga and Jude made a plan and put it into action. It’s been a steep learning curve for Jude, who had no prior experience of founding a commercial company, but she knew the conversation was urgent and essential. The COVID-19 pandemic – as well as issues surrounding sustainability and investments – have only made SmartPurse more relevant.

The response from both men and women has been overwhelmingly supportive.

Although they’ve not been long-term friends, Olga and Jude instinctively liked each other. They both respect each other’s talents and ideas, with Jude finding Olga impressive on a daily basis!

Traditionally, women have been shut out of finance. As a result, Jude explains that it can take a while for women to understand that they should have confidence with money. As with other societal issues, such as healthcare and education, life only becomes richer once women take an equal place in the world, she believes.

EMEA Recruitment works with many companies on their Diversity & Inclusion initiatives, but Paul recognises that change won’t happen overnight. Jude describes how gender politics at a domestic level can cause tremendous tension in our lives, especially at work.

Providing financial education on a global scale is the philosophy of SmartPurse. Olga quotes a study in which British people were asked what they wished they’d have learned about at school; five of the ten topics related to money. To overcome the knowledge and confidence gap, she feels that women need this education the most.

SmartPurse’s education is practical, rather than theoretical, which has proven to be “extremely effective”. Olga discusses the method that they use to provide help to those struggling to understand or manage their money, which ultimately enables them to take action.

Olga and Jude have wider goals for the business, but they have both had exceptional careers individually. Paul digs deeper into the advice they would give to those aspiring to achieve their dreams, as well as the one piece of advice they’d give to their younger selves – Jude has a particularly fantastic answer!

You can listen to the full episode below: 

The EMEA Recruitment podcast is also available on your favourite podcast app, as well as via this link: https://emearecruitment.libsyn.com/emea-recruitment-podcast-104-helping-women-feel-confident-with-money-olga-miller-jude-kelly-cbe

To find a particular part of the episode, please use the timestamps below:

01:25: How Olga and Jude met and created SmartPurse
06:15: What it feels like to have conversations around money
09:44: Why the world needs women to understand money
16:57: The philosophy of SmartPurse
19:42: How SmartPurse helps women manage their money
22:47: What to do if someone’s embarrassed about money
25:05: Olga’s vision for the business
26:27: Advice for people aspiring to reach their goals
30:08: Jude’s mentor
33:58: Who has inspired Olga
35:26: Olga’s favourite quote
36:34: Jude’s advice for her 18-year-old self
37:19: How to reach out to Olga and Jude

You can find out more about SmartPurse at smartpurse.me, or connect with Olga and Jude on LinkedIn.


We’re proud to bring you this episode in partnership with our friends at Operation Smile. We’re hoping to create 100 new smiles through our partnership on the EMEA Recruitment podcast. Find out more and donate at https://www.emearecruitment.com/operation-smile


This episode was hosted by Paul Toms, Founder of EMEA Recruitment, and Rose Jinks, our Senior Marketing Executive.

To find out more about our global recruitment services, please visit our website: https://www.emearecruitment.com/

You can also keep up to date with our news and insights via LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/emea-recruitment-limited/

If you’d like to connect with Paul, find him on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/paultoms/

You can also follow him on Twitter: https://twitter.com/paul_toms


If you have any feedback about the podcast, please reach out to Rose: rose.jinks@emearecruitment.eu