Scott Grady is the President of Reliant Life Shares, LLC. Through Reliant Life Shares, Scott and his team are helping to make accessible the once rather exclusive asset class of life settlements through the use of fractional life settlements. Although they are somewhat of a niche investment, the use of fractional life settlements in a balanced portfolio can add a significant return with minimal risk. A life settlement is created when a third-party investor buys an existing life insurance policy for an amount less than the face value of the policy but for more than the cash surrender of the policy. Life settlements are mutually beneficial to both the buyer and seller—it provides the seller with needed liquidity and the investor with a rewarding and reliable asset. Large financial institutions have been utilizing this asset class for years, as a means to add diversity to their portfolios. Grady has been one of the leaders in providing access to this opportunity to individual investors.
Mr. Grady has led his team in the creation of more than $1 billion in life settlement transactions. For over ten years, he has immersed himself in the workings of the life settlement market and during this time he has evaluated more than ten thousand life settlement policies. He has leveraged his skills in communication and networking, along with his natural inclination toward leadership, to build long-lasting relationships with an extensive group of institutional investment banks that have been benefiting from the use of the life settlement asset class for decades. Grady uses this vast group of life settlement suppliers to evaluate more than 100 policies per month for Reliant Life Shares. From this large pool, he selects the best policies available in order to maximize the potential returns while assuming minimal risk.
The objective of Reliant Life Shares, LLC is to provide the necessary resources and access for individual investors to benefit from the use of fractionalized life settlements in building, managing, and protecting their wealth. One of the important features of life settlements is that as an asset class it does not correlate with equities markets, interest rates, or the prices of commodities. Minimizing sources of volatility within a portfolio increase its manageability. Reliant Life Shares distinguishes itself from its competitors through the use of reporting. It provides several life expectancy reports for every policy it markets. All of the reporting provided comes from validated third-party underwriters. In addition to this, it offers the disclosure of Social Security Administration Life Expectancy reporting. Reliant Life Shares offers transparency into its processes and research methods, so that investors are assured of the benefits they will receive from capitalizing on investment in the asset of life settlements.
Where did the idea for Reliant Life Shares come from?
I have always stayed up to date on market trends and potential investments. After learning about the Life Settlement Market and the benefits of an investment that offers great returns while avoiding some of the risks associated with equities and commodities markets, my next thought turned to how I could make it available to individual investors.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I like to get up early. I find that waking early and having some time to myself helps me to stay grounded and keep a clear head to face whatever the day might throw at me. Once I’m ready to get going, it’s a cup of strong coffee and time to catch up on the latest financial news. I always make sure that before I leave home I will be distraction free for the rest of the day. After that I head to the office. My workday is a mix of meeting with clients and supporting the team with whatever they need so that they can help our clients and give them the individual attention they deserve. My time at the office is centered around customer service. Although I, of course, have obligations like anyone, I try to make my schedule flexible so that our customers are always the number one priority.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I keep a journal where I can write out any ideas I might have, even if they are only snippets. I hated those times when I would have a great idea that was difficult to recall later. I also keep a running email thread with myself. From idea to reality is where the real work lies. For me, it’s a matter of keeping the end product in focus, but being open to letting the process follow whatever course needed to arrive at the ultimate goal.
What’s one trend that excites you?
I find new ways to offer individual investors access to investment opportunities excite me the most. I’m intrigued by SPACs and want to see how those develop in the future, as well as other ways of bringing companies to the public other than the traditional IPO.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
Although entrepreneurs have to be self-starters and be willing to work hard and persevere, I’ve found that keeping a good work-life balance actually helps me to be more productive. By keeping my personal life in a good place, I’m able to be 100% focused on my clients and their needs when I am working.
What advice would you give your younger self?
When you strive to be successful, not everyone is going to like you. And that’s okay. Sometimes success breeds jealousy in others, but don’t let that slow you down. Sometimes doing things the right way means going against the crowd, but don’t back down.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
The phrase “It is what it is” is meaningless. People use it all the time to end conversations. When someone says it to me, I start asking more questions.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Evaluate myself. I look at what I have accomplished, what I’m working on, and where I plan to be in one, three, and five years. I take account of whether I have achieved what I set out to accomplish from previous years and if my future goals demonstrate growth and evolution.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Building a strong team. My goal is always to hire someone that is smarter than I am. There’s a saying: “It’s never the wrong time to hire the right person.” It might seem obvious, but developing a diverse and highly skilled team has been, to my mind, the best strategy I have used. Once I had the right people, they were driving growth for me.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Early on I struggled at times connecting with clients. I think it really just stemmed from trying too hard and some of the nervousness that comes with being new at something. I was able to overcome that by simply slowing down. I knew I had a great product and that I was going to help people make sound investments, so I could take the time to really focus on the people themselves. Now, my relationships with my customers is one of the things I pride myself on the most.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
Find a way to monetize anything to do with shipping, packing, or re-selling sand. It isn’t sexy and, for now, the cost per unit of weight seems unattractive, but long-term it is going to become increasingly scarce since it is used in so many materials for tech. Alternatively, finding a way to create future-pricing and contracts would be good also. Eventually, sand will be a traded commodity like oil or soybeans.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
A full body massage. It’s a great stress reliever and helps me feel more grounded. That helps me to think more clearly and make better decisions.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
Microsoft Teams. It helps the team stay organized and to communicate instantly and easily. Miscommunication is probably the biggest cause of inefficiency. The better our communication is as a team the more productive we all are.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
“Business Adventures” by John Brooks. It was written quite a while ago, but the lessons in it on corporate life are just as relevant today.
What is your favorite quote?
“Have no fear of perfection—you’ll never reach it.”
● Surround yourself with people smarter than you are. A strong team will grow your business for you.
● Keeping a good work-life balance will actually make you more valuable to your clients.
● If you know you have a good product that you believe in, don’t stress. Relax and really listen to what your clients are saying. Close attention is the most valuable thing you can offer.
● Honest self-evaluation is the key to personal and professional growth.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.