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Meet Mehran Assadi of National Life Group in Addison

Today we’d like to introduce you to Mehran Assadi.

Mehran, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I grew up in Iran. In 1976, I came to the United States to visit my cousin on a 30-day holiday. I never left. The change was enormous. When I arrived in this country I could not speak the language. My first gourmet meal in America was Dunkin’ Donuts. It was a really big change for me. Yet I was so thrilled to be here. To me this was the land of opportunity and I was going to embrace it every way I could. Within 18 hours of arriving in Baltimore from Iran I was working – I was 17 at the time – and I really haven’t stopped working since then.

I studied business and technology and went on to graduate school, focusing on technology. I was really a geek. Then in 1989 I was asked to build a technology platform for insurance producers. And I was sent on the road to sell the idea and the plan to top producers. And I fell in love with sales and marketing and working with field organizations.

Eventually – after a number of other stops – I landed at National Life as a IT consultant. Over time I worked my way up through the life and annuity organization and in 2008 the Board of Directors elected me as National Life’s CEO.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I don’t think it is ever a smooth road, certainly not for me. I have worked at a number of companies that were in real trouble, one that was on the verge of bankruptcy. I love a challenge. I love to learn. I love to embrace change. I love to make a difference.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about National Life Group – what should we know?
National Life is a 168-year-old company. We were chartered in 1848. That alone is pretty special. Our founders believed passionately in the power of life insurance to help people. We have not lost any of that passion over those 168 years.

Our vision is to bring peace of mind to everyone we touch. Our mission is to deliver on our promises. Our values are to Do Good, Be Good and Make Good. I love the simplicity of that. Our values are summed up in just six words and every one of my 1,000 teammates knows exactly what those six words mean, and they live our values.

What sets us apart? Our culture. We are a mission-driven company. As a company we understand our why, our purpose, which is in our vision. We keep alive the dreams of families, the hopes of small business owners, and the dignity and financial independence of educators. In my view, no profession can be more honorable or special.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Passion… I have passion for our business. But I have passion for learning. And I embrace change. I believe the most successful organizations never stand still. They are always looking for ways to do things better; they are seeking ways to reinvent themselves, aiming even higher.

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