Pairing retirement with health benefits for a one-two punch

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As an investment advisor at Miracle Mile Advisors, Josh Sailar manages $51.4 million of high net-worth client assets. But something else that sets this 28-year-old apart is that he also develops employee benefit plans for most of his business-owner clients.

Although 80% to 90% of Miracle Mile’s business comes from retirement plans, Sailar says the Los Angeles-based firm also considers its clients’ overall employee benefit needs. With many small businesses strapped for resources yet wanting to offer both health and retirement benefits, “a lot of business owners will take this ‘Frankenstein’ approach, where they just sort of throw parts together.” But absent a more deliberate approach to designing a benefit plan, what they come up with, he says, is usually sub-optimal and often unworkable, which costs them financially.

So Sailar steps in and works typically with the business owner, CEO or CFO to design a plan that suits the company’s needs. That not only ingratiates him with the client, it opens the door to other business opportunities as well.

“If you’re working with the right people, all you need is for your ears to be open,” he says. “You’d be surprised how often 401(k) issues come up.”

Sailar is paid based on his total assets under management, as opposed to any sort of commission, which he credits with helping him sidestep common conflicts of interest and remain directly accountable to his clients.

“Josh has single-handedly driven the firm’s retirement and benefits practice forward,” says Miracle Mile colleague Antonia Burchman. “Forever a student of the industry, he has gathered best practices and adapted them to this highly uncertain time in employee benefits to ensure he’s providing the most innovative solutions possible.”

Burchman notes that by demonstrating creativity with how he structures their benefit plan, Sailar subsequently becomes “a go-to financial resource for nearly every participant whom he’s worked with.” Another reason he’s so effective, she adds, is that he genuinely cares about his clients.”

Very involved in the greater Los Angeles community, Sailar belongs to the Youth Business Alliance, a local organization that provides students with a real-world business perspective.

“I’m always interested to share what I know,” he says, “because I don’t think it’s worth knowing unless you can give it to others.”

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