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Eric Atsma: Living a Life that Demands an Explanation

April 1, 2020

Eric Atsma is a Small Business Specialist here at Erb + Young.  After spending most of his life focused on golf, he made a move into the insurance industry.  Using the skills he learned in golf and entrepreneurship, he quickly rose to the top to become a top performer here at the company.  This past year, Eric was the recipient of our annual Impact Award and was inducted into his alma mater’s Hall of Fame for his accomplishments in golf.

Eric grew up in Michigan where his family owns a health food store that his grandfather started in the 1950’s. He was first introduced to golf at the age of 3 when his dad joined the local country club; it was there that he began to fall in love with the sport.  He spent much of his childhood playing golf and helping out at his family’s business. During this time, he continued to elevate his game but also developed a love for entrepreneurship.

3 Defining Characteristics

Among the team here at Erb + Young, there are a few things about Eric that stand out.  The first is how coachable he is.  Coming into the industry, Eric walked in with very little corporate experience and zero experience in insurance.  However, his coach-ability was 2nd to none. In this video, Eric shares his philosophy on coaching.

Philosophy on Coaching

The 2nd characteristic of Eric that stands out is his relentless work ethic.  Coming into the industry at the bottom, he accelerated quickly, but much of that also was his ability to adapt to the skills needed for the job.  This begged the question, “What’s more important – Hard work or skill?”

Hard Work vs Skill

The 3rd characteristic that stands out amongst the team is his humility.  Going into this interview I knew some of Eric’s accomplishments because of conversations I’ve had in the office.  Accomplishments like the Impact Award and his Hall of Fame induction – however he never brought them up during this interview (even though the questions I asked were designed to open up those discussions).  As someone as competitive and driven as Eric, maintaining humility while staying driven and successful is not something most are able to manage.  Here’s what he had to say.

Staying Humble While Being Competitive

Living a Life that Demands an Explanation

From his coach-ability, work ethic, and ability to remain humble, Eric is living a life that demands an explanation. In this next video he shares his purpose in life.

Defining the Culture of Erb + Young

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