Thomas Stein, Chief Executive Officer of American Trust Administrators, Top 10 Admired Leaders of 2023

Thomas Stein
Chief Executive Officer
American Trust Administrators

Thomas Stein, Chief Executive Officer of American Trust Administrators

“It is hope that makes way for success”

Thomas Stein, CEO of American Trust Administrators, had the opportunity to make his first sales call with his father, Thomas F. Stein, in eighth grade during the launch of medical savings accounts. This experience significantly altered his perspective, as it highlighted the immense potential of the free market in creating improved alternatives for individuals who find themselves stuck in a challenging environment of strict regulations and corporate interests.

Whenever it comes to finding inspiration, Stein’s father has consistently been his lodestar. In an industry filled with short-term solutions, his name continues to command respect even after an impressive 50 years. Beyond his father’s example, Stein finds inspiration in companies like Costco and Ford. Costco focuses on offering affordable prices and eliminating unnecessary extras, whereas Ford has consistently prioritized creating an exceptional product and delivering outstanding service. American Trust Advisors integrates these tactics to build long-standing relationships rather than short-term sales.

Stein is committed to continuously improving his leadership skills. He spends around 75 minutes each day reading extensively on topics like leadership, history, and theory. He also attends conferences regularly to stay up-to-date with the latest developments in his field. Even more importantly, he spends about an hour each day connecting with general agents over the phone. This particular time is of great significance to him as it enables him to understand their needs better and acquire the necessary tools to enhance their client service.

Investing in and empowering his agents is a priority. To that end, he spends half the year visiting brokers in person, soliciting feedback, and providing them with information to make their tasks more efficient. Touching base with the boots on the ground allows him to observe the direction of the market and determine how to better serve their clients.

Today, Stein considers himself a dealer in hope and knowledge. ATA strategically select programs that offer enhanced value to their clientele and foster a sense of motivation among their team of agents, encouraging them to pursue further education. This enables the agents to effectively assist clients in making informed decisions that align with their long-term interests. There exists a considerable sense of discontent surrounding the field of insurance, characterized by its perceived complexity and rigidity. However, it is important to acknowledge that alternative solutions are available, says Stein. He is responsible for identifying strategies that reduce costs and increase the gap between level financing and full insurance while ensuring compliance.

In terms of communication, Stein emphasizes the importance of showing genuine care for others in order for them to value their efforts. He believes that personal interactions and handwritten letters are more impactful than generic messages. Stein also applies this approach to his business relationships, avoiding pushy sales tactics and instead tailoring his communication to each client's specific needs. He maintains a direct line of communication with clients and encourages feedback through handwritten letters and his contact information.

Stein explains that the company values personalization and encourages individuals to share their thoughts and opinions by asking questions. They have high expectations for progress and responsibility, and their main focus is on continuous improvement. Each member of the staff is appreciated, celebrated on work anniversaries, and commended. They value their employees' time and regularly host events and celebrations to show appreciation. Approximately every six weeks, their executive team hosts a barbecue for the entire office, serving their hardworking staff. When they reach a sales target or successfully complete a major project, they celebrate as a team. They deeply appreciate the time and dedication that employees give to the organization. Moreover, Stein also wants to keep getting to know his employees and their families. The way they interact personally is what keeps them tight-knit. As they grow at a steady pace, he wants to forge an even stronger bond with the skilled individuals who shape ATA's identity.

Since the company is a privately owned enterprise, they prioritize long-term objectives spanning a period of 25 years rather than short-term gains within a three-month timeframe. Their objectives tend to align with those of their clients. Recently, they were contemplating a savings-oriented plan for a client, but the product was subject to legal scrutiny. Instead of losing the client, they created a new program in less than two months that met the client's requirements. They had to collaborate with five other companies to build the necessary components, but they kept their promise to provide coverage at a specific price. They annually saved the customer $150,000. Stein was incredibly proud of his team's ability to come up with a solution. In addition, they use homegrown CRMs and proprietary risk-assessing software.

Now, ATA is looking into the future of health care coverage for small to medium businesses. Stein admits that there is no silver bullet or easy button, but through incremental changes, they are finding solutions. In the next few years, he expects to move to a locally contracted direct-care model that eliminates the profit-only middleman. They will also focus on reducing the price of prescription drugs. But while the future awaits, ATA will do what they’ve always done—administer quality benefit plans and return the unused claims funds to where they belong—in the hands of the business owners to reinvest in their companies and workforce.


American Trust Administrators


Thomas Stein
Chief Executive Officer
American Trust Administrators


American Trust Administrators prides itself in providing industry compliant ERISA plans to America's small employers. As a TPA, we can provide your clients with a plan that could save them thousands. At ATA we provide brokers with an opportunity to make a difference, and be the difference in small businesses around the United States Of America. Give us a call at 1(800)-843-4121, and let us know how we can help you better serve your clients.

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