The Hunter Company/ Colorado Saddlery
Matt Wassam has a knack for turning legendary companies around in a very short time. His leadership skills have been put to the test on numerous occasions where his dedication and expertise have led to success.
“Turning companies around is not easy,” he said. “Leading the turnaround of two long standing Colorado companies requires disciplined business management skills, hard work, innovation and effecting deep cultural changes.”
It also requires leading people to perform at their best, and that’s what Matt Wassam is known for in the industry.
Wassam held senior leadership positions in the pipeline and construction industries before embarking upon the role of president of The Hunter Company and Colorado Saddlery. When the Colorado Saddlery owners presented Wassam with the opportunity to run the legacy company, acquire ownership and take on a turnaround opportunity, he embraced the challenge.
“Our vision is to be a lean, safe and innovative producer able to compete in the global marketplace,” said Wassam. “We want to continue to grow these businesses at an impressive pace.”
As one of the largest manufacturers and distributors of equipment for the equestrian industry, Colorado Saddlery had already built a name for itself. However, Wassam and his business partner saw the need to take the business one step further and acquire the Hunter Company, a firm that manufactures accessories and equipment for the firearms and sporting goods industries. The Hunter Company supplies high-quality products to retail outlets such as Bass Pro Shop, Murdoch’s, Cabela’s and Midway USA.
Wassam believes that the success of any type of business requires strong leadership and being committed to be lifelong learners. It also involves motivating employees by example.
“Our first goal is to retain and attract talented employees that can lead these companies to greatness,” said Wassam. “Leadership is easier when you remember it’s about helping those around us to be the best they can be.”
Wassam believes that manufacturing in the USA is making a comeback and as a result, he has worked to re-engineer manufacturing to be considerably more efficient and safer. He has led the redesign of major product categories and attributes these new innovations to the successful growth of both companies – The Hunter Company and Colorado Saddlery.
This success, though, lies within the leadership. “I believe that leadership skills transcend different industries,” Wassam said. “My goal is to be a lifelong learner in an attempt to improve all the time.”
For his efforts, success and obvious leadership that focuses on fostering and advancing the abilities of his employees, Wassam has been selected as a Titan of industry.
I'm a big believer that you can't manage what you don't measure. At the same time, I think this is exactly where we strengthen our ability to follow our gut. I try to apply this to everything I can.