Colorado Mesa University

The Maverick : Fall 2018

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5 FALL 2018 • VOLUME 8.1 COLORADO MESA UNIVERSITY PASSION AND PRINCIPLES PAVE THE WAY Entrepreneur Matt Rissell recently sold his sixth start-up to Intuit for $340 million By Dennis Taylor G rand Junction native Matt Rissell, '99, earned a degree in management at Colorado Mesa University. He parlayed that education into a career so spectacular that he's been written about in Forbes and Fortune magazines, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times and multiple other publications. In 2017, Rissell was named Idaho's Innovator of the Year and he was an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year finalist. Rissell has an impressive resume, the crown jewel of which, so far, is a company called TSheets — a GPS-powered time-tracking and scheduling app for small businesses. Rissell co-founded TSheets in 2006 in Boise, Idaho, alongside Brandon Zehm, and built it into a company with over 300 employees serving customers in more than 100 countries. In early 2018, Intuit acquired TSheets for $340 million and the corporation hired Rissell as a vice president. TSheets was actually the sixth successful start- up company launched by Rissell, who credits two of his former Mesa professors, Tim Hatten, PhD, and Jerry Moorman, PhD, with nudging him in the right direction. "Rather than trying to steer me toward the more exciting and sexy careers, I'm thankful that they really got to know what I was interested in," he said. "Then they invested time to help me develop strategies and principles." Something certainly clicked. Rissell recently received the 40 Under 40 award from CPA Practice Advisor, an Accomplished Under 40 award from the Idaho Business Review and a Rule Breaker award. TSheets was included on the 2016 Deloitte Fast500 list, awarded multiple Top Company Culture titles by Entrepreneur, named Innovative Company of the Year by the Idaho Technology Council and has been named Best Place to Work in Idaho four years running. Key to his success, he believes, are philosophies he's developed about management and leadership. "Management is manufacturing authority, whereas leadership is creating opportunities through passion, hard work, vision and education," said Rissell, who said both Hatten and Moorman mightily influenced his career by encouraging him to develop principles and ideas around his passions. The two mentors also supported him as he challenged traditional management models during his time at Mesa. His other passions include spending time with his wife, three children and his Weimaraner dog, and traversing through the Idaho mountains as a hunter and angler. In his spare time, Rissell is also a pilot. •

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