Steve Threlfall, Delivery Consultant, is the newest member of our Delivery Team and one of the ‘smartest’ when it comes to knowing all about Smart, our Intelligent Service Management Software: he possesses exceptional knowledge of the system! Steve joined Zafire Group in mid-August 2022 and we’re delighted that he kindly agreed to be interviewed for our latest employee spotlight blog post.
Please tell us all about your career to date.
After studying computing and electronics, I was offered my first job as a photocopier engineer. I leaped at the chance to get practical experience relevant to my academic qualifications and, for reasons which will become apparent in the course of this interview, to get my hands on my first-ever company car! I worked in the photocopier industry for many years, taking on a variety of roles, and eventually becoming the IT Manager at a well-known photocopier company after having acquired some additional IT qualifications. During my 19 years with that company, I was lucky enough to experience the wonders of Smart and all it can do for the Managed Print Services (MPS) industry.
Before working at Zafire, what was the most unusual or interesting job you’ve ever had?
Way, way back in the day, I used to work for a well-known high-street jeweller on the shop floor where I dealt with all sorts of weird and wonderful customers in the centre of Leeds, never quite sure if they would attempt to run off with the tray full of swag I was showing them! I also had a very special experience with the Sikh community when I was working as a photocopier engineer and I was called upon to fix a broken photocopier at a Sikh temple. After I’d successfully repaired the fault, these lovely customers insisted that I stay for a wonderful curry which was an offer I definitely couldn’t refuse: it was delicious!
What aspect of your role do you enjoy the most?
I enjoy learning about all the new features of our software solutions and working with our customers to plan and schedule when our latest releases will be deployed for them. Right now, my role is mostly focused on our Intelligent Service Management Software, Smart, given my expertise in this area but I am also looking forward to becoming better acquainted with our Global Aviation Software Solutions, including FirstBag, FirstRamp, and FirstLoad.
What do you like to do on your days off?
I have a wife and a seven-year-old daughter and we all enjoy our family time together at the weekend when we typically like to get out for a walk and some fresh air. I’m also a big fan of Formula 1 motor racing and, believe it or not, Lego! I’ve even managed to combine both passions at once by treating myself to the McLaren Formula 1 Race Car which was a lot of fun to complete. Who doesn’t love Lego?
If you could witness any historical event, what would you want to see?
It would have to be the 1969 Moon Landing when American astronauts Neil Armstrong and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin became the first human beings ever to land on the Moon, and with the whole world watching them on screen. What an amazing achievement that was, given how comparatively basic the technology was at the time! Can you imagine being one of the human computers, like Katherine Johnson, who had the mathematical ability to know that her calculations would successfully land men on the moon when they were shoved up there in their rocket?!
If you were stuck on an island what three things would you bring?
I’d bring lots of tins of food, preferably accompanied by a tin opener, lots of books, and maybe a musical instrument. I’ve never learned to play guitar so being stuck on an island might be a good time to learn.
Tell us something about your family that might surprise us?
My lovely wife is a professional rock choir leader and has even performed at the O2 and recorded at Abbey Road studios. She’ll be performing at the NEC next year but if you’re ever on a Teams call with me, you might have the good fortune to hear her practising piano and singing in the background: she’s very good!
What is the first thing you would buy if you won the lottery?
I would pay off the mortgage on our house and maybe buy another one, and attend a lot of F1 races around the world given that, in case it isn’t obvious by now, F1 is a passion of mine!
What music is on your smartphone?
I listen to music on the Spotify app on my smartphone and it’s an eclectic mix thanks to my love of anything from the eighties onwards and my daughter’s love of the soundtracks from the Disney movies, Frozen, and, Encanto. She is following in her mother’s footsteps there with a love of musical theatre.
Who inspires you?
Bill Gates inspires me! He obviously co-founded Microsoft whose software you could argue changed the way we all use computers. He also has used his wealth for good by, for example, developing water sanitation solutions for remote communities where normal installations would be either too difficult or too expensive to install.
What’s the next place on your travel bucket list?
Believe it or not, I’ve never been to the USA and I would particularly like to go to New York. It’s such an iconic cityscape and has appeared in so many famous movies. It’s got a special kind of buzz about it that is very compelling to me. It’s somewhere I’ve always wanted to go.
Thank you very much Steve, and good luck in your role!