Spotlight on … David Woodward – Thrive Face Of The Fortnight

Thrive Face Of The Fortnight: David Woodward, Tas Valley Fire

Thirty years of fighting fires in the Norfolk brigade didn’t leave fire officer David Woodward wanting a nice, long sit down. Instead, he rejected retirement to fulfil his ambition of being his own boss – with great success.

Thrive: Pitch us your business, David.
David: Tas Valley Fire provides services and maintains all kinds of fire protection products. Since I spent thirty years dealing with the consequences of not having good fire protection in place, I’m able to help my customers keep themselves and their properties safe.

Thrive: How would you describe your business style?
David: We’re actually friendly and laid-back, despite the seriousness of our business. I’m very approachable and always enjoy a good chat with my customers too. Especially if they want to talk Norwich City Football club!

Thrive: How did you first hear about Thrive?
David: Like most good relationships, we met through friends. Lorna and John are good friends with some close pals of my wife Beverley and I. We hit it off and I liked the sound of Thrive because they seemed more friendly and less in-your-face then other business groups.

Thrive: What’s the most useful connection you’ve made through Thrive?
David: Apart from it being very interesting to meet people in a range of different industries and compare notes, it has to be a contract with a world-famous Norwich company. Through Thrive member, Ian Higgins (whose daughter works there), I have been asked to advise on, and manage a large fire detection system. From there they’ve asked for even more work and its become a very lucrative contract.

Thrive: What’s the biggest help you’ve been to a fellow member?
David: We recommended Gareth, the solicitor in our group, to several people and they’ve hired him and been very impressed. He definitely owes me a pint!

Thrive: What do you like most about the meetings?
David: It’s a really supportive place to come and talk about business. There’s no hard sell, just like minded people talking about what they do. I find it very interesting to hear about what others are up to and get to know new business friends.

Thrive: How would other Thrive members describe your role in the group?
David: They seem to like my stories! So I’d say entertainment – and comedy!

Thrive: If you weren’t in your business, in what area would you make a splash?
David: A professional hockey player! No, that’s just a pipe dream. In reality, I’d like to organise events for a living. I did that in my youth in Kings Lynn, in the good old days. But I do think I’ve got a knack for it – just ask the people who come to my parties at home!

Kate White
Front Page PR