There’s nothing that Innocent Sefolo doesn’t know about Husqvarna chainsaws. He has been employed by Husqvarna in Pietermaritzburg for 42 years, and he even trained Husqvarna’s other chainsaw ‘guru’, Roger Jackson.
Innocent said the past four decades with Husqvarna have been wonderful. Highlights, said the Imbali father-of three (and granddad of five), include a trip to Husqvarna’s global headquarters in Stockholm, and attending a conference in Munich, Germany.
“But I also love travelling up north, and seeing other parts of Africa, like Zimbabwe and Zambia, and I’ve also been to Swaziland.”
Innocent is a whiz at training people on how to use Husqvarna’s range of super-efficient machines, and is also involved in sales.
“I started my career repairing chainsaws for a Sandvik franchise, a small family-owned company in Pietermaritzburg, when I was 25. They used to import the equipment from Sweden and I learned to repair and sell the machines,” remembers Innocent.
When the company was bought out by Husqvarna, Innocent continued with the new group, becoming more involved in training and sales.
“But the chainsaws have always been my favourites,” he confessed.
Innocent is especially proud to have shown Roger Jackson the ropes.
“Back in 1980, the company I worked for bought four Husqvarna 480SE chainsaws and Innocent taught me how to maintain and service them,” said Roger, Husqvarna’s business development manager.
Roger said that Innocent has a passion for the brand and the product, an unassuming, humble approach and an incredible ability to converse in several different languages.
“The people who use our products come from diverse backgrounds, and Innocent has absolutely no problem adapting to whatever situation he finds himself in,” said Roger.
He said Innocent’s loyalty to the brand and dedication to customer support has helped the company retain and build its customer base.
Although he was due to retire this month, Innocent has been asked to stay on.
“I’m happy to do that,” he said. “I love my job, and dealing with and meeting different people. I really enjoy the sales and the training, and if I had to retire, I think I would very quickly ‘go upstairs’,” he said with a broad grin, gesturing heavenwards.