Paul Murphy, exercise rehabilitation specialist at EQL, tells Health & Protection how a career in the armed forces paved the way for his change of career, why his father is his role model and his propensity to jump out of planes.
How did you get your start in the sector?
After serving in the armed forces specialising in exercise rehabilitation and alongside my involvement as strength and conditioning coach with British swimming and diving spanning three Olympic Games, I was seeking a new challenge.
Artificial intelligence (AI) seems to be on the tip of everyone’s tongue these days so having the ability to contribute to an AI healthcare product that can potentially help thousands of people get the care that they need certainly delivers this challenge while giving a real strength of purpose.
It also helps having a forward thinking, supportive company that realises employees are their greatest asset. I was employed initially to work on a particular short term project and have been here ever since.
What do you enjoy most about your current role?
I love a lot of features – including the opportunity to collaborate with people and skill sets that I haven’t experienced in my previous job roles. The health tech innovation learning curve is easier to climb with such a great team around you.
Who is your role model – in life or in work?
My father was in the Royal Navy. He reached the top of his promotional ladder ending his career as the head of the RN medical services, I would however like to add that my ladder had a lot more rungs than his.
What advice would you give to people thinking about a career in the sector?
There is opportunity in chaos and be willing to sacrifice some things to build the career you want. Curiosity and questions will get you further than confidence and answers.
What has been your biggest setback and how did you overcome it?
I enjoyed being in change and challenge however I realised that I only enjoyed this due to my experience while surrounded by the armed forces network that I had been a part of for decades.
I had joined the armed forces as a young spotty teenager and finished my time, far more ‘age experienced’ shall we say, with fortunately less spots, unfortunately however with less hair.
The need to regain a sense of purpose ran deep after leaving the armed forces. Working within the high pressure of elite sport with Olympic Athletes kept me grounded and focussed being in an environment where high performance becomes sustainable across the whole team who are all working towards the same performance goal.
I would suggest that anyone reading this prepare, prepare, prepare. We often wait until the hurricane hits us to think about how we’re going to cope with it.
Laugh or cry – what did your most memorable client or case make you want to do and why?
An injured patient who was my first triple amputee from Op Herick. It was later stage rehabilitation and we were working on aqua therapy and he wanted a challenge so we went diving for bricks, which is a challenge even if you don’t only have one arm. It never stopped him even if I did almost have to jump in and save him as he almost drowned.
What’s your ultimate goal for your career?
World domination… but first, coffee.
How would your boss describe you?
What’s your biggest talent away from work?
I can jump out of planes, repeatedly, and survive, most of the time.
What mantra do you live by?
I have a few –
The mind is like a parachute, it doesn’t work if it is not open – Frank Zappa
You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough – Mae West
If at first you don’t succeed then skydiving isn’t for you – Steven Wright
What song would you regard as your theme tune?
AC/DC Thunderstruck closely followed by Mariah Carey All I want for Christmas is you.