International Women’s Day: Interview with Mrs. Murphy
In celebration of International Women’s Day, we interviewed the real boss (she is a person in her own right) Anne Murphy or better known as Mrs. Murphy.
The “Mum” of Murphy Surveys shares her story and interesting experiences throughout her Murphy Surveys journey.
What is your role at Murphy Surveys?
I don’t have a defined role, but I would like to think of myself as the mother of everyone at Murphy Surveys. I do whatever needs to be done that people sometimes miss. For instance, checking to make sure that the meeting room and kitchens are all organised. I usually bring bowls of porridge and I enjoy baking, so I sometimes bring cakes or treats to the office.
What is your typical day like?
I make porridge in the morning and bring some containers with me to the office for whoever who would like some. I sometimes make homemade brown bread for the staff as well. I make sure all is in order, that the office is nice and tidy, and that the kitchens are clean. I also go to the bank and post office when necessary. After work, I collect my grandchildren from school and sometimes babysit the younger ones.
Who has been the biggest influence in your life?
My father and mother.
How different is Murphy Surveys now compared to 20 years ago?
Completely different. Back then, there were only 3 people working in the company and now there’s 270! Everything was done by hand or manually which includes paper drawing. There was limited technology compared to now, where everything is high tech.
If you could do anything now, what would you do? Why?
I wish to carry on as I am. I’m happy being close to grandchildren and family. I just want to stay healthy.
Do you have any funny stories / favourite memory to share about your experience at Murphy Surveys?
When my late husband, Peter was operating on his own during the early days of the company, he would rely on me a lot to remind him about things. This includes, reminding him on paperwork for meetings, etc. One of the funniest moments was when he was on his way to Limerick with my oldest son, Colin and had forgotten equipment. I couldn’t get in touch with him to let him know as there were no mobile phones back then. Coincidentally, the army was in service at the time, so I rang the guards at the border and luckily enough I managed to get through to Peter and got them to drive back to collect the equipment.
Can you tell us about a challenging time you had and how you overcame it?
The most challenging moment for me is during Peter’s death as it happened without any warning. He was self-employed and we had five young children. There was no security. I had to jump in and keep the business going. I had to learn new equipment and manage the finances of the business. Thankfully, my children were a tremendous help to me.
Name an accomplishment that you’re most proud of to date?
My five children. They are decent, respectful and hardworking people. I think that’s my biggest accomplishment.
What would you say is the key to success?
It has to be hard work and focus. If you’re interested in what you’re doing, you will do a good job. Also, it’s important to look after your customers and suppliers.
What are your hobbies outside of work?
Traditional Irish dancing and baking.
What is your favourite inspirational quote?
It’s a quote in Gaelic that goes “Mol an Óige agus tiocfaidh sí” which means “Praise the youth and they will flourish”.
What is your favourite book?
To School Through the Fields by Alice Taylor.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I would ask myself to be more relaxed and calmer, as I tend to worry about everything.