Q & A with Company Director Mark Rybczynski

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Have you ever wondered what an occupational therapist does? We’ve quizzed occupational therapist and company director – Mark Rybczynski, to explain …

Where are you from?

I’m originally from Ramsbottom, our office is in Bury, but myself and my amazing team provide services all over the North West and also Yorkshire.

Professionally I have working in the field of neurology all my working life, I left school in 1995 and started working at Highbank Rehabilitation Centre, in 2000 I secured a place on the part time course at Salford University to study occupational therapy, qualifying in 2004. After qualifying I worked for Hyndburn and Ribble Valley NHS trust first in the adult rehabilitation team moving to the children team. After two years in the NHS I took the decision to work independently and joined A Chance for Life as an advance practitioner OT.

When did you start your own company?

I’ve been an advanced practitioner occupational therapist since 2007.  I launched Rehab for Independence five years ago. Since then the business has gone from strength to strength in no small way thanks to my brilliant team. I’m proud to say we have quickly gained a reputation for being a proactive and dynamic service, who ‘thinks outside the box’ when it comes to designing therapy programmes.

What gets you out of bed in the morning?

The knowledge that we are really adding value to our clients lives. We are all truly passionate about the work we do, it can be a really rewarding job – when you see people regaining their own independence and freedom after suffering a traumatic accident or managing a debilitating condition.

What’s an average day look like for you?

There are no ‘average days’, I think that’s why I like the work I do so much, it’s full of variety!

I try and start each day at the gym (body attack or spin class!), this helps me get ready for the day ahead. I then set off to visit my clients for the day, this includes children and adults being treated for a wide range of conditions from acquired brain injury, spinal cord injury to sensory processing disorder.

My days usually include contact with case managers and law firms who either want rehabilitation advice on a particular client they have, or they would like to make a referral.

As the company director I also ensure I make time for regular supervision session with my team, I understand the power of good communication and always have an ‘open door’ policy. We discuss caseloads and review goals set in order to achieve the best rehabilitation possible for our clients.

In addition to my role as occupational therapist and company director, I am actively involved in The Joshua Wilson Brain Tumour Charity and I am a trustee for the AXM foundation.

What’s been the single best moment of your career?

My most proud moment would have to be qualifying as an occupational therapist; it was a difficult 4 years and very hard work. I am proud everyday I go to work knowing that I am making a difference to clients and making sure they are achieving their full potential. Our clients are our biggest teachers and learning from them makes me continue. Seeing clients being able to feed themselves or communicate with the support and assistance from your input is the best feeling and gives you the biggest job satisfaction.

If you didn’t do this job – what would you do?

I have always wanted to work in the caring profession and before deciding to become an occupational therapist I always wanted to be a paramedic, the idea of being the first port of call, when someone was in extreme need I felt would be hugely rewarding. I have absolutely no regrets though and I’m really happy with the path I’ve chosen.