Baystate Medical Center operator Liza “Lisa” Mitchell has learned a lot during her 23-year span of answering phone calls and helping people. But, if it wasn’t for her prior job, she may not have found her passion.
“Before working at Baystate, I was a receptionist at Hood for 10 years, which was similar to my position here. I have always enjoyed helping people,” says Liza.
Liza was also serving people before her role as a receptionist and an operator, but not in the medical profession.
“I worked in a deli and as a waitress before becoming a receptionist, but I knew I wasn’t going to waitress for the rest of my life,” says Liza.
How many calls?
Being an operator and answering the phone all day isn’t as easy as one might think, notes Liza.
“Together as operators our department answers about 2,000 calls a day and some 730,000 calls a year. It’s rare to see the phone stop ringing,” says Liza.
Out of all the calls Liza has answered, one is still etched in her memory.
“One call that I will always remember came from my daughter, Krista, telling me that she passed her state licensing board exam to become a registered nurse. She worked so hard throughout the years and I couldn’t have been more proud of her,” says Liza.
Not a morning person
Similar to many clinical and other positions at the hospital, an operator has to work either the first, second or third shift. For Liza, she has experience in all of them.
“When I first began working at Baystate, I was on the second shift for 12 years. Then, I moved to first shift, where I currently work. I did third shift for a little bit, but working late at night into the early morning is not for me. My daughter works that shift as a nurse, and I don’t know how she does it,” says Liza.
When Liza isn’t answering phone calls, she enjoys going shopping.
“I love shopping. Whether it’s going to the Holyoke Mall or making trips all the way to the Wrentham Outlets, it’s always nice finding some great deals,” she says.
A daughter at Baystate
Liza has two daughters. Krista, 24, is a nurse at Baystate. Her youngest, Erika, 20, attends American International College, where she is also studying to be a nurse.
On the personal side, Liza has a couple trips she is excited about taking this year.
“I am going to Florida in late March and will be taking a trip to Hampton Beach in New Hampshire this summer. The yearly trip to Hampton Beach has been a family tradition for the past 11 years,” she said.
So, if you have any questions and need to call Baystate, be on the lookout for Liza – who will actually be answering the phone not as Liza but, “This is Lisa.”