‘In a Word’: Angelica Flores on keeping the best interest of the patient in mind, more

This column spotlights the kinds of people you think about when you think about Mayo Clinic. They've answered questions, serious and otherwise, so you can know them better.

Angelica Flores was ready for the next chapter of her career when she came to Mayo Clinic. Her interest in health care dates back to earlier days when she was a hospital volunteer, pushing a cart with magazines and newspapers to offer to patients.

Flores, now an international patient coordinator at Mayo Clinic in Arizona, had been working part time from home as an interpreter while balancing the responsibilities of being a full-time mom.

"As a bilingual individual and the bridge of communication for my parents and some family members, and with the demand for interpreters, I knew I would use my skills to help others," she says.

Flores has now been with Mayo for 15 years and values the relationships she has built over time and the friendships she has made. She also says she appreciates the support Mayo has offered for her to grow professionally.

"Mayo Clinic allowed me to grow, and here I am today," she says. "I am thankful for this, and know I will continue to grow and make a difference."

One of my favorite things about Mayo Clinic: My favorite thing is the primary value, "The best interest of the patient is the only interest to be considered," and the RICH TIES (Respect, Integrity, Compassion, Healing, Teamwork, Innovation, Excellence, Stewardship) values. I also love the old ambulance display at the Cancer Center — a reminder of where Mayo came from and the continued legacy it lives by.

The single most important thing I did at work yesterday (or expect to do tomorrow): My participation in Mayo Clinic in Arizona's International Medicine Expansion project, which allows me to be a part of Mayo Clinic's innovation.

A book I would recommend or one I want to read: I have read many books, but there are two that stand out and that I found very helpful in the different stages of my life: "Go-Giver" by Bob Burg and John D. Mann taught me to be a better person by being authentic and giving much value as possible. It is very inspirational to me. And "Rising Strong" by Brené Brown is another inspirational book that has helped me in many ways. 

Mayo Clinic has taught me: The value of working as a team and remaining hopeful during difficult times. It also has taught me that I can motivate, empower and inspire others by leading by example and having a clear view of my vision, mission and values. And it has taught me always to see the good in others.

Most treasured or best advice from a colleague at Mayo: I was once told to always believe in myself and never to forget why I do what I do. My foundation and purpose in life is to help others.

Most memorable Mayo moment: This past year marked my 15 years of service with Mayo. It took me back to the moment when Mayo offered this fantastic opportunity to make a difference by being part of this incredible organization.

If I could choose the "hold" music for Mayo Clinic: I would choose instrumental music from all over the world, but I do like "Opus No. 1," by Tim Carleton and Darrick Deel.

Favorite space on campus this month: My favorite space on campus is the garden in front of the Mayo Clinic Hospital Building. There is a calming and soothing feeling I get every time I go there. And the chapel.

People who inspire me: I work with so many inspirational people it would take several pages to name everyone. However, I can tell you that my kids have been my biggest inspiration in my life. My co-workers inspire me, and I continue to learn from each one of them daily. The physicians at Mayo Clinic inspire me the most because of their love and passion for what they do, the service they provide to every patient they encounter, and their mission to continue educating themselves and others to provide the utmost care to their patients.  

The most fun I've had at work this year: It is the beginning of 2023, and I have to say ringing in the New Year with new goals and plans for this to be my most excellent year yet, full of positivity, great health and, most of all, a year that will allow me to grow in many ways.

Team Dr. Charlie or Team Dr. Will? Or Team Mother Alfred or Team Dr. W.W.? Team Mother Alfred all the way. Her love for growth and new opportunities, her purpose, and her vision is simply amazing and inspirational.

When patients recall their visit to Mayo Clinic, I hope they remember: That Mayo Clinic provided exceptional service with care and compassion. I hope they recall that their best interest was the only interest considered.