Neil was also a reporter, columnist and news executive at The Age for 16 years, including four years as sports editor. He has also worked for Time Magazine, and presented documentaries and his own talkback TV program on both the Nine and Ten networks which were both short-lived. He also worked on two programmes on Channel 7 and on Sky News.
Mitchell began his radio career in March 1987 on Melbourne station 3AW. His role was as a morning fill in host for Derryn Hinch (who still broadcasts on the station), although he was later confirmed as permanent host of the drivetime program in October.
Today, Mitchell hosts the morning shift (8:30-12:00) while Hinch hosts the drive shift, in a role reversal of sorts. In 2008, Mitchells' morning show will also be broadcast on Ace Radio stations across Victoria in replacement on the now retired John Laws. On the show he is seen as an outlet for politicians such as Victorian State Premier John Brumby (who has a regular weekly segment on the show) to air their views and discuss issues.
Mitchell has been vocal about a number of social issues, and has used his considerable profile and influence as host of one of Australia's most popular radio shows to make positive changes to what he sees as social problems. For example, Mitchell's listeners recently raised over $150,000 to keep the TLC Children’s Charity running.
Mitchell is in-famous for not understanding jokes by comedians. After the Chaser team performed the Eulogy song on The Chaser's War On Everything, he told his listeners to ring up the ABC and complain. He also fronted a public campaign against Beaconsfield: The Musical in A Flat Minor (a pun on A Flat Minor, because it's a musical about the Beaconsfield mining disaster).
On Friday 13th April 2007 Mitchell celebrated 20 years at 3AW.
A member of the AFL Foundation, Neil often talks to Andrew Demetriou on his program.
Mitchell was previously President of the Melbourne Press Club.
Had a talkback program on Sky News Channel Australia for a short period of time but it was unsuccessful.