Oh, how I love my job! It’s not without its quirks, but I look forward to going to work every day. I have had the most amazing experiences so far. Some of my favorite moments has included catching moments of magic being created, such as testing of the lights on Cinderella’s castle, walking through snowfall in the middle of the night at Hollywood Studios, and witnessing the Magic Kingdom switch over from fall to the winter holidays overnight! The one thing that really stands out and makes the biggest impact to me is the passion of the cast members and the commitment to excellence. It’s the Disney level of service that creates a level of awe, even internally, many refer to as Pixie Dust. There are high expectations for this company. The CEO Bob Iger has the vision for Disney to be the Most Admired Company in the World.
Through the many efforts across the company we focus on our four key areas: Safety, Courtesy, Show, and Efficiency. I am honored that I get to be an integral part of safety. While I am still learning about standard safety practices, I am applying my project management skills to support the training of Engineering Services Cast Members with safely executing ride motion protection. It’s driven by a worldwide need to give cast members and employees the comfort that when they come to work at a risky job, they can expect to go home in the same state that they came into work – with all fingers, all toes, and just in general in one healthy solid piece. Disney has many people working to ensure our cast are taken care of.
My team has recently been looking for ways to make training more engaging to take it to the next level by encouraging critical thinking from cast members using gaming methods. We want to add value to the training. Recently, the onboarding experience has been significantly improved through gaming strategies that encourage team work and challenges based on information learned during the onboarding process. It’s the ways that the Disney goes above and beyond even internally to make the cast feel like they are valued that helps make a huge impact. Through efforts like these, the pixie dust spreads.
Understandably, it takes a lot of training to work as a lifeguard for the company striving to be the most admired in the world. So far I have had the following:
- Traditions – A full day learning about how all roles at Disney are important and every Cast Member makes an impact to the guests visiting the parks. Also we went over the 4 Keys. This was a very special class where I got my name tag from a very special Disney Cast Member.
- Welcome to Operations – Operations is the department that I now work in. This class re-emphasized the 4 keys and goes into detail about how Operations Cast Members make an impact on guest experiences through the 4 keys. Plus there is a quick overview on ergonomics.
- Lifeguard License – This is a three day training session that was a little stressful. Apparently a good amount of people fail out of this training. It consists of learning aquatic rescue methods, CPR, rescue breathing, and an overview of first aid. In order to pass, potential lifeguards are expected to perform rescues of pretend distressed guests with an assigned team, pass a written test, and demonstrate CPR techniques for adults, children, and babies.
- Forecast Blizzard – Half day overview of the water park where I will be working, lots of cheesy references to ice and snow. It makes me feel like I need to practice phrases like “Ice to meet you.” While the movie Frozen isn’t very integrated into the park yet, I am told it may be coming this Summer!
- Welcome to Recreation – Half day overview of the Recreation group within Operations and my introduction to the knowledge warehouse known as the Hub. Recreation is seen as the icing on the cake, the personal touch to the Disney vacation, helping to create those amazing memories and great experiences through guest interaction at the resorts and water parks.
With the exception of the lifeguard license training, these classes have all been facilitated by Disney cast members that are training the class as a side activity for their main Disney role. The lifeguard license training was facilitated by representatives from Ellis and Associates at a Cast Member area called Mickey’s Retreat. One thing that stands out compared to my previous jobs is that everyone LOVES their role. Being around so many positive people is very exciting for me and I look forward to getting more involved!
Hello, I am Jennifer! I am starting on a journey to get to my dream job. Last week I quit my very well paying technical leader position at the number one defense contractor to pursue a career with Disney, the company whose main goal is to Create Happiness. I am obsessed with The Walt Disney Company and have a BIG HAIRY AUDACIOUS GOAL to be an influential part of this amazing company and help families create amazing memories.
I have tried the normal way of applying to positions that are equivalent to my experience and skills, but I kept getting past over for internal candidates. Therefore, I am going to be one of those internal candidates. I am going to become a cast member, do the hard work necessary to learn everything I can to one day be a great leader for The Walt Disney Company. The first step in my journey at Disney has me going in as an aquatic safety adviser, also known as a lifeguard at Disney’s Blizzard Beach.
The risk is a little high, but I have worked with my family to strategically secure us financially for a limited amount of time, continue my knowledge growth, and to expand my skills. I am researching going back to school and get my MBA while also working with my boyfriend, Jason, in maturing and launching his mobile web application, a game currently called American Sleuth. I hope to gain some database management and marketing experience, our first official team meeting is tomorrow!