This year I celebrate my tenth anniversary of sharing my ideas, my insights, and a little hope and inspiration with my readers. I want to share not only the highlights of the last 10 years, but give you an idea of how we look forward to celebrating in the months to come!
First of all, I want to say that I would never have been to this moment if it hadn’t been for MousePlanet. A big shout out to Mark Goldhaber and to Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix. They gave me my start way back in March of 2007. I wouldn’t be celebrating today if I hadn’t had their encouragement from the beginning.
Since then I’ve gone on to create not one, not two, but three different blogs. Disney at Work is my place to share my love for all things Disney. Performance Journeys is the title of one of my companies, and it’s where I share my thought leadership on customer service, management, creativity and teamwork. World Class Benchmarking is an organization I created with my former colleague at the Disney Institute, Mark David Jones. We share best-in-business practices there of great organizations like Disney–and so many others.
Combined with some other efforts over the years, my total number of posts have exceeded 600. No wonder I’m always exhausted! Still, it’s been fun, and if I had done it all over again, I would have written more. In fact, that writing led me to my books on Disney Customer Service, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Epcot, and a non-Disney volume titled Lead With Your Customer.
My Favorite Posts
Let me share with you some of my favorite highlights!
1. I had a lot of fun researching the article entitled, Tower of Terror, Water, and Temperance. It has to do with the Tower of Terror at Tokyo Disney Sea. But it also has to do with a highly themed water fountain in front of the attraction, and how the two are tied together. Definitely worth checking out.
2. A popular article I wrote for World Class Benchmarking was on Disney’s Four Keys to a Great Guest Experience. This is an overview not just of Disney’s standards, but of the behaviors expected of guests. This article chronicles the evolution of how those keys have become what they are today.
3. One of my articles on Performance Journeys was a story I shared about a cartoon strip showing Mark Trail and Family Circus in Islands of Adventure. Many people today may not be familiar with these two comic strips, and how they intertwine in Toon Lagoon. I talk about a great work environment and the need to work for a place where it “feels like family”.
4. One of my favorite opportunities was interviewing Scotty McCreery, who visited Disney’s Hollywood Studios right after he had won American Idol. Just another kid from Garner, North Carolina, he seemed very down to earth. His mother was only a few feet away during the interview, and he had to leave afterwards to go back home and take his high school math class. Great kid.
5. On the 45th anniversary of “it’s a small world”, I shared my love of this great attraction. Did you know that there are actually at least 5 verses of the iconic song? Most people know the first two, but I list the other three as well.
6. Easily one of my most popular articles was Getting a Job at Disney But Not For Disney. That article, written back in 2012, listed lots of places where you can work on Disney property for companies other than Disney. I need to update that article sometime soon, because now that Disney Springs has opened, there are easily twice as many possible locations at which to work.
7. And what is my personal favorite? I did a three part series on a wonderful show known as Disney on Parade that ran in the late 60s/early 70s . It was an arena show like Disney on Ice, but without the ice. In it, I highlighted Michel M. Grilikhes, otherwise known as Mr. M. He had been brought in to save the show, which had run into cost overruns and production challenges. You can find each of the articles here at Part I, Part II, and Part III.
Celebrating this Year
There are more I could name. But there are far more I could write. Keep checking my sites for more articles! As you can see, I love sharing the best of Disney–and so many other great organizations. Writing has been one of those vehicles. But moving into our 10th year, we’ve added others. With David Zanolla, we’ve just started a new Disney at Work podcast series, and we’re very excited about it. Be sure to subscribe. I’ve also added a Facebook Live series. Be sure to visit that page and add a Like.
But that’s just the beginning. I’ve always done programs that showcase these ideas at Walt Disney World and Disneyland. This year, we’re adding programs to Shanghai Disneyland and hopefully Disneyland Paris. And, we’re coming back to Disneyland Resort. So be on the lookout for more details as we announce those events!
It’s been a great ten years and I look forward to the next ten. There’s plenty to see, to learn, and to do. Through it, I hope you find hope and inspiration in your life. Thanks for your readership, and please keep sharing.