Corporate Training
February 21, 2016
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1/ Beware of the kids, they ask tricky questions. We’re just kidding. The first secret rule on this list is: There is no “I don’t know”. If someone asks you a question, you have to know the answer. Saying “I don’t know” is just inappropriate. That’s why staff members are given extensive trainings in order to prepare them to give correct answers. In case they really don’t know the answer, they are required to phone an operator and find out what the correct answer is.
2/ Most important things in Disneyland is- you are not an employee. Technically, when you find a job, you are an employee, but not if you found a job at Disneyland! In Disneyland, you are a cast member. And no matter what position you have, from the characters to the janitors and ride operators, you are all cast members now. Well, it is a Magic Kingdom, what did you expect? We just hope their salaries are not so magical as well…
3/ Never, ever break character. So once you become a cast member and your job is to wear costumes in the Magic Kingdom, you must never take off that costume or become yourself again, not even for a second. Each character has its own voice but also, interests, likes, personality and background story! And finally, you have to be able to sign autographs in the style of your character, and you are given training to be able to do it perfectly!
4/ Ready for more bizarre Disney rules? Never point just one finger! Yup, the cast members at Disney World are not allowed to point using one finger. There are two reasons for this: the first one is that in some cultures pointing with one finger is considered rude. And the second reason might be that using two fingers makes it easier for kids to see. So there you have it. Two reasons for not using one finger. It’s kind of easy to remember, don’t you think?
5. There is only one way to pick up trash in Disney World. Every single cast member in Magic Kingdom is required to pick up trash whenever they see it. However, they cannot just stop and pick the rubbish from the floor. Oh no, stopping and bending is not allowed. So when a Disney worker sees trash somewhere, he or she is supposed to gracefully pick it up using a swooping motion! We’re not sure how this is supposed to look like, but we guess there is a special training for that as well.
6. Do you think that the cast member who wear costumes of famous Disney characters do not have to look like them? Well, you are very wrong! You have to look the certain way in order to play the character. And no, large costume will not make it easier for you because unless you are the correct height, you are not passing the audition process. For example, Disney princesses are traditionally around 5’4″ to 5’8″. And what about Aladdin?
7. No social media allowed! If you are working at Disneyland, you are not allowed to post photos or talk about your job. That means that no one can hear about what you do as a character or even hear what character you are. So basically, you are like some kind of James Bond. And it’s such a shame when you think about it! You are doing one of the most interesting jobs with so many people, and you are forbidden to talk about it. Fight Club much?
8/There is a strict hair code that all cast members of Disney World must follow. All male and female cast members must not shave their eyebrows. You read it right. In case you wake up one morning and decide to shave your eyebrows, have in mind that it can get you fired if you work in Magic Kingdom. Also, men’s hair cannot extend over their ears or shirt collars and women have to brush their hair neatly. Women may have braids but no beads are allowed.
9/ once you put on that costume, you have to be on your best behavior. So you passed audition, you gave up on social media and having breaks from your character, but you also have to follow a number of behavioral rules which you probably didn’t come across earlier. For example, if you are a part of Disney crew, you should never frown, use mobile phones or have a bad posture. So if you are prone to using phones or frowning, this job is not for you!
10. No tattoos allowed! Also, you may not have body piercings if you work in Disneyland. This is another strict rule on appearance from Disney World that prohibits any type of body alteration among staff members. So no tattoos, no body piercings, no earlobe expansions and no disfiguring skin implants whatsoever. However, according to some guidelines on Disneyland’s website, tats are allowed as long as they are “discreetly and completely covered all the time”. So no tattoos allowed.
11/ . The members of Disney parks and resorts crew are allowed to wear glasses at work. However, there are certain rules that they must follow in order to make sure they fit in with the “Disney Look”! That’s why employees are advised to buy glasses and sunglasses of a “conservative color and style”, with no brands or logos on them. The reason for this is because eyeglasses and sunglasses shouldn’t detract from the costume or contradict the theme of the show.
12/ This is one of our favorite Disney rules. In case a guest throws up, cast members should never say something like: “Oops, the boy just vomited” or “Oh gosh, this little girl just threw up all over the place”. Oh no. All cast member have to use codes now. They used to call it, wait for it, a “protein spill” but now they have to call it “code V”. We’re not sure which sounds funnier, but we guess that code V sounds slightly better that protein spill!
13/ In case you didn’t know, Walt Disney never had nicknames and he only liked to be called Walt. This is also why you can only see first names on the cast member tags in Disney World! But what if two cast members who play a Disney character have the same name? What happens in that situation? No worries, one of them just gets to go by a new name in order to avoid confusion. So if your name is Jessica, prepare to be Brandy for a few days.
14/ re you a fan of nail art? You might want to reconsider this passion if you want to get a job at the Magic Kingdom. According to the rules, women’s fingernails cannot exceed a quarter of an inch past the fingertip. Also, no nail polish is allowed. And when it comes to men, their nails cannot go past their fingertips. We are guessing that this is for safety reasons, but imagine that Alice has nails like in this photo! It would be so cool!
15/ And finally, rules on facial hair are also very strict! According to the rules, all facial hair on cast members has to be fully grown in and neatly trimmed. However, cast members are not allowed to shape their beards and their mustache may not extend over the lip. Also, mustache may not extend further than the corners of their mouth either, so think twice before you decide to try out a new style. Maybe it’s best just not to have beard at all.

About author

Dr Shailesh Thaker

Dr. Shailesh Thaker is a world-renowned management thinker and trainer on organizational behavior and development. He is the CLO of Knowledge Plus Inc., a highly reputed training firm based in Ahmedabad, India, helping organizations to achieve international benchmarks in management practices.

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