Today’s attendees have higher-than-ever expectations when it comes to the content of a meeting or conference. Attendees, who often travel long distances, sacrificing time away from their daily work routine and personal lives, want to know that a meeting or conference will deliver strong value (ROI) in the form of tangible knowledge and insightful takeaways. At the end of the day, the meeting or conference experience must help attendees improve their professional skills, and arm them with new knowledge and skills to help impact their organizations’ bottom lines.

To meet this need, Disney Institute offers unparalleled professional development content in the areas of LeadershipServiceand Employee Engagement, based on the business insights and time-tested best practices of Disney parks and resorts worldwide. Whether it’s a 90-minute Keynote, or a Half-day, Full-day or Multi-day program, these unique learning experiences delivered by engaging facilitators can become a powerful tool in an event organizer’s content-planning toolkit.  

Let’s take a look at some of the business insights attendees can learn from experiencing a Disney Institute training session:

(This content originally appeared on the Disney Institute Talking Point blog)

At Disney Parks and Resorts, we pride ourselves on striving to offer experiences that not just meet, but exceed our Guests’ expectations. And, in our  Disney Institute training courses, we often share how we pay close attention to the little things that enhance our Guests’ experiences to be able to deliver an exceptional customer experience.

Today, we’ll look specifically at some of those potentially overlooked details that enable our Cast to connect emotionally and build relationships with our Guests. Why is this important? At Disney, we have seen that the power of service lies in its ability to create an emotional connection rather than a purely rational connection – and emotional connections lead to economic outcomes.

As we’ve taught countless business professionals over the years in our training courses, the concept of creating emotional connections with customers is the key to delivering exceptional service experiences. Research suggests that organizations that have optimized this emotional connection have significantly outperformed competitors in sales growth and profitability.

In fact, emotionally engaged customers tend to be: 

·       At least three times more likely to recommend

·       Three times more likely to repurchase

·       Less likely to shop around

·       Much less price sensitive

In our parks and resorts, Disney Cast Members employ a number of little “Disney differences” that delight our Guests. These small, individualized moments of magic can add up to an overall experience where each Guest can feel special. In fact, we want them to feel like the “VIPs” they are—very important people—and also that they are very individual people.

Here are some examples of these personalized interactions: 

Want to Trade?
Pin trading is an interactive experience where our Guests can trade pins with other Guests and with our Cast Members. Whether a Guest is new to pin trading or has an entire collection, it allows them to connect with us one on one to talk about their favorite characters, movies, attractions or pin series.


I’m Celebrating!
Celebration buttons create a unique opportunity to connect with our Guests on an individual basis. Complimentary at our parks and resorts, celebration-specific buttons send visual cues to our Cast Members when a Guest is celebrating a birthday, anniversary, a family reunion or their first visit to our parks and resorts, and provide numerous chances for fun, spontaneous interactions.

Where Are You From?
Disney nametags continue to foster connections with our Guests. Beyond the approachable oval shape and the Cast Member’s first name, they also display our hometown city and state. By conveying this little bit of extra personal information, it creates opportunities for conversation: “Do you know so-and-so from my hometown?” or, “How often do you return home?” This friendly interaction can create an instant bond between Cast Members and Guests.

So, as you can see, creating personal interactions and building relationships with customers doesn’t have to be difficult. Consider implementing little things like pins, buttons or personalized nametags in your own organization.

Think about it: What little things can you implement now to connect emotionally and build relationships with your customers?                

So, there you have it! This is just a small taste of the key takeaways and new ways of thinking that meeting and conference attendees could learn by experiencing a Disney Institute training session. Whether you’re planning an executive retreat, a board of directors meeting, or a conference for thousands, Disney Institute offers a variety of options for groups, including 90-minute Keynotes, or a Half-day, Full-day or Multi-day programs.

To learn more about engaging Disney Institute for professional development content for your next meeting or event held at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, Disneyland Resort in California and Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa in Hawaii, submit a Request for Proposal or Contact Us to speak directly with a Disney representative or sign up to stay in touch with Disney meetings and events.