Reflective Photo Journal #2

Although I’ve been busy earning my ears, preparing for classes, and cooking for myself, it’s been a pretty stress-free few weeks! I’ve made sure to set aside some time to attend housing events so I can meet new people and enjoy what DCP housing has to offer.

Character Meeting!

Character Meeting!

I attended the Extremely Goofy Event at Chatham Square with one of my roommates and had an awesome time at their photobooth and the character meet and greet with Max and Goofy. This was my first time meeting any character and they were so full of energy! Although their expressions were limited to body language and they couldn’t express themselves with facial expressions, I could tell that Max and Goofy were into their roles and were (hopefully) having fun. I’ve been trying to incorporate that same body language into my merchandise role to really get guests excited about visiting the resorts and parks.

Alice in the U.K.

Alice in the U.K.

I also spent a day in Magic Kingdom and Epcot and stumbled upon Alice! Of all the princesses and characters I had met that day, Alice was the most interactive. Ahead of me were three little girls who Alice doted on and played a little racing game where they raced to see who among the four of them could skip to the cottage door the fastest. The children loved it and it seemed like Alice did, too! When it was my turn to meet Alice, she claimed that it was smart of me to have the flowers on my dress reach up to my neck so I could better hear them sing. It was so quirky and funny that I couldn’t help but laugh and go along with it. I had been worried about how my character interactions would go but meeting Alice really made my day and I would love to meet her (and the other characters) again.

Keeping in character is one of the main duties of being a cast member. In my merchandise role at the Ink and Paint Shop, we keep in character by saying phrases like “Sketch ya later!” and “Have an animated day!” They’re incredibly silly and when we say them, some guests pause in confusion but there are others that really appreciate it and love it. I’ve been learning let go of any embarrassment I might have about saying corny, silly lines and have begun to embrace the silliness of it and just have fun.

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4 Responses to Reflective Photo Journal #2

  1. You and Alice look so wonderful!
    It seems like lots of fun.

    At first is very hand to stay in character because it’s all so new to us but as we move forward and find our “grove” this phrases become a natural part of our job. This all is what really keep the magic going and you are so right, let’s have fun with it!

    • Keriann says:

      Thank you so much! It wasn’t too difficult to get into character because all my fellow cast members are really into it. I’m still learning though! I’m still trying to find my own unique way to liven up guests’ experiences and when that happens, it really makes my experience here awesome as well.

  2. You seemed to have learned a lot during your play time. Do you think free access to the parks benefits the cast member in a way that it would be good for the company? You seem to have learned a lot so I would gamble to say yes but would like to hear from you.

    • Keriann says:

      Thank you for your comment, Professor Goodlad! I absolutely think that encouraging cast members to access the parks is a great way for cast members to further understand the culture of the company. Tasha Freidlein highlights this in her article, “Create Company Loyalty with New-Hire Practices.” She writes:

      We also require that all employees spend a night at the hotel to experience the hotel from a guest perspective. It helps them relate to guests better and to discover what it is like to stay in the hotel. After their stay, they fill out a comment card and meet with management to discuss their experience.

      Visiting the parks is an excellent way for cast members to understand what guests expect from Disney. Personally, visiting the parks and going on rides has also given me the opportunity to have more in common with my guests. Whenever someone mentions a ride they love or a show they’re excited to see, I can now join their conversation and express my own excitement rather than sheepishly claiming I’ve never been on it.

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