Lessons from Disney World

Melanie Garza - Director of Strategy & Growth


It didn’t really bother me that I had never been to Disney World, but I have a couple of little girls that never had the opportunity to travel to such a magical place. Thanks to COACT, I was the awarded recipient of the 2014 Dream Odyssey our company sponsors each year.

On January 2, 2014 Mark announced the Dream Odyssey program, an opportunity for a COACT associate to write an essay about their greatest dream. Mark’s vision was to help his employees build purposeful lives, careers and achieve their dreams. With the Dream Odyssey, we will help one of our employees achieve a dream, each year.

Essays were due at our Thanksgiving Meeting. Everyone at COACT participated in the event, privately providing insight into their dreams. Essays were submitted anonymously and judged by an independent panel of people who do not know the employees of COACT. The winner was announced during our annual Christmas party. I teared up when my name was announced and I was given a check and five days of PTO to pursue my greatest wish.

In April, my daughters boarded their first flight, and we flew to Disney World. The entire trip, from dining with the princesses to each and every ride we rode, was an amazing experience. Every single ride at Disney was an extraordinary experience with an incredible amount of detail and depth. Disney World is indeed a magical place, and we will cherish the memories forever.

In studying Walt Disney and his vision for the most magical place on earth, many lessons can be learned. There are countless studies and texts written about many of Disney’s best practices for customer service, leadership, business excellence and life lessons. Disney also owns and operates the Disney Institute, built on its philosophy of creating a magical customer experience.

Businesses around the world strive to achieve Disney’s level of exceeding customer expectations. Some of their most time honored philosophies are as follows:

  1. Align with your brand

    Disney believes that brand loyalty is based on something truly special. So when customers interact with your brand, an emotional connection is built, and the foundation for a long-term relationship is formed. Aim for your customers’ hearts, not just their heads.

  2. Success is in the Details

    According to Walt Disney, “People can feel perfection.” Devotion to detail lets guests know they are worth the effort. In many organizations, the small details that are often “undermanaged” or ignored “chip away” at the customer experience. The Disney Institute says that any place where your customers come in contact with you (your brand), you must deliver a quality service experience.

    One of our core values at COACT is that, “Every interaction is a moment of truth.” Quality control is critical in managing the customer experience. Professionalism in every medium is essential and expected. Small mistakes like misspellings, proper grammar, and unclear references are sloppy blunders that can easily erode confidence.

  3. Know your audience

    According to the Disney Institute, an organization must understand their target customers as well as those for whom the experience is not intended. Once an organization has a clear view of their core audience, they can create experiences that enhance their brand. A common mistake businesses often make is trying to create products and services for everyone.

    At COACT, we know we are boutique, full-service business growth agency reserved for businesses that value strategic growth. We seek to help with strategy and understand our clients’ true business growth goals, giving them confidence and resources to help accomplish those goals.

  4. Enhance with Innovation

    To continue to be a unique and relevant brand in today’s competitive marketplace, organizations must harness the power of creativity and innovation. The Disney brand relentlessly embraces innovation with vigor.

    In every industry, competition is fierce. When COACT was formed in 2003, the consideration of an outsourced sales group was unheard of. Today, not a week goes by that I’m not contacted by at least two or three firms trying to sell me lead generation services. We are continuously searching for value-added services meant to differentiate ourselves in the market. COACT now has a full service marketing department and most recently incorporated a full-time videographer. Over the years, we’ve continuously innovated our value-added services by leveraging those differentiating factors, positioning us as the preeminent full-service business growth agency in the market.

To learn more about the Disney’s Magical Experience, I encourage you to look into the Disney Institute for more information. Better yet, plan a trip to see the magic first hand.

Questions or comments? Please contact Melanie Garza at mgarza@teamCOACT.com.