So you want to work at Disney?
It’s The Happiest Place on Earth, right? Who doesn’t want to work for “The Boss” (Mickey Mouse)? It’s magical…and that’s because Disney maintains a strict code of conduct and invests its full-timers, part-timers and interns with extensive training to instill a sense of service and professionalism in all its employees. It’s a coveted job for those who gladly embrace their cast roles and are motivated to be part of a very special vacation experience for visitors of all ages. It can really make your day to see the delight and wonder on the faces of small children, and you’ll meet others your age who also find joy in being part of the magic.
Disney is a large and complex organization with lots of opportunities to work in the parks, behind the scenes and outside the park properties in support roles. In addition to wearing costumes and mingling with the guests, there’s a wide range of services that take place “backstage” in office buildings, stores, kitchens and hotels. However, even if you’re not on stage or performing in a role, all employees who enter the park (no matter your role) are trained to adhere to the same “on stage” standards. Understanding that aspect of the resort is key to the experience of working for Disney.
There are multiple Disney properties here in the United States. Disneyland is located in Anaheim, California, and the Disney World Resort consists of several parks located near Orlando, Florida: The Magic Kingdom, California Adventure Park, Epcot, Animal Kingdom and Hollywood Studios. In addition to the theme parks, there are water parks, entertainment complexes, hotels and shopping, all part of the Disney experience.
Types of job opportunities:
Performers and Entertainers: Almost everyone thinks of the characters that dress up in costumes, whether they’re animals, princesses and movie characters or perform on stage as singers, actors or dancers. Even if you’re not in costume, there are attendants who escort the characters and interact with visitors.
Restaurants, Quick Service and Full Service: Quick service employees work at counters throughout the parks, preparing food and serving guests. Full service restaurant members work alongside costumed characters and include food servers, hostesses and professional chefs.
Retail Stores: Retail shops sell all types of Disney merchandise throughout the parks as well as in Disney stores located all over the world. There are opportunities for retail sales and store managers in both settings.
Operations in the Parks: There are a wide variety of services that keep the parks running: custodial positions, operating attractions, transportation, lifeguarding, photography, audience control, security and more.
Hotel and Lodging: Disney properties run the gamut from luxurious to motel-style accommodations. In on-site hotels, cast members mingle with guests and host special events. Regardless of which type of property you choose, there are opportunities for jobs at the front desk, guest services, housekeeping, bellhop, concierge and management as well as back office support.
Vacation Planner: If guests wait until they arrive to purchase tickets to the park, cast members will assist in finding the right ticket packages and help them get the most out of their time in the parks. This is an fun opportunity to welcome guests and use your knowledge of the resort to ensure guests have a fabulous experience.
To find a job at Disney, you can go to Hcareers' Disney World site and click on "Job Opportunities." Hcareers also posts multiple opportunities in the hospitality industry in and around the area.
Working at Disney offers excellent training that prepares you to go on and work in other hospitality career. While you’re part of the Disney family, you’ll also enjoy some special perks such as free park admission as well as discounts on merchandise, special events and restaurants.
Even if you don’t work directly for Disney, there are plenty of hospitality opportunities all around the Orlando area. According to the Orlando Sentinel, Florida became the first state to welcome more than 100 million out-of-state and international tourists in 2015. The economic outlook for hospitality in the Orlando area is very strong.