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Be Our Guest

Perfecting the Art of Customer Service

By Disney Institute and Theodore Kinni
13-minute read
Audio available
Be Our Guest: Perfecting the Art of Customer Service by Disney Institute and Theodore Kinni

Be Our Guest (2011) reveals Disney’s key tenets and principles of outstanding customer service and how following these has helped the company become the successful business empire it is today.

  • Entertainment professionals curious about what makes Disney so successful
  • Business owners who want to improve customer service overall
  • Customer service professionals looking to upgrade their skills

Disney Institute trains companies through seminars, workshops and presentations in the practices and knowledge gained and implemented by The Walt Disney Company.

Theodore Kinni is the senior editor for Strategy+Business Magazine and has written on a wide variety of business topics for companies including IBM, Booz & Company and Prime Resource Group.

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Be Our Guest

Perfecting the Art of Customer Service

By Disney Institute and Theodore Kinni
  • Read in 13 minutes
  • Audio & text available
  • Contains 8 key ideas
Be Our Guest: Perfecting the Art of Customer Service by Disney Institute and Theodore Kinni
Synopsis

Be Our Guest (2011) reveals Disney’s key tenets and principles of outstanding customer service and how following these has helped the company become the successful business empire it is today.

Key idea 1 of 8

Disney’s service strategy looks at what guests want and delivers high-quality service in response.

Disney’s expert customer service stems from its carefully crafted Quality Service Compass.

Like the four main points on a compass, the Quality Service Compass has four key elements that help guide every Disney employee in offering quality customer service.

Compass Point 1 is the art and science of knowing and understanding customers. In the world of Disney, this is known as guestology.

This point is the foundation for every other action on the Quality Service Compass. It involves discovering a guest’s expectations – what she likes or doesn’t like – and then informing employees (or cast members, in Disney speak) of what those expectations are.

Disney observed guests and identified the main aims of a family theme park vacation, for example. The company discovered that guests wanted to enjoy a fun time that centered around the family, as well as take a break from the exhausting schedule of daily life.

Disney then used this knowledge to modify and mold the perfect experience for its visitors.

Compass Point 2 is focused on quality standards. Once you know what your guests want, you can start considering how to ensure you will provide them with the highest quality service.

Disney defines four important quality standards: safety, courtesy, show and efficiency.  

Safety ensures the welfare of all guests, while courtesy means guests are treated with a personal touch. Show considers the environment, making sure all elements of a visit are in harmony, while efficiency makes sure that facilities, systems and employees are working as they should.

Disney cast members know these standards are of the highest importance. Consider a situation in which an employee is about to perform in a show. The employee however sees a child in distress, as she is lost.

Because safety is the first Disney quality standard, the employee would assist the child first before beginning the show.

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