Be Our Guest Book Summary - Be Our Guest Book explained in key points
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Be Our Guest summary

Disney Institute and Theodore Kinni

Perfecting the Art of Customer Service

4.6 (46 ratings)
16 mins

Brief summary

'Be Our Guest' by Disney Institute and Theodore Kinni is a guide to creating exceptional customer experiences based on Disney's business strategies. Through real-life examples and expert insights, it offers practical tools for businesses to attract and retain customers.

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    Be Our Guest
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    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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    What is Be Our Guest about?

    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.

    Be Our Guest Review

    Be Our Guest (2001) is a valuable resource for anyone interested in understanding the secrets behind Disney's extraordinary customer service. Here are three reasons why this book is worth reading:

    • With insider knowledge from the Disney Institute, readers gain practical insights on how to deliver exceptional customer experiences in any industry.
    • The book takes a deep dive into the customer-centric culture at Disney, revealing the strategies and principles that have made the company a global leader.
    • Through real-life examples and case studies, the book brings to life the magic that happens behind the scenes at Disney, making it an engaging and enriching read.

    Best quote from Be Our Guest step through the portals of Disneyland will be like entering another world. – Walt Disney

    —Disney Institute and Theodore Kinni
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    Who should read Be Our Guest?

    • 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

    About the Author

    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 FAQs 

    What is the main message of Be Our Guest?

    The main message of Be Our Guest is creating exceptional customer experiences to drive business success.

    How long does it take to read Be Our Guest?

    The reading time for Be Our Guest varies, but it typically takes several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Be Our Guest a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Be Our Guest is a must-read for anyone in the hospitality industry. Its practical insights on customer service can benefit any business.

    Who is the author of Be Our Guest?

    The author of Be Our Guest is the Disney Institute and Theodore Kinni.

    What to read after Be Our Guest?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Be Our Guest, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • Disney U by Doug Lipp
    • Unreasonable Hospitality by Will Guidara
    • Legendary Service by Ken Blanchard
    • The Customer Service Revolution by John R. DiJulius III
    • Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh
    • Agile Selling by Jill Konrath
    • Uncommon Service by Frances Frei & Anne Morriss
    • All It Takes Is a Goal by Jon Acuff
    • Zombie Loyalists by Peter Shankman
    • Good Leaders Ask Great Questions by John C. Maxwell