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  • [Chat] Forced happiness for Cast Members.

    Thanks everyone; don't know why I was thinking just because they work at Disney they're happy all the time. I still think though that a handful of the cast members aren't very happy where they're working (whether it be a certain ride, being a character usher), that definitely shows.

    Has anyone seen this before? I'm not talking about all the cast members, no, just a certain 15% of cast members that display a reluctant smile on their face while they board you on whatever ride, and sigh before they start speaking. It's almost as if they'd be wanting to be somewhere else, and are bored by telling the Johnson family from Arkansas what numbers to stand on.

    It's not even that, I've been walking down Main Street and seen a cast member go from droll to forced happy when someone goes up to them.

    I've seen this at every theme park I've gone too, but it's always weird seeing it at Disneyland; the park that's known for their cast members being genuinely happy to be there, and having a smile on their face 24/7.

    There is one exception though, and I think Disney really needs to take a page out of their book: SeaWorld.

    The ride operators always have so much energy, get the riders pumped to be on that ride, and high five their other workers. It's a really nice group of workers they have there, and I think they it's because they relax the rules on them just a bit, which subsequently makes the workers more happy to be there.

    Has anyone see this forced happiness, or is it just me?

    (Thanks to Mr. Wiggins for recovering my post)
    Last edited by Chesire; 08-21-2012, 11:43 AM.
    Fear of the unknown.

    They are afraid of new ideas.

    They are loaded with prejudices, not based upon any reality, but based onÖ if something is new, I reject it immediately because itís frightening to me. What they do instead is just stay with the familiar.
    You know, to me, the most beautiful things in all the universe, are the most mysterious.











  • #2
    Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

    They are human. Honestly, let's give them a break. I'm not saying they should be Grumpy Dwarf all day, but I think people just have moments.

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    • #3
      Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

      I don't care how much I love my job, there is no way for me to be genuinely huge smile on my face happy for 8 hours a day 5 days a week.

      You are always going to have days where your feet hurt, your kid was up all night crying, you've had a seemingly endless stream of rude guests, your boyfriend just dumped you, etc etc. I'm honestly amazed they stay as happy as they do.

      (This is only in reference to the OP and cast members who aren't perky perky happy happy 24/7, the above reasons do not excuse actual rudeness on the park of a CM)

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      • #4
        Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

        I agree with Juni. It's almost impossible to be always happy and joyus. With Disney, you learn how to make it look like your happy when in reality Hell is freezing over. It's never acceptable for a CM to be rude or unkind to a guest, but a Cast Member has the job to try to make the environment as friendly-looking as possible, even when the cast members day is going wrong. Some are better at managing it than others, but it takes skill to be nice and friendly when you're not in the mood to do so.
        DisneyTwins
        Since May 2003

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        • #5
          Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

          I can't stand ride operators "high fiving", yelling, clapping, etc, etc. If I wanted that in my face.......I'd go to Magic Mountain (or Sea World apparently).

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          • #6
            Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

            You can't expect 100% out of people who deal with "people" everyday all day. There's no way I would survive as a CM that faces guests all day...

            Yes, back in the 50's, 60's, 70's, and even some of the 80's, CM's might have been genuinely happy at their job with Disney all day. But Disney corporate has changed over the years, and become less of a family feeling corporation (far as I can tell from the outside).

            And as long as guests continue to feel more and more entitled to the experience they paid a good chunk of change for, they will continue to act like spoiled children to get what they want.
            -Brian - Find me on Facebook

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            • #7
              Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

              When I worked in retail I absolutely HATED my job, but I did my best to be friendly to the customers and smile as much as could, even if I was having a really bad day or whatever. remember that Disney cast members are human beings just like the rest of us and have their bad days too. They just try to plow through them to the best of their ability.

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              • #8
                Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

                While always having a smile on is a nice way to go through the day, sometimes it's just not possible. CM's are people too, certainly prone to good and bad days. The fact that they ARE able to smile regardless of what's going on (in life, at work, etc.) speaks volumes.

                Maybe it would be best to try and walk around for days at work, constantly smiling for no specific reason other than to appear happy before we ask the CM's to do the same. It might put the use of a smile during work life into perspective.
                <3 There are a million cupcakes in the world but only one is Cupcake Terror. <3

                I AM THE REBEL SPY.


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                • #9
                  Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

                  Former DTD CM here and yeah, nobody can be happy all the time. CMs also get a fair amount of abuse from hot, tired, and frustrated guests, often about things the CM has no control over, and it kind of stinks to just have to suck it up and take it with a smile on your face. Better some forced smiles than unhidden surliness. Chesire, I would challenge you to try for one day to remain genuinely happy all day at school, no matter what gets thrown at you. No, you are not being paid to be happy at school, but everyone likes a happy person, so it could be a good exercise in walking in another's shoes.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

                    Originally posted by mainejeff View Post
                    I can't stand ride operators "high fiving", yelling, clapping, etc, etc. If I wanted that in my face.......I'd go to Magic Mountain (or Sea World apparently).
                    I think I like it on California Screamin!

                    A genuinely happy cast member (except on Haunted Mansion and TOT) is always the best part of a trip to Disneyland. Whether it's the one that engages you in conversation or the one that smiles and high fives you when walking down Main Street, it always makes me 200% happier. It may be forced, but I don't really care!

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                    • #11
                      Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

                      Originally posted by Quarar44 View Post
                      I think I like it on California Screamin!

                      A genuinely happy cast member (except on Haunted Mansion and TOT) is always the best part of a trip to Disneyland. Whether it's the one that engages you in conversation or the one that smiles and high fives you when walking down Main Street, it always makes me 200% happier. It may be forced, but I don't really care!
                      Why would I want someone high fiving me while walking up Main Street??? I guess that it's a generational thing.......everything is a party and everything needs to be loud and "exciting" for some (mostly younger) people these days.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

                        In jr high I had a teacher who worked there in the 60s - early 70s who told us that they were required to smile at ALL times and if they didn't they would be immediately fired. Knowing how the Disney of old used to operate, I believe him.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

                          Originally posted by Chesire View Post
                          Has anyone seen this before? I'm not talking about all the cast members, no, just a certain 15% of cast members that display a reluctant smile on their face while they board you on whatever ride, and sigh before they start speaking. It's almost as if they'd be wanting to be somewhere else, and are bored by telling the Johnson family from Arkansas what numbers to stand on.

                          It's not even that, I've been walking down Main Street and seen a cast member go from droll to forced happy when someone goes up to them.

                          I've seen this at every theme park I've gone too, but it's always weird seeing it at Disneyland; the park that's known for their cast members being genuinely happy to be there, and having a smile on their face 24/7.

                          There is one exception though, and I think Disney really needs to take a page out of their book: SeaWorld.

                          The ride operators always have so much energy, get the riders pumped to be on that ride, and high five their other workers. It's a really nice group of workers they have there, and I think they it's because they relax the rules on them just a bit, which subsequently makes the workers more happy to be there.

                          Has anyone see this forced happiness, or is it just me?
                          It's not just you.

                          If you read Window on Main Street: 35 Years of Creating Happiness at Disneyland Park by Van Arsdale France, founder of the original Disneyland University training program, you'll see how deeply the Disney Company invested in its employee standards, training, salaries and morale in Disneyland's first 35 years.

                          If you read the accounts of Disneyland's visitors and reviewers of that period, you'll see how Disney's investment in high employee standards made Disneyland's customer service world-famous, and made Disneyland University's training the gold standard for many other industries.

                          If you read the accounts of how drastically employee training and salaries were slashed after the Eisner takeover, you'll understand the plunge in morale, longevity, overall professionalism and customer service in the years since 1985.

                          Today there are great cast members and poor cast members, and everything inbetween. But the great cast members brought their professionalism with them when they hired in. If they don't have it before they join Disney, they aren't going to get it from Disney -- any more than they'll get world-class training, a living wage, or the support and backing of a management that, for all its empty words, doesn't value them any more than fast food employees (and in comparison to a number of fast food chains, values them considerably less).

                          And when you see the ever-increasing crowds at Disneyland generating ever-increasing profits, and read the hundreds of responses in threads like these excusing cast member mediocrity, you'll see that nobody cares -- least of all Disney.
                          Last edited by Mr Wiggins; 08-21-2012, 12:02 PM.
                          "With the acquisition of Marvel and now of Lucasfilm,
                          Disney may have finally found the grail. You don't need
                          imagination or art. All you need is a brand."

                          - Neil Gabler

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                          • #14
                            Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

                            Originally posted by CupcakeTerror View Post
                            While always having a smile on is a nice way to go through the day, sometimes it's just not possible. CM's are people too, certainly prone to good and bad days.
                            All this is true, however the job they signed up for is to smile and look enthusiastic for people coming into the park. That means putting any petty personal issues behind them and putting on a happy face for the guests. There are things in my job that I would rather not do, but I am responsible enough to know that it the job I signed up for so I do it.
                            "Greetings, Starfighter! You have been recruited by the Star League to defend the Frontier against Xur and the Ko-Dan Armada."

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                            • #15
                              Re: Forced happiness for Cast Members.

                              Originally posted by mainejeff View Post
                              Why would I want someone high fiving me while walking up Main Street??? I guess that it's a generational thing.......everything is a party and everything needs to be loud and "exciting" for some (mostly younger) people these days.
                              That's not it at all; if you've had trouble parking, a problem with the tickets, and its a bajillion degrees out, I wouldn't mind someone there to lift my spirits up, and give me a high five.

                              But I know what you're saying, I wouldn't want some fool jumping up and down dancing and screaming "ARE YOU READY??" and high fiving the whole group.
                              Fear of the unknown.

                              They are afraid of new ideas.

                              They are loaded with prejudices, not based upon any reality, but based onÖ if something is new, I reject it immediately because itís frightening to me. What they do instead is just stay with the familiar.
                              You know, to me, the most beautiful things in all the universe, are the most mysterious.










                              Comment

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