How To Consistently Excite a Business Team Of Any Size (with Former EVP of Disney, Lee Cockerell)

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Audio Transcription

If you have found some great team members as you have grown your business then the next thing you have to know is how to inspire and excite them on a daily basis. In this episode of the Thrivetime Show, business coach, Clay Clark sits down with Lee Cockerell, the former Executive Vice President of Walt Disney World Resorts who once managed over 40,000 employees.

How to Excite a Team of Any Size (From 2 to 40,000 employees)

  1. What great customer service looks like
  2. Consistency, meeting expectations, and delivering something extra wows customers
  3. When you have a small business, you must look harder to find quality people
  4. Great people make the magic at Disney
  5. Hire character and train skill

How to Build an Efficient Organizational Chart

  1. Try not to have more than 10 direct reports if possible
  2. Inspiring your team is a decision
  3. It’s not magical working at the magic kingdom, it’s hard work.
  4. We all have a different role at Disney, but we all have just one purpose.
  5. How to prevent drifting within a company
  6. Nobody wants to work for somebody who is not a great leader

Every Day is Show Time In the World of Business

  1. You must have the spirit of service

We are booking out for our April business conferences.

Here in beautiful Jenks America, and many of you have already flown in so if you’ve already stop by the business conferences office is exciting to before every workshop. It’s fun because you see people from all over the world, making their way to tulsa, friends and friends and families of theirs or say hey. Where are you going and they go I’m going to tulsa, they say:is that an iowa workshop they say is that, like the sod farm capital of the world is going to tulsa and they’re like in that were that jay paul getty movie was about him. His people into the number one tourist attraction for small business owners is looking fine, it is looking fine, as I can find all the time. Now today we have an opportunity to sit down and do it exclusive view with lee cockerell, the former executive vice president of walt disney world resorts in during this interview. I asked about how do you excite a team of any size every week until steve currington want to get your take on this because you manage total lending, concepts, yep and I know that for you for me and for any small business owner, it’s some point in her career, we had a hard time inspiring a team every week, cuz it’s easy with her new when they first start working with you or they first kind of when you first start the company. But why is it such a challenge for people to excite a small business team or to keep people engaged week after week? And why is there always an exciting about something new will clay? As you well know, it’s it’s not possible to inspire everyone. You know the whole simon sinek books and start that fight, but I think that it starts with having the right people on your team and making sure that you’re you’re selecting people fit on the team that can work. Too, go for those of you who missed my previous shows, where I freaked out about simon sinek and it’s terrible terrible book called the power of why the book by simon sinek ^ y talks about how great leaders can inspire everyone and if you are missed the episodes yesterday and the day before i, would encourage you to go to thrive. Time, show and listen to the archived, a podcast from last two days where lee cockerell explains in great detail that steve currington is a hundred percent right.

Explain that you cannot inspire everyone, so it starts with hiring great people now. What’s the great people are on your team, though it’s on you to keep them engaged. You’ve got to find a way to do it, and so how do you deliver consistent customer service over a decade over years? How does he manage 40,000 people shut up, I’m fired up for this interview with lee cockerell. You know what I’m more fired up in your really just want to fire me. I can’t wait to meet him when I need further. It is this incredible interview with lee cockerell, the executive vice president of walt disney world resorts, who want some personally managed 40000 +, who was responsible for over 1 million customers, every single with you. You have worked in the hospitality and service industry for years, ultimately culminating where you were managing what how many employees were you managing at disney world at 40000 under my area, it’s just gibson context, wrigley field I was reading, has any 37,000 people that can hold or something so wrigley field can hold about as many people as you are managing that’s insane, especially a lot of entrepreneurs in america. Today, the business conferences the us small business administration says that a little over 90% of all business owners have 10 employees or less so you’re, managing 40510 and so I’m going to try to do is make a lot of these thick questions applicable to the average guys got 10 employees or less so. Can you describe to the average person? What does great customer service look like in your mind when you have 10 employees or 40,000? What does great customer service look like it’s a delivering, what the ghazt expects and it’s giving him a little something extra always talk about it. What’s actually look like when I talk about it later, but I said if you’re running a little dry cleaners, you got six employees and you open at 7, get there at 6:30 and then lock the door for the guy who happens to show up early. So you don’t have that sign closed and if you close at 7 stay around till 7:30 for the lady running late and all the sudden, your reputation just going to grow and grow and grow. When you have only 10 employees, you got to really work harder at getting great people cuz, when, if you are one bad, one 10% of people are not good, so you know disney. We have a lot of demands so for the offer tomorrow, entrepreneur they’re going to have to be looking for those people when they go to the mall and then go to mcdonald’s when they looking for that good attitude and somebody meeting people everyday. So you can pick these business conferences people off as asking your friends and neighbors. They know any good kids that want to work for you and i. Think a lot of young people want to be on a small business today they want to be in them selves. They, like that life of pi, not working in a big corporate structure. What made the disney service experience so magical? First, because we had the right people wear very carefully.

We are we’re looking for people with passion and can do attitude. The skill were not worried about, will train. You you’re not worried about the skill you get up too high technical jobs, but it’s pretty killer the employees down this way. You got somebody it’s going to be checking somebody on our front desk. We don’t have to have any experience. I’ll, try not to repeat that again that you’re saying you don’t hire for skill. You hire for passion, attitude attitude attitude can do you know it’s very interesting. You asked before we found out it’s when we do interview and we’ll talk about that many, but finding people who know how to overcome obstacles cuz. We all have them every morning and the candy people just figure it out. You oversaw i, believe 40,000 people group of people. What was the actual total at the end of the before you retire? What was the number of people operations which I was responsible for and + 5,000 managers it? How many direct reports came to you? Yeah I had different times over the years of the 10 years. I was there we re-organize few times at one point:i had sex one time, I had 14 and actually at the 14 first and then eventually got to see I needed to really really nice cuz. It was too many to try to keep up with them, though so yeah, but it worked. Good I mean I’m. Not a manager at has a need to know everything or go to every business conferences. I had great people and then i. Let them do their job. I, don’t work at night, worrying about what I don’t know and I try to focus on where I should be spending my time, not bothering them all day long. If I’ve had a great person i, let them do their job and they communicate with me too. I really should be reporting directly. To me, I mean if you got to buy the business of town, you probably vegas diluted expectations. Everything is diluted and so yeah. If you have 20, you may want to have one one person that takes care of operations. While you take care of running the hr area and the payroll and financing the business and inventory in purchasing-and it kind of have I think you need one person’s looking after the customer and somebody’s looking after the administration, as you get bigger for sure, I’ve been around you a little bit and then try to watch as much as I can on youtube or vimeo about you and read your books. What are the things that I’ve discovered about you and every successful entrepreneur I’ve ever been around or business person? You have the ability, or the least you have decided you’re going to inspire your team and it seems like they don’t inspire their team or seem like they have a lot of patience or a lot of desire to inspire their team. Talk to me about how important it is to keep your entire team all 40,000 cast members, inspire I think it’s everything at disney, because the works hard I mean it’s not magical to work in their everyday. It’s like hard work after you’ve served eight thousand people for lunch and cooked a million pounds of french fries and cleaned up the tables and parks 1200 strollers and wheelchairs.

It’s hard work, and so we want people to. We have a purpose statement at disney, which we remind our employees, cast members all the time, and it goes like that so that they can keep some inspiration. We said you know we all have a different role at disney. Everybody’s got a different job, but we only have one purpose and that’s make sure it ever guessed. It comes to disney. World has the most fabulous time of their life, the most fabulous, an engineer whether you’re a cook whether you’re, you may never see a customer, but you still have the ability to make sure have the most wonderful time. My cooking that burger perfectly salt in those fries cuz it’ll end up out there you we all impact the customer experience, july 5th and we’re on this water and we’re kind of overtime, people kind of drifted. They take your eye off the you know. If you take a fee, if we don’t need to go from this shore to that show I’m going to take your eye off the horizon line or off the shore we kind of drift you can. How do you keep the disney ship from drifting? How do you keep the team inspired under what kind of systems do you have to keep the team inspired leadership? Matters I mean we all want to work for somebody who is a good role model and who makes us it has high energy and a positive person, a person who helps us every time. I cast member would tell me to have a great leader. I’d say tell me why I said hello, there help us they’re always available. They come out and I need to talk to them, though, beat the talk to us. They helped me get through it. I had a rough situation, they worked me through it. They gave me time off on and they cared about me and I think that in the workplace today a lot of people worked at other places where they’re just like a person. Nobody knows them, they don’t know what their aspirations including your business conferences. What they’re trying to achieve? We don’t help him achieve it. We don’t help him get into the right classes. We don’t give him the right feedback and we basically don’t care if we don’t tell them how much we care and we want to help them be successful probation if you’ve ever struggled to get your team to deliver a world-class experience on a daily basis. I really do think we should all listen to that portion of the program over and over and over again, because that’s what was so magical about my time with lee, cockerell and orlando was that the guy does the same thing everyday, like 7 days a week like a machine for years, he gets up at the same time manages the same team executes the same systems gets people inspired everyday.

He just doesn’t stop interviewing people doesn’t stop picking up trash then at the excellence is in the consistency and i. Think consistency is something it’s so many people struggle with it. Just a huge struggle me eric I mean:don’t you think it’s a business coach if consistency is a huge issue for the majority of aspiring small business owners, I feel like a lot of people out there, a business owners or not they view. Consistency is kind of a bird. It’s like something they’re trying to get away from, instead of something they should be embracing. Does that make sense that was deep, bro yeah I mean it’s it’s like you’re running from it because you don’t want to be tied to it, but that’s the only way to have a successful growing business is to be consistent that right there it’s could be the most profound thing. You’ve ever said:it’s not a burden to be consistently absolutely need to do that and we come back from the break. Lee cockerell explains it. Everyday is showtime in the world of business that you must absolutely said. High expectations for your customer service experience. My name is clark I’m, a business coach and I’d, encourage you to never miss a broadcast and to listen to the exclusive podcast. Only editions of our exclusive interviews with lee cockerell by subscribing to the thrive time show podcast and business conferences. Today. Never miss radio broadcast, maybe you’re in your car, and you miss a segment or two. You can hear all of them and we’ve got about 25, more lee, cockerell exclusive podcast noble for you today at thrive time show, but you got to go to the podcast portion of the website, go to thrive time. Show. Com click on podcasts, subscribe to the podcast I would really appreciate. If you leave us an objective review and we come back more with lee cockerell here on the drive time to shine, try to consume but hope for the future that I can pursue resetting the world’s only business school without the bs and I’ll be the sea. Did you put the skills to help you or I can go back to the conversation. It is my honor and grapefruit privilege of interviewed lee cockerell, the former executive vice president of walt disney world resort to golconda disney world. We know someone who has we always hear that they have great customer service. We always hear that the standard of excellence is high, but we are only there visiting disney world for 5 days or 7 days or 3 days before the magic of disney world. From my perspective, as a business owner is that they do it 365 days a year right, that’s where the excellence is so I mean you talk about athletes that was asked you know.

Should this athlete go into the hall of fame debate around baseball player? You should this guy go to the hall of fame. Should this football player go into, the hall of fame is basketball player and in the defining aspects of whether somebody gets into the hall of fame or not comes down to not just their performance but their ability to maintain that performance at a high level for a long period of time, and so I see so many business owners that talk about something that is not actually a thing. It is a justification, but it is promoted by our society or culture and everybody who you know doesn’t manage walt disney, world, everybody that you know isn’t jack welch, everybody. You know, isn’t dr. Zoellner and they talk about this absolute bs called burn out and they say all yeah i, just I got to do something new I’m getting burned out burnt out. It’s called you a mental quitter. So once you find something you’re good at it, if you want to go to the hall of fame, for it poured down, don’t get bored pour down whenever you start to get a new id on your get excited about the new thing, but your thing you started, isn’t really doing. Well, you got a board down you going to hire. People that bore down here to be consistent. Consistency is absolutely what makes greatness in the world of business in the world of sports in the world of financial planning. Anything it’s consistency in the world of marriage in the world of being a good father sister. How about just in the world you have to put people always teach that? Oh, no, no, no, there’s a new thing, but once you find the thing you got to be consistent and I know that people struggle with this, and so am I hope and my prayer is that lee cockerell, the former executive vice president of walt disney world resorts, used to manage 40,000 employees and used to I’ll have to accommodate think about that. Every week they have over a million customers at disney. World he’s going to break down the knowledge you cannot get in college there. Any further do my exclusive interview with lee cockerell, but it seem like everybody was really on stage in disney comcast members, the employees and business conferences. Is it a full of joy and wanted to be there? What kind of people you’re? Looking to hire at disney what kind of people you looked to hire at disney, we really look for nice people, people with big personalities, people that actually enjoy dealing with people, people who are not injured too introverted. They can stand out there 8 hours when it’s hot kids are screaming and take care of the gas and go in and let and they like to serve. You know:there’s something called the spirit of service tonight is going to have it. If you don’t mind serving people and some people don’t like to serve people, and we just do a better job, i. Think of hiring those people.

You just said something, skip over. You said people that aren’t too introverted introverted people there’s a place for them on the plane and there’s things they do well, but you wouldn’t hire him to work at disney out there. While we wouldn’t hire them to be facing, we might hire them to be in the back and purchasing and restore room receiving introverted, feel fine, but there’s somebody for the broadway show they got to have certain talents. It’s likes. Everybody can’t be a professional baseball player. Some people gotta clean the river she wants. We are skeptical about people who can’t explain to us why they changed jobs that we’re looking for people who are really enjoy being with guess who let you enjoy being with people who again they just had the right attitude and they can explain that they can explain how they do it in their personal life, how they enjoy being brown people, how they enjoy taking care of difficult situations, because you get a lot of those at disney. I meant to remind you, told me you should claim your business is not a church. It is a business and he was trying to explain to me that, like i, couldn’t I shouldn’t hire the people amongst our population with the most personal problems possible. I should really find people that have it together and try to hire those people, because my customers won’t come back if I irritate them all the time. Can you explain the fine line, because I know your kind hearted person you do care about people I know you demonstrated that. How do you think people can have personal problem long as they don’t bring him to work? That’s what we very clearly explain to them. We all have personal problems, but we want you to understand if you’re going to work here, you cannot bring those and it’s got an attitude problem and you got to go out there and you want to argue with fellow cast members in front of our gas and say inappropriate things and not have your name tag on and not shine your shoes and not comb. Your hair you’re not going to be here. We are putting on a show and work turn on the hit, show not a second off-broadway we’re putting on broadway show and takes talent to do that. This person is a chosen one. This is the person we want to hire. We want to bring them on our team and then again, I only have 10 employees or less. They don’t have hundreds of employees like we do have people at our business conferences. They have 10 employees or less. How important is it in your mind to wow that new recruit with them at first day of work? Important? Is it for you to really make a great first impression?

Was that disney thing that’s important cuz we have a very uplifting first day for everybody where they’re watching cartoons and snow white and all the fluff a magical place and your boss wants you to cook french fries with 8 hours and smoke the floor, and we try to make sure that we try to get that experienced still pausing, it’s kind of like when’s, the best time to bond with the baby right away. Hold him hugging, i, love them the same of the new employees. Stay close to them. Take him to lunch, make sure they get the check on time, make sure you’re talking to them about the long-term advantages of staying at disney cuz they’re not committed when they come to work. First, they don’t know what a great career that can have. So we right away we’re trying to get all over that, so they don’t quit still at disney, just like first 90 days are touchy because we lose most of our people in the first time. Do you have a did? You guys have an outlined documented system for the first 90 days depends if I have a job as a different list, though, if you’re working on the front desk at the trainings about 30 days so day, one you do this date in the bathroom I be 7, days cooking might be 12 days it every job has a definite time line. It’s a sign off that you’ve learnt this, and this is including you sign off on it. Your manager does like it’s a little checklist. They sign off on make sure you had that training all right, drive nation, welcome back to the conversation is the thrivetime show on your radio and now, during this portion of the broadcast, we’re going to be interviewing lee cockerell after the break about the importance of setting high expectations in your office, as it relates to customer service in every single aspect of your business and business conferences, the importance of setting high so high expectations when we return it should we all went to. Which hand up again without self-discipline. Is it with yourself is which would be


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