what I learned from Disney World: Leadership edition - pt 4

Continuing the series, here is part four of 7 things I learned from Disney World: Leadership edition. (Part four "Personal Edition" can be found here)

Day 4: Magic Kingdom - Pt 3

Strangers will bond as friends against the organization.

This was our last round at the Magic Kingdom, and so our trip in was less keyed into the park and more into the people around us.

My wife shared with me how she overheard a couple on the bus talking with the driver about how they were scamming Disney. Apparently they'd learned that if you tell the front desk that you have medication that needs to be cold, they will give you a free refridgerator for your room. They'd also learned that there was a lady who would shop for them locally, so they obtained $100 in groceries and paid her $15 to do it... and they kept it all in their free Disney fridge. As they boasted about it, the driver congratulated them on their sly behavior. Others around also took note of their other tips (which I won't mention, because I'm not sure they are ethical either).

I saw this sort of mentality all throughout my visit, though. Guests would take joy whenever they could cheat Disney out of a buck, and they'd bond in telling one another how to do it. I'd watch perfect strangers go up to one another and say, "Buy this over there instead of here" or "Order off the menu this way." It was as if we all assumed it was our goal to exploit Disney versus enjoy Disney.

I wonder - have you ever bonded with another person by being against something or someone instead of for someone or something? In the churches I've served in, I've seen this when a group of discontented people get together and bond by venting their frustrations. There's nothing of substance there, but when opinions gather their amplification makes it feel justified.

So I simply ask - are you bonding with someone in rebellion? Or maybe you're feeling its effects on the other side. In either case, call it for what it is.

Maybe Disney deserves it when people cheat them. Or maybe they don't.

It's ironic, because the next morning a Disney employee told me that the three small cartons of milk I was buying cost more than if I bought a half gallon. I would get this each morning so our boys could eat cereal in the room and we could (again) save a buck.

So I thanked her, thinking she'd helped me out in saving some cash. I'll never forget her response, and the way she delivered it.

"The way I see it, sweetie, we're going to get all of your money anyway before you leave." And then she laughed for a long time... or cackled... I couldn't tell which.

- Part 5 coming up.

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