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Saturday, January 19, 2019

Tips From Former VP of the Magic Kingdom

January 19, 2019

If you explore and pay attention, you can find tips for business, career and life in all kinds of places and from a wide array of people. That includes a former vice president who led more than 12,000 cast members at the Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World.

Dan Cockerell developed a 26-year career at Walt Disney Company, and now, as explained on his website, “provides customized, authentic presentations, focusing on leadership and management practices, drawing upon his extensive Disney career with relevant examples and inspiring storytelling.”

I heard Dan talk about Disney and his career on a Lou Mongello WDW Radio podcast (listen to the episode here), and decided to sign up for Cockerell’s weekly email. He provides a few insights from himself, a newsletter, and an article of interest.

Here are just a few brief, valuable points made by Cockerell that can help one’s business and career:

• “[H]aving a short list of things to work toward for our ideal selves is what will make life really interesting and will enable us to live with fewer regrets. So, pick something you want to do, a place you want to go, or a skill you want to learn and spend 20 minutes a day working on it. You will be surprised how much progress you will make. For me, it is not about the length of time I spend on projects but the discipline to spend time on them every single day. After a month, it's fascinating how much progress you can make!”

• “I've been in a few jobs where I was thrown into the deep end to figure the job out. Sure, you learn to be resourceful and self-reliant, but the hit to your productivity and confidence is pretty big. I suggest you dive into your training program and do an audit. Is it effective? Is it consistent? Is it happening?”

• “Did you someone frustrate you today? No, you chose to be frustrated. Did someone scare you today? No, you chose to be scared. Did someone make you happy? No, you chose to be happy. In the words of Morpheus, ‘choose wisely!’”

• “The days of acquiring education early on in life and cruising with that acquired knowledge is over! Everyday has to be a day of learning. Whether formal or informal, we all need to move our mindset to growth and improvement.”

• “Do you try things you may fail at? And I don’t mean high stake moments that will endanger your career. I mean talking to that person next to you on the plane, playing that video game with your son, or trying to learn about that new social media app. If you do, you have a growth mindset and that's good! Curiosity keeps the mind sharp and engaged. Are you curious? Do you challenge your co-workers and direct reports to be curious? If you do, you have a growth mindset and that's good!”

Sign up for these weekly email at Dan Cockerell’s website – go to https://dancockerell.com– and benefit accordingly. By the way, Cockerell also does a weekly podcast – “Come Rain or Shine” – at https://dancockerell.com/blog/podcast/

Ray Keating is the editor, publisher and economist for DisneyBizJournal.com, and author of the Pastor Stephen Grant novels, with the three latest books being Reagan Country: A Pastor Stephen Grant NovelHeroes and Villains: A Pastor Stephen Grant Short Storyand Shifting Sands: A Pastor Stephen Grant Short Story. He can be contacted at raykeating@keatingreports.com.

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