Avast Ye, and listen well! With the arrival of International Talk Like a Pirate Day, our minds have been filled thoughts of adventure, challenge and reward. While the connection might not seem immediate, there’s plenty to be learned from these buccaneers and their life on the high seas. Here’s a pirate’s guide to your Disney Program:
Trust your captain
As you navigate your program and career, you’ll learn that some of your greatest resources will be your leaders. Many leaders began their Disney journey on a program themselves, and have had multiple roles before they ended up in their current one. This means they’ve had a lot of time to learn the ins and outs of what makes a successful cast member. Don’t be afraid to share your goals and dream role with your leader, and ask them about theirs! There’s plenty to learn, and they may be able to connect you to other cast members in your dream role.
Eyes on the horizon
Don’t be afraid to start planning for your future! Whether your dream career involves Disney or not, your program will fly by so it’s important to make the most of it while you’re here. If you do want to stay with the company, look into Professional Internships and full-time roles. Try to network while you have access and availability to meet with other cast members in-person. Even if you’ve decided to pursue other options outside the company, make it a point to utilize all the opportunities available to you while you are a cast member. The skills you’ll learn in various career development workshops, seminars and networking events can be applied to whatever role you find yourself in.
Don’t expect only clear skies and smooth sailing
Like any new experience, there’s likely going to be a challenge or two! Don’t be discouraged if you experience a less than magical day. Maybe you’ve never lived with more than one roommate before or have never worked full-time. These, and other parts of the program, may require compromise, patience and an openness to change. In return, you’ll grow personally and professionally. Keep in mind, if you feel overwhelmed, there’s plenty of resources to help you along the way!
Look for hidden treasure
As the great Captain Jack Sparrow once said, “Not all treasure’s silver and gold, mate.” While you may have joined the program to start a career, make new friends or take a break from rigorous schoolwork, chances are you’ll leave your program with more than what you were expecting! Make time for all that you can, and look for the magic in little moments. Some of your greatest learnings may come from unexpected experiences. Keep in mind that each person’s program experience is different, so don’t compare your journey to anyone else’s. Everyone’s idea of treasure is different, and the greatest takeaway from your program may differ drastically from that of your friends, roommates or siblings that have also completed a program.