Work Update: First Days in Guest Relations

It’s been a bit since I wrote about how I got to my current job working at Epcot Guest Relations, so I figured I’d write a little update post about how things are going!

earning my earsBefore I could jump right in to Guest Relations, I had a LOT of training to get through. The first week was all spent at Disney University learning the basics of GR. We learned about the core values and ideas of Guest Relations and the legacy behind it. The role originated with Walt himself of course, and it was cool to learn about all the history there and how things have evolved through the years.

We also learned all about the various computer programs and systems we would be using. I knew a lot already from my experience in resorts, but the resorts do many things differently from the parks, so I still had a lot to learn. It was a LOT of information but I think I somehow managed to take it all in!

scarf

On my first day before I figured out how to tie my scarf – some girls tie theirs in such cute little bows, I have to learn how to do that!

After a week at Disney University we were headed to the park for our on-the-job training! Training in the park was SO much fun. Part of the first day of training was going on a tour of the whole park, which was awesome!! And the best part was that I quickly learned that everybody in Epcot Guest Relations loves Epcot. I could not believe I was getting paid to walk around my favorite park with fellow Epcot nerds.

The first day was mostly an overview of the area and the park. I already know a lot about Epcot so I knew many of the things we learned already, but it was still really cool to see everything from a new perspective of a cast member rather than a guest. I also got to see a lot of things that I never even knew existed, and it made me love Epcot even more.me

On day 2, I had my Discovery Day which is Epcot’s park orientation. On this day we were with lots of other new Epcot CMs too, and we did a shorter walk around the park. It was awesome to spend yet another day learning about Epcot, and I even teared up a little bit at one point!

Day 3 was my first day of actually working in the lobby and helping REAL guests! It was very nerve-wracking at first not knowing what challenges they were going to come up to the desk with, but it only got easier as the day went on. I found that most guests came to Guest Relations because they honestly just had a simple question or wanted some assistance planning things.

summer

The “summer” version of my costume for when it’s hot outside!

Over the next few days we spent most of our time in the lobby and also visited the GR window outside the park. I won’t get trained on there right away since I just got here, but it was fun to spend some time there helping guests and getting practice with different types of situations too. I also got trained in the park entry position, where GR cast members stand with main entrance cast members to assist with any challenges guests have entering the park.

Finally on our last day of training, we had our assessment day. This basically meant that a trainer stayed with us all day, but we were on our own for most guest situations. The good thing I’m finding about Epcot Guest Relations is that everyone is SO willing and eager to help and it makes me feel really confident in asking questions if I need to.

At the end of the day once we officially passed our assessment, our managers presented us with a special certificate and our D pin! The D pin was created by Walt Disney in the early days of Disneyland, worn by his designated guides so guests would know where to look for great guest service. Now, in Disney parks around the world, Guest Relations cast members still wear the D pin as part of our costume. Our managers presented our D pins to us in the Guest Relations lobby in a special ceremony with lots of hoopla haha. It was really awesome and I feel so honored to have gotten it!

 

And now I’m on my own! Working without a trainer can be scary but the good thing is that there is always someone around to help if I need it. Like I said, everyone is super friendly and helpful so it’s not like I’m really alone. Another fun thing is that several of my old managers and coworkers have reached out to chat and ask how I’m doing and some have even come and said hi while I’m at work! It’s awesome to feel so welcomed into a new environment while also being remembered in my former workplace.

Overall I already feel like I’ve learned so much, and I love working in Guest Relations so far! I hope that I’ll get to stay at Epcot for a long time but even if my TA ends soon and I end up going back to Pop Century sooner rather than later, I am very grateful for what I have learned so far. Hopefully I will have many more adventures in Guest Relations to share in the future though 🙂 Thanks for reading and following along ❤

xo, Kaela

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