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Realityland's David Koenig

Staggs Party

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Calm has returned to the Disneyland Resort, following a tumultuous few days. No, the chaos wasn't related to extreme weather or enormous crowds or unforeseen problems. It stemmed from the first official visit to the resort by Tom Staggs, who a few weeks ago swapped titles with Jay Rasulo to become the new chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.

On Monday, the day before Staggs was to arrive, managers ordered stockrooms, workshops and offices to be cleaned, as they hurriedly tried to memorize all sorts of statistics about their departments.

On Tuesday, to kick off his two-day visit, management gathered in a meeting at Lincoln Theater, followed by personal tours of Disneyland and DCA, and a special hosted lunch in the Dream Suite.

The dog and pony show, observed one cast member, "was a farce. Tom expressed interest in meeting 'ordinary' cast members, so the managers of each department handpicked those he would talk with. As you can guess, those handpicked cast members spoke only positive remarks about their departments. As Tomís tour made its way through the parks, managers who were hardly ever seen before were onstage telling cast members how to do their jobs. It was hilarious, watching managers popping out of their offices and running around like a bunch of scared rabbits."

By Thursday, Staggs was back in Burbank, and park managers could safely return to the confines of the Team Disney Anaheim building, insulated once again from the nuisance of interacting with cast members, guests and attractions.

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  1. olegc's Avatar
    i think that's somewhat OK - if in fact the new Disneyland President Kalogridis goes more towards what Ouimet did than what Grieir did (or did not do). You always try to show the best face to corp management.. let's just hope over time we get better
  2. oregontraveler's Avatar
    Sounds like your typical 'suits' affair. I'm having second thoughts on how Ed Grier was as a President. We all know that Cast Member Matt made a big impression with guests.
    But I realize now how much of an impact DLR is to Anaheim itself and the day-to-day dealings with City Hall over the ongoing construction is no small task. I'm with Oleg on wishful thinking about a better relationship with TDA and the CM's.