Working at a Theme Park: Making the Most of It
Experience is a tough teacher. Some will look back on their theme park employment as the best experience they have ever had, and some will think it was the biggest mistake of their lives. The difference is caused primarily by attitude. Like all things in life, a theme park job is what you put into it. If you accept the job, then come in late every day, not dressed properly or professionally, use foul language with your peers and managers, ignore the guests in favor of talking about personal issues, etc., then you shouldn’t expect to go far with the company.
On the other hand, there are several things you can do to make yourself stand out from the crowd and get noticed as a prime candidate for promotion. Appear approachable by managers, peers, and guests. Smile and make eye contact. Keep conversations professional and positive. Be punctual to all shifts and meetings. Resolve conflicts with coworkers in person and not on stage in front of guests or backstage in front of coworkers. Talk with your managers about shadowing them for a day and learning what they do. If your company offers them, take leadership classes to improve your skills. Show initiative by actively seeking ways to improve your department, such as identify possible cost savings, productivity, or something as simple as moving heavy objects to a more accessible area thus reducing the risk of accidents.
Within a work area, there are always areas for improvement. One former merchandise employee reports:
“I talked to my manager about utilizing the kids’ playground at the base of a nearby attraction. While small children waited for their siblings to get off the ride, I proposed to go out there with some of the hand puppets we sold in the store and have the kids act out a story I’d read to them. Not only did the kids love Story Time, but our sales increased as well.”
So, you have a choice. Do the bare minimum and stay in one role your entire employment, or put a little more energy, creativity, and professionalism into your job, and see where it takes you.