I am a frequent visitor to Disney, and I love going with a bunch of kids.
Disney never fails to astound and amaze. On my last visit, I took note of something I had not crystallized thought about before. It occurred to me one night, leaving the Magic Kingdom after a parade. Probably 50,000 people elbow to elbow, butt to butt, walking very slowly along toward the exit.
Unlike being in a comparable crowd exiting a sporting event, business convention hall or anywhere else, hardly any pushing, shoving. Civility, politeness. Graciously letting people move in front. Care taken not to bump strollers, kids. Everybody pleasant. I saw this throughout my visit . People holding doors for each other. Stopping to help somebody pick up dropped packages, juggle kids. Incredible civility. Why?
The Disney culture not only profoundly affects its employees, it somehow “magically” affects its customers while under its spell. People change their attitudes and behaviors while on Disney grounds, in Disney hotels. (It suggests this is the place to meet for difficult contract negotiations or dispute mediation.)
Well, here’s a question for you to ask yourself: what “magical effect(s)” does your business have on your customers or clients or patients?
I think my businesses and I have created something of a unique “culture.” Has had some profound, positive effects on our Members. I think we create greater entrepreneurial spirit, bigger and bolder thinking, and, obviously, an exceptionally passionate, even obsessive interest in and enthusiasm for great marketing. I also observe our Members far more willing to help each other, share information with each other, mentor each other than businesspeople in other settings and groups.
Finally, our customers are successfully trained and conditioned to invest in continuing education and improvement, to value information. I have research stats I also think the “customer culture” of our Membership is changing, caused I believe by the shift in sources and means of new member acquisition. I am watching this with curiosity and interest.
Starbucks is a “culture business.” Its customers feel part of something, alter their attitudes and feelings while in its environment. Not to the Disney extent, but still an important factor in Starbucks’ success.
Big Idea: what is the ‘culture’ you are deliberately striving to – and investing in – creating? What attitudinal and behavioral changes you strategically work at inspiring?