1. What is the impact of budget cuts on the possible integration of newer technologies (Magic bands, smart phone apps, and more efficient patron loading systems) into the delivery system of Disney? What are the marketing and management impacts on goals and strategic decisions i.e., what is the impact on this new technology to Disney workers (hosts/hostesses) and the interaction of humans with Disney guests, a key component of the Disney experience? Why is the MagicBand and the My Disney Experience App complimentary at WDW, yet the Disneyland app is $20/person/day?
2. What is the impact of budget cuts on the domestic promotions strategies for Disneyland and Disney World? Will the promotions mix be adjusted significantly and how will the role of social media be impacted? What is the impact of modifications on technology use, hiring, contract workers, and revenues?
3. While many will argue that the entry into mainland China is a very positive move for the Walt Disney Company, how does this impact corporate image as it relates to social responsibility, use of resources in a market known for its questionable hiring, compensation, and work environment issues. Does China’s approach to the environment impact the carefully managed image of Disney as it relates to its position in the world and environmental protection?
4. How does the introduction of driverless shuttles impact the existing Disney parks? Hundreds of cast members work in transportation. Will this new introduction that proves valuable to marketing innovation and maintaining the brand, cause a significant negative ripple effect with the cast? Will issues of motivation, satisfaction, and resistance to change prove a significant problem for Disney? How can Disney anticipate and neutralize these concerns prior to the introduction of the driverless shuttles?
5. How does the addition of another Chinese park impact the corporate culture of the existing Disney parks? Considering the changing demographics of the US and China, how does Disney create a global corporate culture or does it choose to have different corporate culture to match the national cultures and demographics in each country. Explore the pros/cons of each approach and recommend an approach.
6. Disney has already begun to experience negative word of mouth from loyal theme park patrons relating to Star Wars Land. What are the pros and cons of this extension to Hollywood Studios and Disneyland? What strategies can be implemented to build excitement for the new rides and exhibits while maintaining traditional consumer loyalty? Can HR strategies be employed to educate cast members on effectively delivering positive messages relating to the addition of Star Wars Land?
7. Identify one strength/weakness relating to each field of marketing and management and identify how the strategic decisions interrelate.
8. Does Disney culture support “we are all in this together” approach to this budget cut or is this a shift in management style? What evidence in the Disney corporate culture supports your answer to this question? If it is a change in organizational culture, what does management need to do to make it work for the organization? If consistent with the current corporate culture, what does Disney need to do to reinforce the culture with stakeholders?
9. Communication is essential for weathering this crisis/challenge. How can social media be used to communicate internally with employees to share information about the changes, progress with changes, and what the future holds to minimize any negative consequences from this approach?
10. Does Disney have to modify its brand image to incorporate the acquisitions of Marvel, Pixar, and LucasFilm OR is their brand robust enough to be consistent with the new films and associated products? What are the HR concerns in training employees to address the new products in the “Disney way” while maintaining the magical, premium entertainment brand associated with Disney? Could resistance to change be a HR problem or will changing employee demographics offset these concerns?
11. Discuss the evolution of internal dynamics and corporate culture at the Walt Disney Company from Michael Eisner’s term as CEO to Bob Iger’s term. What has Iger done to improve these factors and as a result, improve the overall success of the Walt Disney Company?