New Series: Mouse Droppings

Welcome to a new series here on Mouse on the Mind–Mouse Droppings.  In case you haven’t noticed, Tracy sure does like starting new series.  Mouse Style, Mouse Tech, and Mouse Vocabulary will all continue to be featured here on MOTM, but this new blog series takes the meaning of Disney nerd to a new level.  It’s Mouse Droppings!

So what is Mouse Droppings and why does it have such a gross name?  Mouse droppings is a series of mini-posts about the tiny details of Disney–secrets, trivia, and interesting facts all about Walt Disney World.  And, for the record, we don’t think it has a gross name.  We think it has a cute name.  Because mouse droppings are even smaller than, well, a mouse.  And while these Disney facts may seem trivial, they aren’t something you’d want to accidentally overlook.

Ok maybe I took that metaphor a bit too far.  But either way–welcome to Mouse Droppings, post number one!  Because many of these tidbits were learned on the Keys to the Kingdom tour, it is only fitting that our first Mouse Dropping be devoted to just that–the Keys to the Kingdom.

Contrary to what you might be thinking, the Keys to the Kingdom are not actual keys.  I know–I was surprised, too.  I was kind of picturing four big, intricate, old-fashioned skeleton keys that Mickey (or, possibly, Tinkerbell) used to unlock each park each morning.  But no–the Keys to the Kingdom are actually four key business principals used in decision making, planning, and all other aspects of the Walt Disney World company and resort.

Sounds less than magical, doesn’t it?  But wait–it’s actually pretty interesting, particularly from a business standpoint.

The Keys to the Kingdom are safety, courtesy, show, and efficiency.  And the Keys are hierarchical–safety is first, followed by courtesy, which is followed by show, which is followed by efficiency.  This helps to explain a number of things about how the park operates.  For example–ever notice how long it often takes to load a resort bus?  That’s because safety the first key but efficiency is fourth; thus, safety wins out over speed.

Another great example of this hierarchy is the doors on Main Street, USA.  They are all always propped open.  Why?  Because it is safer–no one will get hit with a door opening if it is already open.  Because it is courteous–it’s much easier to get in and out of the stores, particularly when loaded down with children and packages, if the doors are already open.  It’s even part of the show–most doors on actual Main Street USA would have been propped open during business hours at the turn of the century, the time period Main Street USA attempts to recreate.  The one thing the open doors are not an example of is efficiency.  Just walk by on a hot central Florida day and feel the cool, cool breeze of the central air wafting out into the bright afternoon sun.  Definitely not efficient–but safe, courteous, and in keeping with the show.

Have you noticed any of these ‘keys’ being put into practice during your visits to WDW?  Or, rather, now that you know they exist, can you think of some examples of the hierarchy in action?  Share with us in the comments section below.   


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