Former Merchandise Associate at The Walt Disney Company
about 2 years ago
I participated in the Disney College Internship program and accepted a position as a "Merchentainer", or Merchandise associate. Your typical day would range widely depending on where you were stationed. When you arrive for your program you are assigned a home location where you will work most of your shift, unless you pick up or swap shifts with another Cast Member. The basics of most locations are working the register checking out guests, circling the floor and engaging guests helping them find what they are looking for, and stocking. Depending on the location you maybe in charge of a register and engaging guests. My home location was the Boardwalk Resort, which was a mildly busy shop. Typically you were assigned an area in the store to maintain and work the register. We had designated stockers kept the shelves stocked and at delivered things as needed.
My program was actually quite unusual due to the amount I was deployed out from my home location. Some Cast Members are sent or "deployed" to a different location but for most CP's it doesn't happen too often. I spent a good portion of my program deployed at 12 different locations across Walt Disney World property since my home location went under construction shortly after my arrival. I was able to see the variety of stores we have across property and how each store had a different environment. Be prepared to answer questions about the surrounding area, parks, and transportation. I often suggested places to eat or visit or the fastest way from point A to Point B. But the main duties that were common between all the stores was to engage the guests, work the register, and stock.
Days as a merchantainer at Disney like they call it can last anywhere from 6-15 hours. The word merchantainment is a Disney word that they use to describe our line of work. Not only do we work in merchandise, but we strive to entertain guests. We are encouraged to play with the plushes and some of the toys to promote them. It is also a great conversation piece for guests when you're holding a plastic snake making it move like a real one, or using a remote to control a BB8 toy to engage interaction. As I learned in my training class, working with guests should be treated like an interaction, not a transaction. This is something I have kept with me through school and everyday life.