After walking through the creaky dungeon doors, down the dimly lit corridor, and saying the magic words, the blue French doors swing open to reveal the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique. On the storytelling experience I taught young girls all the qualities of being a princess, taught her to use her magic, and gave her a princess makeover, complete with a dress, shoes, hair, and face paints.
The role was one of the most fast-paced and demanding I've ever experienced. Due to the magical nature of the environment, every fairy needed to be extremely well organization and efficient. When I wasn't on an appointment with a princess I was busy preparing dresses for the coming week, manning the front desk, answering questions about Disney and Harrods, or floating around the Boutique, jumping in wherever I was needed.
The most useful skills I applied in this role included:
- Improvising solutions to problems and answers to questions. Things don't always go to plan and little girls can come up with some pretty tricky questions. I don't actually know where the Disney Princesses go on holiday.
- Organizing myself among up to 7 other simultaneous appointments which involves knowing exactly where you need to be and when and being camera-ready at all times.
- Listening and Communication are key when sometimes in order to preserve the magic you need to implement some pretty tricky distraction techniques.
- Customer Service is king at Disney and Harrods. Every guest was treated like royalty and no problem was too small. Whether we needed a different shoe size, a princess's nail polish got dinged, or someone needed directions to the toilet, every query was handled with a smile.
In addition to being a valuable learning opportunity, this role was one of my most rewarding experiences. I literally made dreams come true, whether they be for birthdays, Christmases, or Make a Wish. I was proud to strap on my smock every morning and do what was sometimes dirty and exhausting work. Every task, from counting stock, to prepping appointments, to conjuring up a tiara with a princess, every element needed to be precise and exceed the guest's expectations. This role demanded great attention to detail, communication, and energy, all invaluable skills to me today.