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SUPER POWERS

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  • I'm known for being able to take on complex challenges, transforming them into achievable solutions, and communicating them in a clear and concise way

  • I've led cross-functional teams through operations planning, operations & design standards, opening procedures, and design for new and remodeled facilities

  • I've spent years honing my Operations Integration skills while working on 8 new hotels (2 opened), 3 new parks (1 opened), 4 major theme park renovations (3 are complete), and countless new build and remodeling efforts

  • I've led executives and leaders at all levels through projects, initiatives, and problem solving

  • I provided analytical support for a variety of profit centers and lines of businesses (Parks, Resorts, food & beverage, Sales and merchandise)

  • I provide Disney excellence in everything I do with over 25 years experience with the Walt Disney Company including 2 years at the Disneyland Resort

  • I was an operator too! I have years of Operations experience including Guest Relations, VIP office administration, Attractions, Merchandise, Custodial, Transportation, and I was Duty Manager at Epcot

Pulling it all together in a Dream Job

In 2012, I was given an incredible opportunity that changed my career. After years in operations, project management, operations integration, workforce management, and Guest research I accepted a position in Food & Beverage where my role was to develop efficient ways to design and open locations. Our business was ramping up for a tremendous growth period and F&B had a reputation for operating their concept development inconsistently. I was told to not work on anything but fact-finding for 6 months. I spent that time meeting with representatives from other lines of business (e.g. merchandise, custodial, workforce planning, engineering, etc.), and was met with varying degrees of acceptance. Some people felt F&B had 'burned' them in the past by not including them. Others were open to helping where they could.

I made a flowchart and began plotting when each line of business wanted F&B to include them or communicate to them when opening a restaurant. At the end I had 35 swimlanes on this very large chart but I was on the way to streamlining and integrating everything.

During this time I found that we were lacking in design standards which led to locations opening without needed OPERATIONAL REQUIREMENTS which of course meant years of remodeling, and financial burdens to the organization. I began an amazing journey with domestic (California AND Florida) representatives from not only F&B but other areas - like safety and architecture - to ensure we were designing with everyone in mind. This SYSTEMS THINKING process allowed us to ensure that those STANDARDS were solid and business forward ensuring our stock holders and operators the best design possible at the lowest lifetime cost of the facility. 

I began collecting square footage data with the intent of gathering enough information to develop a SIZING STANDARD for early development of a facility. Working with very smart industrial engineers we finalized a guideline by which we could build facilities that could support themselves in the volume they were projected to produce (read: revenue as well). By the end of this process I had pieces and parts of the 'engine' (what we called the kitchen) broken up into functional spaces so that depending on the desired end-product I could estimate the needed square footage quickly and easily. I also began collecting this information for non-Disney locations as well as the prices to build non-Disney versus Disney locations. This was compelling and invigorating analysis! 

 

My proudest moment was when I overheard an architect whom I admired advising someone to 'contact Gina in F&B because they have their act together' - gone was the 'inconsistent' reputation!

After the opening of Star Wars I had developed enough self-sustaining processes to work myself out of my dream job. After 7 years of this work we had concepted or designed over 330 locations and opened over 120 of them - that's an average of 47 designs and 17 openings per year!

 

Next I was given the opportunity to dive into MENUS & RECIPES which on the surface seems easy, except again there were no standards and processes that were easy to consistently apply to the over 500 locations we needed to support. I developed a recipe category system that would lead to easier tracking of allergens and nutrition information. During the fact-finding for this work I had contacted industry leaders about their process and found that they had none but loved what I was putting together - this started making me think that my corporation wasn't the only one who needed help . I also developed a plan to save millions per year by bringing F&B into alignment with the industry in terms of menu changes (e.g. quick service locations don't change menus, table service may add one item per quarter but ALL menu items get analyzed for profitability, etc.)

Now that I'm outside of the corporate culture, I'm currently ramping up my consulting business and writing a book to help others develop their own processes using a base knowledge of standard F&B needs that can easily be applied to businesses big and small. Contact me so I can listen to your vision and help you bring it to life!

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