Disneyland's operations chief prepares his 16,000 employees to make 'magical moments' during park's 50th anniversary. (Free registration required)

The head of operations at the Disneyland Resortuses the collection of pins as a strategic tool. It forces him to do what he says is the most important work of the day: connect with visitors.

On a recent stroll down Main Street, as Emmer talked about the refurbishment of Disneyland for its 50th anniversary, he spied a father and daughter staring at his chest. He tapped the lanyard full of pins and anticipated their question: "Would you like one of these?"

It's exactly what they wanted. The girl exchanged one of her pins for Emmer's "Princess," they chatted for a few minutes, and she left with a smile.

In Disney lore, that's called a "magical moment." A chance to make a memory.

It's the standard by which Emmer judges his staff of 16,000 at the two theme parks, three hotels and Downtown Disney district. He's the ultimate boss for everyone who regularly comes in touch with the visitors, including those who make the beds, operate the rides and serve the food.
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