How Disney Genie Defines the Bob Chapek Era

Walt Disney Company has had Bob Chapek as CEO since February 2020.

©Orange County Register via Getty Images

Since then, Chapek has brought a distinct leadership style to the company with a number of new initiatives. Perhaps the most indicative of Chapek’s era is the launch of Disney Genie.

Here’s how Disney Genie defines the Bob Chapek era.

Bob Chapek’s term as CEO of the Walt Disney Company has been characterized by a data-driven approach.

Chapek rose through the ranks of Disney starting in 1993 and was often described as being data-focused. Per the Orlando Sentinel, Former CEO Michael Eisner noted, “He was always an executive that you knew would be on the rise…He knew how to grow the business while adjusting to the changing marketplace, which was intense.”

Bob Chapek Filming in front of Cinderella Castle

But feedback has not always been positive to Chapek’s style. Later in his time as CEO, colleagues described Chapek as a “numbers-oriented, bottom-line-focused businessman lacking creative experience and without Iger’s polish and flair.”

Bob Chapek

Chapek is often noted as skewing more towards the numbers-driven business side of things than the creative side of things. Whether this is for better of for worse, data has certainly characterized his term so far.

Data informed the massive shift to a focus on Direct-to-Consumer last year.

A clear example of this is one of the biggest changes that Chapek has made as CEO. Last year, Chapek drove a restructuring of the Walt Disney Company to a focus on Direct-to-Consumer offerings such as Disney+.


When it comes to numbers, this shift has been wildly successful with Direct to Consumer offerings exceeding projections year over year.

Disney Genie is many things — but mostly, it’s about data.

And Disney Genie is, like Chapek, all about data. Itineraries improve crowd flow. The system will learn based on how guests use it. Predictive wait times are built on data and will only improve as they gather more. And, we may see pricing adjustments based on supply and demand of lightning lane attractions.

Disney Genie!

As Genie learns and guests use it, it could help to mitigate crowding and wait time issues with a completely data-fueled approach. That’s pretty impressive and could have longterm effects on the way crowds flow in the Disney parks.


With such a data-driven and numbers-driven approach, Disney Genie is a perfect example of Chapek’s CEO term so far. Despite a variety of reactions to the new service, many guests are purchasing the new service.


So, due to the data-driven nature, Disney Genie may be the defining factor of the Chapek era so far. Of course, his term as CEO is still ongoing, so the positive and negative effects of Disney Genie and other decisions are yet to be fully realized.

Disney Parks, Experiences and Consumer Products Chairman Bob Chapek revealed exciting details of new experiences coming to Disney Parks during D23’s Destination D: Celebrating Mickey Mouse fan celebration in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. (Ty Popko)

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What do you think of Disney Genie? Tell us in the comments!

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15 Replies to “How Disney Genie Defines the Bob Chapek Era”

  1. Unfortunately, Disney has changed and not for the better. Raising prices is expected; but to get nothing in return is not. Disney has always been known as going over and beyond expectations; the Castmembers were courteous and found ways to make the stay wonderful, no matter how much it cost. Even that has changed….but it all starts at the top. Bob Chapek is all about money and the bottom line. What is the benefit of staying on property? Not free parking, people know how to get around that expense. Going to the parks 1/2 hour earlier, what does that get you? This is not what Walt Disney wanted. We are DVC members; time to use our points for something else. Never did that before because we always loved going to WDW. So glad we didn’t add points again.

  2. He’s taken away any reason to stay on property. It’s so expensive and so not worth it anymore- and we are Disney Vacation Club members. Not sure if we are going to sell, or wait and see if this turns around.

  3. Walt Disney was an entertainment person. Genie + It is designed to nickel and dime parents and cost them more money to go.

  4. This era is the worst in Disney history! He has changed the Happiest Place on Earth to a Money pit, No longer can the average family enjoy a vacation.

  5. The Bob chapek era…finally a ceo who doesn’t care what social media thinks and is making the unpopular decisions to finally curtail crowds. Thanks Bob! Now please raise genie+ to $100/day all inclusive like universal so we don’t have to wake up at 645a. You’re doing well so far, despite what the popular opinion is.

    1. Every other business out there expands their infrastructure, i.e. new stores to increase capacity. Chapek has not increased Disney Park’s footprint one square foot. He’s attempting to replace the existing crowds with fewer high dollar customers but NO additional park area. Obviously this will make you happy, John. For me, I think it’s a fool’s gamble. Disney has proven they can likely handle twice the people they have parks for so why don’t they make both you and I happy by expanding park size or number? They obviously realized 2- Dumbos are better than 1. Instead of building “state of the art” awe inspiring attractions that demand uber high prices and special ticketing, I would go for expanding more of what is working for them now and what has gotten them to where they are now. I appreciate that customer’s (I no long refer to us as “guest” because guest are typically treated with respect and I haven’t felt respect from Disney in quite a while) want a bit of new attraction but frankly, I think their attraction building boom of recent has been to satisfy somebody else’s fantasy, not the customer’s. As far as claiming Chapek’s doing well so far, he hasn’t really finished that much so far and his major accomplishments have only been to raise prices and reduce offerings. That may change as time goes by, but finish dates seem to get pushed out more & more all the time. My final comment about the current management is the lack of real celebration around the 50th Anniversary. My family was there for the 25th and it was the most ALL inclusive, everybody’s welcome, truly celebratory party ever. Now it just seems to be billed as an 18 mos. celebration of high priced tickets with limited admission to parks and dining. In my opinion Chapek should be spending more time on working to make Covid less of an impact on customer’s visits instead of adding ride vehicles that mysteriously guide themselves and all the other great but not worth the costs attractions. Right now, Disney execs appear to be busy toasting themselves on the alleged successes of the few attractions they have opened while ignoring the other 90% of the existing parks and the customers who want to enjoy them.

  6. Fire Bob Cheap (Chapek)! Cancel your Disney+ subscription and hit Bon where it hurts. He only care about big subscriber numbers for Disney+. Drop Disney+ and maybe Disney will drop Bob Cheap (Chapek).

  7. Data driven? More like $$$ driven. Walt would not be pleased. He wanted the parks to be for all, not just the people with big bucks to spend

  8. I think he may go down as the most out of touch CEO Disney has ever seen. I also believe that people are buying into Genie+ in spite of not liking it, is because, we’re left with no choice if you want to be able to ride anything and get any of your monies worth on such an overpriced vacation. It’s either purchase it or stand around doing some really expensive people watching all week.

    1. Dana, I’ve not been able to experience Genie+ but from my research, I don’t believe it is going to actually enhance your day in the park very much. Pretty much something new to pay for so that you can jump thru a whole new set of hoops on you “vacation”. I predict Genie+ will just be another “once and done” purchase leaving customers dissatisfied with what they gained. Of course, Disney will counter that you simply didn’t understand how to fully utilize the system so come back and give us some more of your money and try it again.

    2. Actually, you have another choice – go somewhere else. WDW’s rides used to be called attractions or experiences. Now, most of the new ones are just the roller coaster/thrill ride type. I can get that at other parks for a lot less money.

  9. I just signed the petition on to fire Bob chapstick, since we just found at that B’lou and Shadow at Disney HHI was fired after 20 plus years,just signed that petition too to have them hired back, as they are icons of Disney HHI. Last visits to Disney have been less than special as us long time Disney fans can just sense something has changed at the parks and resorts. So my defining moment for Disney exec mgmt. is not too spectacular. Disney has lost there way , nickel and diming everything, I can find other places to go now, I’ll return once Disney wakes up.

      1. I’d like to start a petition to force Disney to stop calling paid visitors “Guest”. Southern hospitality dictates that you treat your “Guest” with respect and kindness. Now a days, we are simply “Customers” and that is what Disney should refer to us as. I wouldn’t be surprised if the “Cast Members” wouldn’t inform us that they are simply “employees” now also. Disney’s veneer is about worn off under Chapek’s leadership.