The week before last, I attended the NAAA Dynamic Leadership Institute in Orlando, Florida, hosted by Disney. If you’ve never heard of the Disney Institute, it’s an amazing program. Millions of professionals from around the world attend Disney Institute for business education and training. I was really looking forward to going, and the event absolutely exceeded all of my expectations.

The speakers were phenomenal. The leadership training classes were informative and eye-opening. It’s inspiring to personally experience the best practices and business lessons that have made and kept Disney so successful.

My favorite part had to be “The Incredible Race” at Disney’s Epcot Center. Not only was it a lot of fun, but it was a wonderful opportunity to meet new people in our industry. We were paired up in teams with people from other auction chains to solve a series of puzzles. It was kind of like a scavenger hunt, but you had to earn clues along the way before moving on to the next step of the race.

It really challenged us all to bring our “A” game when it comes to creativity, teamwork and communication. But you just can’t beat a hands-on experience for driving home a lesson. The entire experience really empowered me, and it made me excited to get back to the office and share what I had learned. And to find ways to implement Disney’s best practices into my own day-to-day routine.

I want to thank the NAAA for inviting me, and to thank all of the attendees for sharing their ideas and experiences with me. I am proud to say that I am a Disney Institute graduate.

Paul Lips' team poses for a group shot at Disney Epcot Center at the NAAA Dynamic Leadership Institute in Orlando. Pictured L to R: Paul Lips, Andrew Pyle, Laura Thacker, Scott Mulligan. Back row: Damian Southerland











Paul's team takes a time out from solving "The Incredible Race" puzzles during the team building activity at the NAAA Dynamic Leadership Institute.











NAAA Dynamic Leadership Institute trophies for the Class of 2012






















Photo credits: NAAA