Episode 80: Army Veteran, Former Walt Disney World Executive VP, Bestselling Author, and Entrepreneur Lee Cockerell


Lee Cockerell, Former Walt Disney World Executive Vice President

Lee Cockerell, Former Walt Disney World Executive Vice President, Army Veteran

Lee Cockerell grew up in Oklahoma. He had a difficult childhood, and his mother was married 3 times before he was 16. He went to college for s short time but did not do well. He enlisted in the Army and served as a cook. After his service and completing his degree, he went to work for Hilton, Marriott. He later worked for Walt Disney and led over 40,000 cast members as the Executive Vice President of Operations for Walt Disney World in Orlando.


Lee talked about one of how important it is to find the truth as a leader. The larger your business gets, the harder it becomes. He stressed the importance of being present, talking to your team, and building trust. When he started at Disney, he held open sessions every week to share his vision and answered any questions they may have had.

Most people underestimate the impact you have on other people

Customer Service

Lee stressed how important customer service is to your business. At Disney, hiring was one of the most critical components to great customer service.

The product, everybody expects that to be good….Your competitors can have a good product too. The one thing you can have different than your competitors is fabulous service.


Lee is currently a mentor with Thrive15.com. Thrive15 is an online learning platform that helps people learn to start and grow a business. They currently have a free program for veterans called the 1-for-1 HandUp. With every new Thrive15 membership, they give away a free subscription to a U.S. Veteran or active-duty service member, and their spouse. Lee also runs a leadership, management and consulting company. He is the author of Creating Magic, The Customer Rules, and Time Management Magic.


You never know how things are going to turn out. Just one person you meet can change the direction of your life

People who are curious do well

You can hear the interview below or on iTunes and Stitcher Radio, and don’t forget to Subscribe to the weekly SITREP

Episode 76: What You Need To Know About Techstars Patriot Boot Camp With Director Sean Maday

Patriot Boot Camp

Background Sean Maday served for over 4 years in the United States Air Force. Sean was an entrepreneur while in college and continued while on Active Duty. After leaving the Air Force, Sean worked for Google as a Sales Engineer and Product … [Continue reading]