Disney Decides To Let Workers Don Beards

Disneyland employees no longer must choose before rocking a goatee and receiving a paycheck. Disney’s strict theme park employee grooming code has always banned beards — it’s only allowed mustaches since 2000 — but the company is overturning the rule.

According to the AP, facial hair will be able to grow free on Disney employees starting Feb. 3.

That’s not the only way the House of Mouse is relaxing its grip on employee appearance. It’s also introducing casual Fridays for employees who don’t interact with customers. So, you know, if they want to, they can go ahead and wear a Hawaiian shirt and jeans.

Disney will allow park workers to have beards [AP via MSN Money]

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  1. lint42 says:

    FINALLY THE BEARDED MINORITY ARE NOT DISCRIMINATED AGAINST ANYMORE!

  2. Mr. Fix-It says: "Canadian Bacon is best bacon!" says:

    Brown… the beards of angry men…
    Black… the color of Eisner’s heart…

    • Fubish says: I don't know anything about it, but it seems to me... says:

      Robert Iger is the Disney CEO. Eisner left Disney 6-7 years ago.

      • and_another_thing says:

        . . . Never wants a passerby to pass him by

      • Mr. Fix-It says: "Canadian Bacon is best bacon!" says:

        But Eisner was in charge when this policy was put into practice, I’m certain.

        • Dude says:

          Disney has had a facial hair policy in effect since 1955, when Disneyland opened. Back then, Disney allowed no facial hair at all for park workers. A little over 10 years ago, Disney relaxed the policy to allow mustaches only (with the caveat they be fully-grown during a vacation or before hiring, etc.).

          The beard policy is a furthering of that recent policy and also has the must be fully-grown caveat.

          The original policy was created under Walt Disney. The second policy was created under Michael Eisner. And the third policy is being created under Bob Iger.

        • wheeitsme says:

          I’m pretty sure that Disney was in charge when it was put in practice.

          • The Lone Gunman says:

            He was, and this particular policy was one of those Great American Corporate practices of “Do As We Say–Not As We Do”.

            It always was worth a laugh when people with facial hair were told it wasn’t appropriate for the theme park(s), all while Walt was on their TV sets every week in glorious color rockin’ HIS moustache!

            • Dude says:

              Walt’s mustache was okay because he was grandfathered in. Anyone that had a mustache prior to the implementation of that rule was allowed to keep it.

              Additionally, that policy only applied to theme park employees. Walt Disney didn’t work for Disneyland, he was the CEO/President of Walt Disney Productions

              • catastrophegirl chooses not to fly says:

                yeah, i’ve met plenty of disney imagineers [the idea people] and the blue hair streaks, facial hair, beads and wire woven into their hair, facial piercings … it’s welcomed in their department

    • jimigsu says:

      That was an awesome reference to Les Mis. Just singing that with my wife.

      • Meagan_R says:

        So there’s a man out there who not only knows Les Mis but sings it, is straight…and is married. That’s so my luck.

  3. StarKillerX says:

    I understand some of the reasons for dress codes, but for those who don’t interact with the customers, the public of management I think anything beyond a simply “don’t look homelss or like a crackhead” is going overboard.

    • Rainicorn with baby bats says:

      The employers just argue that if ANYONE sees you, you should be dressed appropriately because you represent the company at all times when on the clock.
      I’m glad to see that beards are allowed, though. If my husband couldn’t keep his beard at his job, people would think he was a sixteen year old.

      • seth_lerman says:

        As well as the ever popular “keeping it fair”. The “seen” people who must adhere to a dress code often cry foul when the unseen are allowed to wear whatever. I do IT work. Jeans and a t-shirt used to be the norm for IT folks working at the data center location (about 15 miles from HQ). The folks working at HQ had to wear business casual and thought it wasn’t fair. So now even working in the data center from that point forward we too had to wear business casual.

        • Sparkstalker says:

          Too bad those in your corporate HQ didn’t realize that get to crawl around under people’s desks (and all the foodbits), hence a perfectly good reason to wear jeans.

          • Doubting thomas says:

            As an IT worker who has spent a fair amount of time not only crawling under desks, but also running cables through walls and ceilings I have to say that jeans don’t have any real advantages over a pair of khakis. Both are available in the same price range, both can be tossed in the washing machine. Sure there are some days when I would prefer to wear my jeans, but in all honesty if I were in charge i would stick with the business casual dress code. Still allows comfort and a degree of self expression and prevents the office from looking like a dorm or a homeless shelter.

        • Fubish says: I don't know anything about it, but it seems to me... says:

          A corporation is not a democracy.

        • Mr Grey says:

          Business casual is not that bad – I used to work at a Big 10 University and it was as long as i didn’t look homeless. Then I got a job with a full government agency and they let us rock a polo and khakis – its not that bad.

  4. RipCanO'Flarp. says:

    Beards are hip- Disney is hip-overturned rule

  5. FreeMarketFan says:

    You represent the company – so you better look presentable.

    I don’t want a park full of hobos

  6. rmorin says:

    I love how they made the decision, but didn’t enact it immediately. What lead time is needed to say “beard’s are okay now”?

    • Rachacha says:

      Disney is a huge multinational company, and sometimes even the simplest changes take time to implement. You need to change corporate manuals and distribute them to employees and possibly develop literature to visually show what is acceptable and what is not. By making the announcement with a delayed implementation date they can openly modify these procedures and manuals and avoid rumor among their workforce.

      • rmorin says:

        Which would make sense if the employees had to perform an additional action or otherwise alter their behavior. Instead, they don’t have to do anything to comply with these new rules because they are simply being granted greater liberties. Hence you should not need a lead time. Additionally this policy is only for their theme parks in California and Florida, nothing to do with their corporate wide policies.

        You really think it’s fair if dude shows up tomorrow with a beard is he going to be sent home/written up/fired? No. There is no need for lead time if this decision has been made.

        • Conformist138 says:

          But exactly what kind of beards are allowed? Some written or visual bits may be added to manuals. As the previous poster stated, this takes time to put together. In the meantime, they want employees to know what is coming (take power from the rumor mill) while avoiding a bunch of dudes coming to work next week looking full on caveman and expecting Disney to be cool with it.

        • Rachacha says:

          So let’s assume that the provision was allowed immediately. Bob Beard shows up for work the next day with the start of a new beard growth on his face, chin and neck. His supervisor who has been out on vacation has not seen the guidelines and sends him home for violating the no facial hair policy or not abiding by the new unwritten policy which by his understanding does not allow hair on the lower chin and neck area.

          The employees have gone without facial hair for years, what is another 2 weeks so that management can prepare and publish the appropriate guidelines so there is no confusion over what is allowed.

          • rmorin says:

            In your example that is an extremely poorly run business, which disney is not. People coming back from vacation should be told any relevant changes when they are gone. Even if they don’t when “Bob” is talked to by his supervisor, Bob can say “yeah they changed it when you were gone”. You are acting like disney is some rag-tag operation.

      • BuriedCaesar says:

        Wonder how the policy will be stated for those who are in the “shadow” stages…but aren’t quite there yet?

    • The Lone Gunman says:

      Well, let’s see…Disneyland opened in July of 1955, and they only approved moustaches on the employess in 2000.

      So, if we use that as the guideline….

  7. MikeTastic says:

    I have nothing to add to this discussion other than the fact that I always enjoy a good “Office Space” reference. Now I have to go. I have a meeting with the Bobs.

  8. Lyn Torden says:

    Finally, the Amish can work for Disney.

  9. somedaysomehow says:

    Before =/= between.

  10. snazz says:

    “Don Beards” would be a good porn star name

  11. El_Fez says:

    Huzzah! Disney was always so gay-friendly, and yet I could never bring my Beard to the park!

  12. Sian says:

    ಠ_ಠ

  13. Astrid says:

    The catch is you have to have a full blown beard when you show up at work, you can’t just decide to grow one and be all stubbly and patchy for 2 weeks. It’s the same with their mustache policy.

  14. AllanG54 says:

    Well, the mustache thing had to go first because there are many women who can grow them as good as men. The beards are a different story so that took longer.

  15. Peacock (Now In Extra Crispy) says:

    Do the beards/facial hair allowed regulations extend to women, too, or only to men?