Have you worked, or considered working in the industry?

Wednesday, September 29, 2010 3:09 PM
Tekwardo's avatar

Edited to add: those non-disclosure terms *do* have force, though. I was a consultant on an IP case that recently settled. I'm barred for consulting "in the same area" for a specific list of competitors of the two litigants for two years after my final destruction of any confidential documents.

But wouldn't any lawyer be barred for that due to conflict of interest rules/laws/policies? Not that I'm disagreeing with you, but I would assume that that would be more enforcable than a standard worker that goes to a competing company without access to competing knowledge.

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Wednesday, September 29, 2010 4:17 PM

When I left Cedar Point (having worked full time) I didn't have to sign any non compete or non disclosure forms but that is likely because I would not have had any pertinent information worth knowing about.

Having worked for 5 summers at Geauga Lake and stint at Disney I thought I had the passion for the work. When I got hired full time at the Point I was thrilled. (I remember my supervisor sliding a folded note to me (those who know the film "The Firm" can relate) and I was ecstatic that I would be making $24,500. (This was in 1994.) For a young, single guy in Sandusky, Ohio that was a windfall.

Four years later I was making around $30,000. Still not awful for Sandusky but as a now married man hoping to start a family I wasn't convinced about my future. Now, it should be stated that my job was in the hotel side of the business and I had "grown up", if you will, in parks. I made some efforts to get out of the hotel job into another aspect of the company but those efforts didn't pan out. In large part I think I was stymied by the notion that the leaders of Cedar Fair knew they wanted to expand the resort side of the business and had some ideas as to who would be part of that. (And, to their credit, I think they did amazing things with the Breakers Expansions, Camper Village/Lighthouse Point, Castaway Bay, etc.)

My heart just wasn't in hotels...and certainly not for that pay and the ridiculous number of hours that had to be put in during the summer. Six day work weeks, getting home sometimes at 2am, being woke up in the middle of the night for one reason or another. Just not what I had in mind.

And, I will be honest, even by 1997/'98 I was seeing some decision making at the executive level that made me question whether or not I wanted to be a part of it long term. If I didn't get out after four years I could imagine waking up 15 years later and thinking..."if only."

But, 12 years later I still have a little fire burning in my belly for the industry. (It's what keeps me coiming to the Buzz websites.) I don't enjoy visiting amusement parks the same way others do. I was at Wet n Wild a few weeks ago and found myself critiquing the operation, watching their employees, brainstorming ideas for improvements instead of just riding the slides and enjoying time with my kids.

There are a number of good people still at Cedar Point who I worked with. The place is in their blood and I admire their commitment even when they are often faced with ridiculous adversity from above. It is people like them that are the real heroes of the amusement industry.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010 5:00 PM

But wouldn't any lawyer be barred for that due to conflict of interest rules/laws/policies?

Not necessarily---without checking the text of the protective orders, I vaguely recall that the lawyers have a different set of rules than do the outside experts. Also, the restrictions on me are still fairly targeted, and leave a lot of other ways I could potentially consult. Plus, it's not like I'm a full time consultant---I'm told that it's better if your "expert" actually spends time practicing "expertise", rather than just testifying about it. ;)

But, the restrictions are an order of the court, and I have signed an agreement to be bound by them, so I can't just ignore them.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010 5:23 PM
Break Trims's avatar

^There's almost no better way to discredit the opposing expert witness in litigation than to expose him/her as someone who makes a living off court testimony rather than in-field practice.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010 8:49 PM


Thursday, November 18, 2010 3:38 AM

Rick_UK said:
Part of me would love to work in the amusement park industry but people I know who do so, don't often speak highly about it (complaints are often regarding pay and long hours) - but I guess that's what you sign up for.

Also, the whole don't mix work with pleasure thing. If you're working a six day week, I wonder how much you'd want to take a trip to another park on the seventh.

Last summer I bartended at the TGI Friday's at Cedar Point. The restaurant was train wreck, but I made tons of money. I lived in the housing with a bunch of freaks and got to hang with tons of wacky foreigners-and it was the best summer of my life. I really did feel for my roommates who worked in the park because they were paid next to nothing and I was making $1,000+ each week. If you can, I'd say do it.

Thursday, November 18, 2010 4:01 AM
Rick_UK's avatar

Thanks Linktheleperfromwatts. I've actually done it now! I'm working at Dreamworld in Australia from about 6 weeks previous until the end of January before heading home to the UK.

I guess I am one of the 'wacky foreigners' out here. I don't regret doing it one little bit, despite the heat and the huge drop in salary from my IT manager's job in the UK. Glad I came! Certainly an experience.

Nothing to see here. Move along.

Thursday, November 18, 2010 8:51 AM
LostKause's avatar

Wow. I need to take up bartending and move to a place high in tourism!

Monday, November 22, 2010 12:33 PM
LuvRaptor's avatar

I worked at CP on Raptor for '00, 02, 03 and '09 Halloweekends. For me it wasnt the $ (I made more working 1 Sunday at my "real" job then I did for the entire weekend at CP) it was my love for the park, Raptor and the crews. After '03 I said I would never do it again but did it again in '09 cause I absolutely LOVED the crew!!

Your image of the park will immediately change once you work there. I could not believe how hard the kids at CP worked. The dorms are a freaking disgusting NIGHTMARE (I still cant get that smell out of my head) the hours are long and it is obvious by the way some guests treat you that have NO idea what the pay range REALLY is.
The friendships, the behind the scene perks (walking around a completely silent empty park, eating food real cheap in the employee caf, putting the coaster away for the night) are things that make everything else tolerable. I still have life long friends thanks to working at CP :)

Obviously it all cant be too terrible bad since I will be doing it again in Florida starting next month!! :)

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Monday, November 22, 2010 1:10 PM

Where are you going to work Jo?

And, your comments about the dorms are yet another example of Kinzel's short-sightedness. What could be one of the greatest advantages to Cedar Point recruiting is one of their greatest weaknesses. Housing and the employee "social" experience could really make it a place where teenagers across the midwest want to work. Instead, they have to recruit from all across the globe and count on the fact that a foreign student won't be able to turn back and head home when they see their living environment.

Friday, November 26, 2010 5:18 PM

If I was younger or was rich enough to be able to afford a summer with low pay and my own health insurance, I would love to work in a park for a season. I wished I lived closer to Holiday World and would have been able to work for them when I was younger.

Now, if I could find a job where I could work all year round and use my degree (broadcasting, shooting, editing videos, and other things) working full time and make as much as I do now, I would love to do it (plus the occasional operating rides).

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Friday, November 26, 2010 6:28 PM
LostKause's avatar

Put in your application at Disney. I'm sure they could use an extra film shooter, and ask them if you can work as a ride op in your spare time. lol

If I get this Teacher's Aide job that I'm looking at, I might decide to go to work at Camden Park for the Summers.


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