How To Be Like Walt Book Summary By Pat Williams

*This post contains affiliate links, and we may earn an affiliate commission without it ever affecting the price you pay.

In How to Be Like Walt (2004), readers are given the chance to take a deeper look into the life of one of the most iconic artists ever.

This book dives into the amazing accomplishments and career of Walt Disney, exploring what made him so successful and sharing his philosophies and traits that we might all strive towards.

From an early age, he was forging his own path and creating a legacy that others could only dream of following in his footsteps.

Whether you're looking to gain insight into the success behind this incredible man, or just trying to take on some characteristics from one of the greats, this is a must-read for any aspiring artist.

How To Be Like Walt Book

Book Name: How To Be Like Walt (Capturing the Disney Magic Every Day of Your Life)

Author(s): Pat Williams

Rating: 4.4/5

Reading Time: 18 Minutes

Categories: Creativity

Author Bio

Pat Williams is an incredibly accomplished individual.

He's a celebrated basketball manager and current Vice President of the Orlando Magic.

He has also made his mark as a motivational speaker, having presented talks to prominent companies such as Coca-Cola, Cisco and Honeywell.

On top of all that, Pat is an accomplished author – he has written more than 100 titles over the course of his career.

But among them stands out one title in particular – How To Be Like Walt.

This book reflects the deep admiration Pat has for Walt Disney and presents a collection of anecdotes and lessons about how to emulate his success in life.

The Story Of Walt Disney: How Challenges Led To Dreams Come True

Walt Disney

The story behind the Magic Kingdom goes all the way back to its founder, Walt Disney.

He was a man with boundless creativity and resilience, two key ingredients that allowed him to turn his dream into reality.

In the sections of How To Be Like Walt by Curt Anderson, you’ll get deeper insight into Walt Disney’s process for bringing his creative vision to life.

You’ll learn about his philosophy on creativity, how getting stopped by the police inspired him and what really went into the birth of Mickey Mouse!

From initial inspirations to marketing strategies and financial considerations, Walt had no shortage of challenges on his path to building one of the most iconic entertainment empires known around the world today.

With How To Be Like Walt by Curt Anderson, readers can get a better understanding of what it took for this incredible journey from drawing board concept to attraction-laden park – the Magic Kingdom.

The Story Of Walt Disney: From Early Struggles To Becoming An International Icon

As a young boy, Walt Disney was no stranger to hard work.

He and his brother Roy had to help their father in his job managing one of the distribution points for the Kansas City Star, despite receiving no pay.

Each morning, regardless of rain or snow, they would arise at 3:30 am to deliver papers before school, and then again afterwards with preparations for the next day’s delivery.

Despite these formative experiences remaining with him throughout life, Disney still found the time and energy to show off his showman skills in school.

As an example, on Abraham Lincoln’s birthday he donned a costume from a costume shop complete with a stovepipe hat, scarf and beard to recite one of Lincoln’s famous speeches -the Gettysburg address -to an undoubtedly amazed class.

This performance earned him recognition from Rhe entire school which serves as evidence of Walt Disney’s strength under extreme pressures not just during his adult life, but even stretching back into early childhood days

Walt Disney: From Life Experiences To Legendary Cartoons

For Walt Disney, creativity was his greatest strength and he was always looking to capture fresh ideas in the people and world around him.

He believed that creativity is something that can be mastered by anyone, not just a special talent reserved for the privileged few.

These tactics often led to unexpected results, such as the idea of showing Cinderella’s reflection in soap bubbles while singing “Oh Sing Sweet Nightingale,” which became a memorable scene in his iconic movie.

In addition, Disney wasn’t afraid of using his own life experiences as source material for great stories.

One example is when he wrote down all the details of a traffic stop one day and turned it into a Mickey cartoon called “Traffic Troubles” in 1931.

He saw potential in even everyday encounters, and encouraged himself and others to make the most out of these moments instead of letting them pass by without extracting any wisdom from them.

This shows how Walt Disney helped shape our understanding of creativity – it was both something you could pursue and something that could be found everywhere around you, if you knew where to look.

Walt Disney Was Willing To Take Big Risks For Big Rewards: How His Commitment Resulted In The Success Of Snow White

Success Of Snow White

Walt Disney was never one to play it safe.

Even as his successes multiplied, he was always looking for the next mountain to climb, taking risks and striving to make his dreams a reality at every turn.

He boldly went all in with the production of Snow White, investing unprecedented amounts of time and money – despite objections from his brother Roy – and it paid off in spades, earning $8.5 million during its initial release.

The investments Walt made in the studio also proved worthwhile.

He brought in art instructors from Chouinard Art Institute and even famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright, ensuring that the animators had access to the best talent available.

The bank’s confidence in him paid off yet again as Snow White became one of the most popular movies of its time.

Simply put: Walt Disney never stopped taking risks, and more often than not those risks were rewarded.

Despite all odds being against him he persevered and managed to create a masterpiece that has stood the test of time and inspired people around the world over 70 years later!

Despite His Tremendous Success In 1938, Walt Disney’S Life Was Not Immune To Tragedy And Struggles

By 1938, Walt Disney had experienced tremendous success.

His classic film Snow White was a blockbuster hit and Disney even appeared on the cover of Time magazine.

With acclaim from audiences and critics alike, he had built up an impressive team of over a thousand artists and technicians and was excited for his next project: Pinocchio.

However, this success did not make him immune to tragedy and struggles.

In November of 1938, Walt’s mother Flora died from a gas stove leak — something that Walt would never speak about again.

Then in 1940, WWII began impacting the European film markets for Disney’s movie Pinocchio, leaving it with only a fraction of its potential audience and dooming it to financial failure.

Despite the negativity surrounding this monumental loss, Walt carried on diligently with his work.

Walt Disney Was Ahead Of The Curve: His “To Plus” Method Of Perfecting Projects Revolutionized The Animation Industry

Walt Disney was a master of innovation, and he never let finances interfere with improving the quality of his projects.

He was passionate about “plussing” them — finding ways to make them better and more effective.

This meant bringing live animals into the studio for Bambi and hiring Tyrus Wong to add Asian aesthetics to light and shadow background scenes.

He was also ahead of the competition in terms of innovation, such as being the first animator to add color to Silly Symphonies and inventing stereophonic sound for Fantasia.

Going above and beyond, Walt wasn’t afraid to pay extra for top-notch talent like conductor Leopold Stokowski or invest in studio spaces with ideal acoustics.

Despite Roy’s concern about money, Walt knew that making small investments like these would result in major dividends down the line – and he was right!

Never Give Up On Your Dreams: How Walt Disney Brought Disneyland To Life

Your Dreams

When it comes to Walt Disney, his ideas were paramount.

He was unfazed by the opposition of those who doubted his vision and he refused to give up on his dreams no matter what.

When it came to Disneyland, there were plenty of naysayers who questioned its potential success, as well as his brother who deemed it pure folly.

Despite this, Disney continued to remain stubbornly devoted to his idea and saved money and even put up his vacation home for sale in an effort to gather the funds for the project.

He eventually discovered that a television deal could provide the necessary financial resources and attempted to secure a partnership with major networks, only for them all to turn him down.

Undeterred, Walt went back to the drawing board and raised additional money from investments of his own employees and also got help from his brother financially.

With designs for a riverboat, elevated train station and castle included in the plan, he managed to impress ABC enough for them to agree in providing $500 000 as well as securing more loans – worth $4.5 million – thus enabling the construction of Disneyland just like he had always envisioned it.

It goes without saying that Walt’s ideas meant much more than making easy money

How Walt Disney Tapped Into The Power Of Collaboration For Creative Success

Walt Disney was always keen to explore new ideas and collaborate with others.

This is evident in his approach when building the Pirates of Caribbean section of Disneyland; instead of having a homogeneous creative process, he humbly sought advice from one of the builders who had local knowledge and insight.

He also implemented the worker’s great suggestion right away – adding electric fireflies that would buzz above the swamps of Disneyland.

Disney also took an innovative approach to collaborating with his colleagues on storyboards.

After observing Webb Smith pinning up a series of drawings for a cartoon onto big pinboards mounted on office walls, Disney quickly embraced this method, allowing any Disney employee to add their ideas for characters and plot twists too!

Clearly Walt Disney was forever open to other people’s ideas and always found creative ways to foster collaboration among his employees.

Walt Disney Was A Passionate Supporter Of Young Talent, Investing In Arts Education And Mentoring Future Filmmakers

Walt Disney

Walt Disney was passionate about leaving behind a lasting legacy and helping to secure the future of the generations that were to come.

This commitment is clearly demonstrated in his decision to build the California Institute of the Arts, a university for visual and performing arts, and merge two other institutions, Chouinard Art Institute and Los Angeles Music Conservatory, into this grand endeavour.

He also went out of his way to look for young talent worth encouraging as can be seen with Ken Wales who Walt brought to the studios and mentored in every aspect of filmmaking with great focus on story writing and music composition before he financed Ken’s studies at University of Southern California.

It’s clear how committed Walt Disney was to supporting future generations and mentoring young talent.

Wrap Up

The final summary of How To Be Like Walt is that Disney was an innovator and mentor, always embracing change in ways that improved the popular culture landscape.

He introduced talking cartoons to the world with Mickey Mouse and also created an iconic amusement park and arts institute that will benefit the world for years to come.

If we want to be like Walt, then we must learn to be open to adopting new ideas.

Whether it’s a technology or idea, don’t shy away from it!

Embracing change can lead to incredible outcomes, just like how Disney revolutionized the industry with his addition of sound in animation.

Arturo Miller

Hi, I am Arturo Miller, the Chief Editor of this blog. I'm a passionate reader, learner and blogger. Motivated by the desire to help others reach their fullest potential, I draw from my own experiences and insights to curate blogs.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.