Quotes And Leadership Lessons From Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers

A Reel Leadership Article

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It’s been 33 years since Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers the cartoon premiered. The cartoon series brought joy to millions of children worldwide as it aired. Sadly, the cartoon was canceled 30 years ago.

Now, 30 years later, Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers returns on Disney Plus. Chip (John Mulaney) and Dale (Andy Samberg) return in a mix of traditional animation, CGI, and live-action. They’re joined by characters such as Ellie (KiKi Layne), Sweet Pete (Will Arnett), Monterey Jack (Eric Bana), Zipper (Dennis Haysbert), Ugly Sonic (Tim Robinson), Captain Putty (J.K. Simmons), and others.

Still from Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers

The new Disney Plus exclusive movie brings back all the feels of the original Rescue Rangers TV series along with a contemporary twist. It’s great seeing characters that haven’t been used well in the recent past brought back to life.

If you’re a fan of the original, you’ll be a fan of the new Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers movie. If you’re unfamiliar, give it a watch. You’ll find something to like.

You’ll also find leadership lessons in Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers. The movie is filled with them. Read on to see many of the leadership lessons in Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers.

Quotes And Leadership Lessons From Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers

1. Young Dale:

Hello, potential new friends!

Young Dale had to start a new school mid-way through the third grade. If any of you remember what elementary school was like, it could be rough. Especially if you switched schools.

Dale had this experience. He had to switch schools, make friends, and more.

He entered his new reality with a positive attitude. He saw the school as a possibility for new friendships and adventures.

Do you enter your work week or the office with Dale’s same positive attitude? As leaders, our attitudes set the course for the people we lead.

If our attitudes are down in the dumps, your people will have negative attitudes. If you bring a positive attitude, it’s more likely for your people to have positive attitudes.

Bring the ‘tude, dude. But bring the positive attitude.

2. Brevity is king:

Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers ended with season three. At the end of “filming,” the crew threw a little party. Chip took this as the opportune time to give a toast.

He rambled. The toast went on and on. Finally, Gadget (Tress MacNeille) chimed in. She said, “and to everyone who loves a short toast.”

We think we have to give these grandiose speeches that go on and on and on. You see this with church pastors, Toastmasters, businessmen, and more.

The idea is that if you keep going, people will listen.

They won’t.

Eventually, people tune you out. They figure out you’re not adding any more value.

Use brevity. It is king.

3. Dale:

The biggest risk is taking no risk at all.

Dale repeated a line that Chip’s mom had said. The idea was that no risk is a big risk.

This was brought up after Chip said it was a risk for Dale to take on a new series titled Double-O Dale.

Chip thought this could spell doom for the Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers series. He had concerns for the rest of the cast as well. What would happen if the show was canceled?

Chip’s fears were valid. However, Dale also had to take risks. Without risk, he wouldn’t grow.

What risks are you holding back from taking? Remember what Chip’s mom said: The biggest risk is taking no risk at all.

Take the risk. If it fails, recover.

4. Great leaders inspire others:

Ellie, a cop, had seen Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers on television growing up. The little mice had inspired her to be something more than she thought she could be. Their television series was the reason Ellie became a cop.

More than becoming a cop, Ellie let Chip and Dale know they were the inspiration behind her work. She shared openly about how they helped her become what she is today.

Great leaders do more than lead people. Great leaders inspire people.

Make sure your work isn’t for naught. Make sure your work influences others and takes them to the next level.

5. Leading can be dirty:

Chip and Dale find a mission when Sweet Pete and his gang kidnap Monterey Jack. Sweet Pete is a washed-up adult Peter Pan. He is transforming older cartoons into bootlegged characters so he can get away with selling similar but different stories.

Chip and Dale track down Sweet Pete. They’re trapped and have to find a way out.

There is one way.

They escape to the private bathroom of Sweet Pete. There is a toilet. What do the duo do?

They flush themselves down the toilet to escape.

Talk about dirty!

You’ll never flush yourself down a toilet. This doesn’t mean leadership won’t be dirty.

You’ll have to help out when others don’t show up. You’ll have to do things you don’t want to do, like letting people go or having difficult conversations.

Leadership is dirty.

6. An idea doesn’t have to be original to be valuable:

Dale references episode 45 of Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers as Chip and Dale planned to sneak into Sweet Pete’s bathhouse. They needed to evade discovery as they infiltrated the bathhouse. The idea was to don costumes worn in the episode referenced.

Chip wondered aloud if Dale had any original ideas. He wondered why everything had to be repeated.

Yet, Dale’s idea worked. They were able to get into the bathhouse, recover Sweet Pete’s FitBit-like device, and find out where he had been.

Leaders can get caught up with the new, shiny ideas of leadership. We can become trapped by thinking every idea has to be unique.

They don’t.

Great ideas are timeless. They will work yesterday, today, and tomorrow. Stop looking for new. Start looking for what works.

7. Dale:

It’s my job.


No, it’s a choice.

Chip and Dale were tracking down Monty. Suddenly, Dale whips out his cellphone. He does an Instagram-like post promoting the upcoming Fan Con LA (a comic-con-like event) that he would be appearing at later in the day.

Chip chides Dale for this. Dale retorts that he’s only doing his job. Chip tells him there are more important things. Monty is missing, and Dale chooses to promote himself rather than find their friend.


This one hurts, fellas. We often prioritize our jobs, our careers rather than the people in our lives. We think the job will be the thing to care for us. Or that it is what is most important.

It is not. Your job is not the most important thing in your life.

Your family. Your friends. These are the important things. Get your priorities right.

8. Your people want to feel needed:

We discover Dale didn’t take on the new Double-O Dale series because he wanted to. Instead, Dale chose to take on the series because he wanted to be needed by Chip.

For so long, Dale needed Chip. Chip befriended him at the school. Chip helped make Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers popular. Everything was because of Chip.

Now, Dale had the opportunity to be needed. He took the opportunity.

Your people want to feel needed. Their need to feel needed is why so many of your people seek out new jobs. They don’t feel valued or needed in the organization anymore. Someone else comes along and shows them they are valued and needed.

Find ways to show your people they are needed. You can do simple things such as:

  • Notes of encouragement
  • Word of acknowledgment
  • Financial compensation
  • Gifts that are unique to the individual

Make sure you recognize your people. Acknowledging them will help them feel needed.

9. Cliches are cliches because they work:

Who was the secret bad guy in Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers? It was Captain Putty.

Why was he bad? Because it was cliched… and cliches work for a reason.

Much like leadership lesson 6, this follows a similar line of thought.

A lot of things work because they work. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel.

You only have to use what works.

10. Chip:

Friends are more important than business.

Chip had to remind Dale of what was really important. Dale had thought the business side of things was important. They are, no doubt.

Yet, there are things that are more important.

Friends are important. They will be around long after the business is gone. Long after your leadership position is gone.

Make sure you’re making friends. Nurture those relationships.

11. Leaders are often lonely:

Toward the end of Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers, we find out the truth. Chip was just as lonely as Dale.

He didn’t want to go to school the day he met Dale. He was scared and alone.

Chip didn’t stay that way, though. He broke through the fear, the loneliness. He found a way to make friends.

Leaders, I know it can be lonely leading others. Leading is a struggle. More so when you are alone.

Break the stigma of leaders not having friends. Find people you can trust and confide in. Get over the paranoid thoughts that people are out to use you.

Only when you get over that, can you break the leadership curse of loneliness.

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