Mike Rowe’s Idea on How to Navigate the ‘Divide’ Between Blue Collar and White Collar Jobs

by Chase Thomas
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Dirty Jobs star Mike Rowe finds that work is important. All kinds of jobs are important to spotlight, even jobs that most Americans may not see every day or appreciate every day. All across the country, folks are doing jobs that a lot of folks may take for granted.

This kind of sentiment can lead to a divide in culture. A divide can follow between the two types of jobs: blue-collar and white-collar. Fixing this divide is complicated, though.

Mike Rowe has some ideas, though. He said, “You start by acknowledging that blue collar skills are not the opposite of white collar skills. You start by making the case that they’re two sides of the same coin. Then you suggest that the further that you try to separate those two paths, the bigger the chasm you create in society and in the workforce.”

This is a good point from Rowe. There are no opposites, as Mike Rowe states here. They are both important and they both serve an extremely valuable role in our society. When you look at them through different lenses, that’s where the problems begin.

Rowe continues, “Again, that is the divide – like a black hole out in the universe somewhere that sucks all sorts of great opportunities into it. It’s the perceptions we have and stigmas and the stereotypes around whole categories of jobs that fundamentally keep parents from encouraging their kids to pursue their careers. Likewise, if kids look at those same opportunities with the inertia of their parents’ influence and the pressure of their peers, then it’s not long before you start to look at whole categories of work as vocational consolation prizes – or being subordinate.”

Mike Rowe And Perception

There are opportunities, as Mike Rowe suggests. You might be surprised what you might find and what you might like if you have an open mind about it. It starts with having an open mind about work in general. Without it, the divide is usually what follows.

Part of that is the pressure from important influences in our lives. There is a lot of pressure in American society to follow a certain kind of path, even if that path is not for everyone.

Mike Rowe concludes, “That’s why changing that basic perception requires a generational kind of public relations campaign focused specifically on that goal.” Rowe is right here in the perception change that is needed to change this perspective across the board. It starts at home, and you move on from there.

It just requires society at large to think about how they view work. To not close themselves off any type of work in particular. It is going to take time, though, as Rowe knows. There is no quick fix to solving this divide, and it will take everyone to change the larger perspective here.

Outsider.com