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UK Soaps ‘deter teenagers from factory work’


Guardian Unlimited Money | Work |

So this is a problem in the UK? The U.S. has enough factors deterring kids from engineering and factory careers without TV shows making factory life look “boring, dirty and smelly”.

“A survey of teenagers by Newi found 96% of girls had not considered a manufacturing career, but 61% of boys had.”

I've always joked that manufacturing needs a TV drama, probably starring Heather Locklear and/or David Caruso, to make it seem exciting, but fat chance. TV loves shows about lawyers, doctors, and cops…. that's about it. Maybe somebody could be real creative and weave a show around a factory, even if it wasn't “CSI: Engineering” type stories. The show “The Office” on NBC is set in a paper distribution company, but that's about as close to a factory as we get on TV.

I guess the shows in the UK really show factory life as it is, in many plants.

Soap opera factories are full of “working-class people doing repetitive badly-paid work at the mercy of an autocratic sexist boss”, according to a report published by the North East Wales Institute of Higher Education (Newi).

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Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. His most recent book is the anthology Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also the VP of Improvement & Innovation Services for the technology company KaiNexus. He is currently writing his next book, tentatively titled Measures of Success.

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