Glenn Beck and Mike Rowe on Wednesday sat down with young entrepreneurs from across the country for an "ask anything" hour in which they doled out life and career advice. And as a bonus at the end, Rowe wowed the crowd with his vocal skills, singing a few words of his favorite aria.
Among the individuals invited was 19-year-old "Dairy Queen Hero" Joey Prusak of Minnesota, who gave a blind man $20 out of his own pocket after the man had $20 stolen in his Dairy Queen. Another guest was graphic artist Dan McCall, who says the government is trying to silence his humorous political shirts featuring the logo of the NSA.
Beck even revealed what he says is the "secret to success" for 80 percent of people these days: show up, pay attention, and just do what you're supposed to do. If you do just 5 percent more than that, he said, you're almost guaranteed to end up with a corner office. And if you're willing to work around the clock to achieve your dreams, he said, you'll be amazed by how much you can accomplish.
When Prusak asked how he can get to the point where he owns his own business, the two had several pieces of advice for him. First, Rowe asked the young man what he can do to make his boss' life easier. He said that, as an employer, he knows that such employees become so valued that you'll do whatever it takes to keep them.
But second, rather than settling on the dream of simply owning a business, Beck said the young man should determine what exactly motivates him, or if he sees a problem that he knows he can fix.
That "problem" could be anything, he said, including creating a better Blizzard for Dairy Queen.
Beck and Rowe also discussed education in America, and how we all want a "formula." For decades, that formula has been: go to school, get your degree, and when you come out you will be offered a job with perks and benefits.
But Rowe said that while that path may work for some, we've been pushing it "at the expense of all the other educational opportunities that are out there." What we should be emphasizing instead of a costly four-year-education for everybody, he said, is the benefit of having a solid work ethic.
"We get the behavior we encourage, and we ought to be rewarding the behavior we need to see more of," he said simply.
Rowe said he recently spoke with the head of one of the biggest engineering firms in the world, and the two discussed how the company invested millions in workforce development in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. The company "trained people like they were on steroids for about twelve weeks" in basic skills on how to rebuild and various safety protocols. But when the time came to deploy, immediately the workforce shrank, and the program "collapsed under its own weight." When they spent more money determining the problem, the company found out that people stopped coming to work because it was too hot outside, and they didn't want to work in such conditions.
Rowe said rather than train everyone with tools they may not use, it's better to find the people who are willing to put in hard work, in rain or snow, and train them.
And while Rowe reiterated that he is no way against a four-year degree, so long as it doesn't drown you in debt, Beck was more skeptical. Though certain professions, like doctors, require specialized training, many do not, he said.
"Be very careful of the university system," Beck warned. "You need to have an education, but you can self-educate. You don't need to spend all that money. But also something else - be really careful because they train you and put you in a little box."
Watch the clips below for more from the unique show. The first clip highlights the ramifications of phasing out unpaid internships, and the second features Mike Rowe's remarkable singing voice.
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