Airline stewardesses were considered to be some of the most beautiful women in the world back in the 1960s. A job that once was a good stepping stone to modeling contracts, glamorous liasons and more, being an airline hostess was a major honor with great pay. Nowadays, it's turned into one of the roughest nightmares out there.
Not to be confused with a CEO or a startup owner, business executives have taken a huge hit in terms of public opinion after the major finance crashes. In fact, since the major market crash started in the mid-2000s, business executives regularly ranked among the top three least respected jobs.
Lower salaries, combined with a lot of shady lawyer stories involving frivolous lawsuits, made the profession of law take a serious hit. When a Time article says that even plumbers make a better living than many lawyers and attorneys, you know it's a sign that the prestige this career once had is waning.
Doctors have definitely been one of the groups that has been experiencing a huge shift in how people see them. Between the many malpractice suits people have seen, the major medical scandals that have taken place, and the massive amounts of student loan debt that has to be incurred to become a doctor, this is no longer a profession that many aspire to for reasons of prestige. Similarly, while being a doctor is noble, many doctors are citing a lack of respect from patients as being a reason they want to leave the profession.
College professors still do get a lot of respect, but the prestige that often came with the role usually involved high job security and high wages. This is no longer the case with many professors. In fact, many professors actually have to have a second job just to make ends meet. Job security has also fallen dramatically, with tenure options being more than halved in the past 20 years.
This is a job that can pay rather well, but since the Wolf of Wall Street came out, it's hard not to say that people started to view bankers, stockbrokers, and other finance folk as opportunistic people looking for their next dime. It's also hard to compete with electronic brokerages, which means that commissions are lower and so are salaries.
Being a travel agent was once an honor relegated to only the most worldly of people. Now, it's almost considered to be obsolete by many, primarily due to the surge of popularity of online travel booking sites. It's so bad, travel agents actually had to fight back about their image as being obsolete via press releases. It's really hard to get any worse than that.
Believe it or not, many groups no longer view journalists as prestigious. This was evidenced in the same study that had pointed out stockbrokers as people who no longer carried the same clout they once did. It may have something to do with the falling trust in mainstream news, but all in all, it's hard to tell where the hate comes from.
Unsurprisingly, actors and models have scored particularly low on job prestige ranking studies. Entertainers actually have some of the lowest scores on occupational prestige scales. It seems we don't have as much love for Hollywood as tabloids would have us think!
Maybe it's the fact that there are plenty of bad real estate agent stories floating on the net, or maybe it's just the nature of sales, but real estate agents recently took a major hit in terms of occupational prestige. According to the Harris poll, realtors lost out big time after the public focus became more interested in the do-gooders of the world.
Though we may rely on them for our food and flowers, farmers have become less respected throughout the years. We can't knock their knack for growing food, but the fact is that it's not exactly the most glamorous job out there.
Union leaders were once considered the heroes of the working class, but now, they're viewed as people who will bully entire industries for the sake of their members. Between the bad press and the loss of power of unions in the US, there's little surprise as to why union leaders often end up on lists detailing the least prestigious jobs in America.
One poll showed that accountants lost significant prestige since 1977. It's hard to tell why this is the case, since we kinda really need accountants. Maybe it's the whole backlash against Wall Street?
The many different sports scandals that have hit newspaper headlines in the past couple of years have seriously changed how the public views athletes. While they were once national heroes, the typical major athlete in football, basketball, or baseball is now viewed less than a real role model by many.
Models once were girls who had huge pull on Hollywood. They'd date the big shots, have fan girls, and basically become part of pop culture. While some may argue that models still have that kind of pull, it's hard to deny that modeling has become a lot more exclusive, and a lot less respected. With the average annual earnings of a model topping a not-so-awesome $19,000 per year, it's not half as cool as you think it'd be.