I was actually galvanized to write this article a few months back, after cringing at the annual site of the Yellow Pages shrinked wrapped and delivered in front of the entrance to my office. I kept looking around for the culprit, expecting to see a deliveryman navigating the business district with horse-and-buggy, and a crazed treehugger running behind him with red paint on their hands yelling "tree killer"!
It has been at least 8 to 10 years since I used a big yellow book to locate a service, but I get that many Baby Boomers still make good use of the relics. I don't hear my mother demanding to know the Yelp reviews before patronizing a new dry cleaners. I think Baby Boomers will eventually step away from the Yellow "door stoppers", if they haven't already, but what I find interesting is its successor – SEO – has already become outdated in its original form.
Readwrite recently posted an article outlining 10 Technology Skills No Longer In Demand. Number four on the list was SEO Specialist. That's right, the successor to the Yellow Pages has already come and gone. SEO work is expected to be devalued moving forward as smartphones, apps, real-time location information and social media recommendation diminishes the importance of search results.
The Yellow Pages is an easy target, but I bet it wasn't too long ago you proudly boasted about your knowledge of MS Office or Windows XP under "Skill Sets" on your resume. Yet, today, that is equivalent to boasting about your ability to answer the phone properly. And how long does it take the Gen Z kids to master an OS or application? Blindfolded, my four-year-old nephew can navigate his way around iOS, and the mastery of an app takes hours not months. His generation will have never known life without a computer. What technology skill sets will he boast about on his resume in 20 years?