“I need to make some copies to be ready for my class tomorrow morning. Do you know where I can make some copies?” Page asked, as she tugged down her tight purple top which barely covered her midriff.
“Office Depot,” her manager answered.
“Do you know the phone number?” Page demanded as she tagged another shirt.
“I’m not sure,” the manager began walking further away from the register area.
“I need to find out when they close, but I don’t want to run up my phone bill for the number,” Page pleaded, flicking her nose ring forward and backward.
“There’s a phonebook under the register, help yourself,” her manager responded shaking his head.
Page lifted the thick dusty book off the lower shelf. She plopped it on the countertop--the thump added an extra loud drum beat to the store’s contemporary rock music. She started pushing the pages forward and backward with great frustration.
The old yellow pages have little significance to a younger generation. I was recently in a clothing store around 7 PM when I overheard this conversation between a young college student and the store manager.
“How do I find Office Depot? What do I look up?” she asked. With these questions, she captured my full attention, and at the same time, lost the attention of her agitated manager who walked yet further away.
“Look up FedEx Kinko’s,” I suggested. “I think they’re open later than nine.”
“OK” she said, as she continued flipping pages randomly without any effort of finding any particular letter of the alphabet. She dropped her head back, adjusted her pony tail and rolled her eyes.
“It would take forever to find anything in here,” she pushed a few buttons on her cell phone and asked for FedEx Kinko’s. A few moments later, she announced, “I'm screwed! Kinko’s closes at nine.”
“Office Depot, OfficeMax and Staples all close at nine too,” I told her, hoping to save her some time and money in making the extra calls.
“Can I finish up here and leave early? I have to do my homework,” she begged without looking up, while at the same time responding to a text message on her phone.
I’m not sure how this story ended because I left. The rock music annoyed me and I was turned off by employees who were more concerned about clothing and classes than they were about their customers. Neither one said 'hello' or asked if I wanted help.
Although I didn’t purchase anything, I did leave with a free treasure. I learned something about the younger generation. Page and the older manager definitely weren’t on the same page! Page had very little patience for a thick heavy phonebook--to her it was nothing but inefficient. She grew up with the expectation of instant answers after typing a few letters or numbers into a cell phone or into an online phone directory.
Some people in older generations may be baffled by a text message written in foreign acronyms, LOL, while the younger generation is equally puzzled why anyone would value a thick book full of hard-to-find numbers that gets updated only once a year!
If the success of your business is in the hands of a younger generation and you'd like to be sure to accommodate their ideas and their needs, while maintaining overall employee satisfaction, contact Dr. Lorraine for a consultation. If you didn't know that LOL stands for laugh out loud, use a tool like AcronymSearch.com, or Slang, Chat and Pop Culture acronyms on AcronymFinder.com. Your answer will pop right up!