Dipankar Brihaspat: Salutations Lead to Differences and Distances between the Employees and the Employer

Dipankar Brihaspat, the business head of Konnect Peers (http://www.konnectpeers.com) is a stern follower of No Sir No Madam ideology.  Konnect Peers is an HR and recruitment service provider that caters to their client’s needs with deep understanding of each client’s requirements.  In addition, they also provide candidate training regarding interview counseling and resume editing.

Dipankar is a bachelor’s degree holder in business administration, specializing in banking and insurance sector.  Additionally, he also holds a diploma in technical communication.  Before instituting Konnect peers, he has worked for different peers, covering roles from a manager to a technical writer.  Along with being the founder of Konnect Peer, he is also the co-founder of Content Inc.

Being a firm believer of maintaining parity at work, he has instilled No Sir No Madam policy in his organization.  Dipankar conveys — I have always tried to create a friendly relation with my colleagues and employees, which is impossible by following salutation edict.  Addressing each other with “Sir/Madam” makes free exchange of ideas very difficult.  Moreover, there is no personal connection between your employees and you.  Therefore, this leads to differences between the employees and employer, indicating to job dissatisfaction.

He continues, “I like to interact with my employees and get to know them.  Therefore, I have even maintained no cabin policy in my office.  As, when you put a cabin and separate yourself from your team, it forms a notion, that your employees are different than you.  Furthermore, following a salutation-ridden culture has led to beneficial exchange of ideas for us in the past.  I remember, one of my employees came up to me with the idea of conducting a recruitment camp in Varanasi, which turned out to be profitable for us.  He would have not been able to approach me without any hindrance, had we been following a “Sir/Madam” tradition.

Furthermore, the idea of practicing a salutation-free culture at the workplace seems vague to a lot of people.  Dipankar shares one such incident.  He narrates — I contacted an organization for some tie-up work.  I initially conversed with the HR manager of that firm.  During our conversation, I requested her to connect me with her CEO and addressed him by his first-name.  The HR manager surprisingly questioned me about why I referred to her CEO without any salutation.  In addition, she informed that she could not connect me to her CEO as he does not correspond with her.   To converse with the CEO, the HR manager would first have to take an appointment with the secretary of CEO and then decide on a date.  Such rules complicate the chain of communication and cause a barrier for smooth functioning of the organization.

Besides private sector, salutation diktat is pre-dominantly followed in government officials.  Dipankar mentions, “I prefer not to work with bureaucrats because of the self-pampering mandates that the officials impose on you.  I once had to meet with an office-administrator, who was chewing tobacco in his office and lecturing me on professionalism.

The public employee questioned me about professionalism because he heard one my employee address me without a salutation.  To which I replied, I do not like being referred as “Sir” and have informed my employees regarding the same.  Subsequently, he asked me that, “then you would not address me with a salutation too”.  I boldly answered him saying I will because you like being greeted with a salutation all the time.”

Salutation practice in government offices has led to egoistic behavior of public sector employees.  It is high time we take a stand against such demeanor to fight for equal and lawful treatment, when we visit their offices.

Over the years, even people have become pompous and created this sense of superiority because of their fortunate upbringing.  Salutation culture, for long has plagued the blue-workers community.  People look down on them and hold prejudice against them.  As a result, the workers tend to think that they are inferior than the rest of the society.  Consequently, their kids grow up with the same notion and do not put any effort to improve their lives.

Therefore, to eradicate disparity and educate people to respect one other despite our differences, Dipankar suggests teaching No Sir No Madam doctrine in schools.  He remarks — education is the root cause, where we learn to utilize the word “Sir” and “Madam”.  I had gone abroad for a small course and found out that students there do not have to address their professors with a salutation.  We used to address our teachers with their names or by prefixes such as ‘Mr.’ or ‘Dr.”.

In the end, Dipankar conveys, “stop denoting respect with salutation.  If you truly want to respect someone, honor them for their work and their ethics.”

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