Suresh Kumar: No Sir No Madam Drive can Help in Uprooting the Deeply Rooted Problem of Discrimination against Blue-collar workers
Suresh Kumar, a social worker for Anant Learning and Development Pvt Ltd, whose co-founder is Major Ajit Singh, (https://www.anantinnovation.com) is a fervent supporter of No Sir No Madam movement. Anant Learning and Development Pvt. Ltd. is a group focused on experimenting, innovating and trying to find a viable model for sustainable growth. They are trying to redefine the “social-pyramid”, as they believe the bottom-level has much more potential.
Suresh is an MBA in finance and marketing. He has spent his career working in the IT sector, before deciding to join Anant group.
Being a supporter of first-name culture, he and his team, has implemented a salutation ridden environment in their organization. He mentions, “To set equality at our workplace, we a follow a no-designation rule. Moreover, we do not have any designation of an employee printed on our business cards. We believe that all the employees are equal and there is no need for any hierarchical custom.
Additionally, he shares — Communicating on a first-name basis, lets everyone open up and express their views and ideas. Whereas, in a firm with “Sir/Madam” culture, most of the employees are scared to talk to their seniors. I remember, when I used to work in the IT sector, there were some peers from IITs and IIMs. A lot of us would hinder in calling them by their first-name, as we felt they were superior than us. Consequently, making it difficult for us to converse with them.
He adds, “However, I have noticed young people informing others to address them by their first-name. The trend is changing in private sector and hopefully, salutation edict will be completely eradicated from other organizations as well.”
Upon venturing on the public sector, Suresh remarks — A lot people address the government officials with a salutation just to avoid any hassle. Furthermore, if you address the bureaucrats by their name, they take it as an attack to their ego and unnecessarily complicate your work.
Ergo, it is vital that we abolish such traditions from government offices in order to prevent people feel suppressed by the officials.
Besides, private and public sector, salutation diktat has spread discrimination against the lower-economic people. We seem to be regressive as a society, than being progressive. Suresh opines, “Conversing with a blue-collar worker on a first-name basis is a small act that will go a long way in making him feel respected. Allowing them to follow No Sir no Madam initiative will enable them converse with their employers without any barrier. Moreover, when a bottom-tier employee feels recognized by his or her employer, he or she feels motivated and happy. Thus, subsequently it may improve their work-morale and work-efficiency.”
We, Indians, tend to criticize a foreign culture, if it does not help in boosting our ego. However, we are quick to embrace any change that makes us look superior. To fight discrimination and instill No Sir No Madam habit, Suresh suggests to instill it in schools. He states — School is the first place where a person learns about the titles “Sir” and “Madam”. Therefore, education institutions should welcome No Sir No Madam doctrine and teach it to the students. I know of schools abroad where teachers and students converse without any salutation. To my surprise, their communication is more transparent and welcoming to any student. As, students are the future leaders of our country, imbibing No Sir No Madam habit from their initial days will ensure that they do not adhere to any salutation dictum in the future.
He recommends to conduct seminars to inform everyone about No Sir No Madam movement. He voices “It is important that people are aware about this cordial drive that seeks to bring a positive change in our society.”
Overall, he concludes — it is not necessary to utilize salutation to display our respect towards someone. We should also be more respectful towards the lower-income group and work towards uplifting their status, to eradicate disparity from our society.