Adit Chouhan, Founder of CLICKS Technologies ardently supports No Sir No Madam. CLICKS is a boutique Digital Advertising Agency based in Pune that provides customized and resourceful digital marketing solutions to its clients from across the globe.
CLICKS specialize in website design, App design, SEO, SEM/ PPC, Social Media, lead generation, Graphic Design, content writing, and other services related to Digital Marketing Adit Chouhan is an Author, Entrepreneur, Digital Marketer, Trainer/Coach, and a Professional Anchor. Adit is an MBA in marketing. Before incorporating his firm, he has worked with a number of companies to providing digital marketing, consulting and training.
He has implemented No Sir No Madam culture in his firm and adheres to it strictly. They even instruct any new joinee to communicate with each other on a first-name basis only. Adit states” I believe Salutation-free breaks down any communication wall between two people of different hierarchy. It creates a comfort and space for ideas to flow without any hindrance.
For example, when we wear casual clothes, our body language is more relaxed as compared to being in formal clothes; in which we are more aware of our actions and words.”
Speaking about private sector in general, Adit opines many multi-national firms now practice first-name form of communication irrespective of the designation. He remarks, “I remember after completing my MBA, I joined a company in Mumbai, and we were informed about Sir/Madam-free culture in our induction. I thought this was a great work-life culture.
However, in our effort to establish an efficient workplace, we must not forget to respect our seniors. The liberty to address someone by their first-name should not be taken for granted. It’s easier for the west to follow first name culture since there is only ‘You’ in English to refer to other person. But, we have ‘Aap’, ‘Tum’, and ‘Tu’ in India.”
Hence, we should know that while we adopt the first name culture, we should not forget to maintain respect while using our local languages and not jump the gun making a senior uncomfortable.
Moreover, he addresses a persistent issue in private companies. Adit mentions that employees in senior designation never have a problem with No Sir No Madam policy. It is only the junior or lower-level staff that is hesitant to follow it. So top-level managers and executives need to introduce and follow No Sir No Madam ideology in order for it to be accepted by everyone.
Because in India, everyone is familiar with ego-massage, one has to give to a bureaucrat in order to have their work completed. Adit has seen this culture growing up and points out that government officers are reluctant to embrace any change. “Salutation diktat in government offices is a big hurdle in their functionality. Government employees take being addressed as “Sir/Madam” seriously as it is a form of ego satisfaction for them.
Indian government offices have been practicing salutation order since the British era. However, we need to question ourselves, if we still need to follow an archaic tradition, introduced to us by our rulers.
Equality is something that every citizen is entitled to irrespective of anything. Yet, we see the complete opposite of this in society. People from less-fortunate backgrounds are looked down upon and treated indifferently.
On this, Adit voices “allowing these people to communicate with you on a No Sir No Madam style can help them in having a sense of equality. The maids who come to our house address us by ‘didi’ or ‘bhaiya’ which is wonderful. However, the blue-collar workers are the ones who tend to follow a salutation edict. It will be delightful to see them refer to me as Mr. Chouhan instead of Sir.”
Adit adds, “You also have to understand why these people are so reluctant to addressing their employers by their first-names. Most of the blue-collar workers come from mid-to-small cities or never had appropriate education. So, effective education needs to be provided to them to increase their sense of individuality in them. “
To tackle this issue at corporate level, Adit suggests instilling No Sir No Madam ideology in post-graduate level. Students here come for skilled courses and will be trained before they enter the professional world. This would also ensure that they follow it themselves and allow people from a lower-economic background to be free of salutation mandate and its taboos.
Instilling this idea and changing the mindsets of billions is not easy. Therefore, Adit recommends reaching out to people/companies from small to medium cities and towns and educate them about No Sir No Madam culture and its benefits.
Adit winds up by quoting “I continue to share a wonderful relation with people from the past with whom I have communicated on a first-name basis. So, adopt No Sir No Madam culture in your life, although ensure that you do not forget the respect factor while shifting languages for communication.”