Gopi Suvanam, Founder of G-Square Solutions Pvt Ltd wholeheartedly supports No Sir No Madam movement in India.  G-Square Solutions provide plug-and-play solutions in the analytics process using machine learning.

Gopi, is an MBA from the esteemed Indian Institute of Ahmedabad (IIM-A).  He completed his graduation studies in computer science from Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (IIT-M).  After finishing his studies, he went to London and worked as a Vice-President at Deutsche Bank. 

However, he wanted to follow his entrepreneurial dream and established G-Square Solutions after returning to India.  Gopi has also been a visiting faculty at IIM-A.

His career made him experience the workplace culture abroad.  Gopi states “I never had to face the ‘Sir/Madam’ Culture until returning to India.  In the UK, ‘Sir’ typically is someone who is knighted by the Queen. 

However, in India when you address someone using a prefix ‘Sir’ or ‘Madam’, you are using it without any actual deep respect for that person.  Since, I had experienced the benefits of No Sir No Madam custom at the workplace, I try to instill the same in my office.”

He continues — Initially, the people that we had hired were previous colleagues, or through prior networks.  So there was no salutation culture as such.  Once we began to hire more people, the newer employees started using ‘Sir/Madam’ to address us.  It was difficult to change their habit.  So we had to take steps to correct this, including putting a ‘fine’ box.

“No Sir No Madam is a genial culture that helps in building better relation between employees and the senior.  It enables you to be friends rather than just colleagues”, adds Gopi. “Some age-old habits will take time to change.  However, you need to take initiative to alter that mentality.”

For work, he has to engage with government organizations as well. 

Gopi Suvanam remarks — the salutation mandate is much more prevalent in the government sector.  It is a colonial culture that people continue to follow blindly.

He believes, if you eradicate salutation compulsion from public sector office, it will make government services more approachable.  All across India, you see people being afraid to approach police and other officers.  No Sir No Madam movement can definitely assist in reducing this fear.

For years, we have observed discrimination based on person’s economic status.  Blue-collar workers work for longer hours than most of the people and still do not get the respect they deserve.  By the virtue of being an equal citizen, they are entitled to the same respect as everyone else.

To spread this cause further, Gopi suggests — interact with corporate sector where the change can come easily.  Then move to the government sector and educate them about No Sir No Madam idea’s benefits.

In the end, he quotes “Dignity of work is not dependent on what people call you or what you call people.  If you accept this and find value in it, then these prefixes and suffixes do not matter.  Thus, you can focus on things that matter.”

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