Krithika Radhakrishnan, Co-founder, and Director of Cosine Labs is an ardent upholder of the No Sir No Madam initiative. Cosine Labs is an IoT product company that has created a solution for elegant living. With intuitive interaction methods and intelligent learning algorithms, they are bringing the next-generation home automation and smart living products to the market.
Being a science graduate, Krithika started her career at Goldman Sachs. After a progressive growth, she became Vice President of the derivatives team at Goldman Sachs. After quitting her job at Goldman Sachs, Krithika started an art company, which provided logo designs and intricate arts to various companies. Later, Krithika joined Siddharth and Sriram to kick-start Cosine Labs.
She associates herself with No Sir No Madam culture. She acknowledges the culturally driven and transparent nature at Goldman Sachs. Krithika believes it made everyone approachable. Hence, it was easier to communicate with her seniors as Sir/Madam convention was not a mandate.
Therefore, at present, Krithika has actualized the practice of No Sir No Madam at Cosine Labs. She holds an opinion that honest relationships are built on mutual trust and respect and not necessarily based on salutations. These relationships also go the distance. Imagine what wonders that could do for business or otherwise. Krithika confesses this to be one of the reasons for easier and better communication with her team.
She discloses by implementing the first-name concept, everyone feels equal. Today business environment is highly competitive. Hence, it is important that people can communicate without any hindrance. It should be fundamental for employers to make themselves more approachable. Krithika believes No Sir No Madam initiative will certainly help in doing so.
The tradition of Sir/Madam has plagued the government sectors in India for ages. Addressing a government official with such prefixes is the only way of getting things completed. She questions this practice as it makes them feel superior. Krithika wishes for a change where bureaucrats can feel mutually respected without being addressed as Sir/Madam.
However, instead be addressed by their first name prefixed with Mr./Miss. Above and beyond this, she also believes that calling one Sir/Madam should be voluntary and not a mandate at a workplace. One should have the choice and flexibility to address someone as Sir/Madam should they feel the need to do so.
Sir/Madam restriction exploits the working-class section of any society. People who work as drivers, security guards, and laborers may feel a hindrance in growth. Krithika recalls an experience of requesting an individual not to call her as ‘Madam’. The person started referring her as ‘didi ’ since that person wanted to respect Krithika.
It is imbibed into lower-economic class people that they are inferior to others. It is essential to abolish these conceptions for us to grow as a society. We need to initiate this development from the grass root level.
Krithika advocates — children in school need to be taught about respecting everyone from a different socioeconomic background. She appends that parents need to inculcate this No Sir No Madam ideology within the young right from home itself. This will help when they go to colleges. Thereafter, they will confidently be able to show respect without using any salutation. This will assist students and fresh graduates to form better relations with everyone.
Therefore, Krithika firmly suggests that No Sir No madam ingenuity should be implemented in government schools. This would help to change the mindsets at the grassroots. She reckons No Sir No madam doctrine would impact more people, given the reach is far wider.
She finally concludes, “Addressing someone by his or her name, first or last as requested conveys due respect. Other means would be to prefix titles such as Mr. or Ms. Respect is usually earned through what we do, through our character, and the way we treat people.” As Wayne W. Dyer rightly said, “change the way you look at things and the things you look at change.”