Mansi Rana, Managing Director at EZ Ranking IT Services Pvt. Ltd. encourages the widespread movement of No Sir No Madam cause. Ez Rankings is a digital service provider that focuses on placing their client’s website on the growth curve. They channelize every possible effort in providing them a competitive edge over their other contemporaries in the market.
Mansi is a commerce graduate from the University of Lucknow, who started her career by working in Business Processing Output firms. Having gained over a decade of experience in digital marketing, she quit her job to lead the role as an entrepreneur.
Mansi came across No Sir No Madam practice when she began her career.
She explains — Addressing your seniors and peers on a first-name basis imbibes a sense of equality. Moreover, it also makes you feel comfortable when interacting with new people. I remember when I had to switch cities for my work. I would be hesitant in interacting with people. Subsequently, I used to refer to my trainer as ‘Sir’. To which he once replied, “yes, we all have ‘sir’ (Hindi for head), although you ought to call me as Vivek.”
Inspired by this, she ensured to instill first-name convention in her firm as well. Mansi states, “In digital domain, people come from various backgrounds. As a result, people are afraid to utilize first-name custom while communicating with others.
However, with my team, I always emphasize on informing them to address me by my first-name. First-name habit gives your employees the space and freedom to put their thoughts across. More importantly, it eradicates the fear from their mind.”
In India, everyone has had to deal with the public sector official at some point in his or her life. People have to adhere to the salutation diktat while communicating with these officials as there is no other option. In relation, Mansi mentions — I personally have been through situations where I have addressed bureaucrats as ‘Sir/Madam’ to get my work completed faster. Even though you do not want to, you end up referring them with a salutation just to avoid any hassle.
Likewise, many people from lower-economic social classes cling to ‘Sir/Madam’ culture as it is all they have been made to follow all his or her life. Mansi advocates that people in senior positions should understand the essence of No Sir No Madam decree and allow blue-collar workers to exercise it.
While dealing with workers, a top-to-bottom level approach is much-needed as laborers might be afraid of facing backlash upon addressing people by their first-name.
She shares — I always interact on a first-name basis with my house-help and drivers in my life. My house helper is older than me, so she refers to me by my first-name. Whereas, the drivers and the clerks in my office address me as ‘didi’.
“‘Sir/Madam’ exhibits respect” is just a mental block that people are holding onto. Respect can be shown in many other ways than only greeting someone with a salutation.
As a result, Mansi opines that No Sir No Madam culture should be taught to students in schools. This would enable them to understand the importance and benefits of the first-name edict. Additionally, it would teach them to communicate with people with confidence and display respect as well.
Mansi recommends spreading this cause, “Top level managers should encourage their juniors to follow it. Moreover, conduct seminars and make people aware of the redundancy of ‘Sir/Madam’ convention in today’s world.”
She winds up by iterating, “We ought to move away from ‘Sir/Madam’ culture. If a person truly respects you, it does not matter with what prefix or suffix, he addresses you with.