to Address Others
important part of manners is how to address people. This partly depends on whether the person addressed is a man,
woman, older, younger, boss or subordinate.
In today’s world, there is a move toward everyone being on a
first name basis. While this
may make things more “friendly,” it also tends to make people forget
who is the boss and people seem to lose respect for those who have earned
it through hard work or by the simple fact of their age.
friend of mine, who used to work for my father, referred to my father by
his title, “Dr. -------,” while at work, but away from work he
referred to him by his first name. Rare
are the individuals who can separate their personal relationship from
their professional relationship. Respect
begets respect, and studies show that regardless of who you are and where
you come from, everyone wants to be treated with respect.
addressing a subordinate or younger person outside of work it is best to
use their sir-name (last name), but it is okay to use their first name if
you are familiar with the individual.
When addressing a superior or older person always
use their sir-name. For peers
it is okay to use first names, but familiarity can break down the barriers
that support proper conduct in professional and personal life.
move to familiarity is especially confusing for children and young adults
who are not yet adept at distinguishing what is proper. In the past, children called their friends’ parents by Mr.
or Mrs. (Sir-name). It
has now become common practice for young people to use first names or at
the most formal, Mr. or Mrs. (First-name).
This practice creates a blurring of the lines of authority and a
loss of respect. Adults
wanting to be a child’s friend instead of their authority figure or role
model has wreaked havoc on the fabric of our society.
Rules of Introductions