Dear Kind and Honorable Listener, or is that Mr. Listener, Ms. Listener? It can often be confusing ...
Dear Kind and Honorable Reader, or is that Mr. Reader, Ms. Reader? It can often be confusing figuring out exactly how to address someone, be it in writing or personal interactions. Is it better to always be more formal, or will that sometimes give the impression of distance and lack of warmth? Especially in the workplace, there is a great deal of movement to less formal interactions. So here are a few tips to help with addressing other people.
How Should You Address People?
If you are introduced to the parents of a friend or spouse, you should address them more formally at first. Use the appropriate title (Mrs., Dr., Mr. or Ms.) and their last name until you are invited to do otherwise. You should do the same when meeting someone who is significantly older than you.
How Should You Address People at Work?
In the workplace, there are two schools of thought. Start by addressing all by their honorific, to demonstrate your formality and how seriously you take the work environment. Or, start with the casual approach of addressing all by their first name, to demonstrate your friendly and collegial attitude.