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How to address the VP of a company or department? I have been told that addressing by name was not polite.

Any clues?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Unless you knew him personally, it would certainly not be appropriate in the UK, and I imagine it would not be in the US either. Few men will object to being addressed by a stranger as 'Dear Sir'.

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i am sorry , i am little confused here . If i don't know him how should i address ? – brainHax Nov 19 '13 at 9:11
'Dear Sir' should be OK. If you know his surname, then 'Dear Mr [surname]'. 'Dear Vice-President' might also be possible, but you should perhaps check first with someone in the company. – Barrie England Nov 19 '13 at 9:14
thank you @barrie :) – brainHax Nov 19 '13 at 9:25
As a side note, @brainHax, do not put spaces before commas, periods, and question marks. That is not done in English. In fact, to my knowledge, for commas and periods it is not done in any language at all. – RegDwigнt Nov 19 '13 at 10:53
Thank you @RegDwigHt, noted. – brainHax Nov 19 '13 at 13:31

"Sir" means "a respectful or formal term of address used to a man". Omit it, and you also omit respect. You use "Dear [name]" if the person you are addressing to is close to you.

If you are writing a business-related letter, do not omit "Sir" even if the CEO is your husband!

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