“Nicknames” are very important for high performance and high values teams. They can be terms of endearment, morale makers and coping mechanisms. I would argue they are in fact a very insightful indicator as to the way an individual is viewed or accepted as a member of the team and team culture. The way the individual reacts and responds to finding out their nicknames, good or bad, is also an indicator of the individual’s professionalism.
I think using nicknames is unprofessional unless you know for sure, they have given you permission to call them that. I've always stayed with proper etiquette and rank. I have seen and heard, soldiers of lower rank than me, call First Sergeant Top...that soldier was probably working directly for First Sergeant.
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