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A Guide to Your Career With the UN

If and when you land a job at the UN, relax and enjoy life, forget about those big ambitions of changing the world for better for indeed if you do you will be misplaced. It does not happen, not in the UN, unless of course someone lied to you long time ago, especially a western professor in the university that you went to through sponsorship by western governments, that the UN was formed to change the world and make it better. It has not, it does not, it was never created to, it may not, it cannot, it shall not.

Well then your job is the most important thing and your life and that of your family is number one priority, of course, do not forget workmates with whom you combine business with leisure, you know. After all, the UN cares so much about your well-being including specific locations where you should live in cities like Nairobi that are becoming prone to terrorism. Again you must be made to understand that a UN staff, especially senior, is a big target of terror. Why? And the UN is meant to help humanity? I do not know. Take good care of your job, avoid silly questions and wild thoughts such as how better to make the UN more effective in delivering its mandate.

Your job is the most important thing. Where would you be then if you vacate a lucrative job at the UN? Do you want to go out there to the jungle, lead a life without business access to airport lounges, diplomatic passports, tax-free shopping? You want to join the rest of humanity in waiting lines by protocol? You mean, you do not want to enjoy the pleasure of prime minister letting his/her people wait while he/she hushes you into his/her office? Come on. You must learn to get along with the mistakes, the unethical behavior, and the unprofessional performances all around you. Hunker down, keep a low profile unless safe to do otherwise, and never utter the word “problem” because there are no problems in the UN – you know that now – only challenges exist in the UN and you have been taught that challenges are actually very good. Unless and until you see a child dying of malnutrition how else do you learn to know if and how they die?

Use those challenges as lessons for future interventions especially for more resource allocation to address challenges that have become endemic. But that is what the UN exits for; to tackle challenge after challenge. Never mind if challenges are never overcome, do not worry if new challenges emerge, do not be bothered with instances of escalation of challenges. All those are just but learning points. Take as many photos as you can; write as many reports as you can, hold as many planning, strategic, consultative, etc meetings as you can. Issue briefs and let the people and the world know about the hard hitting challenges that you have to face daily and then do not forget to take long leaves and off days for paid holidays to unwind. It is very important for you, if you do not want to, the UN will force you to.

Never let anything harden inside you as you rise through the UN ranks. Do not bother about where you are leaving the rest. Focus on your career; develop yourself, rise up. Your status is the most important thing. You must train your mind to learn to look straight ahead. You must gather the courage and confidence to ignore things that could jeopardize your position and status. You must know the importance of employing people who will not threaten you; there is value in that too.  If possible have the mediocre, those who soon wise up to the rules of the game. Occasionally, you may allow yourself the luxury of an original thinker, especially when in spaces where people tend to think hard about issues that ail the world, but never indulge too much in good thinking. It is not good for your career, position, and standing.

As you rise through the ranks, it will become more and more clearer to you what the UN exits for and its greater plans. They are few, in fact, it is one: to maintain the status quo. It is only that all these years you were so damp, too slow to learn that it took you all this while to grasp such a simple and straightforward fact. Oh do not forget that there is no retirement age for bosses at the UN, the more you ‘freely’ serve humanity, the more experienced you become and the more the UN needs your many years of practical experience. Not many people want to give their lives for free to serve in the course for humanity. Remember, it is a hard decision to make, after all if you really wanted money and status and power; you know that you actually had options.



A Guide to Your Career With the UN A Guide to Your Career With the UN Reviewed by Ibrahim Magara on June 07, 2016 Rating: 5

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