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United Nations Leadership Dialogue 2014


Welcome to the resource page for the 2014 United Nations Leadership Dialogue. Between ‎now and 31 December 2014, all managers in the Secretariat are asked to host a one-hour ‎dialogue session with their direct reports on the topic, “Treating Each Other with Respect and Tolerance.” This discussion is designed to explore how the language in the Preamble to the Charter of the United Nations, that we will “practice tolerance and live together in peace with one another as good neighbours,” applies to us as staff member of the United Nations.‎

Each head of department/head of mission should lead the first Leadership Dialogue ‎session for his or her direct reports. Following that initial session, those direct reports ‎will schedule and lead the next sessions. The dialogues should occur in this “cascading” ‎fashion, until all managers have engaged their staff in a Leadership Dialogue. After 31 December 2014, all heads of department will be asked to confirm to the Ethics Office ‎that their managers have all completed their Leadership Dialogue sessions.

All materials needed for the Leadership Dialogue are provided via the link box above. Each Executive Office has been given a hard copy of the Leader’s Guide as well. The Leader’s Guide is self-explanatory; just open up the Guide and nearly everything you need (instructions and materials) will be there.

The materials you need are available on this page. To open or download the document(s), click on the link(s) provided. If you cannot download the materials, or if you have reviewed the materials and still have questions, please contact the Ethics Office directly. The Leader’s Guide contains a feedback form for you to complete and return to the Ethics Office. We welcome your comments and suggestions.

The most important thing is that you enjoy the session. Last year, more than 28,000 staff members around the world participated in a Leadership Dialogue. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive. We are confident you will have a similar experience this time.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q.‎ Why should I do this programme?

A. All managers in the Secretariat are asked to host a one-hour session with their direct reports on this year’s topic, “Treating each other with respect and tolerance”.  All heads of department will be asked to confirm to the Ethics Office that their managers have all completed their Leadership Dialogue sessions.  More importantly, however, we all have a responsibility to create a harmonious work environment for all staff by treating each other with respect and tolerance, and this programme will help us meet that responsibility.

Q.‎ Why did the Ethics Office choose as a topic, “treating each other with respect and tolerance”?

A. We chose this topic based on last year’s Leadership Dialogue feedback and overwhelming interest in how to create a working environment filled with respect, tolerance, fairness, and courtesy.

Q.‎ How are respect and tolerance related to ethics?

A. Ethics is about doing the right things for the right reasons. Demonstrating respect and tolerance for our colleagues is one of the main aspects of “doing the right thing.” The Leadership Dialogue programme explores how challenging it can be to show respect and act with tolerance in our diverse environment, and how we might overcome those challenges.

Q.‎ I am not a great trainer or public speaker. Do I have to do this program?‎

A.‎ Don’t worry. The Leader’s Guide was designed with you in mind. Just follow the ‎programme that has been provided and you will find that it is relatively easy to lead ‎your session. The most important thing you can do, besides being prepared, is to ‎be honest, open, and authentic with your team during this discussion.‎

Q. What if I cannot answer all of the questions raised during the session?‎

A. The Leader’s Guide provides summary points that should address most questions ‎that may be raised. However, it is entirely possible that your staff will ask questions ‎or raise issues not previously considered. This is a wonderful opportunity for the ‎group to consider the issue and reach its own answers. For matters you continue to ‎struggle with, document the question and consult with the Ethics Office. After your ‎consultation, you can go back to your staff and share helpful information.‎

Q. I am ready to conduct my session, but my manager has not yet done her ‎session with our team. Can I go ahead with my own session?‎

A. The program is designed in a “management cascade” style, which anticipates that ‎you will lead your session once your manager has conducted her session with you. ‎However, you may go ahead with your session if you are ready. ‎

Q. Can I ask my Executive Office, or another manager, to do these sessions ‎instead of me?‎

A. No. The purpose of the dialogue session is to allow you and your staff to engage in ‎a direct discussion with each other about this important issue. Having someone other ‎than the manager lead the discussion does not achieve the purpose of the program. ‎But don’t worry – the Leader’s Guide was designed to make facilitating the ‎discussion relatively easy.‎

Q. How can I learn more about international civil service and what it means for ‎staff?‎

A. Feel free to download and view additional information from the Ethics Office website. ‎In particular, you are encouraged to download our new ethics guide, "Putting Ethics to ‎Work: A Guide for UN Staff(pdf icon), which is also available in French(pdf icon), and The Roadmap: A Staff Member’s Guide to Finding ‎the Right Place (pdf icon)‎ on the Ethics Advice and Guidance page.

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