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Working for the United Nations: Helpful Resources

Working with the United Nations is a dream of many who hope to dive headfirst into their dream of changing the world. At the United Nations, you are presented with ample, diverse and deeply rewarding opportunities to make meaningful changes around the globe. Those who find themselves driven to make a difference and put the needs of humanity above their own will do their best at the UN: those who are honest, impartial and fair when it comes to dealing with realities of the work; those who are flexible and creative and responsive to the needs and challenges that cultures and peoples all around the world are facing. You can learn more about the United Nations in a free online course.

Within the United Nations, organizers and employees operate under three basic principles. The first is integrity, which means behaving in an impartial, selfless and giving manner all of the time, no matter who is looking. By working at the United Nations, this will mean embodying the values that the organization holds dear in your everyday work and behaviors, no matter where you find yourself at any given time. Integrity is the foundation of the professionalism that the UN requires, meaning that one is conscientious, dedicated, and efficient in terms of getting results and hitting deadlines.

Regardless of the situation, it also means commitment to presenting yourself in the best possible way and demonstrating pride in the work you do. Because of the nature of the work, the final principle, respect for diversity, is imperative. The diversity of those employed or otherwise working for or with the United Nations is crucial to the functionality and efficiency of the organization. Respecting and learning from each other’s unique mindsets and cultures make it simpler to find solutions to the challenges faced every day.

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Alongside a commitment to the values of the United Nations, in order to obtain a position with the United Nations, there are some attributes, skills and natural behaviors that you’ll need to walk in the door with. Perhaps among the most important is teamwork, as it is an essential part of any job at the UN—working hand in hand toward a common goal while working toward finding solutions. Creativity is also certainly valued as the organization is always seeking out new ways to help make change.

Because the clients and communities that are served come before the needs of the organization, client orientation is crucial. Having productive, trustworthy and stable relationships with those you work with to find solutions to what they need is at the backbone of the organization. Communication is key, and being able to present ideals verbally and written in one of the official UN languages is paramount. The ability to plan, organize and learn continuously are invaluable, as this type of work is ever changing. Identifying what is a present priority and what can be shifted and adjusted is a skill that helps keep the changes moving through the company and the world in the most efficient manner.

If you innate skills and qualifications match your drive to change the state of the human condition for the better, consider work with the United Nations. New positions in the different programs offered are constantly available to let you find the one that best suits your goals. Have a look at the links below to get a better understanding how you can get involved in the UN.

Official UN Careers Website
A Guide to a Career with the United Nations
Career Guide for UNFPA Staff Members
Applicant Guide
How to get started with inspira
The Applicant’s Manual
The Recruiter’s Manual
Hiring Manager’s Manual
UNICEF Competency Definitions
International UN Volunteer Handbook Conditions of Service