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YOUNDP In Brief > Your First Week

Your First Week


Welcome! You must feel very excited to be at the UN on the UNDP team. We're excited to have you as a colleague.


Following are some tips to help you acquire the big picture knowledge you need to become an effective organizational member at UNDP. Please note that these tips are general and largely agency-specific (as opposed to role- or duty station-specific). In addition to these actions, you will of course need to take steps to understand your role and your duty station.

By the end of your first week at UNDP, consider accomplishing the following:


Seek Information

  1. Meet with your Supervisor to 1) understand his/her leadership vision and brand (i.e., what s/he stands for), 2) share your aspirations and your vision for your work, 3) begin to establish your workplan, and 4) get clear on how your performance will be measured.

  2. Schedule a meeting with each of your direct colleagues. (Make sure to meet with all, regardless of the level of the staff member.) Ask them to spend between 30-60 minutes with you so that you can understand the work they do, how they perceive the way forward for your office and the organization as a whole, and how you can collaborate with them.

  3. Spend time on the UNDP Intranet and get familiar with the full scope of information there (on central bureaus, regional bureaus, practice areas, etc.).

  4. Review the UNDP Organigram, Strategic Plan, Agenda for Organizational Change, and Annual Business Plan to glean UNDP’s “big picture” and understand how our products and services are delivered in the field.

  5. Take a look at UNDP for Beginners (English, French, Spanish); this guide gives you a snap-shot of where UNDP stands now, as well as an overview of the basic structures and systems of UNDP.

Build Relationships

  1. Invite your direct colleagues to have lunch.

  2. Invite your supervisor to have lunch at the week's end and ask any questions you might have on what you've seen, heard, or read so far.

  3. Prepare an email message to introduce yourself and add some personal components. Ask your supervisor to send it.

* Don't miss this "Helpful Hint" on Teamworks on developing social capital.

Learn & Share Knowledge

  1. Get familiar with the UNDP Learning Management System (LMS) and our six corporate mandatory courses. Complete one of the courses (we suggest the Ethics course.)

  2. Identify the Learning Manager in your office and ask this colleague to spend 1 hour with you to provide you with an overview of the LMS, your Learning Path, and your office's Whole Office Learning Plan (if your office has developed one).

  3. Set up your profile on UNDP’s professional networking platform, Teamworks. Upload a picture, post information about your skills, and add colleagues who work in your area to your profile. Join communities that interest you; a good starting point is the Teamworks sitemap.