Ombudsletters

Each of our Ombudsletters revolves around a relevant theme of the Ombudsman services related to workplace disputes and concerns. The Ombudsletters give you an insight into the Ombudsman’s role and principles and provide you with valuable tips and ideas on resolving workplace conflicts.

#13 Ombudsletter: Difficult Conversations: listen more; talk less

Effective communication is a key part of our daily interactions in the workplace. However, there are times when communication is not easy. We all find it hard at times to express how we feel about a situation. It may be in relation to the actions of a colleague whose abrasive behavior makes you uncomfortable.

English (PDF)


#12 Ombudsletter: When silence is golden

Open communication in the workplace is the foundation of a well-functioning office, as the Ombudsmen have noted many times in their annual reports. It fosters a healthy exchange of ideas among staff at all levels and can be the inspiration of new initiatives or the revamping of processes that have become cumbersome.

English (PDF)


#11 Ombudsletter: When will I receive my Pension Benefit?

Since 2014 , the Office of the Ombudsman has received a number of cases from the former staff members who have retired from the organization but who have experienced difficulties in receiving their monthly pension benefits from the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund (UNJSPF).  

English (PDF)


#10 Ombudsletter: Providing constructive feedback on staff member performance

“This remains a persistent problem and in many cases still seems to be neither timely nor thoughtful. Staff members still complain that they thought that they were doing a good job only to hear at the very end of the reporting period that the supervisor is dissatisfied. Feedback should not be a one-time event but something that happens regularly during an assignment.”

English (PDF)


#9 Ombudsletter: Receiving constructive feedback on staff member performance

In our interaction with colleagues at all levels, we have learned in the Office of the Ombudsman that how something is said is very often just as important as what is said. When people communicate in the workplace, either in written or oral form, the real issue can be clouded by contradictory signals. …

English (PDF)


#8 Ombudsletter: Emotions in the workplace – a no-no?

How can I control my emotions at work? How can I cope with my co-worker being emotional? These are questions which are frequently encountered when staff approach the Ombudsman. …

English (PDF)


#7 Ombudsletter : Between you and me – gossip and workplace conflict

Just as conflict is a part of our lives and unavoidable, so is gossip in the workplace. ‘’Between you and me’’ conversations might end up being between you and others resulting in misunderstanding and harmful gossip. …

English (PDF)


#6 Ombudsletter : ‘Sssh……..don’t go to the Ombudsman’

When should I contact the Ombudsman? This question often arises when people face conflict in the workplace, especially since parties involved in a dispute usually have various avenues open to assist them to find a resolution. …

English (PDF)


#5 Ombudsletter: Bullying and workplace aggression

The Office of the Ombudsman has listened to many visitors, often in tears, who come to tell their stories after a long period of suffering. …

English (PDF)


#4 Ombudsletter: My door is always open

During a vibrant and highly interactive session on the subject of mediation and workplace conflicts in a small conference room in the secretariat building, a colleague shared her experience with the group. …

English (PDF)


#3 Ombudsletter : Ombuds confidentiality applies both ways

During one of the meetings in which UNDP/UNFPA/UNOPS Ombudspersons discuss various issues that are brought to their attention, a colleague points out that a message sent to a staff member on the understanding that it was a confidential communication was copied and circulated to several other people. …

English (PDF)


#2 Ombudsletter: Consulting an Ombudsperson with the right expectations

One knows, in principle, that an Ombudsperson is an independent, confidential, objective and neutral person who works to resolve conflicts in an informal way, avoiding litigation. In reality, what is often expected of the Office of the Ombudsperson goes well beyond its mandate. …

English (PDF)


#1 Ombudsletter: Talking to an Ombudsperson: a priceless occasion

Contacting an Ombudsperson may not be an easy decision. Many questions may come to the staff member’s mind: Can’t I really resolve this issue by myself? Has it really come to this? …

English (PDF)