Africa Day contributions |25 May 2022
Working for an African regional organisation: Testimonial of a Seychellois
Working within an African inter-governmental organisation can be both a gratifying and a challenging experience. It can be a helpful way to learn about other cultures by working with people from the African continent as well as with those from other countries.
It can also provide opportunities to make a difference in the lives of people who are facing developmental and other challenges.
People working in African inter-governmental organisations are from different cultures, which can sometimes lead to misunderstandings and difficulties in communication, making it harder to resolve issues and reach agreements. In addition, various countries often have their priorities and agendas. In this regard, it requires diplomatic skills to resolve conflicts. When working for a regional organisation, I had to engage with at least 15 nationalities daily, with some reporting directly to me. Within this context, I had to address various multicultural and multidimensional issues which impacted the work environment.
Regional organisations tend to have multiple layers of protocol and structures to deal with, which may sometimes lead to decisions taking a long time to implement.
An intergovernmental organisation's work environment can help foster a greater understanding of the complexities of international relations because those organisations are responsible for facilitating multilateral relations between different countries. They must deal with a wide range of issues, including economic, political, and cultural. This can give employees a greater understanding of the different factors that can influence international relations. In addition, working for an international organisation can also help build skills in diplomacy and negotiation, which can help foster a greater understanding of the complexities of international relations since such organisations deal with a wide range of daily issues, including those related to diplomacy, trade and security. In many cases, African inter-governmental organisations have successfully tackled regional issues when the member states can work together effectively. As a result, employees of international organisations are exposed to a variety of different viewpoints and perspectives, which can help to broaden their understanding of the world. In addition, working for an inter-governmental organisation can also provide opportunities to travel to different countries and meet with a variety of different people, which can further contribute to a greater understanding of international relations.
The Foreign Affairs department usually advertises job openings in regional organisations to which Seychelles is a member.
Contributor: Steve Lalande
Editor’s note: Mr Lalande has previously worked in a management position for a regional organisation.