IFAD country office staff come to town

Annual  occasions and recurrences are healthy rituals. They provide an opportunity to come together, take stock and celebrate. In less than 72 hours, IFAD family will have its annual reunion. Our 165 member states will gather in Rome for the 34th session of the Governing Council.

As we’re getting ready for this annual event, we are also preparing to welcome 33 country office colleagues from 15 different countries who will be attending the corporate induction workshop.

Some of our country office colleagues are already in the building and it is so nice to run into them in the lifts or meet with them in person instead of via skype or video conference.

As part of the annual family reunion ritual, not only they will be attending the Governing Council, but also participating in corporate activities such as learning events, brown-bag lunches and of course their divisional retreats.

Their visit to headquarters is a great opportunity for the HQ staff to get to know them and put a face to their email addresses. There is nothing in the world that can replace a face-to-face encounter and inevitably when this happens the quality of the next “virtual” interaction improves exponentially.

Next week, thanks to the corporate induction programme, they will have a chance to meet colleagues from the different departments and divisions. They’ll be able to discuss how they can enhance their contribution to IFAD’s work and also put on the table some of the challenges they are facing.

“ I hope that by the end of the week, we all have a better understanding of each other’s works and build all the necessary bridges”, says Agnes Kiragu, our country office colleague in Kenya.  “I am looking forward to sharing our challenges and walk away with solutions!”

Eric Rwabidadi, who is a veteran country office staff, having served first in Rwanda and now in Kenya said: “ I am looking forward to getting answers to all the operational questions, for example, how can I put together key files, how do I prepare myself for a quality enhancement and quality assurance session”.

“We’ve tried our best to put together a comprehensive induction programme and I hope at the end of the 27 different sessions,  our 33 colleagues coming from far afield will get answers to their many questions”, explains Richard Aiello, Human Resource officer responsible for putting together the induction programme.

Hopefully our country office colleagues will see the corporate induction programme as the beginning of a long-term relationship and use the opportunity of their visit to HQ to meet and know as many colleagues as possible, so that the next time they need anything they can immediately get to the right person! They are indeed an integral part of and an important constituency for IFAD. We may have our offices in wing A, B or C and they are the "Field wing".

And let’s hope that they continue this annual ritual of coming to HQ at least once a year if not more!

Talking to Richard Aiello, the man behind the corporate induction programme, this is what he had to say:
On Monday 21 February, we'll launch the new IFAD corporate induction programme withs 33 staff from 15 country offices.

For the last couple of months Willem, Shyam, Martin, Lalita and I have been working together to build this programme and as we did so, we gradually understood how this is really a practical IFAD wide sign of care towards its staff.

Colleagues from across the house, including senior management despite overlapping commitments in preparation for the GC, have been meeting with us a number of times, are preparing presentations and have been going through extensive dry runs with us.

We are almost ready and our colleagues are already in town and in the building. As of Monday for the entire week, our team and our 30 facilitators will start illustrating to our new colleagues what makes IFAD so unique and so special,

So while we look forward to sharing impressions of participants and facilitators, join us in welcoming them to IFAD HQ!!!