The United Nations decision-making deliberations are unique. Administrative matters are complex and each country representative needs to understand the substance of the issues that are being voted on that include topics such as:
- Results-based budgeting
- Budget reform
- A new DFS business strategy using business principles
- And improved accountability over the years.
The challenge: to make representatives more informed on the complex, technical issues that they were voting on.
Graham Joscelyne of Joscelyne + Associates was asked to help create an agenda and provide an environment that encouraged open discussion, and helped technocrats and diplomats become better educated on technical proposals before voting.
To address this issue, we needed to make representatives comfortable with the issues and confident to discuss them openly.
Hosted by the Swiss Permanent Representative to the UN, Graham developed and facilitated multiple workshops with country representatives. He:
- Designed a workshop format to help decision-making representatives debate issues for each topic under review
- Identified and coached subject-matter experts to share their expertise
- Developed workshop guidelines for roundtable and breakout sessions
- Facilitated workshops to encourage debate and allow participants to table views for big-group discussion
- Integrated workshop themes and outcomes into the closing sessions in such a way that participants found effective, actionable solutions.
As a result of our work, the workshops proved to be well-designed and effective. The environment prevented undue politicking and exceeded the key success criteria set by the host. The subject-matter experts’ contributions informed decision-makers on all key technical issues, and discussions helped representatives be more well-informed before voting.
So successful was the venture that the firm has had multiple requests for additional workshops. The UN Secretariat came away confident that the proposals on the table had been understood and properly discussed by key decision-makers.
Representatives were also pleased with the workshop approach and delivery, agreeing that these helped them make sound decisions on often-complex technical aspects of their duties.