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The new job

The new job

At her new job, Christine must adapt quickly, juggling multiple assignments while learning the ropes. She is introduced to many new colleagues, some of whom she meets for drinks in the evening, but really getting to know them and making new friends proves difficult. Christine is forced to work under permanently changing conditions as she has appointments at different locations every day. In order to do her job, she relies on her local assistant, Bertrand, who began his work in the mission several months before Christine’s arrival. Initially, Christine doesn’t get along that well with Bertrand. She considers his questions about her personal life intrusive and his views on the role of women in society archaic.

Additional information

While on a peace mission, your workplace often plays a more important role than it does at home. The special work environment of a peace mission can have a negative effect on your well-being. Factors such as a high staff turnover rate, an ill-defined area of responsibility, or management that is overwhelmed, can all contribute to your stress levels. On the other hand, a lack of leisure activities and a limited social network – especially at the beginning – may also cause strain. Therefore, stress factors at work may prove to be more pervasive than at home. Workplace stress factors that may be present whilst on a mission abroad include the following: professional shifts and changes of tasks and roles, a hopeless environment and limited possibilities of changing it, impossible personal demands or overestimation of one’s own abilities.

Like in any other job, there can be workplace conflicts in the context of a mission. What is unusual here is the central role that your workplace plays in your life. On international missions there is often a merging of professional and private life, as  you often share your free time with the same people with whom you have spent the entire day at the office. Therefore, stress in the workplace may affect your well-being more significantly than would be the case at home.