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Posts Tagged ‘EER

EER Tips

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Unfortunately for most Foreign Service folks it is Employee Evaluation Report (EER) time again.  The rating period ended on April 15, and if your post is being timely you should have your final submissions to the review panel right now.

I’ve written a lot of EERs – whether as the rated employee, rater, or reviewer.  Over time you see the same mistakes being made, and while my more experienced colleagues have undoubtedly similar experience, here are a few things to avoid at all costs in your EER.  Your EER is the only thing the panel sees when it comes to promotion time.  Assuming promotion is important to you, you should give it your best effort.

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Written by OSB

25/04/2013 at 22:02

Posted in Foreign Service

Tagged with ,

RQ: What Are Some Important Yearly “Deadlines” In The Foreign Service?

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This week a reader celebrated the end of FY11 (or the beginning of FY12) with an appropriate question;

What are some important deadlines a Foreign Service Specialist might get to deal with?

For completeness I’ll also include some examples of deadlines I know the FSOs deal with also (but current FSOs please feel free to chime in if I misspeak).

Probably the most important date to remember is October 1 of each year.  As eluded to above, October 1 marks the beginning of the new fiscal year.  Budgeting restarts anew.  Money left over from last year is no longer available (in most cases).  The weeks leading up to the end of the fiscal year (often acronymed “FY”) can be hectic, as bureau-specific deadlines for turning in reports, orders, reimbursements, travel receipts, can all coalesce into, in Steve Jobs’ words, “a big ball of hurt.”  I know that Foreign Service Specialists are generally very busy approaching the end of the fiscal year; as they tend to be more operational in nature.  The General Services Officers, Financial Management Officers, Office Management Specialists, Regional Security Officers, Security Engineering Officers, Facilities Managers, and Information Management Specialists all have major budget responsibilities that need to be taken care of around this time. Read the rest of this entry »

9 Things You Need to Accept as a Foreign Service Specialist

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Working in the Foreign Service is a fascinating and rewarding career, but as a Specialist one needs to accept certain realities of one’s standing and role in the larger picture.  Here are a few realities of Foreign Service Specialist life that are worth mulling over- whether you’re a prospective or if you’re currently serving and are in a revelatory mood.

1. Generalists are, and always will be, your boss(es). Face it: you’ll never be an Ambassador or a Deputy Chief of Mission.  The Foreign Service at the upper levels has no room for Specialists regardless of how hard you work, how many awful posts you served in, or how good of a manager you are.  There is some wiggle room for the medical specialties (fun fact:  the RMO is the only person other than the President that can order an Ambassador out of post), but otherwise you will almost certainly experience this glass ceiling if you stay in long enough. Read the rest of this entry »