There are millions of people working in childcare throughout the nation and many of them are working as nannies.
Are you interested in hiring a nanny for your children? Do you want to make sure you’re hiring the best person for the job?
The process of hiring a nanny can be quite nerve-wracking, especially if you’ve never hired one before.
How do ensure they’re trustworthy? How do you know they’ll take just as good of care of your children as you do?
If you’re nervous about hiring a nanny, keep reading. Listed below are eight tips that will help you figure out how to find a good nanny.
How to Find a Good Nanny
If you want to find the right nanny for your children, be sure to keep these basic guidelines in mind:
1. Watch How They Interact with Your Child
One of the most important things to consider (if not the most important thing) is the way in which your potential nanny interacts with your child.
Do they seem patient, attentive, and caring? Do they communicate with your child in an age-appropriate manner? Are they playful and engaged?
Don’t worry as much about how your child acts. Pay more attention to what the nanny does when faced with a difficult situation.
2. Ask the Right Questions
During the interview, it’s important to make sure you’re asking the right questions. Some good ones to ask include:
- “What if” questions: This includes questions like, “What will you do if my child gets hurt and I can’t be reached?”
- Questions about their discipline strategy
- Questions about the kinds of activities they do with the children they watch
It’s also important to ask questions about their experience and education, as well as their motivation for wanting to work with your child or children.
3. Check Their References
Don’t forget to reach out and check the references your potential nanny provides. Many nanny agencies, like A Nanny on the Net, make it easy for you to find and get in touch with their references.
Don’t just assume that they’re reliable and a good fit for you — call the people they’ve worked for in the past and learn as much as you can.
4. Consider Your Chemistry
It’s also important to pay attention to your chemistry with your potential nanny. Sure, you won’t be spending hours a day with them as your kids will be, but they’ll still be a part of your life. If you don’t get along well with them, this is likely to cause problems later on.
5. Think About Your Long-Term Needs
If you’re a new mom and plan to work with this nanny for quite a while, you need to make sure he or she is someone who is willing to stick and around and grow and adapt with your kids.
Find out how long they intend to work as a nanny and whether they’re interested in a long-term arrangement.
6. Ask About Their Education
They don’t necessarily need to have a college degree. But, your nanny should have some basic education under her belt. This might include a first aid or CPR course, for example.
7. How Much Hands-on Experience Do They Have?
In addition to these kinds of courses, it’s also important that your nanny has hands-on experience.
How many children have they cared for in the past? What age range? Do they have experience caring for kids with special needs?
8. Schedule a Trial Run
Even if the initial interview goes really well, you still need to conduct a trial run to see how they interact with your kids.
Pay attention to their behavior and make sure they’re as good in real life as they seemed on their resume or during the interview.
Mistakes to Avoid When Trying to Find a Nanny
At the same time, there are also some mistakes you should try to avoid when you’re looking for a nanny for your kids.
The following mistakes are common but they can also make it very challenging for you to find the right nanny.
Using a Generic Job Description
When you’re writing the job description, be as specific as possible.
Let job-seeking nannies know exactly what you’re looking for. This will help you avoid interviewing lots of people who are unqualified or don’t meet your unique needs.
Include information about hours, pay rate, the amount of time you want them to work for you, and the specific skills your nanny will need to possess.
Setting Unrealistic Expectations
There’s a lot a nanny can do for you and your children. Remember that there are limits to their abilities, too.
The bulk of your nanny’s responsibilities should revolve around caring for your children.
It’s fine to ask them to handle household duties that are centered around your child (cleaning the child’s high chair after feeding them, washing the child’s clothes, etc.). But, asking them to handle the full range of housekeeping tasks is a bit much.
Hiring Without a Written Agreement
It’s always necessary to have your nanny read through and sign a written work agreement. This will help you avoid a lot of issues (including potential legal problems) later on.
Your written agreement should include information regarding hours, specific duties, compensation, and other expectations for your nanny. Protect yourself by being as detailed as possible.
Time to Find the Right Nanny for Your Kids
Now that you know what to do (and what not to do) when you’re trying to figure out how to find a good nanny for your kids, it’s time to start shopping around.
Look online, ask your friends and family for recommendations, and keep these guidelines in mind to make sure you’re looking at the right things when you’re making your decision.
When you’re hiring a nanny for the first time, it’s common to worry that your children will miss out on quality time with you.
This can certainly happen, but it will be less likely if you make an effort to prioritize family activities and bonding. Not sure how to do this? Check out the family section of our site today for helpful tips and tricks.
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