Step 1: Know what is involved in being a nanny
Being a nanny is a serious responsibility. While being a nanny can be quite similar to babysitting, much more is required of a nanny. Nanny positions may be just a few hours per week or may be live-in, requiring up to 60 hours per week. Families will expect nannies to be mature, able to care for the needs of the children, and even assist in childrearing. This is a responsibility that is not to be taken lightly. However, for those who truly care for children, taking on such a job can be very rewarding and have a great impact on the lives of young ones!
Step 2: Education & training
Often, families will prefer nannies with some kind of educational background in childcare or education. While having a degree is not necessary, some parents are more likely to hire someone who does have a degree. A nanny may choose to become certified in CPR and First Aid. This is certainly recommended for anyone who will be caring for young children. Hopefully an emergency will never occur, but it is best to be prepared. Parents can have more peace of mind knowing that their children’s caretaker knows what to do in an emergency situation.
Step 3: Background checks
Some parents prefer to have a background check run on any nanny they hire. This is quite understandable, considering the nanny is likely a stranger to the family starting out. Nannies seeking employment may want to preemptively have a background check run on themselves. Families will certainly appreciate this extra step.
Step 4: Learn the expectations before accepting a job
Each family is different and will have different expectations. That is why it is very important for the family and the nanny to be very clear about every expectation of the job before starting. The details should be discussed and put into writing. Of course, it will be impossible to cover every scenario, but matters pertaining to pay, weekends, holidays, and sick days should be worked out ahead of time.
Step 5: Communicate
Communication is vital to a smooth relationship between a nanny and the family. When issues do arise, these should be discussed clearly and effectively between the two parties. Misunderstandings occur sometimes, but can easily be cleared up by straightforward communication. Perhaps weekly or monthly meetings can be held to discuss any issues, concerns, or progressive ideas on the children’s discipline and development. Families will be happy to see the true concern from their nanny.
Step 6: Benefit from other resources
For those interested in becoming a nanny, there are some other fine resources that will prove helpful. If possible, find others who are currently nannies or have worked as such in the past. Their experience will prove invaluable to you. Also, the International Nanny Association (INA) is an excellent resource for nannies. It provides much helpful information on pay, benefits, tax information, and more. Find out more from the INA website at www.nanny.org.