Guest blog by Amanda Rosenbloom, of The Nanny Network
Most parents envision a Mary Poppins type character when asked what the “perfect nanny” looks like. Sadly, she was a fictional character, but there is some solid advice that exists when thinking about hiring your own version of a realistically fantastic nanny.
First, recognize their worth.
Nannies are not just babysitters. A nanny is essentially an extension of your parenting.
They are professionals who are fully invested in your child’s growth and development and have a desire to make a significant impact on their lives. Many come with additional training, CPR and First Aid training, for example, and have years of specialized childcare experience before being placed by a reputable agency. Nannies know they aren’t with a family just for the short term and they desire to bond with the family and the community around them and will put their whole effort into doing so.
Second, create a realistic list of expectations.
One of the most critical things you can do before jumping into the hiring process is to create a concise, realistic set of expectations about what your family really needs. This involves working out not only a tangible list of day to day requirements, but also asking yourself about your subjective “perfect nanny” mentioned above. Truthfully asking yourself what is expected in your household, what is reasonable in addition to child care, and what is a “make or break” for you will lessen the chances of frustration later. Do you need someone who can be flexible because of your varying work schedule? Do you expect a nanny to also make meals? Do laundry? Drive carpools? This is just a small sampling of the questions you should ask yourself when coming up with a full picture of your very own Mary Poppins.
Third, consider hiring an agency.
One of the most important decisions you’ll ever make for your child is to hire a competent caregiver. It’s also an investment in your peace of mind. A professional nanny placement agency specializes in finding the perfect fit by marrying your specific needs with a rigorous screening process. Certainly there is a benefit in the agency having the initial face to face interview and verifying references before you meet with final candidates. But what you’ve really gained is access to a highly skilled specialist and minimized your risk significantly. The most skilled professional nannies will typically return to their agencies when they are job seeking again. We recommend reviewing our agency partner, www.nanny-network.com in order to see if they can be of service to your family.