Hiring a nanny is a major decision for you and your family. The nanny you choose for the role will be spending quality time with the most important people in your life, your children, so it’s absolutely key to select someone you can trust, and who will have a positive impact on your little ones’ lives. While varying personalities are of course to be expected – no one person is the same – there are some basic attributes that all successful nannies will have. It’s important, therefore, to look for these qualities when making your final hiring decision.
• Love of Children
Of course, the top characteristic of a nanny is her genuine love of children. Education, experience and special skills matter however, none of those will make a person who doesn’t truly love working with children a quality caregiver. Enjoying children and feeling honored to be a nanny to them is the foundation that everything else is built on.
A key attribute required of employees across virtually all industries is punctuality, and nannying is no exception. Getting out the door when you are supposed to help you make the early morning commitments that are critical to your job. Her punctuality is also important throughout the day as she does school drop off and pick up, attends classes with your child and manages her time to ensure she completes all the required household tasks. Being punctual and having good time management skills will keep everything and everyone on the right track.
Caring for children can be a challenge, even at the best of times! Temper tantrums, disputes over toys, fussy eating – it can all be very stressful! That’s why patience is a crucial attribute that all nannies should display. If an individual is quick to lose her temper, or is able to become overwhelmed easily by multiple responsibilities, she is not cut out for the role. The best nannies are cool under pressure and able to tackle challenging situations head on.
This trait can make or break a nanny’s ability to work successfully in your job, especially when both parents work. Nanny care doesn’t always come with a standard 9 to 5 schedule or a job description that never changes. Built-in flexibility is often one of the main reasons parents choose nanny care over other types of care. When interviewing candidates, talk about what kind of flexibility they offer and what their comfort level is in regard to scheduling, daily responsibilities and the household environment. Nannies that can easily adjust and adapt to change tend to be more successful in nanny positions.
• Communication Skills
The best nannies are able to communicate well, both with you as a parent and to your children. When it comes to communication with you, an ideal nanny won’t hide any secrets. She will provide comprehensive updates to you at the end of the day. You want to search for a nanny that is comfortable asking questions when she is unsure of your expectations and/or directions, that regularly shares important information about your child with you and that is able to address any issues within the employment relationship.
Parents have to place an enormous amount of trust in their nanny. Of course the biggest show of trust is allowing her to care for their children. But they also trust her with their home, car, and lots of sensitive information about their family. A nanny’s trustworthiness is an important part of the hiring decision. Knowing your caregiver is going to love and care for your child at all times and make good decisions based on his health and well-being is a must. Knowing she’s going to respect your home and property, protect your privacy and keep what she sees and hears on the job confidential is also important.
• Proactive Nature
You’re hiring a nanny to help make your life easier in terms of childcare, and your home. Things, however, won’t be that much better if you find you have to constantly assign tasks to your nanny, delegate chores or take frantic phone calls asking for help. In addition to childcare, nannies are also required to assist with light housekeeping (keeping up with the high traffic areas of the home) and children’s laundry.
• Common Sense
Your nanny will make endless decisions about your child’s health, safety and well-being throughout the day. You want a nanny who can accurately assess an emergency situation and decide the safest course of action. And one that can make good choices about simple things like what to make for lunch, how to handle a surprise mess and who to call when the sink overflows.
Consider The Hazel Agency
Need help selecting the best candidate? Consider enlisting the talented services provided by the staff at The Hazel Agency. In business since 1996, we have a range of highly skilled nannies registered with our agency and provide comprehensive screening and background checks. Contact us today at 770-643-2034 or visit us online at www.thehazelagency.com.