Friday, March 13, 2009

The beginning

As the President of American Nanny Company I have so much blogging to do. Nanny and Family Matters is a place where nannies and families can pose questions, concerns and receive some constructive advice and guidance.

Recently, I led a seminar at BI Deaconess Hospital in Boston on "Everything You Every Wanted to Know about Finding and Hiring a Nanny. 55 doctors attended, some with lap tops and others with new babies. In presenting strategies for how to search for a caregiver and where to begin I realized that most of my audience were first time parents and very anxious about the whole process. Having done this since 1984 I had to remind myself that for many young professionals the whole topic of nannies is a daunting one.

About half an hour into my presentation I opened up the floor for questions. From questions like "Should I use a nanny cam?" to "What questions should we ask in an interview?" I realized that so many parents have so many questions and that maybe it was time to start a blog to begin a conversation that could be helpful for these worried professionals and the many nannies seeking employment.

Finding a nanny or finding the right family involves work and self examination. For families it means taking the time to develop a working job description and and list of qualifications sought in a nanny candidate. For nannies it means developing a professional resume and list of criteria important for them in a position and in the selection of employers.
Finding the right nanny or right family takes work, preparation and motivation. As an agency owner I know that there is no magic fairy dust that I can spread to make the match right. What I can offer is a set of guidelines and a lot of coaching to help parents and nannies sift through the screening process and come up with the right match.

It would be very helpful to know more about the topics/themes that families and nannies are interested in addressing. This is the beginning and I hope that many of you will join us in establishing a constructive conversation.

4 comments:

  1. Congrats on your new blog, Marsha!

    From a nanny's perspective I'm curious how a high end nanny markets herself in the current economy. I'm currently interviewing like mad & sorting through offers...but, I find myself constantly mulling this question over as I think the current situation almost mandates that I market myself differently.

    Thanks!

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  2. Min,

    You should have an updated and well written resume, a comprehensive list of references that can be called as well as letters that have been written by prior employers. An earnest and enthusiastic letter of introduction is always welcome by parents who are so anxious about the process. At the interview make sure that you emphasize how you differ from the competition in terms of long term job track record, understanding of the complexities of the nanny role, early childhood development and the many skills you can offer a busy family. A HUGE turn off is the nanny who harps on money. The most successful nanny will market herself/himself by exhibiting the qualities and skill sets that will make them worth a top of the scale salary. What sells, everytime, is outstanding and long term experience with rave references and the ability to truly engage the parents and children at a meeting. Parents want the sense that they are hiring the sincere professional best suited to helping their child/children develop to their fullest potential. They also seek candidates holding similar childcare philosophies and priorities. Parents on the hunt for high end nannies want to make sure that they are getting a high end nanny with stellar credentials, a commitment to the nanny career, and a great role model for their child. It is taking longer but the strongest candidates prevail by interviewing better and presenting incredible credentials. Again, make sure that your materials reflect all of the experience and growth that you possess as a high end nanny. Good luck. Would love to hear comments from parents and other high end nannies.

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  3. Hi Marsha, Great blog!

    As I high end nanny, I think it's important to find your niche. Whether it be working with a specific age group, multiples, special needs etc.. if you can really carve out a market for yourself you create a demand for your services.

    But when it comes to working for the uber rich, always, always remember, all that glitters isn't gold....it's much better to make a dollar or two less an hour and be happy!

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  4. Amen to all. The niche thing would give a great marketing advantage and stream line who you look at for a potential employer.

    Countless times applicants understand that money is not all that matters.

    Thank you, Michelle!!!

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