Saturday, March 28, 2015
I have learned so much from the kids I have been working with. In the circles that their family runs in and also working at a school, you learn that this is definitely not a job for the faint of heart. There are things that no one will share with you, and things that the kids parents will never know just because of their perspective on how to raise their child(ren). There's a show on Disney Channel called Jessie that shows how happy, perky, fun and easy being a nanny is. I think that represents about 60% of the "job." The other 40% is really trying to help raise them to be the best people they can be, without actually raising them.
1. Finding A Job
The two sites that I highly recommend are sittercity.com and care.com. NEVER go looking on Craigslist unless you're looking for trouble. I'm not saying that they're all creeps, but it is most likely. When creating a profile remember that you're asking people to invite you into their homes and care for their prize possessions. So you have to ask yourselves, what would you be searching for in an optional family member? Show them what you have that fits that magical description. Your profile picture is also important. You want to cater to both parents and give off an appropriate, loving, happy and inviting ambiance. You should try to be a modern-day Mary Poppins honestly.
2. The Interview
Once again, this is no ordinary job. Consider yourself applying to be a part-time parent, a friend, a disciplinarian, an optional family member. If you keep that mindset, that's how you really get the job.
This interview is also about you: you are interviewing them. Make sure you set up the first interview in a public place, getting their names and phone number. Do your homework on them as I hope they would do on you. Think of it as an online date, you'd never meet a stranger without some backup internet stalking just because they had a pretty profile. Safety comes first.
3. Meeting The Kids
In a recent interview for an assistant director position for an after school program, they asked me what my biggest weakness was, and I told them that it was to have the kids like me. Yes, we all want the kids to like us, but f that's your only focus on the first day, they will walk all over you. I don't mean lay out all the rules the second you get there, but don't let them get away with everything. Also, remember to send out feelers with the parents on how they discipline their kids. Some parents can be very harsh and some are easy-going. It takes time to get to know the kids, and they want to know you too. And just so you know, you might fall in love with these kids before you really know them.
The rest is learnt along the way, but these are the first few steps to being a modern Mary.