The Basics of Hiring a Nanny for Your Kids

The Basics of Hiring a Nanny for Your Kids

Despite their best efforts, parents can't always make time for their children, especially when both parents are working or have other pressing concerns to handle. That's why hiring a nanny can make a huge difference and give parents peace of mind when they're busy at the office or need a helping hand.

Keep in mind, though, that a nanny isn't the same thing as a babysitter. Whereas any teenager or family friend can babysit kids for a short time, a nanny is someone who's professional about child care and is fully committed to your children in particular. It's not uncommon for nannies to also be involved in other domestic activities like preparing dinner or doing a load of laundry—whatever it takes to help the parents out.

When it comes to hiring a nanny—either through an agency, a job listing, or a personal reference—there are 4 essential qualities that you should look for in the person you want to hire.

Professionalism: When going through candidates for a nanny, you should consider the basic criteria and hire someone who is over 18 years old, in good health, and has extensive experience with babysitting and child care (it may even be necessary to do a background check before letting her interact with your kids). She should also know the essentials like administering first aid and CPR, basic nutrition for kids, and practicing good hygiene for your children and your home. A professional nanny is someone you can trust to make good decisions about your kids in your absence, who only needs to call you when the issue is too much for one caretaker to handle.

Good Relations with Kids: Besides keeping children safe and in order while you're away, the right nanny can also be your kids' best friend. As much as they're a surrogate parent while you're away, a nanny should also be able to play with your kids and make their time together a fun experience. It's not uncommon for kids to grow attached to their nannies, so you'll want someone that they'll feel comfortable being with for an extended period of time.

Similar Parenting Style: Because your kids will be used to how you handle things as a parent, the ideal nanny should be a similar match to the way you run your household. If you're big on discipline, then your children should expect the same discipline from their nanny. If you insist on keeping your home smoke-free, then you shouldn't hire a nanny with a smoking habit. You'll also want to keep a clear line of communication with your nanny so that she doesn't overstep her bounds with your kids and so that you'll know if she has any problems or concerns.

Positive Personality: Above all else, a good nanny will bring a positive and caring attitude to both your children and your home. You'll want someone that both you and your kids will get along with, treating her like a member of the family.

Related Articles