Nannies – working in a family’s home can be tough. Your own family or friends don’t understand the dynamics of your job, you have a confidentiality agreement in place and there is no HR team you can go to for help. If you’re worried about keeping your job, here’s what we find families are paying attention to and why they reach out to us for a new nanny:
- Phone usage: we understand that some families like to get those photos and updates throughout the day, but constantly scrolling and engaging on social media platforms, non-work related texts, and gaming is frowned upon during working hours. If the kids are napping and your job is done, there’s a time and place for being on your phone. Turn notifications off for popular apps and keep your phone on vibrate so you’re not constantly checking those alerts.
- Watch the Clock: Just as you expect parents to be home at an agreed upon time, they expect you to be there at the start of each day. Checking weather and traffic reports allow you to plan your commute and be on time. Have to stop for coffee? Order ahead and skip the line. Know you’re running late? Give the parents a courtesy heads up that you’re on your way. Be sure to have an inclement weather policy in place as well for those Boston snow days!
- Crossing Boundaries: As a nanny, you’re likely to get pretty close with the family you work for, but be careful not to cross the line. Sharing your personal drama, asking for favors or loans, or expecting to be included in family events or trips can cause tension and affect your job performance. It’s important to maintain a professional relationship with a healthy balance of mutual respect for each other’s personal lives.
- Slacking off on your job as a nanny can cause major problems. Having to be reminded to wash the kids clothes, return overdue library books, letting parents know when running low on children’s supplies like snacks, or when you notice they are outgrowing their clothes or shoes. Being proactive and working as a team will make your workplace and their home run more smoothly.
Being a nanny is a rewarding career, but it is one that requires professionalism as in any workplace position. Setting healthy boundaries and expectations from the beginning can help ensure a long lasting work relationship between nannies and families.
The Washburn Agency is here to answer any of your questions or concerns you may have when it comes to the nanny-family relationship.