Becoming a professional in the childcare department is a brave decision that requires several prerequisites.
When you’re thinking about becoming a nanny or governess, it’s important to think about all the pros and cons of this job.
Some families insist that their nannies live with them 24/7. Others prefer employing nanny on an hourly basis.
Also, it’s good to bear in mind that every family is different, so you’ll be facing various challenges along the way.
Therefore, every nanny-to-be should prepare herself for her new career. The following five preparatory tips will be helpful to start doing this job as successfully as possible.
1) Extend your knowledge of childcare
Childcare is a delicate field of work. This is the case because babies, toddlers, and kids are sensitive little beings.
What’s more, when you look after your kids, you take care of their parents.
When everything goes smoothly and there are no issues, being a nanny is one of the most beautiful jobs out there. Having such an important role in the lives of children is often a real blessing.
But in many cases, nannies have to deal with kids’ tantrums and parents legitimate requests.
Being between the hammer and the anvil in that situation can be easier if you properly understand children.
What will help you here is learning more about children’s psychology.
Of course, you can rely on your instinct and common sense but sometimes it’s not enough.
That’s why every nanny should commit herself to gain knowledge about kids in general. Books, courses, practicing with mentors, and spending time with your friends’ kids are just some ways that can help you get inside the children’s mind.
When you possess the knowledge, it’s easier to resolve a problematic situation.
2) Bring your own rules
First and foremost, let’s make one thing clear: parents are in charge of the upbringing style for their children.
This means that they bring the main decisions when it comes to their kids’ schedule, behavioral rules, and social norms.
While nannies can make some suggestions along the road, they shouldn’t interfere too much with these general rules.
What’s important for nannies is to bring their own set of rules.
Of course, it would be pointless to insist on your rules if the parents don’t agree with them.
Instead of that, write down several major principles that you don’t give up on at work.
For instance, you need to inform the family in question about your availability. If you and the family agree that you don’t work at weekends, make sure that both parties follow those rules.
Also, you might insist on some minor rules regarding children’s behavior. This will help you spend quality time with the children you’re looking after. For example, one of those rules can be that kids shouldn’t eat sweets. Apart from the bad effects on their health and teeth, sweets might trigger hyperactive behavior in your children.
Again, present those rules to the parents for verification to keep your work completely transparent.
3) Discuss additional obligations
One of the most frequent problems that nannies encounter is doing tasks outside of their jurisdiction.
In other words, some families want to hire an all-round helper around their household.
As a result, they might ask you to prepare meals, do chores or take care of other works around the house.
So, every nanny needs to decide whether she wants and needs those additional activities.
Nannies who accept to do those works are often paid more than those who just take care of children.
However, the additional payment might not be enough for all the extra tasks that you’re obliged to do.
Therefore, write down all the pros and cons of accepting such a position. Some nannies don’t want to bother with those things because this isn’t their profession.
For instance, if you’ve become a certified childcare provider, like nannies trained by a professional UK governess agency, you probably just want to do your job.
On the other hand, some nannies need a few dollars more, which is why they might agree with performing additional works, as well.
Whatever you decide, it’s vital to negotiate all the terms before you start working, as well as all the tasks that you’re in charge of.
That’s the best way to avoid any misunderstandings or arguments with your clients.
4) Handle the legal aspects
If you’re thinking about becoming a nanny, you need to know that there are some legal aspects of this move.
For starters, you can either be a self-employed individual or get your salary through payroll.
In the first case, nannies get the payment from parents and sort out all their pension and tax obligations alone.
However, self-employed nannies have the legal right to do their job in line with their preferences. Although this doesn’t happen too often, they could apply some rules that don’t comply with parents’ guidelines.
In the second case, parents employ the nanny. This is a better option for parents from the legal point of view, because that way, parents have complete control over their nanny’s work.
When it comes to accommodation, it’s the matter of agreement between the parents and the nanny. What’s important is to clarify this issue in the contract so that both parties are legally protected.
You can read more about the legal aspects of nanny employment in the guide at nanny.org.
Childcare is one of the most demanding, yet most humane fields of work. There’s something magical in taking care of babies, toddlers, and kids and follow their development.
Still, this is a special type of work in which everybody needs to follow some clear rules.
In a nutshell, nannies need to decide how they want to do their job and invest in their education. Also, their scope of work can include some chores and additional tasks around the house.
It’s up to every individual childcare professional whether to accept those works.
Finally, nannies should always make sure that they’re legally protected.
All these things should be taken into account when you’re launching your childcare career to do your job responsibly, followingthe law.
AuthorBio: Anne Harris is an HR specialist working for londongoverness.com. She recruits nannies, governesses and other childcare professionals, ensuring top-notch services for parents worldwide. In her free time she likes reading about education, and children’s welfare, as well as visiting sports events.