Finding the Ideal Nanny

by | Feb 7, 2012

Are you a single parent or working parents in Sarasota and you’ve decided that you just have to hire a nanny for your kids? How do you find the ideal nanny for your family? It may actually be one of the most important decisions you make for your family, especially if you want a nanny long-term. When you realize just how daunting a challenge it is, you may want to get some help whittling down your choices by using a nanny agency. Elite Family Care is a Sarasota based nanny agency. They will meet with you and help you sort through nannies to find the perfect fit for your family. Once you have a few candidates to interview you will want to talk extensively with a potential nanny and observe them interacting with your kids. Your intuition will likely begin sending you signals that one in particular would be a great addition to the family—and not just for a couple of months. Here are some tell-tale signs that you’ve found a true diamond of a nanny:

  1. Will your kids learn? – It’s tough finding someone who is willing to devote the time and effort to help your kids learn – it might be reading, drawing pictures or getting introduced to the computer – your children will benefit as they develop. They’re with the nanny an awful lot, so they should be exercising both the body and the brain.
  2. Does she make for a good fit? You might have snagged the greatest nanny on the planet, but if she doesn’t fit into your family it’s not going to work. Not just your kids, but you and your spouse as well, should feel relaxed with your nanny.
  3. Does she go that extra mile? Does your nanny act almost as if she’s punching in and out by the clock? Does she try to neaten things up a bit before you get home? Did she take the dog for a walk while you were gone so everyone got out in the fresh air? Does she occasionally bake you fresh cookies… Some nannies don’t have the motivation to go beyond what’s listed in their job description, and if yours does, you’re very lucky.
  4. Is she respectful? Do you find that she feels free to go against your instructions; does she take liberties behind your back? Earning respect is just as important as giving it and it’s important to locate someone who respects your parenting techniques and understands how you want to raise your children. She shouldn’t use a whole new set of rules for rearing your young ones.
  5. Do your kids like her? Sure, when the nanny has to withhold privileges for bad behavior, the kids won’t exactly be praising her. You don’t want a nanny who the kids push around; that makes for unhappy chaos. But they should be generally happy and well-adjusted with the nanny you hired.
  6. Is she a creative problem-solver? It’s important that your nanny uses fresh ways of getting the kids to do the right thing. She should be able to deal with the moods, the anger, and the boredom of your kids. Having a nanny that is willing to put in the time and effort to hang in there through your kids’ ‘ugly’ moments is an amazing blessing. She deserves a lot of reinforcement from you.
  7. Do you trust her? This is one of the more important traits. If you can’t trust her with your home, your kids, and your stuff, you’re going to be one unhappy, suspicious parent. If you trust her wholly with your children, your house, etc., then you can rest assured. Even if you have to leave for extended periods, you’ll know that your nanny is taking care of things on the home front.
  8. Is she a good communicator? Does that nanny give you a head’s up during the day and/or at the end of each day, letting you know if there were problems and giving well deserved praise? One mom spent several frantic hours trying to get her nanny to answer the phone. She rushed home only to find the nanny nonchalantly at the pool with the child, chatting with her friends on her cell.
  9. Does she have a great rep? You will know probably within months how your nanny is coming across to others. Your friends will make comments. Your kids’ teachers might express appreciation. Those who attend that big party in your home will grill you on where you found Wonder Nanny.
  10. Can you count on her? What if, after a month or two, your nanny starts arriving late, calling in sick, trying to leave early? Not a good sign. You should know that when you need her, she is going to be punctual. Sure, give her enough time off and be generous with vacation weeks during the year, but forget all the scrambling around at the last minute trying to find a replacement so that you can still show up at work.

A nanny agency can save you a ton of time and even future heartache. Or you may choose to try to navigate those waters alone. But, whatever the case, when you find that nanny who’s just right for your family, you know you have found a treasure you’ll want to keep for a very long time.

Debra Fortosis

Elite Family Care

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