The Qualities You will Need to be a Nanny

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Surprisingly to most people, a nanny’s job is a particularly demanding one. If a person is attracted to nannying as a career because of the notion that it principally consists of humming lullabies to babies to send them off to dreamland, then they will be disillusioned when the reality sets in. Not everyone can be a nanny. It is physically and emotionally demanding, and as we are responsible for young lives, mistakes simply must not happen. Babies learning to crawl can tumble down steps, toddles can reach for and grasp a cup of hot coffee.

A nanny must not only see to, and provide physical care, but also set a good example for the developing children she is responsible for. Kids view the adults in their lives as the most important role models, and even when it seems they are lost in their own world, they are still quietly observing the adults around them and learning behaviour from them. That’s everything from table manners to speech patterns to interaction with others.

A family who is looking for a nanny will have a list of the most important qualities that they expect her to have. New parents, even those who a familiar with hiring and firing in the corporate world, may have difficulties when thinking about the attributes they need in a nanny. A nanny should have intelligence, personal integrity, common sense and a cheerful positive attitude. Below are some more attributes which you may consider:

Loving and nurturing. A good nanny will must give unconditional love for the children and always be concerned for their well-being. Nurture and love builds self-esteem and promotes positive emotional development that can last a lifetime.

Good morals and manners. Children learn by observing the adults around them and so it is imperative that the nanny is always setting a good example. When speaking to a child she should speak with care, consideration and respect.

Patience. Looking after children requires an almost endless amount of patience. A person with little patience or a quick temper has no business being a nanny. She should be able to answer all questions from a curious pre-schooler patiently and good naturedly, and keep her composure when a toddler throws a temper tantrum.

Long hours. Many nannies work very long hours while the parents are commuting and probably working long hours themselves. Nannies don’t get many breaks during the day, except perhaps when babies or children are sleeping or have gone to school, and even then there are usually household chores to be done.

Cleanliness. This is an important subject with infants. Everything they use must be kept scrupulously clean. this includes bottles, soft and plastic toys, high chairs and bedding. when it seems as if all chores are done and there is nothing left to do, there is always something else to be cleaned.

Organised. School children usually have many activities crammed into the typical week. There may be after school activities, study sessions, birthday parties, playgroups, music lessons, ballet and sports. Keeping all these appointments in your head, especially for more than one child, will be a major challenge. You may be the one to take the children to all these events too. Reliable. Coming late, days off to do personal errands, frequent sick days cause untold stress for the parents and it is unsettling for the children too, who thrive on routine. You must make it a personal goal to be as reliable as a Swiss watch, no matter how much inconvenience this causes are a professional and you need to show it.

Trustworthy. Parents need to trust their nanny. It is a vital ingredient in the relationship. Once trust goes, there is really nothing else to talk about and certainly you will be out of a job. Nurture trust by discussing the day’s events with the parents, even the seemingly unimportant events or the ones which might put you in a bad light, such as when a toddler tripped and banged his head. It is better for the parent to hear it from you than to discover the bruise himself.

As you can see a nanny’s job is tougher than it might first appear, but along with the demands for the highest standards in human behaviour, come the unbelievable rewards of having made a real difference to the lives of people you worked with.

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