How to Hire a Nanny Who Matches Your Parenting Philosophy
You plan to hire a nanny. You want her to handle your kids in a manner consistent with your parenting philosophy. How can you accomplish that objective?
- 1. Spend some time thinking about the specifics of your parenting philosophy. If you want your nanny to match your philosophy, you first need to know what that philosophy is. That may sound obvious, but many of us parent without thinking a lot about why we do what we do. Those underlying philosophies become important when hiring a nanny. For example, when your kids ask “Why?” do you treat that as challenging your parental authority or as young minds trying to understand the rationale for the things that happen in their world? If your kids back-talk you, do you hold a firm line on accountability for bad behavior or do you ask your kids what they are feeling that is causing them to choose behaviors that they know are non-constructive? If your kids accidentally spill grape juice in the living room, is that to be met with redirection for the poor choice of taking grape juice out of the kitchen and into the living room, or is that to be met with a response that validates the lesson learned (i.e., that there is a good reason that kids should not take grape juice out of the kitchen and into the living room). If your kids behave in a manner that deviates significantly from expectations, is spanking ever an acceptable response? Hierarchical parenting, egalitarian parenting, strict parenting, lenient parenting, etc. . . . these and many other philosophies needs to be considered so that you can determine which best matches your parenting style.
- 2. Once you have fleshed out the details of your parenting philosophy, you can form interview questions that will help you assess what your nanny candidates’ philosophies are. For example, you could ask the following interview question, “Would you tell me about a time when one of the grade school kids in your care back-talked you and how you responded to that?” Additionally, you should observe your nanny candidates’ non-verbal communications: do her words match her actions?
- 3. Once all your interviews are complete, you can select the nanny who most nearly reflects your parenting philosophy.