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For Nannies For Parents

Happy Pride Month

 

“Happy Pride” from the The Nanny Solution team! It’s Pride month and we want to celebrate all of our wonderful LGBTQ families, nannies, and staff. We are in awe of all that you have stood up for and achieved over the years, and we are here to offer our support as the fight for equality continues. Every day, you remind us that love and acceptance is what truly makes a family! 

This week, we’ve put together a list of children’s books for parents and nannies to share with little ones to help teach them about the history of Pride and to celebrate all genders and sexual orientations.

Books about Pride (Click on the image for more details)

 

“Stonewall: A Building, an Uprising, a Revolution” by Rob Sanders

“Rainbow: A First Book of Pride” by Michael Genhart

“This Day in June” by Gayle E. Pitman”

“Love is Love” by by Michael Genhart

Books about same-sex parents / families

 

“And Tango Makes Three” by Justin Richardson & Peter Parnell

“Mommy, Mama, and Me” & “Daddy, Papa, and Me” by Leslea Newman

“Love Makes a Family” by Sophie Beer

“Stella Brings the Family” by Miriam B. Schiffer

“A Family is a Family is a Family” by Sara O’Leary

Books about LGBTQ children

 

“Phoenix Goes to School” by Michelle & Phoenix Finch

“Sparkle Boy” by Leslea Newman

“Jack (Not Jackie)” by Erica Silverman

“Morris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress” by Christine Baldacchino

Books about LGBTQ characters

 

“Red: A Crayon’s Story” by Michael Hall

“King & King” by Linda de Haan

“Princess Princess Ever After” by Katie O’Neill

“Jerome By Heart” by Thomas Scotto

If you have any other LGBTQ children’s book recommendations, we’d love to add them to our own lists. Feel free to email us at info@thenannysolution.ca Happy Pride!

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For Nannies Newborn Care Specialist

How becoming a Newborn Care Specialist Can Help Your Career

 

The Nanny Solution is delighted to announce that we are now adding newborn care to the professional childcare services we offer! If you’re not already a trained and certified Newborn Care Specialist, but you love working with newborns and want to help support new parents, you can complete your training online through the Newborn Care Solutions Institute.

Why should I become a certified Newborn Care Specialist?

Newborn Care Specialists support parents by assisting with sleep, feeding schedules, and infant development during the first weeks of their newborn’s life. NCS have a lot of autonomy in their role, and often work independently with minimal guidance from the parents. They are hired as baby whisperers and parent lifesavers — and they are in high demand! If you already have a passion for working with newborns and infants, getting trained and certified as a Newborn Care Specialist can help you turn that passion into a professional career.

How will this help my professional childcare career?

As Newborn Care Specialists are hired to support families during the first 3 to 6 months of their newborn’s life, they are hired on short-term contracts and able to work up to 4 or 5 placements in a single year. The more placements you are hired for, the higher your earning potential. In addition, just like in any other field, completing more training and gaining experience puts you in a position to earn a higher rate of pay. As such, NCS typically earn a higher salary than a traditional Nanny — sometimes $3-$8 more per hour than the average Nanny rate.

How do I become a Newborn Care Specialist?

There are many several different training and certification programs available, some of which are online/virtual and some that are in-person. When you’re looking for a program to enrol in, look out for ones that 1) will specifically prepare you for NCS certification, 2) are accredited by an independent organization, 3) are taught by an instructor teaching evidence-based practices, 4) have positive reviews from past participants, and 5) provide you with the option of becoming a certified NCS, rather than simply offering a certification of participation. You may also want to consider getting additional specific childcare training in areas such as sleep conditioning, breastfeeding/chestfeeding, lactation training, and/or Postpartum Doula training, as this training will make you an even more qualified and desirable NCS candidate.

For more information about the newborn care services we will be offering or how to become a Newborn Care Specialist, feel free to email us at info@thenannysolution.ca or Contact Us for more details.

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For Nannies

The one thing that makes all the difference in an interview

 

Over the past 20+ years, our agency has noticed that there are some Nannies who get every single job they interview for. Are they the most qualified? Do they have the most experience? Is their resume overly impressive? Not always. So, what is it that sets these Nannies apart? Why do they always seem to get hired over the other qualified applicants? It comes down to one thing — emotional intelligence.

Okay, but what is emotional intelligence?

Emotional intelligence (EQ) refers to one’s ability to perceive, evaluate, and control emotions both in themselves and in others. EQ is often thought of in contrast with cognitive intelligence (IQ), and some experts even believe that it is more important than IQ in determining your overall success in life. 

It is thought that there are 5 key elements that make up emotional intelligence:

  1. Self-awareness
  2. Self-regulation
  3. Motivation
  4. Empathy
  5. Social skills

How can these 5 elements help in a job interview? 

Self-awareness
Self-awareness refers to your ability to recognize and understand your own emotions, and the effect that they have on others. This is a useful skill to have in a job interview, as it helps to know how you’re presenting yourself, and how you’re being perceived by those interviewing you. A Nanny who is self-aware, and knows how to control their emotions and respond appropriately, is going to make a better impression than one who doesn’t recognize their own emotions and how others are reacting to them.

Self-regulation
Self-regulation involves managing your emotions and knowing how to express them appropriately. Those who have strong self-regulation skills are able to be flexible and adaptable to change, remain calm in stressful situations, and express their emotions in a healthy manner when/where it is appropriate to do so. In a job interview, which may be considered a “high stress” situation, the ability to self-regulate and remain calm is essential for making a good first impression.

Motivation
Your motivations are what causes you to act. Extrinsic motivation is when we perform a behaviour or engage in something because we want to earn some sort of reward (e.g., praise, recognition, payment, etc.) or avoid negative consequences (e.g., disappointing others, losing our job, not being able to pay bills, etc.). Intrinsic motivation, on the other hand, is when you engage in a behaviour because you find it rewarding. In this way, the behaviour itself is the reward. Intrinsic motivation is another emotional intelligence skill. Those with high intrinsic motivation take initiative, are goal-oriented, and are always looking for ways to improve — qualities that every employer values!

Empathy
Empathy (not to be confused with sympathy) refers to your ability to put yourself in others’ shoes and understand how they’re feeling. It involves active listening, considering things from the other person’s perspective, and responding appropriately. Empathy is essential in all social relationships, and if you’re able to convey it during your job interview, your potential employers are going to notice! 

Social skills
Social skills refer to your ability to interact and communicate with others in an effective way. These skills include active listening, verbal and nonverbal communication, appropriate body language and eye contact, and showing an interest in others. It may seem like the most obvious element of EQ, but it is often the one that is lacking during a job interview. If you know that social skills are something that you sometimes have difficulty with, we recommend practicing for your interview by getting a friend or partner to run through questions and give you constructive feedback before the actual interview. 

You may have the most impressive resume in the pile and years of experience under your belt, but without emotional intelligence, that is only going to get you so far in an interview. So, before your next interview, check in with yourself and evaluate where you’re at with the 5 key elements, and how you could improve in those areas. Demonstrating your EQ is always an asset in interviews!

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For Nannies

Sick and Tired of the Monday Morning Mess? Nanny Tips

You leave work on Friday with the house clean. You have cleaned up the dishes from the kids lunches, tidied up the playroom and put away the crafts. Monday morning rolls around and you come into a house that looks like a bomb went off. How do you deal with it? Silent resentment? Complain to the parents again? Let’s go over some tips to help you keep your sanity.

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For Nannies For Parents

What’s wrong with “manny”?

Gender InGen

You may have heard the term “manny” used to refer to a male nanny. Sure, it’s kind of cute, it’s kind of clever, but it’s also being used to gender a role/title that really doesn’t need to be gendered. The term “manny” is the masculinized version of “nanny”, which implies that “nanny” is inherently feminine. Nanny, however, is actually a gender-neutral term.

People of ALL genders can be nannies — after all, gender doesn’t determine whether or not someone has what it takes to be a professional caregiver. Using “manny” to refer to male nannies and “nanny” to refer to female nannies creates an unnecessary binary that excludes caregivers who are non-binary, transgender, intersex, or any other marginalized gender.

If this is all sounding a bit too Gender Studies 101, think of it this way… Nurse is not a gendered title. People of all genders are referred to as nurses, provided they have the training and qualifications. The same goes for teachers, chefs, pilots, and so on.

So the next time you go to use the term “manny”, consider using language that is inclusive of all genders by simply referring to them as a “nanny”. It’s really that simple!

To read more about using gender-neutral terminology, take a look at the links below:
Gender-Neutral Pronouns 101
30 Everyday Gender-Neutral Terms to Use
Guidelines for gender-inclusive language in English
An Employer’s Guide to Using Gender-Inclusive Language in the Workplace

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For Nannies

Oversharing at Work

 

When you’re working in a highly personal setting, like someone’s home, it’s easy to forget that you’re still at work and have to maintain a certain level of professionalism. Sometimes, the line between personal and professional is crossed, and you may end up oversharing with the family you work for. In fact, oversharing is one of the most common complaints we hear from families about the nannies they hire. So, what is oversharing and how can we avoid doing it? Read on to learn more about how to avoid the dreaded T.M.I. (too much information).

What is oversharing?

Oversharing is the act of disclosing an inappropriate amount of information about one’s personal life. In the context of the nanny/family relationship, this can show up in a number of ways and at any stage of the hiring and employment process. For example, during a job interview with a family the nanny may say something along the lines of “I’m just nannying until I can open my own daycare” or “I’m only nannying until I can land an acting role”. That’s oversharing and it makes the family (the employers) question your level of commitment to the job. Oversharing can also look like engaging in a friendly conversation with one of the parents, where they’re sharing details of their personal life — their marital issues, workplace drama, gossip about the neighbours, etc. — and the nanny reciprocates by disclosing intimate details about their own life. It’s common to develop a closeness with the family that you work for, but it’s important to remember that, at the end of the day, they are your employers. Would you tell your boss at any other workplace about your dating life, a messy breakup, or that party you went to over the weekend? Probably not.

How to avoid it

The first step to avoiding oversharing with your nanny family is to set boundaries right from the onset of the work relationship, and to maintain those boundaries throughout your employment. These boundaries can centre around what information you choose to share with your employers, which topics are off limits to talk about, whether or not you “friend” or “follow” your employers on social media, personal rules about not having a drink with your employers, and so on. Another way to avoid engaging in oversharing at work is to ask yourself “is this helpful for my employers to know?” and “will this make them question my childcare abilities?”. If the information is not useful or pertinent to your role as a professional childcare provider, it probably doesn’t need to be shared with your employers. If the information could make the employers view you in a negative light and question your abilities, it definitely doesn’t need to be shared with them.

Remember, it’s important to be authentic and give your nanny family the opportunity to bond with and get to know you. By avoiding oversharing, you’re simply ensuring that they get to know the best version of you!

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For Nannies

Wondering what to do with your ECE background? Become a Nanny!

 

An increasing number of Early Childhood Educators are leaving the daycare world and are finding professional jobs working as nannies in private homes. Parents want the best for their children and many families are choosing to hire in-home educators to provide one on one learning throughout the day.

Below, we’ve compiled a list of some of the reasons why ECEs are transitioning from working in a group environment to becoming professional Nannies.

Nannying gives you the opportunity to continue using your education
Do you have a diploma or degree in Early Childhood Education or Child and Youth Care? Being employed as a Nanny is a wonderful way to make use of that education. Nannies are not glorified babysitters; they are caregivers, teachers, and a source of support and guidance for children during their most formative years!

Less children = more time to form quality relationships
When you’re working one on one with a child, rather than with a group of children, you are able to develop a special relationship with them. You will form a close bond that they will likely remember and carry with them for the rest of their lives!

Competitive Wages
Nannies with ECE diplomas and backgrounds in Education are currently being paid $23-30 gross per hour.

Not paid “under the table”
As a Nanny, you are hired as an employee. You will receive a payslip, have taxes deducted from your pay, and receive a T4 at tax time. This also makes you eligible for Employment Insurance and other applicable government financial supports and subsidies.

Not required to do housekeeping
Nannies are not required to do housekeeping. Their primary purpose is to provide care for the child and ensure they are safe. Aside from tidying up after any meals or activities they may do with the children, Nannies do not need to do any cleaning for the family. In fact, many of our clients also hire housekeepers to take care of that.

Paid vacation
That’s right, Nannies get paid vacation, and often receive 2-6 weeks of paid vacation! Do you even need another reason to make the switch?

Health and safety
Working in a private home, as opposed to a daycare centre, means you’re exposed to far less bugs and viruses. You’re able to limit exposure and better protect yourself and any “at risk” people in your life, which is especially important in light of the recent global pandemic.

Appreciative parents
When you work for a family, the parents come to depend on you and regard you as part of the parenting team and family unit! You are invaluable to them and that level of appreciation sure feels nice.

More autonomy and independence
As a Nanny, the parents are your employer. Aside from that, you have autonomy and the ability to work independently without constant supervision. The family trusts that you know what’s best for the children and can make decisions and plan around that.

No workplace politics
When you work in a private home, there’s none of the usual workplace drama. No conflicts with co-workers, unfair power dynamics, lack of cooperation and communication, etc. When you’re just working with the family, the structure is far more simple.

It’s free to register with an agency
Working with an agency comes at absolutely no cost to the Nanny! The families pay the agency a finder’s fee.

Opportunities for fun field trips and activities
Taking the children out for a field trip or even to the park for an afternoon doesn’t require extensive planning, waivers, and coordination when you’re just working with one family. Think of all the fun places you can explore and activities you can do with the children in your city! When the weather is nice, you get to spend the days outside in fresh air.

World-wide travel (if that interests you)
Some families hire Nannies to travel or go on vacation with them as well. They cover the expenses and you have the opportunity to visit new places while also getting paid to do so!

Categories
For Nannies For Parents

Introducing The Nanny Solution

 

This month, Nannies on Call is celebrating its 20th birthday. To celebrate, we wanted to share the story of how it all began, and introduce you to our new sister company, The Nanny Solution!
 

Our story:

When working mom-of-two, Michelle Kelsey, started Nannies on Call in 2001, it was out of necessity — she couldn’t find trustworthy, high-end childcare for her daughters and it was impacting her life in a negative way. So, she created what she had longed for — a professional, easy-to-use, reliable Nanny service. Since then, Nannies on Call has pre-screened over 18,000 Nannies and provided 1,552,310 hours of on call childcare to families. Our Placement Team has connected over 26,000 families with exceptional Nannies and placed over 1,800 Nannies.

In 2021, twenty years later, Nannies on Call has had to evolve and adapt to the ever-changing needs of both clients and Nannies. We recognize that there is an increased need for safe, health-conscious, reliable child care. At the same time, parents’ and Nannies’ roles have also changed — they have to be educators, as well as caregivers. While many families are familiar with our on call babysitting services, they may be unaware that we also offer full-time and part-time Nanny placements to fulfill their ongoing child care needs. Our Nannies on Call team assessed the situation and saw an opportunity to provide a solution — The Nanny Solution.

The Nanny Solution is made up of the same knowledgeable, experienced staff and offers the same high-quality Nannies on Call service. We recruit educated, engaging, and experienced Nannies, and offer families personalized childcare solutions to fit their unique lifestyles.
 

About the Nanny Solution:

The Nanny Solution is dedicated to providing families with trustworthy, high-end childcare that is tailored to fit their unique needs and lifestyle.

Nannies who are hired have impressive skill sets, up to date certifications, and varying personalities. All our Nannies are educated, engaging, and adaptable. You tell us your situation, and we find you your personalized Nanny Solution.
 

All our Nannies have:

  • Clear Criminal Record Checks
  • Valid First Aid and CPR certification
  • A minimum of 2 years child care experience
  • Verified references

 

If you’re looking for a personalized childcare solution to fit your lifestyle, book a consultation with one of our Placement Managers to find out if The Nanny Solution has the right fit for your family.

Lisa Bruce – Book a consultation
BC, Alberta and Nationwide Searches
Ext 104
lisa@thenannysolution.ca

Kate McGeachin – Book a consultation
Ontario and Nationwide Searches
Ext 108
kate@thenannysolution.ca

Find us:
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COVID For Nannies

For Nannies: Practicing Gratitude During the Pandemic

 

These days, it’s easy to get caught in a spiral of negative thoughts. With all that’s going on in the world — a global pandemic, the tense political climate, racially-based violence, increased financial stress, a general feeling of uncertainty, we could go on and on — it’s hard to feel optimistic. That’s why now, more than ever, it’s important for us to practice gratitude and recognize the silver linings hiding in those big, dark clouds. Whether you simply have moments of silent reflection to think about the things that you are grateful for or you actively write in a gratitude journal each day, practicing gratitude can be both cathartic and healing. We have put together a list of a few things that Nannies have to be grateful for to help you get started.

Your own health
Be grateful that you are strong and in good health. Say “thank you” to your body for all it does and all it has gone through over the years.

Family and friends
Whether they live in the same household as us or we’ve only seen them over Zoom in the past 8 months, our family and friends are what’s really getting us through this. Their ongoing support, words of encouragement, shoulders to cry on, and moments of laughter are something to be grateful for.

Your Nanny family
Many families are also facing financial hardships and uncertainty, yet they still see the value in having you on as their Nanny. Have gratitude for the parents for continuing to employ you during this time when so many others have lost their source of income. Thank the little ones as well — for the joy, wonder, and curiosity they continue to bring into your life.

The gift of time
Without all of the usual social obligations and everyday responsibilities, many of us have more time on our hands than ever before. We are able to do things that we wouldn’t normally have time for — organizing, DIY projects, hobbies, reading, learning new skills, catching up on our Netflix watch list, and so on. Sometimes it may feel like all we have is time, but when we reflect on the alternative, we realize that this is actually something to be thankful for.

Less social pressure
Homebodies rejoice! Is there a better excuse to decline a social invitation than a global pandemic? We don’t think so. Your introverted side is grateful for the opportunity to recharge and engage in some self-care.

Self-reflection
These past 8 months have given us the time to sit back and really figure out what’s important in life. We’ve gained insight and clarity, allowing our priorities to shift. If you’re finding that you’re not sweating the small stuff as much as you did before, be grateful for this increased time for self-reflection.

Creativity
The societal changes and restrictions we’ve had to adapt to these past few months have forced us to get creative and find new ways of doing things. Have gratitude for our collective creativity and imagination!

The benefits for our planet
The earth says “thank you” and we should feel grateful too. Less emissions means we’re reducing our global carbon footprint, making the air cleaner for all. In some parts of the world, coral reefs are actually starting to grow again. Venice’s waterways are cleaner than they’ve been in decades. Our planet is slowly starting to heal and that is something to be incredibly thankful for!

Solidarity
The message everywhere is “we’re all in this together”. People are coming together to help each other out, we’re showing appreciation for our essential workers, and we’re finding that we are stronger and our voices are louder when we stand together. Have gratitude for the solidarity that we are demonstrating.

The Nanny Solution by Nannies on Call team is grateful for YOU, our wonderful Nannies who have stood by us through these difficult times. We truly wouldn’t be here today without you. Thank you!

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COVID For Nannies

Nanny Interviews in a COVID World

 

Job interviews look a lot different today than they did just 9 months ago. Can you even imagine beginning an interview with a friendly handshake these days? We can’t either. That’s why The Nanny Solution has put together a list of helpful tips and things to be mindful of when interviewing for a Nanny position.

Be flexible with the format
It is still possible that the employer will request an in-person interview; however, these days it is more likely that they will decide to host the initial interview virtually (over Zoom, Skype, Facetime, Whatsapp, etc.). You may not be familiar with all these formats, but it is important to be flexible and willing to use a different app than what you’re accustomed to. Everyone has a different take on how they want to host an interview — view this as an opportunity to demonstrate how adaptable you are before the interview’s even begun.

Test your technology
Make sure you’re prepared and have tested out your technology prior to the interview. It is important to do a test login and ensure your video and audio works beforehand, as there can sometimes be technical errors. You certainly don’t want to be late for your interview because you can’t log in.

Find out the family’s social distancing rules
If the interview is taking place in person, be sure to communicate with the family beforehand and find out what their preferences and safety protocols are. For example: Will you be meeting inside or outside? Will you be able to safely social distance? Do they want you to wear a mask? To be on the safe side, you should always bring a mask and your own hand sanitizer with you, and wash your hands upon entering the home or other indoor space.

Day-to-day details
Similarly, you should also ask about the family’s preferences for the day-to-day in the job. Will you be required to wear a mask at work at all times or only while indoors? Do they allow you to leave the house or just stay on the grounds? Can you visit a park? What are their rules about where their child/children is/are allowed to go? What sort of interactions do they have with those outside their household? What are the rules with family members coming over or friends stopping by for a playdate? It is important for you to have all this information prior to working with the family, so that you’re all on the same page and understand each other’s comfort levels and expectations.

Define roles and discuss scenarios
This is especially important if you’re going to be placed with a family where the parents are working from home. You should discuss roles, boundaries, and scenarios you may encounter with the parents beforehand, and develop a mutual understanding of what your duties are, as well as where and when they can step in. For more in-depth information, take a look at our blog post with 4 helpful tips for Nannies with parents working from home.

Discuss the family’s social and travel plans
With the holidays fast approaching and travel restrictions constantly being added or modified, it is important to discuss the family’s social and travel plans during that time. Will they be having family members or guests staying with them? If they’re coming from out-of-town, will they be quarantining? You should disclose your holiday plans to the family as well, and make sure everyone is comfortable with the plans and protocols that are in place.

In addition to the interview
There are typically more steps involved in the interview process these days — and that is a good thing! If you met your potential employer virtually, it is also a good idea to meet the family in person before officially accepting the position. It is important to see the space that you will be caring for the child/children in and make sure it works for you. It will also give you the opportunity to interact with the child/children and ensure it’s a good fit. Lastly, ask for a working trial shift (this should be paid, with a prearranged time and wage paid out beforehand).

Have a strong contract
As always, you must have a strong contract in place. In these exceptional times, the contract should include a section regarding COVID, sick time, and what will happen in those circumstances. Some points to consider are: If you or the employer are having any COVID-like symptoms, you should be paid for the time taken off. Do they (or you) require a negative COVID test in order to go back to work? Remember, our Placement Managers are always here to help if you have any questions regarding your contract.

Finally, be prepared to discuss all the potential “what if…” scenarios. It is a strange time, but by communicating and discussing these things ahead of time, it will hopefully alleviate a lot of uncertainty and stress down the road.

Best of luck on your interviews and landing that great new job. Check out our YouTube video on 5 Tips for your Video Interview.

Stay safe!