Many domestic job-seekers wish they could unlock the secret formula to winning the hearts and minds of a family. What, they wonder, is that unique combination of skills and values that make some domestic employee so in-demand. Why do some nannies garner such high salaries – in some cases earning over $65,000. Why do the top 1% of elite nannies earn $100,000 + annually?
Every employer is looking for a specific set of skills that match the skills necessary to perform a particular job. That’s a given. But beyond these job-specific technical skills, certain skills are nearly universally sought. Those who master these skills are sought-after by America’s finest families seeking private childcare and represented by the very best nanny agencies.
Skills Most Sought After by Premier Client Families
So, what are these critical employability skills that separate the cream from the milk?
Communications Skills (listening, verbal, written). By far, the one skill mentioned most often by employers is the ability to listen, write, and speak effectively. Successful communication is critical. Also, the ability to speak a 2nd language such as Spanish, French, Mandarin or Cantonese is nice, but it’s the proven ability to teach a child a 2nd language that separates a nanny from the rest of the pack.
Analytical Skills. The ability to assess a situation, seek multiple perspectives, gather more information if necessary, and identify key issues that need to be addressed. The best domestics have a talent for identifying, scrutinizing, improving and streamlining childcare/household processes and procedures.
Computer Literacy. Almost all jobs now require some basic understanding of computer hardware and software, especially word processing, spreadsheets, and email – and domestic employees are no exception. Whether it’s creating a childcare or household manual or creating checklists and inventories – great computer skills are paramount.
Flexibility. Executive families seek flexible team players that are able to adept to changing work conditions and assignments. They must be highly adaptable and open to new ideas and not stuck in a “well this is how I’ve always done things” mindset. The best nannies are mobile, positive, resilient, and open to new ideas.
Managing Multiple Priorities. Executive nannies are stellar project managers with ability to juggle multiple concurrent projects…and multiple children! To do this they must have the ability to design, plan, organize, and implement tasks. The best nannies have extraordinary energy levels and an absolute obsession with results.
Interpersonal Abilities. The ability to relate to your co-workers, inspire others to participate, and mitigate conflict with co-workers is essential given the amount of time spent at work each day. Failing to master this essential job function can derail (and sink) the career of an aspiring executive nanny. Don’t work with coworkers? You’re not off the hook. You will still interact with your families extended relatives, friends, teachers and coaches. To succeed you must be a relationship builder with unsurpassed ability to foster professional relationships.
Honesty and Integrity. Employers probably respect personal integrity more than any other value, especially because you are working in their private sanctuary, the home. For executive families, trust is not given readily. You must earn it.
Dedication combined with Strong Work Ethic. Employers desire those who love what they do and will keep at it until they solve the problem and get the job done. Think tenacity personified.
Reliability. There’s no question that all employers desire employees who will arrive to work every day — on time — and ready to work, and who will take responsibility for their actions. They are dependable and responsible.
Loyalty. Employers want employees who will have a strong devotion to the employer—at all times and even in challenging circumstances. Just like fair weather friends there are fair weather employees. Good professional relationships endure through good and bad times. They know you “have their back”. Executive nannies have a history of loyal relationships that not only last years and decades – but may span a lifetime.
Motivation and Passion. The job-seekers who get hired and the employees who get promoted are the ones with drive and passion — and who demonstrate this enthusiasm through their words and actions. This also includes confidence in your skills, education, and abilities.
Self-Motivated. While teamwork is always mentioned as an important skill, so is the ability to work independently, with minimal supervision. You must be self-motivated and work with little or no supervision.
Willingness to Learn. No matter what your age, no matter how much experience you have, you should always be willing to learn a new skill or technique. Jobs are constantly changing and evolving, and you must show an openness to grow and learn with that change. Executive nannies are enthusiastic, knowledge-hungry learners. They are eager to meet challenges and quickly assimilate new concepts.
Cambridge Nanny Group
4707 N Broadway
Chicago, IL 60640