Interviewing Your Nanny or Babysitter

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woman talking to someoneIt is crucial that you find someone you trust to take care of your child. And it can be nerve-wracking interviewing potential caregivers. Here’s a list of questions you may find helpful when speaking with possible nannies and babysitters.

Basic Questions:

  • What experience do you have?
  • What hours are you available?
  • Is your schedule flexible?
  • Do you have reliable transportation? Do you require transportation?
  • Are you looking for live-in accommodations?
  • Do you have a clean driving record? (If she/he will be driving your kid(s) around)
  • What salary range are you expecting?
  • Would you be willing to perform other duties? (cleaning, cooking, etc.)
  • When can you start?
  • How long do you plan on working in this position? What are your future plans?
  • Do you have references?
  • Have you ever taken a CPR class?
  • Can I run a background check on you?

Child care questions:

  • What is your child rearing philosophy?
  • Are you willing to follow my direction in caring for my child?
  • How do you handle discipline?
  • What got you interested in this line of work?
  • What is your ideal day spent taking care of children like?
  • Do you have any special talents?
  • What are you favorite activities to do with children?
  • How do you cope with frustrations?
  • What would you do in this scenario? (Come up with a couple scenarios, such as the child seems ill, or an injury occurred, or it’s raining and the kids are bored, etc.)

You may have more questions than this, and that’s great. You’ll probably have questions that are specific to your lifestyle and schedule. For example, you may need care on an occasional weekend or overnight. Or perhaps you’re looking for a bilingual nanny or babysitter. Add your questions to the list so it reflects your needs.

Finally, have the potential care giver meet your child or children. Watch the interaction between them. And most of all, trust your gut. If you have an odd or bad feeling, trust it. You may not be able to provide any real evidence that supports that feeling, but your intuition picked up on something, and it’s better to be safe than sorry. Once you’ve done a thorough job screening potential care givers, you’ll feel comfortable and confident, and your children will benefit from all your diligence!

What do you think? Interviewing Your Nanny or Babysitter

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20 comments

  1. Avatar of Denise Denise says:

    My son grandmother is his nanny so no interviewing for me.

  2. Avatar of LIZ says:

    very good article, give me so much information i didnt know

  3. Avatar of Alanna Alanna says:

    These are very helpful things to consider.

  4. Avatar of Heatherly Heatherly says:

    This makes the most sense to me. Thanks for posting!

  5. Avatar of Heatherly Heatherly says:

    I knew of a woman once that had a strong British accent. The sad thing was, neither one of her parents did…they were truly both Californians. Why? When this woman was young, her Nanny was a Brit. She spent more time with this woman rather than her parents.

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  8. Avatar of allie_cat allie_cat says:

    i would defiantly use these questions if i ever needed a baby sitter but i have sisters to watch matthew

  9. Avatar of Aimee Aimee says:

    Awesome line of questions! I’ve already had these questions asked of me and I work as a PK teacher for 3-5 year olds. I’ve also been working in my field for 13 plus years. Don’t be afraid to ask these questions at all!

  10. Avatar of ChrisS ChrisS says:

    Great info. Very useful!

  11. Avatar of Lisa Lisa says:

    I agree! This is a great guideline for choosing the right person for the job :)

  12. Avatar of Verucap Verucap says:

    I’m definitely going to be using this as a guideline in a few months.

  13. Avatar of Babyma Babyma says:

    it should good information about this..

  14. Avatar of Debbie Debbie says:

    great Information for all parents..

  15. Avatar of LostinCT LostinCT says:

    good start.. thanks

  16. Avatar of Ade Lina Ade Lina says:

    I would first ask family and friends if they knew someone to recommend. Someone that they knew personally that is experienced in providing quality childcare. I would have a very hard time leaving my infant with someone that I did not have some sort of prior relationship with. If you have to consider this, then I think the statement in the article about watching the interaction between the caregiver and the child would be important. Possibly even have the care giver spend a day or two interacting with the child, where the child will be cared for, and you can get a sense of the conditions your child will be in when you are away.

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