Good communication is a crucial factor in a nanny-parent relationship – its importance can not be emphasized enough. This is primarily because the relationship between you and the parents of the kids you’re managing is sensitive. Clear communication between nannies and families is a key element for great relationships.
As rewarding as being a nanny can be, if there isn’t proper communication and feedback between you and your nanny family, your relationship will be strained and unproductive.
Proper and quality communication will do the opposite and foster healthy, beautiful relationships, interactions, and growth for all the parties involved – you, the kids, and their parents.
To maintain a seamless and successful partnership, nannies must engage in frequent, high-quality contact with the parents of the children in their care.
Below are helpful tips by which you can foster quality communication with your nanny family so that your contributions and help will be maximized.
1. Implement a Family/Nanny Communication Culture from the Start
Be sure to communicate and be transparent with your potential new nanny families about your expectations from the interview process onwards. Then, after the decision has been made, discuss it with them and be intentional about implementing a communication culture. Finally, let them see the reasons why clear communication is necessary for a healthy relationship between the both of you.
If you’re already in a nanny-parent relationship with no established communication culture, it’s not too late to start.
Below are ways you can establish a communication culture:
I. Pay attention and listen during every conversation.
II. Inform them about everything they need to know. Be honest and transparent.
III. Carry them along when making decisions, especially if the decision will affect the kids.
IV. Establish a routine of communication.
If communication between nannies and families is a high priority for both parties, the relationship will strengthen and all expectations will be clear.
2. Establish Effective Channels of Communication
There is only so much you can do about communication between nannies and families if there aren’t effective channels by which you can carry it out. Figure out what channels of communication would work perfectly for both of you. There isn’t a fixed solution here; both parties must come together to find a mutually beneficial time.
Based on your expectations and agreement, some parents may prefer face-to-face conversations every other day to stay updated. Some parties might prefer a detailed report and such. Others might require daily and frequent reports such as regular and live pictures of their child and actions.
The key here is to find something both of you would find convenient and productive.
3. Don’t Make Assumptions; Ask Questions for Clarification
One of the best communication practices to foster productive interactions is always to ask questions. Whenever you find anything confusing or strange, rather than making assumptions, it is better to ask questions to clarify the situation.
4. Communicate and Give Regular Updates on Important Topics
As a nanny, you will be involved in many vital aspects of the child’s life. As such, it is essential to have regular and transparent discussions on different topics to ensure both parties are on the same page.
Below is a list of topics that should be discussed with your nanny family regularly:
Feeding is an important aspect of a child’s growth and development. It is important to discuss whether or not your responsibilities as a nanny would involve feeding the kids placed in your care. If they would be, discuss with your mom-boss or dad-boss to get all the necessary information you’ll need.
Having the ability to set age-appropriate boundaries and a discipline method is often necessary to help teach children and to establish safe perimeters. As it pertains to discipline, discuss with your nanny family which methods they like to use and what they hope from you.
Children always exert a high amount of energy during the day. Sleeping or napping is a great way to keep them rejuvenated. Discuss sleeping routines for the children with your mom boss and dad boss so that you can help build effective sleep hygiene for the kids.
Other Helpful Tips
- Discuss issues as soon as they arise.
- Keep your nanny family updated regularly, especially regarding their children’s needs.
- Communicate with clear and neutral tones.
- Be honest, direct, and transparent.
- Try as much as possible to have face-to-face conversations.
- Be empathetic and flexible.
- Keep a friendly and positive demeanor.
A nanny’s role goes beyond just employment. You play a vital role in a child’s development as well as the functioning of a family and household. You contribute significantly to children’s and families daily lives.
Your role and the part you play in your nanny family’s home will function much more smoothly with effective and regular communication, and everyone will feel more appreciated.