April 23, 2016 — By Wendy Sachs
Employee/employer relationships are important in the workplace environment. Being a nanny, housekeeper, household manager, or tutor is no different. These relationships take place in a more intimate setting because you are working in your employer’s home. Good tips for developing, and maintaining, these relationships in a healthy manner include:
Establish a connection. For long term jobs, the interview process is key. While the family may be interviewing you for the position, you are also interviewing them. Is this a good personality match and could I see myself working for this family are good questions to ask yourself. For temp jobs, a brief telephone conversation is a good way to get to know the family and find out any important tidbits about the upcoming work day.
Set expectations. Ask about any house rules and daily routines. For childcare, ask what the kids can, and cannot, do throughout the day. What activities, food, and technology are allowed? For cleaning and household management, what tasks need to be completed throughout the day? What is a priority?
Discuss communication. How would the family like you to communicate? Will they leave a list for you to check off throughout the day? Are there times throughout the day when they would like you to call or text? Even if you communicate throughout the day, it is good practice to provide a recap when the family arrives home.
Check in. For long term jobs, request that time be set aside to check in with your employer. Where are you in your position? Are there any barriers you would like to discuss? What is working and what needs improving?
Maintain a professional relationship. Household employers and employees work closer than other workplace environments, making it easier to share more personal information than one normally would. Create a boundary to ensure that personal and work life does not intertwine.