Nanny Job Interview Tips

As a nanny or au pair, you will be expected to possess a specific skill set, demeanor and attitude. When it comes time for the nanny interview, you will have the opportunity to show the family that you might be working for exactly what you have to offer in these areas.

How do you prepare for the nanny interview?

The most important thing to remember is that a nanny interview is no different from any other job interview and all of the basic rules apply. These rules include:

Dress your best: Wear something professional (no jeans or t-shirts), which for girls is generally trousers or pencil skirts matched with button-down tops and blazers. For guys, a basic suit with a crisp shirt and tie is best.

Do some research: You should not only learn as much as possible about a potential family, but you should also research different child care techniques and current issues in the field. Pick up copies of child care and education magazines to stay on top of trends, and prepare answers to some commonly asked questions. These questions include: Why do you want to work with children?

How do you handle discipline/behavioral problems? What experience do you have with children (be sure to say more than what is on your resume here)?

Ask good questions: One of the best interview rules is to never leave without asking questions. Asking questions during your nanny interview is the best way to show that you have a real interest in the family, field and position. If at the end of the interview you cannot think of anything that hasn’t already been answered, make sure that you reiterate your interest in the position, and ask a follow-up question like “What do you think a nanny needs to do to be successful in your family?” The question may have already been answered, but the family should appreciate your desire to hear more about exactly what they are looking for in a candidate.

Be polite: This may sound like a simple task, but in some nanny or au pair interviews, parents or agencies might actually try to rattle you during the interview. Since they will be looking for a nanny with patience and self-control, they might try to test those things with the questions they ask. The best thing to do is remember to smile and be polite. Refer to your interviewers as “sir,” “ma’am” or by their last name, unless told to do otherwise. No matter how things go, make sure to thank them for the opportunity, and offer to follow-up in a given time frame.

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