Interview Tips for Nannies

  • Dress casual, but neat. Look presentable while giving the impression that you are willing to get down on the floor and play or interact with children.
  • Hair + make-up are in good order; don’t wear too much perfume and jewelry.
  • Travel time, if you are lost or delayed (run into traffic) ALWAYS call the family to say you are running late.
  • Do not arrive too early.
  • Turn off your cell phone during the interview.
  • Make sure to show your interest in the children and interact with the children.
  • Ask to wash your hands before holding infants or small children (parents really appreciate this).
  • Be sure to show enthusiasm about childcare.
  • Offer information about your children experience and special training. Have references on hand for the prospective employer, in case they would like to contact your past employers.
  • No bad-mouthing about previous employers!! Be very polite and personable.
  • Try to keep interview focused on your strengths as a caregiver.
  • Do not get side tracked with personal questions (too much about your personal life is not relevant to the job you are applying for).
  • Ask any questions you may have about the job expectations inquire about a typical days, get a good feel for the job. Remember, you are making a commitment, if you take a job (so make sure it is the right one).
  • When you decide to go for the interview on a long term basis be aware that every family will be interested in hiring a nanny who can make at least one-year commitment. They don’t like to change a nanny every few months!

Typical Interview Questions

  • Why do you want to be a nanny?
  • What qualifies you to do this type of work?
  • Be prepared to give dates of when you worked and ages of the children you cared for.
  • What types of activities do you like to do with children?
  • How do you handle a child that is a picky eater?
  • How do you handle an emergency situation?
  • What do you do when a child is crying? What if the child cries all day?
  • How do you handle a child that is misbehaving?
  • What do you think a typical day would be like with the children?
  • Have you ever toilet trained child? What was your experience like, and what techniques did you use?
  • What is your background? Tell us about your family.
  • Describe your personality.
  • Are you willing to do lots of outside activities?
  • Are you comfortable being both a nanny and a housekeeper?
  • Are you flexible to occasionally stay a little bit later during the week?
  • Are you in good health? Do you smoke?
  • Are you a good driver? Any accidents in your past?
  • How often do you take vacations? Are you willing to coordinate some vacation with a family vacation, so that family is on vacation at the same time?>
  • Describe what your discipline philosophy.
  • Describe how you work within parent requirements for child supervision (e.g., children doing chores, limited T.V. time, meal time etc.)
  • Are you comfortable with constructive criticism?
  • What did you like about your most recent job? What did you not like?
  • What is your educational background?
  • Have you completed any childcare related courses or do you have any special training?

NOTE: Think carefully and answer their questions as clear as possible.

It is a good idea to prepare few questions in advance so that you are not caught unaware when asked if you have any questions during your interview.

  1. The family lifestyle.
    • What is your work schedule?
    • If one or both parents work at home?
    • Do you plan to buy a cat? (if you are allergic)
  2. Job responsibilities and structure: (topics)
    • Arranging play dates
    • Baby’s laundry
    • Children’s room neat and organized
    • Toys clean and organized
    • Are there any duties in addition to childcare: family laundry, grocery shopping, errands, starting dinner, light housekeeping. Ask for specifics.
  3. If Live-In
    • What accommodations are available for the nanny?
    • If the family is providing car, what are the limitations on its use?
    • Can friends visit me?
    • What are the family expectations during off duty hours? Must the nanny disappear?
    • Does the nanny have her own phone? How is the phone bill handled?
  • Happy nanny
  • Thumbnail image
  • White house
  • Elderly couple
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