(Not) Burning Bridges...

Received Wednesday, July 7, 2010
perspective and opinion I was a nanny for a family for two years. I worked 50 hours a week for a couple that "worked" from home. We went on vacations together and they even had two new babies during my time with them. We had a wonderful relationship for the first year, but year two really became a struggle for me. I even posted a rant on this site seekiing advice. Eventually, I left the job, before things got too tense and confontational. I moved on, got a 9-5 job, and went back to school. I had no contact with the family for about a year. It broke my heart to leave the family, but it was the healthiest thing to do for all of us.

In the last year, the family has started to contact me for childcare, petcare, ect. I was so very excited to hear from them and to be able to reconnect with the people that had shared the last few years with me. It has been a wonderful situation. The family know they can trust me with anything. That makes me feel great. I just wanted to let parents and nannies know the importance of being professional during a transitional period. I know it is tempting for either party to take an "f you" stance when relationships go sour. But in the long run, we all care about the same thing. THE CHILDREN. Burning bridges may be satisfying at the time, but in the long run, it is generally best to keep in mind that adult relationships change naturally. Our needs and what we can bring to a relationship can evolve without us being totally aware of it. Being an adult in these situations can help sustain meaningful long term relationships even after an nanny's stay has ended. That's all. Just wanted to share! Thanks!


Angelina said...

What a great story with a great happy ending. I wish all families/nannies could end on such good terms.

nannyfran said...

Thanks for sharing this! It is important to remember.

Do you mind me asking how you made that transition to a new job? I am currently trying to move from nannying into a more conventional position and am finding it difficult.


OP said...

Thanks, guys. I was more than happy to share this story!

Nannyfran, getting back in to the more traditional work force was tough. First, it is important to work on your resume. A childcare job will contain certain information on a resume used for childcare and need to be re-worked for for a traditional job. Instead of stating potty training, meal prep, and arts and crafts, focus on "real world" skills.

Include things like being aware of non verbal cues, your ability to be proactive in preventing problems instead of being reactive to trouble, managing multiple tasks, ect. Most corporate employers are not interested in how well you can fold laundry, change a diaper, or engage a toddler. Try to relate the skills you have learned as a nanny to the position you seek.

Next, apply, apply, apply! The interview process for 9-5 jobs are very different from nanny interviews. You might blow the first few interviews ( I sure did!). It takes practice and you'll learn from each one. I suggest coming up with several examples of problem solving and excellent customer service from your nanny jobs. Think about some ways you were able to effectively communicate with your child care employers to improve a situation or implement new routines. These will be helpful in showing what you have to offer. And NEVER complain or rant about your previous employer. That is tacky and no one wants to hire a whiner or gossip.

And don't forget that it is okay to start small. Entry level positions are great for getting familiar with what is expected in an office or new field of work. No job is forever, so it is okay to get your feet wet somewhere and it will help diversify your resume.

Best of luck!