By Rebecca Nelson Lubin
ISYN Guest Author

My favorite scene on Bravo’s new original scripted series “Odd Mom Out” is where the Uber Alpha East Side Mom Brooke urged her sister in law Jill to “staff up” and procure a nanny. Jill (the odd mom out of the title) asks what nanny agency she should call. The overly confident and bitchy Brooke laughs off that idea and takes Jill to a popular children’s museum where they can observe the nannies from a high balcony and decide which one to poach, like big game hunters seeking out the best trophy. It is a delicious scene to watch.

So, my fellow nannies, a show of hands, who has been poached on this blog? And let’s not leave the parents out. Who reading this has been guilty of being a big bad poacher? I myself have been poached twice in my nanny career, plucked out of what previously seemed just peachy a position and led towards greener pastures. The first time I was poached, it was by a good friend who offered me a significantly higher salary than I was receiving at the job I have actually loved for a little over a year. How could I say no? Better pay, working with a friend, and the promise of fun travel on the horizon. I jumped ship and never regretted my decision. My friend and I worked together for an agreed upon contacted year, and you know what? It was great. I made more money and received better benefits and travelled with the family to far-flung fun places.

 My second poaching proposal (Several years and another job later) around came my way as a second hand secret. One of the mom’s I was friendly with on the playground had floated my name to her friend who was expecting. Mom A (my friend) had gotten out of me what it would take to leave my job, and had told Mom B. (Her friend.) Mom B had Mom A make me an offer. It was all very mob like. I didn’t even get to meet the Big Lady until it was already agreed via our go between that I could be had for a raise, medical benefits, and paid sick days, paid vacation days and paid bank holidays. And poof – just like that I was plucked off the playground to a new position. Again, I had no regrets and I equally adored my new job along with the perks my old job had not offered.

Now this is not to say that I am the type to jump ship at the drop of a hat, continually seeking out greener pastures. I have been stubbornly loyal to many jobs, no matter how pretty and shiny the poacher might be, and there have been some mighty tasty threads dangled in my face over the years. I have said no to a pitch of “more money and less hours” because truthfully, I just really liked the family I was already with. Starting over with an adorable baby who sleeps all day? No thank you. That 90’s television actress I crossed paths with in my neighborhood Whole Foods who was toting an adorable toddler? Yes, I told her with a smile, I was a Nanny. But no, I said, still smiling, I was not available.

Sometimes we can be so satisfied with what we already have that even the shiniest of stars cannot sway us away. And perhaps that is the real answer with poaching. If your nanny is happy with her job, then nothing and nobody can steal her away.

Rebecca Nelson Lubin is a nanny and writer who resides in Marin County, California. You can follow her writing at
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Lacy said...

I have been poached twice in 8 years as a nanny and accepted, other times declined. Always for better pay, hours, benefits, and less responsibility. I was poached once at a park, the parent like the way I interacted with the kids, kept boundaries, was fun, and not on my phone-- this was one I declined. Another, MB loaned me to her friend who was in a pickle, again I declined, I was hired on and didn't want to risk my review. Another mom at the baby/toddler group however did get me to leave a job for hers-- it worked out great. My first poach a friend told a friend about me what I make and my hours, next thing I knew at a pool party I had a newer and better job.

My next one is a border line poach-- I was working for 2 families part time the morning family wanted more hours, after much negotiation I quit the other family; this didn't last long a month into she decrease my hours by 75% (turns out she just needed more help for that small chunk of time). I then go on to find a new family and this MB through a fit over me NOT wanting her ten pathetic hours.

Gianluca of ISYN said...

Welcome back Rebecca! We love your writing! Perhaps your unique perspective will inspire other similarly vetted nannies to share their own tales. :)

PS Among the ISYN Team, we have
A poacher, an oft attempted poachee and a SAHM currently scheming to poach a West Side nanny.

Jen said...

I get poaching attempts almost monthly in my area. I live in a very competitive market. I have never accepted. Something about the poaching process seems shady as heck to me! I don't mind if someone says: when does your contract end or can you let me know when your schedule frees up?

But I won't just walk out on a job for enticements. If I'm working, it's because I'm being paid well and am receiving great benefits. So unless they want to pay me to stay home, there's nothing they can offer me.

Blythe said...

Ha! Most "poaching" attempts went through my former employer. ("Are you planning on having Blythe work for you this summer? Because if not...") Not really poaching so much as scavenging. I think my employer felt slightly worried, though!

I did have an experience (on top of a mountain, no less) when a fellow hiker saw me with my four kids.
"Are these all yours?" she asked.
"Oh, no, I'm their nanny."
"And you take them hiking?!"
"Well, of course."
"Oh! Oh. Well. My brother is looking for a good nanny. Would you give me your phone number?"

Um, no. Because, see, I already have this job...

Anonymous said...

I actually had a single mom hire me previously but then quickly decided that her mom would care for the baby for 3 months(in my head what will you do when mom leaves). Meanwhile I was offered a great Live in position with a really AWESOME family which I accepted. The single mom begins texting me asking if I'm happy in my current job and what she could do to "steal " me away. I told her she missed out and that I would continue to babysit but that's about all I could offer her. I'm still with the family that hired me after she took her offer back it will be a year in December and I'm glad I decided to stay. I just thought it hilarious that she would even have the nerve to ask to "steal" me!!!