What makes a good babysitter? We all ask ourselves that, and being an agency that hires babysitters I am always looking for key elements that make a good babysitter. Everyone you interview will say they just love children but you need to know WHY they love children. As we all know children are lovable and difficult at the same time. We love them and they have the innate ability to push our buttons. Babysitters are no longer what they used to be. We want them to tutor, transport, teach, organize, and engage with our children while keeping our homes tidy. Here are some qualities I look for when interviewing and honed in on after 9 years of hiring babysitters.
Qualities that make a great babysitter:
- Problem solving skills. It is important that a babysitter can use "common sense" when dealing with children. Children always have the ability to turn our world upside down from the time they begin crawling, and a babysitter needs to be able to think on their feet.
- They must have a good sense of integrity and professionalism. If a potential babysitter presents themselves as someone that just wants a job and that babysitting is no big deal is a definite NO.
- Dependability is essential in order for your family to operate on schedule. A babysitter who doesn't have respect for your time and your family's time isn't the professional you're looking for.
- An ease with children. When a child comes into the room they immediately acknowledge them and, if appropriate, they kneel or sit down to see them face to face if they are toddlers.
- An openness and friendliness that your intuition feels good about. Your gut or intuition, so to speak, will help you more then anything when dealing with babysitters.
- Experience with children is necessary since they will inherently know what it means to take care of children; the love, hugs, and chaos that a child can bring to a day plus what things love to do and be able to engage with them appropriately.
These qualities are important but keep in mind that you know your children best and that you will know a good babysitter when you find one if anything gives you a red flag. There are a couple of things you need to understand. You shouldn't keep a babysitter just because your children love them. If the babysitter isn't professional and is disrespectful of your time you can find another. Parents always make the mistake of keeping a babysitter because their children love them. Children are so much more flexible then you think and they will love another babysitter that will work for your family and not just the kids.