Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Creating Nanny Support Group Bylaws and Guidelines

Dealing with Nanny Support Group Behavior, Gossip, and Complaints

Photo of educational activity of learning CPR & First Aid with Nanny Alliance of New York and New Jersey

When forming a nanny support group it is important to help encourage members of the group to behave in a professional manner. To do that, create guidelines or bylaws for all members to follow.

Andrea Flagg of the Nanny Alliance of New York and New Jersey (NANYNJ) shares the NANYNJ Membership Guidelines as an example for other nanny support groups to follow.
Nanny Alliance of New York and New Jersey Membership Guidelines:

Membership is open to nannies on all levels. We kindly ask all group members to please:

1 . Respect everyone as an individual and understand that all members are appreciated and viewed as a benefit to the group.

2. Be honest about your true feelings when giving your input on all issues; we want you to know that you have a say in the group as a member.

3. Not gossip behind each others backs. We understand that not all individuals will click with all other members but please maintain a mature attitude. We want everyone to feel
welcome.

4. Honor the privacy of the members of the group and your employers. Do not refer to the family you work for by name.

5. Give the courtesy of a reply when moderators or other members of the group contact you even if it is to say, "Sorry, not interested."

6. If we do not hear from you for over two-months, we will assume you are no longer interested in the group, and your name will be removed from the member list. You are welcome you back at any time, but you will be asked to sign up as a new member again, which will require you to pay for a new membership.

7. Note: We are a professional organization and drugs and excessive drinking will not be permitted at any events or functions hosted by NANYNJ. Foul language is frowned upon.

8. We do not accept agencies or businesses as sponsors. We have listed businesses on our web site that have supported us in some way, (like exchanging a link to our web site).

The Yahoo Group for the Nanny Alliance of New York and New Jersey adds the following guidelines to those already described for their nanny support group above:

1. Any and all nannies are welcome. This Yahoo Group does not invite agencies, parents employing nannies, or businesses to become members. We do not welcome spamming of members. We monitor who joins the group. If you feel you have received spam from someone who may have gotten your address from our list please let us know.

2. Please do not post any personal contact information -- yours or the family for whom you work.

Do not post:
• Any of your employer’s contact information.
• Last names.
• Phone numbers.
• Addresses.
• Any specific charge and family information.

The group moderators will continue to closely monitor who joins the group, but since we have not yet had the opportunity to meet everyone in person, we can never be sure who is reading the posts.

Please note: Currently there are over 80 members. Therefore, we urge you to please think of your safety and the safety of the family for whom you work.

3. Please email individuals privately if your post pertains to just one person (such as a play date and meeting for dinner) since we do not want messages that are not intended for the group as a whole.

4. Please do not flame. This means if you disagree with someone's opinion you are free to disagree but do not put them down or make them feel like they are not entitled to their own opinions.

5. If a dispute occurs off list do not bring it to the group to solve. Please solve it amongst yourselves or email the moderators privately.
Do you have any other suggestions for nanny support group bylaws or guidelines?

7 comments:

Tara said...

Our group, Michigan Professional Nanny Association, has slightly more formal bylaws (a constant work in progress!). Because we have status as a nonprofit in the state of Michigan and are filing for IRS nonprofit status, we have bylaws regarding payment of dues, member suspension, board member suspension, etc. We have a risk management policy regarding illegal behaviour at official events. We also have an event policy...events held at private homes are open only to paid members and whoever else the hostess wants to invite. We have two yahoogroups for our organization...one that is only for paid members and one that is open to all nannies in Michigan (paid or unpaid). Thus, some events only get publicized on the members only group.

We also have bylaws regarding leadership roles and responsibilities.

Anonymous said...

Well...truth be told....despite being a group member and / or leader....those who run some groups have been known to "flame" themselves....
Hard to have nannies be seen as professionals when they "flame" and gossip within the groups. Sadly, those running the groups often get involved in the gossiping (arguments and fights) too.

djeterfann2 said...

I run an online community for nannies Worldwidenannies@yahoogroups.com. My group is a free online nanny support group. We have rules that help the group run smooth. We rarely have issues with the girls and if there is the discussion is closed my me or my moderator who are very active in the group. At between 700-1000 posts a month I can tell you these groups are very valuable. I have made friend throguh the group and some have been momeber for the whole ten years we have been around. Many nannies cannot afford to pay for a group support system and these groups allow them to speak to people who have jobs like them and get advice from nannies with over 15 years experiance. It can be lonely being a nanny if there arent many in your area. Live support groups are great but if there arent many nannies in your area then it can be extra hard. There are groups with gossip and such you just have to weed them out when looking for the right fit. Im all for the support groups. Anything that gives you a place to vent out with people who do the same thing as you helps. We dont have an office or office friends to vent to.
Jenn
worldwidenannies@yahoogroup.com OWNER
Nanny for 19 years

jobs for 13 year olds said...

Helpful post. thanks

Anonymous said...

These bylaws and guidelines are SO SO SO important. The gossiping negatively about parents and employers is my biggest problem with nanny groups and nannies. I guess you can't force people to not gossip. Nannies will always talk. But these guidelines are a good way to start.
Imani Okoro, Miami FL

Kim Peters said...

I feel that if a Nanny cannot vent to their fellow Nanny friends and acquaintances........THEN who can she go to when we are sometimes taken advantage of or have a disagreement with our employers or have a bad day with tempermental toddlers??????????

Anonymous said...

I understand what you are saying Kim. To expect us not to vent to someone is nuts. But I also understand venting professionally. Tell you husband or best friend not all the other nannies in town. Gossiping to others too much risks your bosses finding out.
Isabella Cruz
Chanhassen, MN