Monday, October 22, 2012
Importance of Nanny Mentors
Nurturing and mentoring seem to come naturally to nannies. Working as a nanny for more than two decades I understand the isolation and lack of support that can overwhelm full-time nannies. That's why I believe all nannies need a mentor.
I began mentoring many years ago and authored the International Nanny Association (INA) Mentor Program in 2002 and chaired the committee for a few years.
The Internet and Facebook provide outlets for nannies questions, frustrations, and support. But, when nannies feel isolated during their job search, need guidance on how to handle a job interview, or advice about working with job placement agencies, nannies still crave in-person, one-to-one, personal support.
Personal experiences provide powerful lessons for nannies. Mentors should make an extraordinary effort to coach, model, and share both their failures and their success stories with their protégé. Mentors who can talk about themselves and their experiences establish a rapport with other caregivers that need their encouragement.
Mentoring is a joint venture that works best as continuous learning. Successful mentoring requires shared responsibility that helps both he teacher nanny and the student nanny. Learning never ends when working as a nanny or when supporting others as a mentor.
Do you have good coaching skills, are an effective communicator, and are a positive role model to novice nannies? Then you have what it takes to be a mentor. Who has been your mentor in your nanny career?
Marni Kent has been working as a nanny for 26-years and was awarded the 2002 International Nanny Association Nanny of the Year. She is currently working and living in San Francisco, California. Marni has been the mentor for Stephanie Felzenberg, the editor of Be the Best Nanny Newsletter and this blog.