This may be the first time you’re hiring someone, unless you’ve had personnel experience at work. It’s natural to be a little ill at ease at first, but keep in mind that the person being interviewed is nervous too.
• Begin with small talk to get acquainted. In an initial phone call, introduce yourself, describe your child, and briefly state your needs. If appropriate, setup an appointment. Have your child with you at any interview to see how your baby interacts with the respective caregiver.
• Pose open-ended questions to gain insight into the person’s values. Ask about other children she’s cared for, what she’s found most difficult, her feelings or policies about spanking, bottles, pacifiers, even toilet training. Don’t hint at your own feelings initially, or you may just be told what that person thinks you want to hear.
• If this person will be caring for your child in your home, outline the terms of employment. And do make a point to check your sitter’s references afterwards.
• If you know, however, at the end of the interview that you do not want to hire this person, it’s okay to say politely, “Thank you, but I don’t think this would be the right arrangement for me.”
Vicki Lansky’s practical, common sense approach to parenting is familiar to millions throughout the world. Vicki’s first book, Feed Me, I’m Yours, published in 1974, and still one of the most popular baby/toddler food cookbooks in the country, was followed by The Taming of the C.A.N.D.Y. Monster, a #1 New York Times bestseller. Her other titles include: Toilet Training, Birthday Parties Best Party Tips & Ideas For Ages 1-8, Dear Babysitter Handbook, Welcoming Your Second Baby, Getting Your Child to Sleep … and Back to Sleep, Trouble-free Travel with Children, Baby Proofing Basics and Games Babies Play From Birth to Twelve Months, Koko Bear’s New Potty, A New Baby at Koko Bear’s House, Koko Bear and the New Babysitter, and Koko Bear’s Big Earache. Vicki Lansky’s Divorce Book for Parents: Helping Children Cope with Divorce and Its Aftermath