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100 Tips for Nannies and Families

The advice in this book comes from Candi Wingate, President of Care4hire.com.
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Writing a Letter of Recommendation for Your Nanny, Pet Sitter, or Other Caregiver

You employ (or have employed) a nanny, pet sitter, or other caregiver and have been asked to write a letter of recommendation for him/her.  What should you write?  What should you NOT write?  Here are some tips for writing the requested letter of recommendation.

What should you write?

Think about the skills, behaviors, and traits that you look for when you hire a nanny, pet sitter, or other caregiver.  These are probably the same skills, behaviors, and traits that other families look for when hiring for these same positions.  Therefore, your recommendation letter should speak to those skills, behaviors, and traits that your current or former nanny, pet sitter, or other caregiver possesses.  For example, you may write, “Pat was our family’s nanny from May of 2010 to August, 2013.  We found her to be an extraordinary nanny.  Her level of care for and dedication to our children was unparalleled.  Our children felt completely loved and accepted when they were with Pat; they looked forward to her arrival and hated to see her go every workday.  She was an excellent role model for our children and taught them a great many things about life, their environment, and healthy relationships.  She helped them do special things for us on Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, and she respected the boundaries we set as the children’s parents.  Her attendance record was unblemished, and she was always punctual.  You can rely on Pat to be the best nanny your children will ever have.”

What should you NOT write?

Do not write about the weaknesses or problems with your current or former nanny, pet sitter, or other caregiver.  For example, do not write, “Emily had difficulty reporting to work on time daily.  Sometimes, our dog, Zeke, had ‘accidents’ in the house due to Emily’s tardiness in arriving to take Zeke out for his walks.”  (Note:  if you have serious concerns regarding Emily’s job performance, simply decline to write a letter of recommendation for her.)

Do not write about topics unrelated to your current or former nanny’s, pet sitter’s or other caregiver’s fitness for other jobs.  For example, do not write, “Paul drives a Jeep Wrangler and loves to go ‘off-roadin’.”

Do not write about information of which subsequent employer-families should not, by law, have knowledge.  For example, do not write, “Chris is a 41-year-old white female with a strong faith (she’s Irish-Catholic) and patriotism (a citizen of the USA, born and bred).  She has four children, but they are all grown and on their own, so they should not interfere with her ability to perform her job.”

Summary

By following the tips above, you can write an effective, appropriate letter of recommendation for your current or former nanny, pet sitter, or other caregiver.

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