Tips and Advice for Managing Your Household Employee

Jan 3, 2020 | Employing a Nanny

When you’ve found the nanny or other household employee you want to keep, you want to ensure your employee is satisfied and engaged. Our partner GTM Payroll Services has HR experts on staff to offer advice for managing your household employee. Here are some recent tips they’ve shared with us.

Best Practices for Giving a Raise

Employees feel better about a pay increase when they know it is due to their hard work and efforts. Your families can practice the following guidelines when giving their nanny or other household employee a raise. 

  • Tie the raise to a written performance evaluation. Relating a pay increase to a performance evaluation displays your attention to and appreciation of your employee’s good work. The performance review also gives you a chance to sit down with your employee to go over their performance and formally recognize them, and your employee has the opportunity to provide formal feedback on their job.
  • Give the raise to account for additional duties or responsibilities. A pay increase associated with expanded job duties displays your acknowledgement of both your trust in your employee to successfully handle the added duties and that the added duties deserve a higher wage.

Best Practices to Follow for Frank Conversations

Your nanny or housekeeper will occasionally misstep, especially as they begin and learn their job. The tone and clarity of conversations about issues create lasting impressions, and the below guidelines can help to ensure the communication is clear, expectations are understood, and you can continue to mutually benefit from the relationship.

  • Tackle the issue promptly. If it is several little things that you feel are not conversation-worthy but bug you, write them down and review after a week to see if there is a pattern and if it warrants a discussion.
  • Ask if there is anything going on outside of work that may be distracting them from their duties. It may be an issue you can help with, such as a schedule change or suggestion on an issue you have dealt with in the past.
  • Have an honest conversation and focus on the issue, not their job in general. Provide the examples you have gathered to further clarify the issue for your employee.
  • Confirm their understanding of the job duty/task/responsibility, what mistake was made, and how it must be improved or resolved.

Establish a communication strategy with your nanny on day one. Tell them they are expected to bring up any issues they have and vice versa. An honest 5-minute conversation at the end of each shift fosters a professional and trusting relationship.

Staying Happy and Healthy This Winter

Cooler weather and shorter, darker days create a host of winter blues that can be minimized with a little preparation and perseverance.

  1. Defend against sickness: get your flu shot, wash your hands often, and make sure everyone in your household does the same.
  2. If you will need your employee to come to work when a winter storm hits or stay overnight if travel is unsafe, prepare ahead of time. Communicate your expectations to your employee and help them plan alternate travel methods. If your employee is unable to make it to work, decide ahead of time if they will be paid for their time not worked, through paid time off or other allowances.
  3. Have a backup plan for childcare if your nanny cannot get to work.
  4. Combat the seasonal drops in serotonin with self-care. Counter the dark, cold days with intentionally cheery, happy things, like fresh flowers in the home, feel-good movies and books, and photo books of summer activities or vacations. Spending time outside each day, exercising, socializing with friends, and even snacking on dark chocolate will also help!

Let us know of any other issue you’d like advice about. Contact us at (518) 348-0400 to learn more about how we help families across the Capital Region.

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