Chicago Collegiate Nannies is happy to present this month's "Nanny of the Month!" Each month, we feature one of our very own CCN nannies and tell you a little about them. Below is our interview with Brittany L.! We were able to connect with Brittany recently about her experience as a nanny who has found a career path that allows her to work towards that one-on-one connection with a family. Hearing how she has used her education background and how she has found a new respect for this industry was great to discuss! Take a moment to read up a little about Brittany’s experience as a Chicago nanny and how she has enjoyed her experience thus far and how she plans to continue to grow as a professional nanny! Congratulations, Brittany, and thank you so much for how well you represent Chicago Collegiate Nannies!
CCN: What is your favorite thing about being a nanny?
Brittany L.: I would say the one-on-one attention I’m able to provide to the children within the family. Just really having the opportunity to watch them grow and develop daily. Just really building those one-on-one relationships as opposed to the daycare setting or the setting where you’re working with multiple children, you kind of have to cater to so many and you don’t get to build those relationships the way you really can with one-on-one.
CCN: Can you tell us your story about how you decided to become a nanny?
Brittany L.: I started in a daycare setting in my previous position and I felt the need to have the more one-on-one relationship with a family. And in growing in my career, having recently completed my master’s degree in education, I decided to scale back a little bit and get the one-on-one experience. I’ve had experience babysitting and nannying one-on-one but only with part time positions. I wanted to give myself the opportunity to tap into that full time opportunity. And I felt that was something worth the jump.
CCN: What do you think has been the most rewarding thing you’ve learned throughout your current placement?
Brittany L.: I would say adjusting to change. I think in working with children in general, you never know how the day is going to go. [Being] extremely flexible and being able to feed into the moods or attitudes of the day or even with the weather. There’s constant things I can’t control, so it’s just about being able to adapt to whatever to keep the day fun and [by] exposing the kids to new adventures. Keeping it fun and lively is really my goal continuously.
CCN: What do you think has been beneficial about working with an agency like Chicago Collegiate Nannies?
Brittany L.: I would say the safety of it has really been my biggest thing. I’ve been on different websites and I feel like you never know if someone’s legit or a scam. That makes me nervous not only for my well-being, but also for the family because you don’t know who you’re going to be placed with. I feel extremely confident that I was placed with a loving family that looks out for my well-being as well as for their children. So I don’t feel like I’m in any danger and that was a big thing, because you don’t want to feel like you’re in danger at work. And the placement was a super easy process. It’s easier than any on boarding experience I’ve ever had with any other job.
CCN: What advice would you give to someone who is looking to become a professional nanny?
Brittany L.: Do it. I heard a previous Nanny of the Month speaking about how you can get into your own head by saying “nannying’s not enough” or feeling like you’re not living up to what “you’re supposed to do” when you have a college degree. But I feel like it’s parenting, essentially. You’re helping raise someone’s children in a major way and [when] a family is so loving and kind and they appreciate everything you do, you essentially become family with the parents and the children. If you really have a passion for working with kids one-on-one, I would say take risk, let all fear go, and just do it.
CCN: Do you have any plans and goals for yourself personally and professionally in the next five years?
Brittany L.: In the next five years I would say growing my experience as a full time nanny, possibly starting my own family because I’m actually getting married! And just really gaining my exposure. I love my [nanny] family. Who knows, the sky is the limit. I never want to leave my family, but I know things and personal life [will] change for them and for me one day. I feel like growing as a nanny, learning the kids I’m currently with, and learning myself and how I can continue to grow and develop in my role.
CCN: What would you say has been the biggest lesson you have learned as a nanny?
Brittany L.: There’s always something to learn from children. I tell people this all the time, but having the relationship with the kids I work with, I feel like kids are a lot smarter than we give them credit for (and sometimes smarter than adults!). I feel like you have to change as a parent (and as a nanny) the way you discipline, the way you teach and the way you learn from your kids and in turn to how to teach them. They’ll show you how they respond in certain behaviors in adjusting and adapting from what you see in them. Be open to change is what I would say.
CCN: Are there any other tips and tricks you would like to share?
Brittany L.: I would say keep them moving. With winter coming, I found a lot of indoor freeze dances. They actually have on youtube or amazon, pre-recorded freeze dances that give the kids instructions for younger kids (I.e. hop like a bunny). So when trapped indoors, there’s always something to keep them energized and essentially tire them out like if you were to take them running on the playground. Also, Pinterest is your friend. I use Pinterest for everything: for personal life, for work. Most of the crafts that I don’t think of right off the bat, I go to Pinterest. When it doubt, Pinterest it out!