I provide a lot of hand-holding to my nanny agency clients and I often find that I end up mixing in a lot of therapy as I walk them through their options as they choose the right nanny for their family. Today, I tackle the topic of parenting styles and how to find a nanny that fits with that style.
The first thing I ask my clients is, "How would you describe your parenting style?"
This question asks you to think about your own approach to parenting, as well as the tenor and flavor of your household. The three main types of parenting styles are: Authoritarian, which is extremely rigid; Permissive, which is, "We're friends with our children, and don't really have a lot of rules"; and Authoritative, which is a balance of both. If you are authoritative, you are casual about some things--for example, what your kids eat or how much TV they watch--but strict about others, such as bedtimes or respect.
Using these three styles as a framework, do your best to articulate your own approach. Do you have a lot of rules, or are you more laid-back? Do your children have a lot of autonomy, or do you like to be involved with everything--from homework to playdates, to what clothes they put on in the morning? Do you feel strongly about discipline, and if so, about which things? Are there certain things you enjoy doing with your children--such as reading or cooking--but others that you prefer they do on their own--such as dramatic play or running around outdoors? You want to try to define, as much as you can, how you are as a parent so that you can explain it to your candidates.
Note: this brief post originally appeared on Tammy's blog here