The question is asked, is it mandatory that a nanny receives a bonus at the end of the year?
My answer: Yes, of course!
Didn’t she work hard all year round? Did she not feed the children on time, care for them when they were sick, changed poopie diapers, changed their dirty clothing, do their laundry, and fold their laundry?
Did she not teach them how to use their manners, held their hands to walk, potty train them, read the same book 392385029322 times, color with them, sing to them, and comfort them when they were sad?
Did she not have to deal with mean older siblings who said hurtful things to her, kicked & slapped her, and made her feel super emotional and unappreciated?
All the while keeping her patience, forcing herself not to lose her cool and most importantly, overlooking all of it so she can still make everyone happy.
Then at the end of the day share lots of hugs and kisses as if nothing ever happened?
Then uhm, yes! She DESERVES it!
Gifts and bonuses are two ways you can show a nanny that you appreciate her and all the hard work she puts in each day. Wouldn’t you agree?
It’s quite unfortunate that parents feel different about this, however.
About four years ago, I worked for a family three days per week for three years in total.
I earned $13 per hr for the first child, and when the second came, It was raised to $15 per hour.
I got 3 paid holidays throughout the year, and no paid vacations, and no sick days.
Well, for the sick days, I got an upset mom-boss. Because the night before, I was supposed to know, and inform them, that I’d be sick the next morning I woke up.
I was considered a part time yet full-time nanny that worked from 8:30 am -6 pm each day I went in to work.
Mornings were horrible, and so was the family dog. (Sorry dog lovers)
I usually walked into “I don’t want Kizzy! Followed by one hr of whining, tears, and offensive slurs until the parents FINALLY left for work.
If I made the mistake of leaving my breakfast on the table, all of it would be eaten by the extremely greedy dog.
Talk about a nanny life!
I must admit, though, I loved those two children. They were amazing, lovable and fun. I enjoyed most of my time with them, except for the mornings and the unnecessary tantrums sessions.
But on most days, I had a mixture of feelings towards working there.
I contemplated leaving on countless occasions, but I stayed for three years!
Then life changes were made, and I was finally ready to move on. It was also a necessity.
So I shared with the mom-boss that it was time for me to move on to a real full time (Mon-Fri) job.
The cost of living in New York City is high, and I couldn’t afford to be taking home $450 each week anymore since the other mom-boss I worked for the other two days per week quit her job and no longer needed me.
Anyway, this mom-boss was unhappy, and it showed in my supposed end of the year bonus.
After working for this family for three years, I was given $50, and a thank you card at the end of the years.
Mind you, I was given a full bonus and even a Christmas present for the first two years.
But on this Christmas, because I was planning to leave their family to go with another in January, (to make things better for myself ), I was given a $50 bonus, and a thank you card.
Now some would try to justify this by saying, well you were going to leave, so you shouldn’t expect a bonus.
My rebuttal: regardless of the fact, I worked very hard that year. All year! At the end of the year, we all desire a bit of appreciation from our employers, and we all look forward to that bonus.
After all, we left our families to take care of other families. I think it’s fair that employers, especially employers of nannies and babysitters understand that sacrifices we make to ensure they are happy as well as our own family.
So to those who’d like to justify this, whatever!
Anyway, I shared this story with my family and friends, and every single one of them told me I should have given the $50 back to her.
They were obviously angry.
I, on the other hand, was more hurt than angry.
I was lost for words and until this day, I don’t quite know what to say.
So what are the lessons I’ve learned from this experience?
I learned that life and people can be unfair, but it’s still my duty to give and do my best regardless of how I am treated.
Why this lesson?
Well, after I left, the family changed about three nannies.
Some quit and I was called back to “have a chat with the older sister because she is giving the new nannies a very hard time because she didn’t want the new nannies, she wanted Kizzy. She misses you Kizzy.”
I guess It pays to be the best after all, eh?!