Running a home and handling a business or career can be so tiring that you feel your body beg for help. Who wouldn’t? From taking care of toddlers to doing house chores and getting supplies for the house, a lot of things jostle for our attention and leave us in a near-mad state. After several attempts to do everything at the risk of falling sick and no rest, you finally realize that you need a help. In this article, you will learn how to treat your help (especially a live-in help) right while ensuring that the job gets done.
It is important to state that the help (or a maid) is also a person with her own expectations, values and behaviour. As much as you seek the relief she can bring, you must be ready for the baggage that comes with having an outsider in your home. These are the basic things you need to do in the bid to get a help:
1. Have A Checklist:
You need to know what you want. Source for this help the way you would employ new workers in your office. The maid is expected to render services in exchange for payment. You need to ask questions relating to work history i.e. has she worked with children? Can she take care of sick people? Why did she leave the last place of employment? These questions will help you screen the available options until you get the right person for the job.
2. Run Background Checks:
So you finally found one that fits your picture of a proper maid. You are happy it is over but is it really that simple? Before you take her into your home, you need to know her. Who is she? Where is her family? Who is she accountable to? Where has she worked and why did she leave there? If these questions have no clear answers, you need to cut your losses and keep searching.
3. Run Medical Tests:
The way you would be concerned about an employee’s state of health is the way you should also deal with the help. This person will live in your house and handle your things and children. It is essential that she gets a clean bill of health before she resumes work. Tests that can help tell if she is pregnant or suffering from incurable diseases like HIV/AIDS, Hepatitis A/B etc. must be carried out so you know what you are dealing with. No one has to tell you how important it is to do your due diligence when it comes to health. You can also read more about must-do medical tests for a maid here.
Now to the second phase, here are a few things you need to do after you have got a maid.
1. Be Professional:
You have to start out and stay true to the process in place for a mutually beneficial relationship. You MUST be kind to her. You cannot treat someone badly and expect that person to put in their best. Give her all the tools she needs to make her work easy i.e. give her a room with supplies (Sanitary pad, roll-on etc.). Let her know where her tools are while making room for her to give feedback when she needs to. She is not a slave and she must never feel like one. On the other hand, she is not family so there should not be undue familiarity.
2. State Your Expectations:
As the boss, you need to tell her what she is required to do and break it into bits for her. This way, she knows what to do and how to do it. If she needs to do the laundry and clean the house (amongst other chores), tell her clearly while putting the time frame for this to be done.
3. Install a Camera:
This is your choice but you might want to do this since you are not going to be at home with the help 24/7. You want to be sure that she is doing exactly what should be done. This way, you can keep an eye on her and watch how she treats your children.
4. Buy a Small Phone:
Getting the maid a small phone will help you stay in touch while you are away. This makes it easy to give her instructions via the phone and also speak to the children from time to time. Give her your number so she can reach you in case of an emergency and also load airtime so that she can call you when something urgent comes up. A number of people might feel that the maid will use this for personal use but the pros outweigh the cons and you can always go through the call log and text messages from time to time.
5. Lower Your Expectations:
It can be frustrating to work with someone who has to be told what to do and how to do things but that is life. She is not you and she is not perfect. To avoid issues, you need to consciously give her room to learn from you and also make her mistakes. After a few months, you can be sure that she will be better at it though she can never be perfect.
6. Ask Questions:
If you notice anything out of place, do not guess. Ask her direct questions and watch out for tell-tale signs of lying. Also speak with your children and get their own side of the story. Remain civil to her no matter the offense. Do not punish your maid by beating or starving her. That is totally unacceptable. If she does not learn after a stipulated time or becomes unruly, let her go. Work on getting another maid and keep your sanity.
These tips do not guarantee a seamless experience with a help. However, you can be sure that you have done your best. If the maid becomes a problem, don’t hesitate to let her go and begin the search again. No one is indispensable so do not be afraid to let her go for stealing or disobedience. There are good maids out there. Some people have gotten good maids who are loyal and become family even to the point of going to school and even getting married. If you have other tips that should be here, kindly share by leaving a comment. Stay well and don’t stop keeping it together.