2020 was a year of so many things we did not see coming. It was a year of change in so many ways. We went from everyday life out and about to quarantining and not even starting school in person this year. As 2020 comes to an end I thought it would be a great idea to reflect on this year and what’s in store for 2021.
What was the biggest achievement of 2020?
2020 has been an unprecedented year. At a point in time, we were not sure if the agency could stay open. The greatest achievement is that despite the difficulty of the year, we remained opened and worked with the families that came through the agency to find caregivers for their childcare needs.
What was the biggest struggle of 2020?
A couple of things. First, at the onset of the pandemic, several caregivers lost their jobs. It was disheartening. Second, fielding calls from anxious parents about the right childcare and needing assurance that their safety from the pandemic will not be compromised because of hiring a nanny. Third, at some point in time, it was difficult to find caregivers because they were equally fearful of their safety from the pandemic.
How did I overcome COVID-19 with the agency? What did I learn from it?
At the start of the pandemic, we were not quite sure what to do. There were lots of fear and uncertainty. As an agency, the positive outcome was the opportunity to emphasize the importance of personal responsibility and thoughtfulness in our daily activities. We encouraged our caregivers to wear masks, keep their area of work sanitized, wash their hands, and follow the health and safety guidelines from our health officials.
How was the growth of Signet Nannies in 2020?
At the start of the year, the agency was hopeful. We were planning on participating in several family-friendly shows. Of course, that could not be possible. While there was a decline in our sitting services especially at the hotels, requests for our nanny services increased. In fact, we have placed more nannies this year than we have placed in any other year around the same time.
What was the most requested type of nanny in 2020?
There were requests for all kinds of nannies. I must say though that the most requested nannies were live-out nannies.
Where do I want to see the agency in 2021?
Obviously, we want to reach more families that are in need of in-home childcare. We also want to reach and connect with high-quality caregivers who are passionate about childcare.
Most importantly though, we want to stay true and authentic to what we do; and that is to find a caregiver who is the right fit for a family’s specific need. To this end, as an agency, we are very intentional about our process. We are focused on getting it right than rushing through the process. We are committed to long-term success which includes quality relationships with our families and caregivers.
Not only are we focused on our families, but we also want to be an advocate for the nannies that we represent. Some caregivers are unaware that they can go through an agency to find a family. Others also think the agencies do not represent their interest enough. In 2021, one of the goals of Signet Nannies is to change this perception for the caregivers that come to our agency. We want to let them know that we value them. We are here to listen to their concerns and find ways to make their work a worthwhile experience. The childcare industry has often been underestimated, but at the same time, it is one of the most important industries. Studies show that having the right nanny can greatly improve a child’s development.
My final thought and reflections
We have had an unprecedented year. However, I would like all our families and caregivers not to be fearful. We should instead be positive and hopeful as we begin in 2021. Caregivers and families have one thing in common: “Excellence for the children we care for”. May this goal encourage respect and a quality relationship among all of us.
So as you roll into a new year may you remember all that 2020 has brought and taught us. Happy New Year and we wish you happiness and blessings in 2021!