A variety of skills can make a great sitter (maybe your kid’s crafty tendencies or Lego love will be a hit), but there are certain fundamental characteristics that parents almost always desire in a childcare provider. According to Nicole Rotman, community advocate for Sittercity, a connection portal for families and sitters ages 18 and over, parents value:
Official training: Organizations like Red Cross offer multiple courses online and in-person to help prepare sitters. CPR, first aid, and babysitter training are a few of the classes they offer.
Good judgment: Young sitters should be able to showcase their ability to make clear and informed decisions before they take on a job.
Organization and reliability: Punctuality and the ability to juggle multiple schedules are key traits for sitters. Parents need their sitters to be in the right place at the right time, every time.
Communication skills: Sitters should be able to talk to children about their day and feel comfortable communicating effectively with parents when they come home.
Transition management: Transitions can be hard for everyone. A good sitter can ease that transition by recognizing what the child needs when the parents leave and come home.
As a parent who hired many teenage babysitters, I would also add that basic cooking skills and taking the initiative to clean up messes are a huge bonus, as nothing is worse than coming home from a great night to a kitchen disaster and messy playroom.