How NOT to Market Yourself as a Nanny

Lost your nanny gig in the recession? We have six tips to help you get it back

All sorts of sectors are hurting in these recessiony times, but those who provide luxury goods and services are in an especially tricky pickle. Take, for instance, nannies: The ultrariche aren't going to stoop to changing diapers anytime soon (though as a recent Vanity Fair article notes, some might be downgrading their maids to four days a week instead of five), but what about the yuppies? Hiring someone to Mary Poppins your spawn used to be something you just factored into your monthly budget, along with iTunes downloads and TiVO; but now - especially if one parent has been laid off and has plenty of time to make grilled cheese and sing "The Wheels on the Bus" ninety times in a row - corners are being cut.

But what about the nannies? Well, as you might expect, the poor dears are finding themselves duking it out for a dwindling number of positions. Enter Kimberly Castro, who pens the Luxe Life blog over at U.S. News and World Report, with her handy, career-saving list of "14 Ways Nannies Can Market Themselves." Some of the groundbreaking tips: Having proof to work legally, references, and knowledge of CPR and first aid. Take that, other nannies!

But seriously - and we have no children, so you'll have to excuse us for perhaps not being in an ideal position to judge - shouldn't that stuff be a given? If you want to make yourself stand out, shouldn't you really provide a list of what you don't do instead? Here's our own set of tips to help you muscle your way into stable nanny employment:

  1. Don't use your nanny stint as a stepping stone to the U.S. senate.
  2. Don't be a closet psycho who breastfeeds your charge in secret and then tries to murder your employer by emptying out all her asthma inhalers.  
  3. Don't pose as a Scottish Barbara Bush lookalike to get the job so you can be closer to your kids after your wife kicks you out for being a manic, unemployed freeloader.
  4. Don't hint at your plans to write a bestselling tell-all after you're fired -- even if you're going to be played by Scarlett Johannson.
  5. Don't sleep with the kids' dad, especially if he's a high-profile actor in an even higher-profile committed relationship and is the kind of tool who cheats and then squirmily blames the affair on his girlfriend. (Stay classy, Jude!)
  6. Don't ever wind up as a blind item on
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