Coping with the Economic Crisis Part II
What are you good at doing that could help you make some money?
After helping one of my clients Mom’s with her recovery from surgery, I decided to attend CNA School and I earned my CNA license. The class was relatively inexpensive, and allowed me to help my friends who had insurance that only covered a C.N.A. for home health care needs…For example around the same time I was done working with the traveling family, my friend who started with me when I first began my Practice was in need of help. She needed care giving and had an insurance policy, but they wouldn’t reimburse her unless the person caring for her had been licensed. After I received my CAN License, she was able to get reimbursed for her care.
In my case I expanded skills I already had, but most of us have skills we do not even consider using unless pushed to do so.
Everyone is good at something. Some people clean well, or they can garden but unless they’re pressed for money might not consider doing it for someone else. If you can fix computers, or teach someone how to use a program, you have a marketable skill. Childcare skills are helpful because even if you don’t want to play Nanny, you still might need to help out if you’re working with families.
I had a couple that I enjoyed working with, massaged them weekly. Their little dogs loved me!
When they had some traveling to do they asked me to watch the babies, reminding me that Henry liked to float in his little boat in the pool, and Gracie liked to be brushed.. Both were walked three times a day. There was a three pages list of their likes and dislikes and needs. I happily complied. They were treated like the little Princess and Prince that they were. As I was sipping a Margarita, strolling by the pool tugging Henrys little boat, I had to chuckle. I’ve expanded my services to Canine Spoiling! I was also staying in a million dollar home across from the beach.
In fact most of the places I stayed were luxurious homes. Even in tough economic times, there are those who are willing to pay for help and are use to having staff.
If you are going to position yourself in this way there are a few rules I learned that are essential to success. Understand that this is a job, that although you may be friendly with this person, that does not entitle you to take liberties, you are, for this period of time, no longer a friend, but an employee!!
1. Never discuss Politics, if they bring it up, just smile and nod. The saying goes, leave Religion and Politics out of the conversation. You may or may not agree with their views, so keep a lid on it and shut the Hell up, all you’ll do is get fired ! Always remember you’re working even though it’s a private home.
2. Don’t overstep your bounds or ever look too comfy. Please don’t just plop your butt down in their favorite chair. Follow their lead, they sit first you sit next.
3. If you smoke, don’t smoke in or near their home. Even if they’re out of town. They will smell it on their furniture or in their air space and it will offend them.
4. Do not have friends over unless they give you permission.
5. Do not help yourself to items or food and drink in the home; you are not at the Hilton with free shampoos and robes. Again, remember you are staff.
6. Be punctual and dependable. Answer your phone quickly when they call.
7. Be discreet, do not pry into their lives or private papers etc. Don’t even look at their things like you admire them too much. Wealthy people are paranoid about being ripped of or people being jealous of them. They have cameras everywhere! It helps to pretend that you have a camera over your shoulder, cuz ya probably do.
I once had a friend sit down next to me when I was using the computer at her estate.. She typed my name in the Google bar on the computer, I said, oh there wouldn’t be anything in there on me. Sure enough my name pops up because of an opinion I had entered about a fitness video. I said” wow, lets type in your name”, she says No let’s not”. So I didn’t. I knew her and her partner for years before I realized she was a famous and wealthy entrepreneur. I knew they were well off and one of the businesses they had but didn’t get how extensive their success was, and they liked that. When she left the room looking happy after typing my name in and realizing I was oblivious to whom she was she felt safe. I didn’t want to ruin that.
When my local friends realized who I was working with they told me! I said wow, how can I keep from being star struck now? They like me because I treat them normally, and don’t ask anything from them. They were so generous and kind to myself and my daughter, I can’t even explain it. Looking back I realized they appreciated my respect of their privacy and the gifts I shared with them.