Keeping your domestic help happy and harmoniously working together for your benefit can be quite a challenge! The task seems multiplied exponentially by the number of workers you have in your home. When the head of the household is physically or mentally impaired, or not feeling well, then the opportunity for the hired help to misbehave and manipulate increases. Here are some common problems that can develop with domestic help and hired caregivers and some suggestions on resolution.

Did you ever have a favorite pet, and then add a second pet? Did it result in a lot of snarling, hissing, and bearing of teeth? Well, unfortunately, a pre-existing worker can be just as threatened by a new co-worker. It is a false hope that if the two workers have completely separate job duties, then they will peacefully co-exist. For instance, let’s say your housekeeper has been with you for ten years, and now you add a home health aide or nurse to assist you at home. Your best bet would be to explain to the housekeeper, in advance, your need for additional, professional help. Pre-empt the housekeepers’s biggest fears by reassuring her/him that you are not going to fire her/him and that she/he is a valuable part of your workforce.

It is not uncommon for co-workers to vie for your attention. When this manifests in a negative way, co-workers tattletale and gossip about one another, to garner your favor. You should never reinforce this negative behavior and you should not indicate favoritism. Tell each of your workers that gossiping is forbidden in your home. If co-workers become territorial, redefine their job duties and responsibilities.

Another problem occurs whenever a worker promotes her/his own interests, instead of focusing on what is best for you and the other workers. This can happen when a worker wants to frequently revise her/his schedule or take time off without adequate notice, resulting in a domino effect on co-worker’s schedules and your household activities. Chronic tardiness and absences should not be tolerated.

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