In this day and age, starting a job (or business) as a young teenager is easier than it's ever been. Even if you aren't keen on babysitting kids, you could start a pet sitting club in pretty much the same way you'd start a babysitting club. This article is geared towards teenagers starting their own babysitting club/business, but will work well for babysitters of all ages. And is the perfect timing with summer just around the corner so have fun with it! Remember back to when [amazon_link id=”B009KVH44A” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]The Baby-Sitters Club books[/amazon_link] first came out?! I sure do.
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Tips for Starting a Babysitters' Club
Use this [amazon_link id=”1593691866″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Babysitting Kit[/amazon_link] to get started (for younger teens). [amazon_link id=”B00AH37152″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Don't Sit on the Baby![/amazon_link] is a great guide to “sane, skilled, and safe babysitting”.
What is a Babysitters' Club, Exactly?
A babysitters' club is basically a group of sitters working together to provide babysitting (or pet sitting) services for a neighborhood or local area. Clients will call or text a number that you decide on and an email would even work, then it's up to the club to match them with a sitter that is available to babysit for them during the hours they're needing them.
So, it's a network of babysitters, working together to provide a service to the community. Because there are several of you working together, the availability of the “club” as a whole is much better than with just one or two sitters.
In order to have a successful Babysitters' Club, you need to have dependable, reliable, trustworthy babysitters to work with. To find reliable babysitters, first start with your circle of friends, or maybe even some other teens from church or sports.
Check your province or state's laws before allowing younger sitters to join your business venture.
Keep in mind that working with friends can be tricky, so you need to have an actual business plan – and be sure everyone knows that you rotate babysitting jobs fairly, and you don't play favorites. If a client requests a certain babysitter, then you should offer them the job first. If they're not available, go to the next sitter on the list.
Training is so important when it comes to babysitting. First, start by getting First Aid and CPR certified. You can find babysitting classes through the American Red Cross, Canadian Red Cross or even your local YMCA.
If you're under 16, babysitting in pairs is a good idea. Not only will it ease the mind of your clients, it will also give you both experience while learning from each other. Yes, that means you have to split the amount you've charged, but gaining experience is worth its weight in gold!
Social media allows you to get the word out so fast, that your babysitting calendar could be full in a matter of a few weeks! While that might not happen, it could. You need to be prepared for it!
One fun way to advertise is to create a Facebook Fan Page! Name your page something descriptive, not clever/cutesy. “This Town's Babysitters' Club” tells that your club serves this town's neighborhood. Join local Facebook groups to advertise your services, and get references! Your clients can leave ratings on your fan page, which creates credibility for future and potential clients.
Other ways to advertise include flyers, business cards, and word of mouth. Word of mouth will be the most valuable, of course, but having business cards will also make you appear more professional! If your clients know you treat this as a business, they're more likely to be okay with paying you a decent rate each hour instead of trying to get you to babysit for a few bucks a night like they would a normal teenager. You're not just a teenager – you're a business owner!
Offer discounts for referrals, and remind club members to advertise any chance they get!
Put a binder together for each sitter, so they have their own business cards, brochures, flyers, etc. Print out extra Babysitting Sheets for them to take to their jobs. Babysitting Sheets should include a spot for clients names, phone numbers, etc as well as any allergies their child(ren) may have.
The Business Stuff
There will be expenses when it comes to starting your own Babysitters' Club, so you need to decide how to pay them from the beginning. Are you going to pay them all, and then have the other sitters pay you a small fee to join the club, in order to cover the expenses? Or are you going to split the fees evenly and make each sitter pay up as the expenses arise?
The problem with having each sitter pay as the expenses arise… well, they might not have the money at the time, and they might end up bailing on you. Then you're the one stuck paying the fees, and you're also out one more sitter.
Expenses can include training, and even babysitting books like [amazon_link id=”076112845X” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]What to Expect Baby-Sitters Guide[/amazon_link]. It's a great resource for new and old babysitters alike!
Have your parents look over all your paperwork, and check it for mistakes. Ask them if there's anything you should add.
What's your best tip to give to babysitters?
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