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Personal Qualities Employers Look for: Key Traits You Need

What are the top personal qualities employers look for in job candidates?

Employers look for personal qualities such as dependability, adaptability, strong communication skills, problem-solving abilities, teamwork, and a positive attitude. These qualities demonstrate a candidate's ability to handle the responsibilities of the role and work effectively with others.

woman cleaning windows

1. Trustworthiness

Perhaps the single most crucial quality employers seek in household hires is trustworthiness. Household employees will often have access to the family's most personal space, belongings, and even children.

Employers seek safe environment, for them, their family and their children - and trust is the foundation upon which any household role is built.

2. Reliability & Honesty

In the world of household employment, employers depend on their reliable and successful employees to meet deadlines and keep everything running smoothly. After all, that's why they hire them in the first place - to ease some departments of their life in order to focus on something else. This means sticking to schedules, handling various chores, and taking good care of family members. Being on time, trustworthy, responsible, and reliable is super important because any hiccups in the household routine can create a hassle for the employer, which again - they sought after not to have by hiring household help.

Being dependable isn't just a job requirement – it's a big deal that helps create a relaxed and harmonious home environment for everyone involved.

3. Flexibility

Flexibility is crucial in household roles because domestic environments often require adaptation to changing circumstances and may involve working extra hours. Private staff may need to adjust their schedules and tasks to accommodate the evolving needs of the family. For example, one day you might be working for a High Net Worth Individual, and within a few years, your responsibilities may expand to include their spouse, two children, and even their beloved dog.

Additionally, unforeseen situations, such as emergencies or unexpected events, may necessitate quick changes in responsibilities.

Family routines can vary from day to day, and a flexible approach allows household employees to better align with these fluctuations. It enables them to provide necessary support without causing disruptions or stress for the family members.

This flexibility should work both ways, as employees won't be overwhelmed if their duties undergo slight changes. Being prepared to go the extra mile and adapt is a highly sought-after quality that employers should prioritize when seeking private staff.

Flexible employees, who can adapt to change, take on projects outside of their scope, and shift their schedules if necessary, are especially sought after in household roles.

4. Discretion and Privacy

Working in households often means getting an inside look at the personal lives of your employers. That's why being discreet and respecting their privacy are very important qualities. Employers want to know they can trust you to keep their personal matters private.

Being discreet means you have to carefully handle any sensitive information you come across. Whether it's family issues, financial matters, or personal challenges, your employers expect you to keep a tight lid.

It's all about creating a safe and trustful atmosphere where employers feel comfortable sharing their lives with you. When you can do that, you're not just a household employee, you're a valued member of the team. And that's what makes these working relationships strong and lasting.

5. Adaptability

In the world of household jobs, every family is different.

Being able to adapt to different family setups and their unique expectations is a really important quality. Employers love candidates who can easily fit into various lifestyles and are open to new ideas and willing to learn new things, such as overcoming roadblocks and embracing challenges. Each household has its own way of doing things. Some are big and busy, others are smaller and more laid-back. So, it's crucial for household employees to be like chameleons, smoothly blending into different families and managing their workload. This means adjusting not just to tasks but also to their culture, communication style, and values. But it's not just about reacting to what's happening now; it's also about being ready for changes and embracing new things, such as new challenges and new ways. Families grow, routines shift, and life happens. In addition, adaptability and resilience, including the ability to overcome roadblocks, are highly sought-after qualities in leadership positions, where individuals are expected to navigate through various situations, guide their team effectively, and cope with setbacks and criticism while staying calm under pressure.

Candidates who can anticipate and smoothly adapt to these changes contribute to a harmonious household in the long run. So, adaptability is not just a buzzword; it's the key to building strong and lasting working relationships in the world of household employment.

chameleon, adaptable

6. Communication Skills & team Work

In any household, good old-fashioned communication is key to success. It is a vital element that enables employees to establish and maintain harmonious interactions not only with their employers but also with fellow household staff, thus contributing significantly to the seamless execution of various tasks and responsibilities.

Think about it: in a household, there's always something happening. Employees have to be able to express themselves clearly and listen up when the bosses are sharing their thoughts and wishes. It's like teamwork – when everyone can chat openly and work together, everything gets done without a hassle.

Clear and open communication ensures everyone's on the same page.

7. Empathy and Compassion

For roles involving childcare, eldercare, or care-giving, employers look for candidates with a genuine sense of empathy and compassion. The ability to connect with family members on a personal level is highly valued.

Check out our related blog post "Finding the Perfect Nanny" , where we talk about the importance of Patience & Compassion.

8. Attention to Detail & Organisation

A keen attention to detail is a prized attribute in household roles, as it encompasses the ability to manage the finer points of responsibilities, including maintaining cleanliness, cooking with precision, and ensuring the safety of family members, all of which provide employers with the assurance that their home is receiving comprehensive care and consideration.

9. Problem-Solving Skills

knot from big rope

Household roles often involve unexpected challenges. Candidates who can think on their feet and find creative solutions to problems, like fixing a leaky faucet or improvising a meal when ingredients are missing, are highly regarded.

10. Professionalism

Even in a household setting, professionalism is important. Employers look for candidates who exhibit professionalism in their actions and behavior. This includes being reliable, respectful, and maintaining confidentiality when needed. Within a household setting, professionalism and strong professional skills, like the ability to develop constructive and cooperative working relationships with others and build rapport, remain a cornerstone. This encompasses dressing appropriately, upholding a positive attitude, and conducting oneself with unwavering respect and courtesy. Such professionalism and the development of professional skills, like interpersonal skills, not only set a standard for the work environment but also foster a harmonious atmosphere, contributing to productive and respectful interactions among all household members. In today's competitive job market, where power skills are in high demand, it is crucial for individuals in household roles to possess these qualities and bring out the best in their coworkers as they contribute to joint projects. Displaying such skills, such as being a good listener, will impress your potential employer and could lead to future opportunities for promotions and raises.

Every household has its unique dynamics, and addressing this matter with care is key. Some households are more relaxed, with a family-style dynamic, while others are more professional, with a dedicated person to report to, a dress code, and a code of conduct.

Following the dynamics will ensures happy and stress-free environment.

12. Dedication and Loyalty

Employers highly value candidates who demonstrate dedication and loyalty to their roles and exhibit loyalty to the family. In household staffing, long-term commitments and dependability are often preferred, as they not only provide continuity in service but also foster strong, trusting relationships between employees and their employers. This commitment, loyalty, and dependability contribute significantly to the stability and harmony of the household environment. Employers want reliable employees so candidates should demonstrate dependability, responsibility, and consistency in their job performance.

Employers seeking household hires are looking for individuals who can offer more than just skills and qualifications. They want trustworthy, reliable, adaptable, and compassionate individuals who can seamlessly become part of the family's life and contribute to the well-being of the household.

If you're a candidate seeking a job in the private household industry, taking note of these essential aspects and actively working on them can significantly enhance your prospects. This commitment to professionalism, adaptability, attention to detail, and loyalty can open doors to a wide array of opportunities and pave the way for successful and fulfilling careers in the household service sector.

To help you even further we've put together few links to websites containing more helpful tips such as Ways to Improve Your Communication Skills,


Always helpful to read from few different sources for a diversity :)

Kate C., CEO and Founder of Tailored Staff
Kate C., CEO and Founder of Tailored Staff

It was as always a pleasure to write a post about the crucial personal qualities employers look for which might be helpful to some/many job seekers out there, but also outline the key qualities to new employers / long-established employers in need of refreshing their of useful tips and insights.

Check out our blog for more helpful insight and if you'd like to get in touch please do via our many available channels, call us, e-mail us, connect with us on Instagram and LinkedIn or fill this form for a quick reach out.


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