Are you looking to find work as a domestic helper abroad? If so, you need to know how to last long with one employer. You don’t want to be jumping around from one employer to another because that won’t be beneficial to you.
Fortunately, in this article, you will learn about some practical tips on how to be the best domestic helper you can be, so that your employer will not even think about firing you. Read on to learn more.
Disclaimer: The information posted here is based on the personal experiences shared by the OFW in the video below. Please let this post serve as a guide only. If you have specific questions, you may ask the OFW by commenting on their video on their accounts.
How to Be the Best Domestic Helper You Can Be
The following information comes from a YouTube video from OFW Joyce Bognadon. You can watch the full video in the link below:
A lot of OFW domestic helpers get terminated or lose their job. But if you follow the tips mentioned below, you won’t be one of them.
1. Love your job.
This is very important. You are the one that is looking for a job, you are the one that needs a job. Even if it’s a difficult job, but you have to love it. What matters is that your employer is not hurting you. Some OFWs only think about the salary, but if you do this you will fade.
Once you love you work, you will enjoy it. Even if, as a domestic helper, you do a lot of difficult household chores, like cleaning the bathroom, carrying the sick elderly, being patient with naughty kids, you will be happy every day if you love your job.
If you love your job, you will no longer complain. That’s why it’s very important to love your job. This is especially an important advice for new OFWs wherever they are assigned in the world.
2. Love your patient/employer.
If you are a caregiver, love the person you are taking care of. The vlogger shared that the patient she took care of is senile. It was challenging because, for example, even if she fed her senile patient, the patient would tell his kids that she didn’t feed him.
As a caregiver, this was difficult to hear, but because she loved her patient, she understood that the person is senile. She also considered her parents as an example. Her parents are now old as well, and that helps her understand her patient even more.
Some patients even hurt her. In that case, she just stayed away. She just basically looked for a way not to get hurt. This is another way of understanding your patient.
Treat your patient as someone who is a part of your immediate family. The only way you can truly care for them is if you love them. The only way you can truly enjoy your work is if you love them, and this will make the harder aspects of dealing with them easier.
3. Love your employer.
If you love your employer, and treat them like your parent if they are older than you, or as a sibling if they’re just about your age. Don’t expect that they will love you first. Why? Because you are the stranger in their house. You are the only person that’s new in their household, and they don’t know who you are. You should be the first to show them love. Show to them that you are a good person, that even if you are not their relative, or even if you are a foreigner, you are a kind person.
So how can you show them that you are kind?
- If you make a mistake, tell them the truth.
- If you damage something, confess to your owner. Tell them you are sorry, but you didn’t do it on purpose. They will probably scold you, but that’s okay because it’s your fault. Don’t be angry back at them, and show them that you are really sorry.
- Some employers don’t accept your apology, but if you show them that you are responsible and respectful.
- Use respectful words like “sorry,” “may I,” “sir,” “maam,” “please.”
- Show them that you know how to take care of your client. If they see this, then your employers will treat you well. Eventually, they will treat you like family.
Your employers will go so far as to observe you. Some even have CCTVs within their homes, even inside the rooms of the OFW. This is bordering on violation of privacy, but despite this challenge, the vlogger mentioned that she still continued to do a good job.
After 6 months, they removed the CCTV. This only means that she gained the trust of her employers, and that is something that you should aspire to as well. She showed them that she is a good caretaker, and that she represented the Filipino well.
She took care of her elderly patient, so that even if the employers went away, they could trust her alone with their grandparent. She cleaned the house even if her bedridden patient couldn’t see what she was doing.
4. Be faithful.
If you need something, tell your employers. If there is food on the table, and if you’re really hungry, ask them if you can have it. Chances are, they will tell you that you can. In case they say no, then just accept their decision wholeheartedly.
Employers tend count how many pieces of a certain food they have. They know how many they leave on the table or inside the refrigerator. So, if they say you’re not allowed to touch the food, don’t take it. They will know that it’s you when they find out something’s missing.
The same is true with things. If it’s not given to you, don’t take it. Once they lose something, they will probably put the blame on you. As such, you should be honest and faithful to your employer and your client.
5. Be wise.
If there are calls, you need to know how to answer them. Sometimes, relatives or friends call, so you have to answer the phone smartly. When your employer asks you to do something, write it right away. You need to make sure you wrote everything that your employer says. If you miss something, you will get scolded.
If someone calls and the family isn’t around, write down who called, and tell your employers right away when they arrive. Write down whatever information you hear over the phone as well.
The vlogger shared that her employer is the president of their business. Lots of clients call home, and sometimes she answers the calls, especially when her employers are out of country. That’s when it’s most important that she writes everything and shows it to them when they arrive. Tell them who called and what they said in detail.
6. Ask permission.
If you go out of the house, you have to ask permission. But if your employers are not around, and you’re left alone with the patient you’re taking care of, you shouldn’t go out. This is especially true if your client needs to be monitored at all times.
The vlogger said that most domestic helpers or caregivers she knows gets terminated because they escape going out when their employer isn’t around. If you have to go, you can call your employer and ask permission. They usually have a CCTV they can review to check if you escaped or not.
7. Dress modestly.
The vlogger said that some OFWs dress inappropriately when they’re at home. Here are some tips:
- Don’t wear too short shorts
- Don’t wear too tight clothes
- Don’t wear clothes that are too revealing
Sometimes, even you don’t intend to, you might get your employer jealous. Especially if you’re a young domestic helper, you need to know your place in the family.
It can’t be helped that if your employers are husband and wife, and you’re a stay in domestic helper, the wife may already have negative thoughts about you, even if you’re not doing anything.
8. Behave properly during your days off.
Some domestic helpers aren’t lucky enough to have a day off. But once you are given one, enjoy it. Go out and relax. The vlogger recommends that you use your day off to go to church. If not, then meet with the right people and hang out.
Don’t go to the bars to drink. Basically, don’t go to places where people engage in vices. Your employer actually tends to observe what you do when you’re out. When you leave their premises in good spirits, you have to come back in the same state.
Moreover, if your employer tells you to go home at a certain time, be punctual. If your employer knows how to give and take, you should also know how to give and take. By doing all these, you will likely get a salary raise according to the vlogger. That’s based on her experience as well.
9. Don’t bring a visitor home without your employer’s permission.
The vlogger mentioned that some domestic helpers got terminated because they brought their friends over to their employers’ home. They did this when their employer was not around, in fact in a different country in some instances. They didn’t know that the house has a CCTV they could review.
Typically, even if there’s no CCTV inside the house itself, there is one by the gate. When the employer comes home and finds out you’ve been doing this, you will almost automatically get terminated.
Therefore, never bring your friends inside the house of your boss without their permission. If you want to bring your friends over, then ask for their permission. Now, if the employer allows you to do this, don’t bring your friends inside the rooms of your employer. Just entertain them in the living room.
If your employer allows you to bring your friends over, and they are around, the right thing to do is to introduce your friends to them. Don’t make them stay for too long, too, and don’t always bring your friends. In truth, bringing your friends is really not allowed.
10. Don’t use the house telephone to call your friends, family without permission.
The vlogger mentioned that she knows someone who got terminated because they always used the phone, so much so that the bill increased significantly. They traced it back to the helper, who denied it at first, but eventually admitted when the boss showed her what numbers were called and where those numbers come from.
As a consequence, the helper was told to pay for the calls, and the trust was lost between them. Therefore, never use the phone without their permission.
11. Don’t use your employers’ things.
Don’t use their personal belongings, like lotion, toothpaste, etc. Leave their things alone. If it’s not given to you, don’t use it. Employers know, so you need to be smart and honest about this as well.
12. Be smart in dealing with money.
Sometimes your employer will give you money to run errands. You need to know how to deal with your cash on hand by making the right decisions.
Some employers require you to present a receipt so you can fully account for what you bought. The vlogger mentioned that in her case, sometimes vendors don’t have a receipt, so what she does is she brings a piece of paper and asks them to write down a handwritten receipt.
It’s really not ideal for a domestic helper to be transferring from one employer to another. The more you last working for just one employer, the higher your salary gets.
When an employer sees that you are kind, trustworthy, reliable and hardworking, they will reward you by giving you a raise. Not only that, they will give you a bonus.
Another great thing about sticking to one employer is that you’ve already mastered what you need to do on a regular basis. That will make your job less difficult. Moreover, they will be more likely to approve if you ask for a favor.
Often it’s a give and take relationship; you ask a favor from them, they grant it to you. They ask a favor from you, you gladly comply as well. It’s a seamless work experience when you last long with an employer.
There you have it. These are some really practical tips from an OFW domestic helper on how to stay with one employer. If you are a new DH and wish to stay long in your job too, then these are definitely some great pointers to follow.