3 Key Ideas to Hiring Right in your Child Care Program

Today we are going to talk about hiring. We are in a hiring crisis, and many of you are still really struggling with a lack of qualified teachers in your market. I want to help you fix this phenomenon. You have to get smarter and better, more strategic and more ninja about how to hire.

Let me share some hiring nuggets with you!

Watch my brand new video below to learn the 3 Key Ideas that will help you to solve your hiring issues:

The over-arching message here is that you must market harder to your applicant pool, to your potential teacher pool.

We are in a hiring crisis and things have completely changed with digital media and our society. It’s no longer good enough to just put an ad in the paper that is very boring and “corporate speak.” It won’t catch anyone’s attention if it doesn’t have any fun inside of the ad, and doesn’t give any examples of what you do for your team. All of that goodness that’s the culture of your school needs to be put into how you market to teachers – whether they are millennials or genX you have to do a better, bigger job of marketing your program to candidates.

So, that’s the core message that I am teaching today.

The 3 Key Ideas that you want to take away from this training are:

  1. Hire to your Core Values
  2. Have a great Careers Page
  3. Have an Employee E-packet


Core Values are the things that drive your company. They help define the way that you want to impact the world. What are the values, the principles that you hold dear as an owner and a team? – this is for your teacher team also. Core Values are what matters to them and to you most. These are laid out in examples below.

Steve & Jessica Lloyd’s Culture Wall:

Busy Little Hands, Centennial, CO

This is an example of how you can take your brand, your story, your core values and your service standards (if you have them) and display them. Steve and Jessica actually have their teachers all sign the service standards, so there’s a commitment from their team. And when you pull your core values into how you hire, you will find people who are a fit for where you are driving your bus – Right People Right Seats. And you want to hire for a culture fit, which is more important than hiring for number of years of ECE experience – in most cases. You want both ideally, but a culture fit is usually more important.

When you talk about your core values from a culture stand point and you put them in your ads, you will get better responsiveness and better candidates. I’d rather have you get three amazing candidates that are a fit for your culture than 10 people who are not. Right? Who wants to go through all those candidates who aren’t a fit?

So your core values are really important.

Steve & Jessica’s team figured out what they stand for and chose the words Family First, Fun, Respect, Integrity, and Progressive. They have a sentence for each that gives it a little bit more flavor and definition.

You can take your core values and put them into your ads, you can put them on your website, you can put them on the wall of your school, you can do shout outs to staff. In your staff meeting you can reward them based on who represented the specific core values this month. Doing those shout outs starts baking your core values into your culture. You can give rewards (such as gift cards, cash, gifts, things that are meaningful, plaques, certificates) to your team based on displays of excellence mapped to your core values.


Do you have a careers page on your website that’s laid out with a video or teacher testimonials? Those are two elements of your careers page that are super important. Check out an excellent example of this on the Growing Kids website (Owner Mike Garratoni) www.growingkids.com His promotional video markets to teachers “Why Growing Kids Staff Like What They Do.” It’s a very charming video. And they have plenty of teacher testimonials. Please check them out.

Another part of their Careers Page, when you scroll down, allows them to clearly define what they are looking for. (See Photo) The headline of the page is “A Career With A Purpose,” and “We’re Looking for You If You…” and then you can put your bullet points of your core values or what you are looking for in people, specifically related to experience, expertise, behaviors, education, whatever you are looking for.

Growing Kids is a fantastic example to model.

You’ve got to have careers pages that really market your school effectively. Include teacher testimonials, more about benefits and what teachers love most about working here, what you’re looking for in a teacher (in terms of qualities and values), pictures of them having fun with kids and with each other, and a CALL TO ACTION. Those are the elements that you want. A video would be fantastic – it’s kind of extra credit if you can do this kind of a video. It really does an amazing job of pulling people in to actually apply for your positions.


An e-packet is simply a pdf document. It’s like a brochure that you put in yummy copy & images – the same types of things that you would have on your careers page, you can leverage and put in to your e-packet. A really good thing to put in there is more detail about benefits. (See this article for a list of inexpensive benefits you can provide to your employees) Get creative about the perks and benefits you offer and MARKET them.

An e-packet is typically between 4-7 pages long and it also has a checklist of things that you get compared to competing schools. It puts you in a frame of really standing apart in what you offer your employees. And your applicants will get excited about that when they see how professional, and how awesome, and how fun, and rewarding it is to work at your school. You are showing your best in this e-packet to applicants.


The 3 keys to hiring right are:

  1. Hire to your Core Values
  2. Have a great Careers Page
  3. Have an Employee E-packet

I hope this brings some things to mind to help you fix your hiring problem. When you do these things, and you start marketing your school to applicants, and you continue to get better – and build this stuff out over time – your applicant pool will double or triple. When you start getting this right, the number of people who actually get engaged with and apply will blossom. And word of mouth will also double or triple because teachers have friends in the marketplace and they will start sharing

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