Full Name: Dawn Grey
How did you decide to become a career maternity nurse? I was working as a nanny through an agency who also supplied maternity nurses. A very tricky night job came through with a poorly baby who had just been discharged from hospital. He had severe renal complications and needed oxygen and medication throughout the night and his parents were exhausted and unable to do it. The agency asked me because of my calm nature and said I would be perfect for the role! So it started from there really almost 18 years ago and I haven’t looked back!
Have you had training outside your jobs? Yes I continue training and undertake at least one course each to ensure my professional development is maintained. I’m also a certified sleep consultant, lactation specialist and hold the latest Level 5 maternity nurse qualifications.
When you say you’ve served as an extension of the parents what do you mean? I guess that means that as well as providing the utmost in excellent care of the baby/babies, a secure, loving and nurturing environment is also created by me so the parents feel confident in my ability to card for their baby whether they are present or not.
What can you tell me about your salaries and packages?
I offer a wide variety of packages as well as bespoke packages to cater for all my clients needs. These are on my website. I try to be as flexible as possible from a 1 hour consultation to several weeks/months if the client needs the support.
What should a family look for in a maternity nurse? Definitely someone with a gentle and warm personality who assures the parents that she is flexible and accommodating to the parents needs. I hear from so many parents about maternity nurses being so ‘strict’ and I honestly feel that this approach is totally unnecessary in this role. You can get things across to parents in a very gentle way to avoid upset, embarrassment etc especially when this is such an emotional time generally.
What’s the most difficult experience you’ve ever faced in your professional career and how did you overcome it? I can’t think of any particular difficulties as such. Over the years there has been the odd client who has been a little unfriendly but I do my job professionally and always with a smile on my face. If the job is through an agency I would always inform them fully of the situation.
What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced? A client that I did a ‘trial’ for and her agreeing the dates and talking about the months ahead too, deciding suddenly to terminate the contract and refusing to pay for the remainder of the time booked/agreed according to the contract. I was the 4th nurse in 4 weeks.
How do you handle picky eaters? In my past career as a nanny I would incorporate the disliked foods into sauces etc (e.g., vegetables) or make patterns, funny faces etc. Also not making a big fuss of what they’re eating/not eating helps!
What do you do when children won’t go to bed? Various tactics and games and words of encouragement about the next days activities of they hurry/clean their teeth/pjs on etc.
What advice would you give candidates looking to become a nanny or develop to a high level of nanny or maternity nurse work? That they do a lot of research into their desired role and that it is of paramount importance to continue with CPD in the form of research/qualifications and courses.
What are your top tips for interviews and getting your next dream job? Be yourself, be friendly and professional and discuss all the important issues before taking on a role.
What was your most memorable moment looking after a child? There have been so many but for me as a maternity nurse now it has to be helping parents with sleep issues in their babies. I was told recently by a client that it was the best money she had EVER spent on anything because I had completely changed their lives around in 2 days! She was delighted and I’m looking after her little boy for a few days whilst she has to go away because she said I’m the only person she can put 100% in apart from her mum!
Lastly what are your dreams and hopes for the future? Definitely to write my book that I’ve been thinking about for many years and in the meantime to continue offering a fabulous service for my clients!