Lifestyle

How to live in harmony with your domestic helper

One of the greatest things about living in Hong Kong is that you can hire a live-in domestic helper cost effectively. Domestic helpers are a godsend to Hong Kong families, (especially when both parents have full-time jobs), since they can help lessen the workload for employed parents. Miscommunication with people often leads to misunderstandings – in order to avoid unnecessary conflicts, here are a few tips on how to live in harmony with your domestic helper!

Discuss job responsibilities from the beginning.

Before your domestic helper starts working for you, we recommend discussing the details of the employment contract with your domestic helper. This is similar to starting any new job - when both parties are clear on the exact job responsibilities and fully respect the details of the contract, this will help in sustaining a professional relationship.

Respect the domestic helper’s privacy.

Although your domestic helper lives in your house, you should respect their privacy. Once they are off duty (such as evening time on weekdays or holiday on weekends), refrain from asking them to perform work tasks or invade their privacy.



Communicate in their preferred language.

Since English and Cantonese are not the domestic helper’s mother tongue, communicating in their preferred language will help avoid miscommunication. If their English level is stronger than their Cantonese level, simply communicate in English to ensure a smooth and comprehensible conversation.

Do not gossip in front of your domestic helper.

Even if your domestic helper doesn’t understand a word of Cantonese, people can often tell if someone is gossiping about them in a foreign language by their tone, facial expressions and body language. If you want to talk to your family members about your domestic helper, you can discuss it freely when they are not at home.

Communicate in a cool and collected manner.

Even if you develop a close and personal relationship with your domestic helper, you should always remember that the basis of the relationship is a professional one. Instead of getting emotional in discussions, make sure you communicate in a cool and collected manner while addressing issues with your domestic helper.