Entries in baby planner (1)

Wednesday
Feb202013

The Inside Scoop on Baby Planners and How to Choose the Best One for Youfor You

What is a Baby Planner?

OK, I get asked all the time, “What the heck is a Baby Planner and why in the world would I need one?”

First let’s answer the basic question.  A Baby Planner is a personal consultant to new and expecting families. They can have a number of titles and may be called a Maternity Concierge, Baby Concierge, Maternity Consultant or Parent Coach.  Ultimately, what Baby Planners do is provide families with factual, unbiased information, practical preparation, and new parent services.

Keep in mind that not all Baby Planners are the same and most will provide many services.  Most Baby Planners focus on one or many areas of expertise such as product education and safety, nutritional consulting, nursery design, birth education, sleep consulting, and more.  So, when looking to hire a baby planner, focus on a company that offers services that are in line with your particular needs.

Why hire a Baby Planner?

“C’mon, I’ve got advice coming out of my ears!  I need one more person giving me advice like a need another stranger coming up to rub my ever-expanding belly!!  Why would I hire someone to help me?”  

Simply put: friends and family have a different function from trained, professional pregnancy and birth support.   They should and will be there to support you, but not everyone is lucky enough to have friends and family near enough to be there for full support and, frankly, they may not always be the best resource for some of your needs. 

I wish I had a dollar for every time I hear expectant parents say, “I have friends and family that have kids and they are going to tell me what I need to do to prepare and what I products I need.”   Well, my response to this is, “I may own a car, but I’m no mechanic”.  What do I mean by that?  Well, although these well-intentioned helpers may have experience with their own children and know what worked for them, that doesn’t make them an expert with a breadth and depth of knowledge (and a lack of bias) that allows them to consult for other’s experiences.

In addition, although some expectant parents may really love to spend hours researching and reading, many others don’t have the time (or energy) to research all of the baby preparation options out there and when they do attempt to research their options, more often than not, end up feeling overwhelmed, stressed, and even more confused!  More and more expectant families have realized they can gain immediate insider access to the latest products, health information, on-call support, the best classes, the greatest resources in their area, as well as customized consulting specifically tailored to their own unique family beliefs, goals and vision for parenthood; all with a Baby Planner.  I want to emphasize that a good Baby Planner doesn’t tell a client what to do or buy, they ask questions and EMPOWER them to make the right decisions for their family.

So how do I choose a Baby Planner?

First and foremost do your research.  I highly recommend asking your potential Baby Planner the following questions: 

  1. What trainings and experiences do you have that are relevant to baby planning?
  2. Do you hold any certifications relevant to your company offerings?
  3. How often can I expect to hear from you? How often may I contact you?
  4. How do you prefer to communicate with clients?
  5. Which primary baby planning services do you provide?
  6. Do you have references? Can I contact them if I decide I’d like to move forward?
  7. When conducting research which resources do you consult?
  8. Do you have any manufacturing contacts?
  9. Are you a member of any professional organizations, such as the Better Business Bureau or the Chamber of Commerce?
  10. How many clients do you take one at one time?

After doing this initial research, ask for an in-person meeting.  This should be free-of-charge and allow you to meet your Baby Planner to make sure that your personalities and philosophies will work well together.  Once you have decided on your Baby Planner, ask for a written proposal and insist on a contract for all services to be provided.

Finally, RELAX!  You now have the piece of mind that you will have access to the latest and greatest information and resources, allowing you to enjoy the most amazing period of your life.   With these simple tips it’s a piece of (baby shower) cake to find and hire the right Baby Planner for your and your family.  Now if you can just keep those belly-touching strangers, with their unsolicited advice, at arm’s length, you’re all set.

Annie Mullens, founder of WeePlan Baby Planners, is a premier, Certified Baby Planner in the Greater Denver area.  She also works as a national/international Independent Maternity and Child Product Consultant for both retailers and manufacturers in order to promote product education and safety.