Parent Pays $300 For Babysitter

2013-07-13_12-36-51_448Kids are running amuck, a boy is standing on the couch swinging a hockey stick, and a girl is running around showing off her pink ruffle to anybody who will pay attention to her. I think to myself, “I am a babysitter this afternoon”.

The event started by me being greeted at the door with a warm smile and a woman thanking me for showing up. She booked the party on Monday, five days earlier, and was worried that I was not going to show up. As we walked into the Chicago bungalow the question was, “Where do you want to do this?”

I was told this was a last minute party and there was going to be around seven kids. I was escorted to a finished basement, where the host informed me she would “send the kids down”.

Tearing down the hardwood stairs are six boys and two girls. The peace and quiet of the basement was no more. Periodically the host would appear to grab a bottle of wine from the wine cooler, but other than that, I was the supervising adult.

As the treadmill spun, toys distributed around the room, discarded potato chips on the floor, and the repetitive question of, “Is it my turn yet?” filled the room.

To end the party, while the kids contentedly shoveled pizza into their mouths, the host requested three more balloon figures for kids who did not arrive at the birthday party. I gathered my stuff and the extra balloon figures and headed up the stairs. The father escorted me to the living room for payment and the wife proceeded to requested two more balloon shields.

As I walked to the car, I thought, “What’s next”?

Here are just some of the client types I have worked with over my career.

  • Clients that treat you like you’re the babysitter
  • Clients that have last minute requests
  • The indecisive client – keeps changing their mind
  • The detailed client – has everything themed and choreographer
  • The obliging client – whatever the entertainer wants, it’s fine
  • The controller – they dictate what balloon figures should be made
  • The invisible client – they are so busy socializing that they have somebody else pay you at the end of the event
  • The you snooze, you lose client – they hired you for a given time period and if someone cannot make their event when the entertainment happens, sorry no balloon for you.

These have been some of my experiences.  What good/bad types of clients have you had the experience of working with in your career?