This week’s TSC Style Profile is dedicated to Alison Ganko, founder of myhouseholdmanaged.com. Alison, like The Stylish Co., is in the business of saving time. With My Household Managed she is able to curate her own employment agency and provide top notch staffing services to high profile clients.
Tell us more about My Household Managed? The story behind it? How it started, etc?
I founded My Household Managed with the goal of solving a huge need in the household staffing agency industry in Chicago that had affected myself personally as well as all of my previous household employers. Graduating with highest honors from the University of Illinois with a degree in Human Development and Family Studies, I knew that I enjoyed working with children and I loved the idea of owning my own business one day. However, I never imagined a world where those two dreams could collide. I started nannying part-time for fun, after my 9-5 recruiting job, on nights and weekends. This soon turned into a full-time professional house management career that I loved. When I first began working in private households I had a front row seat to the way in which a busy, high profile family functioned. I saw other staff get hired, and then later fired. I realized the crucial role that a placement agency played in the job placement process. When I spoke with other nannies and household staff I quickly understood the wide range of misconceptions about the domestic staffing industry and I saw a need for education on these topics. Further, I found that families were looking for high quality, reliable employees, as well as a placement agency that would go above and beyond to understand a candidate's personality and career goals in order to make the right match. Families needed one consultative agency to hire for all of the positions they needed as their family grew and their lifestyle changed.
As a household manager looking for jobs, I found that there was no local Chicago agency specializing in household managers and emphasizing important matters like education, advocacy, and assistance with contract negotiation. I was looking for an agency to take a personalized, consultative approach that could connect me to families that needed more than just a nanny, and I knew there must be others just like myself in the same position.
Using my experience as a house manager, nanny, and former recruiter, I started My Household Managed. With all of our placements we keep the rights and well-being of household employees in mind and believe that employee happiness and job satisfaction will ensure career longevity in order to best benefit our clients.
Who is your ideal customer?
Our clients are busy Chicago families, whether they are stay-at-home moms, or dual-working professionals. These people may be looking for a nanny, or likely something more. They need an experienced house manager or family assistant, to not only handle childcare, but to help with household organization projects, transporting children to activities, and generally working to manage their day to day lives. Our clients are looking to get back the precious free time they deserve.
What services do you provide and in what locations?
As a full-service household staffing agency, we provide a one-stop shop for nannies, house managers, housekeepers, private chefs, chauffeurs, estate managers, personal assistants, and more in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs. We handle the sourcing, recruiting, screening, scheduling, negotiations, so our clients can get back to doing the things they love! One day we hope to expand to other cities as well.
We always love learning more about women’s style. How would you describe your style?
My day to day style is functional and casual. Most days I can be found with no makeup, wearing workout clothes, simple, dainty jewelry, and a fanny pack. I love staying busy and on the go, so comfort and convenience are important to me. On weekends or nights out with friends I like to wear a flowy dress or nice jeans and a cute blouse (preferably no heels, thank you!). Lately I have been embracing a minimalistic approach to style, with simple jewelry and a “no-makeup” makeup look. A few months ago I got a “permanent bracelet” zapped on my wrist at Alexandra Marks in Wicker Park and I am IN LOVE with it. It allows me to be fashionable without thinking! I found it’s an added benefit while I am around kids - they are always trying to take off my jewelry and try it on and it inevitably ends up getting misplaced, but this is one piece that cannot be lost!
What outfit/look/pieces do you feel most powerful/confident in?
I feel most confident on the days I am making an effort to look nice, without going over the top. When I find a flattering piece of clothing that also allows me to be comfortable, it becomes my go-to outfit. I prefer clothing without patterns, that I can dress up or dress down, so I can be dynamic in the type of look I am going for that day.
Can you share where your favorite places to shop are right now?
Madewell, All Saints, Zara
What’s next for MHM? Any fun events or news you'd like to share?
We are launching “private chef experiences”, which will allow families or individuals to book a private chef to create a custom menu and come to their home or venue of choice to prepare a gourmet meal. This is great for a person looking for a personalized dining experience for a special occasion or a couple looking for the restaurant experience in the convenience of their own home for a simple date-night in. We are connected to some amazing top-level chefs that have experience working in Michelin-Star restaurants, working for high profile Chicago families, or cooking on private yachts around the world. I am super excited about this one!
For more information about Allison and My Household Managed visit www.myhouseholdmanaged.com.