1. What makes you qualified for this role?
This is a tricky one because, as I mentioned, sleep consulting is a completely unregulated industry. So you have to consider the qualifications and experience to ultimately choose someone who you feel confident will meet your needs ethically and professionally.
For example, “My experience as a qualified social worker with an additional specialty in infant and child mental health allows me to have a different perspective on child and infant sleep. My social work background enables me to have a systemic view of the sleep problem. I consider all the different factors that impact your and your baby’s health, well-being, and sleep from a biopsychosocial perspective. This means I create strategies collaboratively with you that are practical in your life and that is based on the latest knowledge and evidence-based practices. Not on my personal opinions or agenda, but on what is important to you and your individual family and baby. When working with you I consider the risks and benefits of my recommendations and only use an approach that does not cause harm. I am constantly aware of my scope of practice and areas of competence and refer you to relevant professionals when your need is outside my scope of competence. As a regulated healthcare professional, I adhere to strict ethical and professional standards that are designed to protect your interests first and foremost from how I handle your information to how I work with you. What does all this mean? That you can breathe easy knowing that the information you are getting is reliable. This also means that whenever there is a conflict between your best interests and the needs of my business, your best interest is prioritized. Being a new parent to a young baby is a vulnerable time and it is essential that you are getting reliable, empowering support and advice during this time.”
2. I noticed you stated you are attachment focused/understand infant mental health/are using an evidence-based approach. What training have you gotten related to attachment, child development, and infant mental health?
Suggested Answer: (Familiarity with child development, healthy attachment, attachment theory, and developmental psychology at least.)
3. What would happen if your instructions don’t work on my baby?
Suggested Answer: We would work together to try something different that you are comfortable with.
4. Would you ever defer to a different specialist?
Suggested Answer: Yes. (Your sleep consultant, depending on their own qualifications, will often need to defer to a doctor, lactation consultant, and other healthcare providers to get the right answer for you. Doing so is a sign of professionalism and knowledge of one’s competencies and scope.)
5. How do you respond when a client feels uncomfortable with your suggested plan?
Suggested Answer: (Work together to build a plan that feels comfortable and works for your baby and family.)
6. Do you use individualized plans? How do you accomplish this?
Suggested Answer: Assessment, working one-on-one, but here is why families find my service/offer helpful… (Look for transparency here rather than a specific way of working.)
7. How do you assess what your client needs/what your plan is?
Suggested Answer: An intake/assessment process that includes ruling out symptoms of underlying health conditions and biological reasons that disrupt baby sleep prior to making behavioral changes.
8. What is your refund policy?
Suggested Answer: (Something you’re comfortable with.)
9. Do you guarantee results?
Suggested Answer: No! I cannot. My clients report positive changes usually in xyz circumstances.