It’s no secret that Prince William and Kate Middleton rely on a team of expert staff to help look after their home, which just so happens to be in Kensington Palace. The royal couple share the 20-room household with their three children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis, and rumour has it, Kate runs a very tight ship. But we wouldn’t expect anything less, right?
With high standards to upkeep, it seems that the Duchess of Cambridge has one very strict rule in particular that her staff must obey if they want to work for her family – and in a recent housekeeping job ad posted on the Royal Household’s official website [as per OK!], in which the role was described as an ‘exciting opportunity’, there’s a big non-negotiable that any successful candidate needs to have.
As you might imagine, privacy is of the upmost importance to the royals – and they’ve run into difficulties in the past with staff leaking stories to the press – and as such, the job spec makes it super clear that there’s to be zero-tolerance for any gossiping. To be exact, it says that “maintaining confidentiality and exercising discretion” is key. Noted!
The job ad also read: “You will be a self-starter who also enjoys working collaboratively. You will be keen to take on new challenges as these arise and develop your own knowledge and skills.” So, if have a tightly-zipped lip and feel ready to take on the challenge of one day becoming a housekeeper for the Royal Family, listen up – as that’s not all you’ll need to be mindful of during the interview stage. According to Tracey Waterman, the head of recruitment, the special test helps weed out the average housekeepers, and single out the “special” candidates.
The idea of the test, is that she places a dead fly somewhere around the room to see if the applicants spot it, and how they react. Nice. In a recent Channel 5 documentary, titled Sandringham: The Royals at Christmas, Waterson also said: “The difference between a housekeeper in a five-star hotel and in a Royal Palace would be attention to detail. One of the tests I like to do, to see if a candidate has a potential eye for detail, is to place a dead fly, either in the fireplace or on the carpet.”
She continued to say, “Once the dead fly is placed, I then bring the candidate into the room. I lead them into the room quite slowly, just giving them a chance to glance at the room, have a little look at what we’ve got inside the room. Bringing them to the fireplace, maybe highlighting that we’ve got a beautiful fireplace.
“It’s a great test, maybe out of 10 people half the candidates will notice the fly. One out of ten will actually bend down and pick it up, that’s the special housekeeper.”
OK, that is a strict rule, but if you’re going to be working for the future King and Queen, perhaps it doesn’t seem *that* far-fetched? 20-20 vision at the ready!