Hobby Quest is an educational enrichment franchise that has been in business since 2003 and franchising since 2015. It’s a business with extremely low overhead that you can be open within 90 days of signing your contract. It’s the sole vendor in the US for an aviation program founded on STEM learning – in addition to a robust STEAM program that allows franchisees to operate after school classes, summer camps as well as scouting events, workshops and incredible birthday parties. You will start your business with just 2-4 instructors and simply need drive, people skills and strong communication skills as well as the ability to build relationships within your community.
This is the story of Claudia Cespedes – a mom in Weston Florida who is making this business her foundation for financial security.– tell us about your background:
I am originally from Colombia and moved to California in 1988. I majored in Finance in school. I was always good at numbers and analytics and landed a fantastic job at a marketing agency where I ended up as the CFO. I moved to South Florida in 2005 following my gut. I met my husband here and we have one amazing daughter. And it was here where I became a business owner after a traumatic work reduction/layoff at my job of 16 years.
What was happening in your life that caused you to want to own a business?
Everyone around me would always push me to start up a business. But I was very comfortable with my CFO job and the flexibilities it came with. I was a natural in my role and very much enjoyed and felt proud of what I did. Until my position was moved to an “as needed contractor” basis while I was on maternity leave. Needless to say, I knew it was time to move on to the next best thing. However, timing was bad. I was a new mom and sadly, had postpartum depression. I had no energy to pick my head and start something new.
Why franchising (did you consider a startup)?
Franchising was a ticket to business ownership without the effort required to come up with something of my own. I did not have the brain power to figure out where to start with something new.
Why Hobby Quest – did you look at any other options?
Hobby Quest seemed like the right fit for our needs. My husband and I wanted to join efforts. He is a pilot and with Hobby Quest’s signature aviation program, it seemed like an initiative that would employ both our strengths. I also needed the flexibility to run a business from home and at flexible hours. My priority was raising my daughter, but I also needed to make a living. I knew it was also important to feel I was making a contribution to society by doing something I could be proud of. Enriching kids with skills for a lifetime made me feel proud. And as a new mom, I was suddenly interested in child education. We then traveled to the corporate office and met the founders. Amazing family. We made an immediate connection, so we accepted that as the final sign. It was all around a perfect fit.
Before Hobby Quest, I looked into a promising carpet cleaning franchise. As fate would have it, the deal fell thru when a seller (was buying existing franchise) would not provide his financials in the early stages. I am thankful this happened as I’m not sure carpet cleaning would provide the satisfaction I gain from offering our programs.
What was the biggest surprise) when you opened your business?
I was spoiled by my very comfortable lifestyle and consistent paycheck. Financial uncertainty was a surprise but at least I know I have somewhat control of it as a business owner.
What’s the best thing about owning your own business?
That I can raise my daughter (this is the answer to everything for me) and not rely on other people to be of higher influence on her during the early years.
What’s next for you?
I’m trying to grow my business here in year two so that I can afford employing my sister (who I highly trust and respect) full time and we can both continue to prioritize our children. She’s an amazing asset and we’ve worked together well for years.
For additional information about Hobby Quest – click here