Chic Spotlight: President of KidQuest Unlimited, LLC

Chic Spotlight: President of KidQuest Unlimited, LLC

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012108SPOTLIGHTNEW.jpgCincy Chic: Explain the premise behind KidQuest.
LaDonna Smith:
Simply put, the premise behind KidQuest Unlimited is to address the untraditional childcare needs of today’s busy parents. By offering childcare event planners show respect for their attendees’ family life, attract young professionals with small children and allow parents to be able to attend events they might not have otherwise. And kids get to be able to act like kids and be more of a part of their parents’ life.

 

Cincy Chic: How did you come up the concept?
Smith:
It came out of a need that I first had. When my husband and I were planning our wedding and reception, we knew that many of our friends and family members had children—a lot of children! We attended six weddings in six months and saw how children completely took over the dance floor at some of the wedding receptions. We wondered what we could do to make sure that our wedding reception did not turn into a Romper Room. We wanted a solution that allowed us to plan an adult affair and not offend our close friends and family members. So, we came up with a solution to provide on-site childcare. It was hard, because all of our family and friends were attending our wedding.

Fast forward several years. While working with a group of young professionals, I noticed that many of them were either with child, just had a child or were thinking about having their second child. Many parents either could not attend company sponsored events because of the lack of childcare. Some even had to bring their children to adult events.

I read an article that said many young parents now value time spent with their families over earning more money, and some extensive research, I discovered that occasional childcare was a niche that wasn’t being met. My passion for service, children and parenting all lead me to start KidQuest Unlimited, LLC.

Cincy Chic: When did you launch the business?
Smith:
The business launched very quietly in January 2007. My hope is that KidQuest will end 2008 with a bang!

Cincy Chic: Any tips for launching a business that you'd like to share with our readers?
Smith:
Before launching a business I highly recommend having a dear friend and the book The Dream Giver. They will both prove they are worth more than their weight in gold.

When my dear friend learned that I was starting a business, she gave me a book entitled, The Dream Giver, by Bruce Wilkinson. It’s a modern-day parable that mirrors the journey of many Big Dreamers. In the book, Ordinary (you and I) are given a Big Dream (our big idea) by the Dream Giver (God). Along our journey to find the Big Dream, we encounter Border Bullies (those who knowingly and unknowingly try to block our path leading to our Big Dream). After we defeat the Border Bullies and feel that we are near the Land of Promise, we end up in a Wasteland (a delay or self doubting period). The book goes on to talk about the many obstacles that you encounter along your journey to your Big Dream, including the obstacle of yourself. The light at the end of the tunnel is that you can make it! With a friend like Champion and Faith you can equip yourself with the armor of the Warrior that you are, defeat the Valley of Giants and Thrive in the Land of Promise—all while watching your Big Dream flourish.

Cincy Chic: You didn't do a major advertising campaign to launch, but you're still successfully building your business…what's your most powerful tool for getting the word out?
Smith:
Word of mouth has been our most powerful tool. We pretty much eased our way into this market very quietly because we just did not have the funds to spend a few thousand dollars here or a couple of thousand dollars there on advertising. I was speaking with a lady from a women’s organization here in town and she said that someone had emailed her my brochure. It’s good to know that people are excited about my company and share that excitement with others. Our website has also been very helpful. By the way, we will be rolling out a new website later this month!

 

Cincy Chic:Where do you see your company in five years?
Smith:
Wow. It’s one thing for your five year statement to be in your business plan. It’s another for me to have to say it out loud. Here goes. In five years, I see KidQuest Unlimited, LLC being a leader in the special event childcare industry. I see meeting planners and individuals adding a line item in their event budgets for an on-site children’s program. I see parents experiencing the conveniences and balances of work and life that companies such as ours advocate for. I see a long and happy future.

Cincy Chic: What's your favorite thing about your business?
Smith:
Honestly, my favorite part is the reaction that I get from people when I tell them what my company does. “KidQuest Unlimited, LLC is a special event childcare company. We provide our services on-site for conferences, expos, meetings, training sessions, weddings and any other events. When you are looking to increase the attendance and opportunity for women and young professionals with families to attend your event, we’ll offer our childcare to you.” Often times the reaction is, “Really!” “What a great idea!” “I’ve never heard of anything like that!” “Wow, that’s needed!” “I wish you were around when my children were younger!” It brings me great joy to know that I am providing a service both men and women see as being valuable. It’s not that I need validation, but it sure feels good when I get it.

Cincy Chic: What's your favorite thing about Cincinnati?
Smith:
I was born and raised here, so I love a lot of things about the Queen City. But by far, the thing that I boast about often is the great golf courses! I am not an avid golfer, but I do love the game. I love being outdoors and I love the fact that Cincinnati has so many grade “A” golf courses. If I can pick up this game, anyone can – and at an affordable prices too!

LaDonna Wallace Smith is President of KidQuest Unlimited, LLC. She may be contacted at (513) 885-6935 or lwsmith@KidQuestUnlimited.com.

 

Watch a Webcast of LaDonna below or click here.

PHOTO CREDITS
Neysa Ruhl Photography
Location: Fischer Homes Granite Spring Model Home
Model: LaDonna Smith
Makeup Artistry: Jocelyn Sparks, Zoë Custom Cosmetics