The Birth of Student Maid™ by Kristen Hadeed, Founder
“It all started with a pair of jeans. I was an undergrad at the University of Florida and didn’t have a job (or any real work experience for that matter). I found myself wanting a pair of very expensive “Lucky Brand” jeans, and naturally asked my parents for permission to use that taken-for-granted credit card. They told me the three words college kids dread most, “Get a job.”
I didn’t want a job. Being a finance major, my courses were tough and I had very little time to dedicate to anything but school. I needed something flexible that would work around my demanding schedule, something that would allow me to be my own boss in a sense. I put an ad on Craigslist to clean houses. I didn’t mind cleaning, and figured it would give me enough money in order to buy the jeans and hopefully finance my upcoming spring break trip to Panama City. What else is on your mind when you’re a Junior in college?
So, that’s how it started. I cleaned houses after class and started very small. I found that my clients would tell their friends, who would refer me to their friends, and before I knew it I needed help. I slowly hired other students to clean with me after school and on the weekends. The turning point came when I approached Paradigm Properties, one of the largest property management groups in Gainesville, about possibly doing some of their move out cleanings in the summer. There was a short three week period in which they hired cleaning companies to get the apartments ready before the new students moved in. They agreed to work with us.
Our team went from four to sixty in less than one month. I had to recruit an army in order to be able to handle the workload over the summer. I decided to make a 3.5 GPA requirement in order to attract students who were dependable, disciplined, and goal oriented. We completed the contract with success, worked with over seven different apartment complexes, and were asked to come back the following year.
When move out season ended, I found myself not wanting to stop. I saw a need for a reliable cleaning service in this community, one that only employs individuals of the highest caliber. Throughout my last year in college I continued to run my residential and commercial cleaning operation. I found that our clients grew attached to our students. We were being invited to Thanksgiving dinners, and being asked to house sit and pet sit. They trusted us. (Since when does one invite their cleaning person to Thanksgiving?) So we decided to offer it all, whether it’s cleaning, organizing, dog walking, or another chore needing attention. Our theme was “we are here to help.”
I graduated in May 2010 from the University of Florida with my Bachelor’s in Finance. Since graduating, my passion has been to continue to take Student Maid™ to new heights and to motivate other young entrepreneurs.”
Not only is Kristen Hadeed a super-savvy entrepreneur—she’s also a compelling and inspirational speaker!
What do smoothies have to do with boosting profits? How can the word “no” lead to success? Could you really retire at 20? For several years, Kristen has inspired audiences of all kinds with her answers to these questions that stem from her experience as an entrepreneur, a business owner and a former college student who just really wanted a new pair of jeans. She has used these experiences to build a repertoire of keynotes that she has given before a variety of groups, including young kids, students (including college classes and events, high schools, and middle and elementary schools), businesses, business organizations and incubators, women’s organizations and more. No matter how small or large the audience is, Kristen makes it her goal to connect with each person, and she will work with your organization to tailor her presentation to deliver the most effective message.
But you don’t have to take it from us. Just look at what one of the top speakers in the U.S. has to say about Kristen:
“I’ve been a professional speaker for 22 years, was named one of the top 50 speakers in America and have shared the stage with some of the top speakers in the country, and I can say with complete honesty and confidence that Kristen Hadeed is without question one of the most talented young speakers I have ever known.”-John Spence, Author of Awesomely Simple
Since graduating from the University of Florida in 2010, Kristen has remained extremely active in the Gainesville community. She serves as a Chamber Diplomat, is Chair of the Small Business Advisory Council, is an Ambassador for the Builder’s Association, and is a Board Member for the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce. Kristen is also the Transition and Progression Planning Resource at the Center for Innovation and Economic Development business incubator, where she helps other startups plan for growth and expansion. Student Maid was named the 2010 and 2011 “Leading Women’s Enterprise” by the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce, making it the first repeat winner in this category. Kristen was recently named a recipient of HOME Magazine’s, “13 Going on 30″ award and was also named one of the “25 Most Interesting People in Gainesville” by Insite Magazine. She is a guest lecturer at the University of Florida and was honored to be a TEDXUF speaker in February 2012.
Watch Kristen’s TEDxUF talk!
Want to spice up your next event with a truly mesmerizing speaker? Book Kristen Hadeed today! You can visit her website for more information: www.kristenhadeed.com