098: Adam Hoffman (Qstodian)

Adam Hoffman on Innovation City

“So many people operate through a paradigm of fear, but if you take a leap (even once), it will make you more successful at anything you choose to do next.” — Adam Hoffman

Welcome to Innovation City—powered by Venture Cafe—where Tyler Kelley and Michael Johnson, Co-Founders of SLAM! Agency, interview innovators, creators, and disruptors to discover how business is changing in the modern world.

Created and produced by SLAM! Agency in cooperation with Venture Cafe St. Louis and Venture Cafe Miami, Innovation City gives you an inside look at how rapidly business and culture are changing thanks to increasing diversity and inclusion, heightened creativity, and a stronger and better-connected business community. Venture Cafe is the largest combined gathering of entrepreneurs and innovators anywhere in the world. Events are held every Thursday in St. Louis, Miami, and other leading innovation cities around the globe.

Today’s guest is Adam Hoffman, CEO of Qstodian. Qstodian is a restroom management system that empowers venues to keep restrooms immaculate and their customers thrilled and coming back for more. Adam sits down with the team to discuss launching his new venture: Qstodian, how to know when it’s time to pivot your company, the importance of listening to the marketplace, being welcomed by St. Louis’ startup community, and much more!

They discuss:

  • Moving from Boston to St. Louis to attend Washington University and falling in love with the city
  • St. Louis has room for innovation and change for the future
  • Starting his first business in college, CheckTheQ
    • Tracking the movement of people in airports, stadiums, hospitals, etc. to estimate how long lines would take
  • What is Qstodian?
    • A restroom management system that allows venues to keep restrooms immaculate and customers happy
    • 1st Product:
      • Tracks and counts the number of people using the restroom, so management staff knows when to check on cleanliness quality
    • 2nd Product:
      • Users can text a number with their issue and janitorial staff will be contacted immediately to come fix it
  • How to know when it’s time to pivot your company
  • The importance of listening to the marketplace
  • Taking learning curves as they come
  • Balancing the idea of pivoting your company and keeping the peace with employees and stakeholders
  • Having investors who are trusting and believe in you
  • The startup community in St. Louis has been welcoming and gracious in lending their network
  • CIC, Cortex, T-Rex, & STL Fusion all pitched in to help beta test Qstodian
  • St. Louis is growing and changing along with its entrepreneurs
  • One of the largest expenditures in the operations budget for restaurants, hospitals, etc. is the cleaning staff
  • Any failed venture is a learning moment
  • People who are dedicated, hard working, & willing to solve problems are the most attractive when looking to hire
  • Working through the hard times to come out stronger and more successful
  • Connect with Qstodian on their website
  • Reach out to Adam on LinkedIn