Bringing baby to work: New business hopes to help working moms

Posted on 9 November 2017 at 7:47pm

COLUMBIA - The hatchery had its grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony with the Columbia Chamber of Commerce Thursday.

The Hatchery is a co-working space with on-site childcare. Owner Amanda Quick opened The Hatchery after she had a daughter but still wanted to work, without putting her daughter in daycare full-time. 

“Like I want to be close to my baby, but I want work and I want to be me,” Quick said. “I really just went to a mentor and laid it all on the table and asked if I was crazy or if it might work. And here we are today.”

Quick visited a restaurant in St. Louis, The Nest, which offers child care. She was inspired by this idea.

“And so that idea was kind of just stuck in my head for two and a half years,” Quick said. “I’d kind of go back to it and then think no, that’s not going to work. And then, once we had our own kiddo I kind of just had the idea, and it just wouldn't go away.”

The memberships are based on how often someone comes. People can choose between once a month, five times a month, 12 times a month and then everyday or 24/7 access.

Quick said a lot of people use the space for different reasons. The Hatchery started as women who worked from home and had children.

“That was our big niche, and so we definitely have those ladies that come in here,” Quick said.

Amanda Ford is a graphic designer who brings her infant son to The Hatchery as she works.

“Obviously, I have this little bitty guy and I needed a place to hang out that I could be near to him because I am breast feeding him,” Ford said.

The Hatchery works for people like Ford who need an additional space but not an office.

“If I opened an office, I would never show up because I do have a home office, Ford said. So being here gives me a chance to still be close to the new baby and be able to get a lot of work done. And a collaborative space to hear all the other mom stories because I’m a brand new mom”

Ford said The Hatchery allows her to use the conference room for meetings and have childcare.

"I think it’s an extra $5 here versus $10-$15 if you have them come to your house," Ford said.

Trina Reifsteck comes to The Hatchery to network.

"I wanted to know more of the entrepreneurs in the area,” Reifsteck said. “I’m trying to get into sustainability and green salons and helping with social media and marketing. So being at The Hatchery gives me the resources that I need to get involved.”

Reifsteck said the conference room and meeting room will be useful for her clients.

“It has a home feel to it,” Reinsteck said. “It’s an efficient place for everyone to meet up and get involved.”

Quick said one of its members is a full-time book keeper.

“Her kids are in school,” Quick said. “But working from home is kind of lonely and full of distractions. So she’s able to have meetings here and come in here and get work done.”

Quick said The Hatchery has a couple of members who work remotely from bigger companies and health coaches who use the private meeting space.

“Even in their policies, they’re actually asking people in the community to come and actually network and talk and they make it very clear it’s ours,” Reifsteck said. “Like it’s not yours it’s not mine. It’s our tools. It’s our resources and we are all here to help and empower each other.”

Columbia Chamber of Commerce President Matt McCormick said there has been an increase in new business in Columbia.

"It's always great to help us open a new business in Columbia," McCormick said. "To watch businesses grow and take an idea and turn it into a business, especially this one, they are doing a great job helping other businesses do that."