Jennifer Marcus is a highly sought-after entrepreneur, youth keynote speaker, and empowerment coach. After earning her master’s degree in Accounting and Finance with honors, Human Resources Management, and MBA from Keller Graduate School of Management, she went on to work for a couple of accounting firms before establishing Marpalms in 2016. In addition to owning Marpalms LLC, Jennifer is also the CFO of Tour Décor and co-owner of Beau Diamante LLC, CEO and President of You Can be You, Owner of Jepriv Fashion, Paint Me Sassy, One Winged Incorporated, Marcus Brands Incorporated, One Winged Steel, One Winged Studios, One Winged Speaking, One Winged Literature, One Winged Presentations, Jennifer Marcus LLC.
Since childhood, Jennifer has tackled racism, physical and emotional abuse, and child abandonment. These life experiences eventually created expectations that nearly exceeded her abilities, such as finding employment to pay rent while being a full-time student at thirteen. Unfortunately, at this point of time, Jennifer’s mother also suffered from drug addiction and used the household’s limited income to feed her drug habit.
At fifteen, Jennifer reached a pivotal stage in her life after moving to California with a few older friends. She was then shot in a random drive-by and immediately taken to the hospital. While lying in bed, attached to several monitoring devices, Jennifer thought she deserved much better. Upon her exit from the hospital, she immediately set a course to be on the right path and got involved in sports programs, clubs, and other initiatives that helped her to use her time wisely. These decisions eventually developed her self-confidence and led to a range of achievements, including earning three master’s degrees, owning twelve successful businesses, and identifying her purpose to make an impact on youth and students internationally.
In 2016, Jennifer founded Marpalms, which has since grown into a sophisticated business providing much more than simple bookkeeping services. Proud of the educational focus of her company, Jennifer is incredibly enthusiastic about the consulting work and the relationships she builds with other individuals and organizations. Jennifer is an open book of tools and strategies which can be used to improve efficiency, be successful, and effectively empower small business owners. Jennifer’s philosophy is to offer the highest quality services at affordable pricing.
While working for other accounting firms, Jennifer noticed that entrepreneurs and small business owners were struggling and being taken advantage of. They were being charged exorbitantly for bookkeeping and accounting, which they couldn’t afford. Although they needed the help but were spending everything they had, leaving nothing to grow their business further. So, many would go out of their businesses for lack of capital.
So, she formed Marpalms in 2016 to give those businesses a greater opportunity to grow while still receiving the needed service.
“If you’re going to live, leave a legacy. Make a mark on the world that can’t be erased”- Maya Angelou
“Marpalms is built on the philosophy that we try to start with our clients early and set the fees so that they are affordable. As the client’s company grows, the fees increase, so we grow together. Doing this leaves more money in their business and, in turn, creates a long-term partnership versus a company out of business and a client lost,”- Jennifer explained.
She also went ahead and started Jepriv fashion, offering clothing at a price that everyone could afford. Later she opened Beau Diamante, offering both fine and fashion jewelry, Paint Me Sassy carrying nail wraps and nail supplies, One Winged Studios offering a podcast studio, a video studio, and a photography studio under one roof.
When the Going Gets Tough
Jennifer feels the main challenge she has faced in the Accounting and Bookkeeping industry is not being taken seriously. Several larger firms have questioned her abilities, as her fee structure is different than others, that she loves to work with new businesses, that she does not take any of the large companies, and that she will not conform to the way that they want Jennifer to run her company. However, she prefers to operate her company in a way that can cater to those that others do not want to take care of, those that need the services the most to grow their businesses and thrive.
“If you can dream it, then you can achieve it. You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.” – Zig Ziglar.
“Honestly, when it comes to business, I do not think that I have had many roadblocks related to being a woman. I think this is because I don’t let them bother me, and I refuse to let them deter me from helping others and staying on the path set forth,”- she said.
As we all know, the pandemic had many major effects on all businesses worldwide, and Jennifer’s businesses were no different. Her retail businesses almost completely came to a halt, and there was a massive drop in her clients, as they no longer had their businesses or could not afford services. Jennifer and her team worked with her clients in any way they could.
“Luckily, when it came to my retail businesses, I was able to ride it out and withstand. This is because years ago, I decided that when I started a business, I would ensure that I had enough money to pay for the inventory, the costs, and any other fees that are not just basic day-to-day. By doing this, I had no expenses, allowing my companies to hold tight until sales started coming in again,”- Jennifer remembered.
In the future, Jennifer seeks to grow her business with the addition of the nonprofit You Can Be You, continuing to speak to business owners, entrepreneurs, and individuals to help them create and maintain their own business empires. She plans to do this through public speaking, podcasts, and educational classes. In addition to those projects, Jennifer will also continue to speak with high school students regarding the importance of choices, their ability to make decisions, and that regardless of background, where they came from, or what they have been through, they too can make choices that can set their life on the path towards the future they desire.
Advice for Future Leaders
As a serial entrepreneur, youth keynote speaker, and empowerment coach, Jennifer advises future business leaders that they should not give up. She says, “I know that it seems insignificant and redundant but never give up. No dream, no goal, no job is too small. I started out working for others now; I stand here with three master’s degrees, twelve businesses, one nonprofit, and a passion and fire not only to teach others but to ensure that they are also able to inspire and teach others.”