A behind-the-scenes look on Jed Morley, who started his adult career as a lumberjack in Alaska and is now an important Managing Partner of a merchant processing company called Platinum Payment Systems (PlatPay or PPS.)
What was your early career like?
Jed Morley: I didn’t start anywhere near the business side of things, that’s for sure. When I was 18 years old, I decided to move to Alaska. There, I worked as a lumberjack for a while — which is probably not what you’d expect from someone so entrenched into the business-world like I am today. But, I think that it was a much-needed growing experience.
I still believe that I met some of the most hard-working people ever while on that job. Dangerous and formulaic as it was, it taught me a lot about dedication and keeping-on.
What did you use to do before PlatPay?
Jed Morley: Immediately after I worked in Alaska, I moved again, this time, to Argentina. I served as a missionary for my church there for around two years. During that time, I learned how to adapt to an entirely new setting — one where people spoke differently, acted differently, thought differently, etc. it was an incredibly enriching experience.
I also spent time studying for quite a bit. I went to the Utah Valley State College and the University of Phoenix to study business while working several jobs and running my first personally owned businesses.
Then, after that, I spent a lot of my early years as an entrepreneur in the real estate space. I sold homes, both existing and new, I developed subdivisions, hotels, national credit buildings, charter schools, and dozens of other exciting things. You can say that I still ‘exist’ in the real estate space today — I do still own several tracts of land and a property management company, but as you can probably tell from my world-hopping adventures as a young adult, I like to try out new things — which is what ultimately led me to PlatPay.
When did you start working with PlatPay? (What is it like?)
Jed Morley: I officially started my partnership with Platinum Payment Systems (PlatPay or PPS) in 2008. We’ve grown a lot since then, and I’d like to think that we’ve helped a lot of our clients grow too. Our goal with PlatPay, after all, is to help others solve their payment processing problems — regardless of the size of their business, or what they need to do in order to handle risks and balance the different types of payments they receive.
I partnered up with PlatPay as a managing partner — with a heavy focus on encouraging the growth of PlatPay through other partnerships and improved technologies.
Working in the payment processing space, I’ve found, is very humbling. We’ve done our best to maintain and work ourselves up to be smarter (to the point of being experts on the field) so that we can be sure that we can meet the expectations and honor the trust our clients have for what we do.
What book would you recommend for beginner-entrepreneurs?
Jed Morley: A book I enjoyed and learned a lot from, was “The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It.” by Michael E. Gerber. Highly recommended. Especially if you’re just starting out — but it’s still something to pick up even if you’re more experienced as an entrepreneur. It taught me a lot about how to achieve success by establishing a solid foundation, or rather, a good system, in which that success can be built off of.
Do you have any tips for preventing the dreaded ‘burnout?’
Jed Morley: I have always been, and probably always will be, a people person. I just love people — it’s part of why I enjoyed the two years I spent in Argentina so much, it put me in a place where I could continue to get to know more people.
Anyway, I digress. My method of preventing burnout is to turn away from ‘my’ own work and help someone else with theirs. I make it a point to meet younger, more inexperienced employees regularly so that I can talk to them about how they’re doing at work, how they’re doing on a more personal level, etc.
There’s just something about teaching others that teaches you in turn. And, of course, there’s no denying the level of satisfaction it brings to see someone succeed because of your help. To learn, to teach, and then to learn again — it really is the ‘full circle of business life.’
Fergus Murray is the lead editor for Business News Ledger. Fergus has been working as a freelance journalist for nearly a decade having published stories in the New York Times, The Plain Dealer, The Daily Mail and many others. Fergus is based in Detroit and covers issues affecting his city and New York State. When he is not busy writing, Fergus enjoys jogging.