So you think you want to go into business with the idea of working eight hours per day, taking the profits and buying a nice car and a boat or some other expensive toys and living the good life?
In theory that might sound good, but in reality it doesn't work out that way the majority of time.Take the case of Bonnie and Mac Burr, owners of Jordan Valley Office Supply, 1377 W. 9000 South, who spend an average of 70 hours per week in their store, stocking shelves, selling to customers, putting items into the computer and delivering office supplies to customers.
The long hours are necessary because they have put all of their profits back into the business to build up the inventory, making it impossible so far to hire a helper. But they admit they are getting to the point where they can afford an employee and that will cut down the long hours somewhat.
Add to the 70-hour work week the time spent with their children in dance lessens, ball games and the like and the Burrs know first-hand what it's like to be productive every minute of every day.
Mac purchased the business in 1989 from Brent and Harold Diamond, who started the company in Heber City. It later moved to 7865 S. Redwood Road and has been at the present location since November 1987. He was running the business by himself until a few weeks ago when Bonnie retired from J.C. Penney after more than 23 years to help the office supply store.
Without an employee to help, the Burrs have relied upon family members, including Mac's mother, to wait on customers, make deliveries and pick up supplies from a warehouse. "I don't know what we have done without them," Bonnie said.
The experience has brought their family closer together, but it also has opened their eyes to government regulations and paperwork, even though they had many years of experience in previous jobs.
The long hours apparently are paying off for the Burrs because they are getting back former customers, walk-in traffic has increased and deliveries are up. Jordan Valley stays open longer than most office supply stores and promises either same-day or next-day delivery service.
In addition to selling office furniture, school supplies, hospital supplies, envelopes, writing instruments, legal forms, business forms and typewriter ribbons, the Burrs said installation of a copying machine also has increased their business.
The Burrs were married in June 1989 (the second marriage for each). Their only time away from the business was three days in St. George. Once they hire an employee their first priority is to develop more accounts and spend more time with their three grandchildren.
Mac attended Utah State University and Utah Valley Community College and worked for J.C. Penney for seven years in the Cottonwood and Valley Fair stores. He also worked for Best for four years and later was a stock broker until he bought the office supply company.
Bonnie worked for a finance company for two years after high school and raised three children. She spent 231/2 years at J.C. Penney in the Midvale and Valley Fair stores. She was manager of credit, layaway and catalog when she retired.