The Fence Above, the Ambulance Below

On several occasions, I’ve heard our work at CALMC compared to the role of a fence at the edge of a mountain road. It is better to have the fence there to prevent an emergency than to have to rely on the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff.

There are times when we play both roles. To be the fence is to be proactive. Our work in job preservation is this role. We want to keep jobs in Ohio. As we have detailed in earlier blog posts, keeping those jobs helps not only the employees, but the employer, their families, the community, and the overall economy.

Whether its training a labor-management committee, serving as a facilitator, or conducting an assessment, we work proactively to improve workplaces and enhance their ability to compete. Improving Ohio’s economy demands that existing jobs be maintained.

We are also involved in other means of proactively helping employers and employees. These can include working to improve workplace safety, helping organizations engage in joint strategic planning for their futures, striving to constructively deal with conflict, or in a variety of other approaches.

Bringing jobs to Ohio is important, and we hope the new Jobs Ohio initiative will be successful. It will do little good, however, if the positives of new jobs creation are nullified by Ohioans losing the jobs they have now.

Unfortunately, there are also times we have to play the role of the ambulance at the bottom of the cliff, reacting to unfortunate situations like layoffs and closures. When these happen we strive to help the employees find ways to get back to work as soon as possible while minimizing the impact on them and their families.

Of course, we would rather be in the role of the fence and work proactively. If your company could use some assistance in finding ways to improve your workplace or if you know of other organizations that could use help, let us know.

About CALMC Blog

Columbus Area Labor-Management Committee is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to involving employers and employees to preserve jobs, resolve workplace issues, and promote labor-management cooperation. Visit our website at
This entry was posted in Facilitation, Job Retention, Labor-Management Cooperation. Bookmark the permalink.

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