Manufacturers of Snow Fence, Sand Fence, and Split Rail Fence

Cool Employers
(The Cleveland Plain Dealer - Link to actual article)

    There are very few times when a company can be family-owned and oriented, mature and stable, and the largest manufacturer in its field. Strongsville's Kalinich Fence Co. fits all three descriptions.

    Kalinich is the largest manufacturer of snow fences in the United States, and also makes and distributes other kinds of fencing. And, although the "season" for snow fencing is winter, snow fences are also used for holding back sand everywhere from the beaches of Florida to the oil fields of Saudi Arabia. "In season, we produce about 25,000 feet a day of fence, mostly made from aspen and spruce," says Mike Kalinich, Jr., who has taken over operations from his father, Mike, Sr.

    Mike, Jr. is the third generation of his family to run the business, which employs about ## people. "We want the people who work here to be a good fit," says Mike, Jr. "We stress to people that this is a family atmosphere, and that all employees are a part of the family. People like to feel that they fit, that they belong, that they are important."

    Mike, Jr. says that it may take two, three, or four interviews to find out if a potential employee is the right fit, even for a seasonal worker. Once in the company, however, Kalinich emphasizes promotion from within. Many of the company's employees have been there for two or three decades, and many of them have known each other for years as a result of growing up in Strongsville and the surrounding communities. "We want people who are going to be here for a long time," says Mike, Jr.

    He looks specifically for people with good communication skills and the kind of common sense that applies to general applications (i.e. "Can you read a ruler?"). Employees also need to be able to be pleasant to the public while being skilled negotiators. And there has to be more than a little artist in an employee. "A fence does more than create a barrier," he says. "It creates an image, an opinion, a restoration. You need to be able to take pride in every fence that leaves here. Every fence you install is a reflection of your profession - it is a work of art, not just a fence. We also want to be proud of what our people do, so we watch who we hire, and we instill our values to make sure that they carry those values on."

    And those values will likely be carried on for at least another generation - Mike III is a business major at Kent State and, if he can take time out from his duties as a Cavaliers ball boy, is in line (if he wants) to be the fourth generation of the family to run the company.


Minimum Order Required The Kalinich Fence Company is a manufacturer of fencing products. Minimum product quantities may be required for certain direct purchases
© 2011 The Kalinich Fence Company 12223 Prospect Rd. Strongsville, Ohio 44149
800-650-FENCE (3362)