Saturday, March 19, 2011
THE NEED TO KNOW
At Rockwell, "The Need To Know" policy was strictly enforced. When I became a Manager I noticed one of my employees enter a room marked "Top Secret"; being curious, I knocked on the door and I asked what was going on and the employee stated, "I'm sorry, ma'am, but you don't have the Clearance to come in here." Immediately disbelieving that I had employees allowed to be where I was not allowed, I went to my boss and he said, "Oh, yeah, we need to get you a Top Secret Clearance for that area." He saw that I has highly agitated. He laughed and said, "And you need to give that person a gold star for NOT letting you in there!" I answered, "But he's an HOURLY employee!" My boss said, "But he's an hourly employee WITH a Top Secret Clearance!" As a Supervisor I had needed only a Secret Clearance.
Plant Security called me one day and instructed me to escort one of my Leadmen to their office. When I asked WHAT it was about I was informed that I did not NEED TO KNOW. I later learned that the Leadman had made a simple error and transposed a number on a blueprint request; the requested blueprint did not pertain to our area; his request was immediately flagged. After his "interrogation", the Leadman said it was like being interrogated by the FBI! After Security had determined it was just a matter of carelessness, I went to see the Director and asked why I hadn't been in the loop and he said that I didn't have the NEED TO KNOW, because they did not know whether I might be involved!
Well, that certainly put me in my place!