The government did not rely on the internal inspections of the main office workers to assess the productivity of businesses, so every city was graced with a government office called “The Technical Inspection Bureau.” This department was supposed to visit the factories from time to time to check the level of productivity of the workers and to decide whether it was necessary to change the salary or the production quota. During these inspections, they would scrutinize the entire operation from top to bottom and determine how many products each worker was able to produce.

We developed good ties with the head of the Inspection Bureau, Ivan Ivanovitch, after giving him a large gift. When our factory was scheduled for inspection, he would come on his own and ensure that all went well. Nevertheless, assessment day was nerve-wracking.

One day we were informed by the Inspection Bureau that we should prepare for the annual evaluation. We told all of the registered workers that on this day, they all had to be present. I arranged things so that each registered employee would have a position where he would work and instructed them to refer all questions to me.

During these inspections, a representative of the main office under whom we worked was also in attendance. We were required to demonstrate that the products produced on our premises matched the number of working employees. This was complicated since on a daily basis, four people completed the work. I reserved for myself the most crucial job—working the machine which produced the labels. I did not want to risk the chance that someone else would complete the quota faster.

My brother Berel had a similar factory that was run by a different government bureau. We decided that Berel would invite his plant representative on the same day, so that we could both have our inspections completed simultaneously.