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A Formula for the Perfect Company Size? May 12, 2009

Posted by baileyrichardson in Uncategorized.
150 people strong?

150 people strong?

Last quarter I read about the Dunbar Number in a class of mine on the human brain. The Dunbar Number is a theory based on human cognitive abilities and it states that the maximum number of stable social relationships one can maintain is limited to 150. It basically means that human beings can only remember/sustain 150 dynamic social relationships at a time.

Dunbar's Findings

Dunbar's Findings

UK anthropologist Robin Dunbar calculated this number by examining neocortex sizes of primates in relationship to their social group sizes. But today people have found its extensions into modern hunter-gatherer groups as well as holiday card recipient lists – each of which average about 150 people. Recent studies have also been done relating the Dunbar Number with social networking sites such as Facebook, which averages 120 friends per person (slightly more for women and less for men)!

The Dunbar Number relates to this course because it also impacts the sizes of corporations. Business often develop a management structure after growing to over 200 employees, as to avoid rivalries and poor communication.



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