Wednesday, February 28, 2024

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    What’s the right size?

    There are no city buses with just four seats. And none with 400 seats.

    We get to leverage the driver’s effort if we put in a few more seats, but add too many and the bus is too big to make a turn–and soon we’d have to add conductors and cleaners and then the bus economics no longer work.

    Doctors discovered that a solo practice made it hard to care for patients seven days a week, not to mention the benefits of sharing overhead with a few other professionals. On the other hand, a practice of fifty or a hundred doctors often begins to struggle in the face of management and structural issues.

    Trees can’t grow to three hundred feet because the amount of pressure needed to bring water that high can’t be produced.

    Most projects have a right size and technology and communication networks have changed the best ‘right size’ for many organizations. If you’re struggling, it might be because you’re fighting the laws of organizational physics. Radically transforming the size of an organization changes more than we would think. We can begin to right size by asking the question.

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