Monday, 22 November 1999
Three is a crowd is an English expression. It sounds a bit exaggerated to me. Looking back at my career the most successful projects has small teams indeed (, staffed with just one, two or three persons (

Group of 3 with 3 communicationlines A group of three has very clear communicationlines. Just two for each participant, with a total of three. Group of 2 with 1 communicationline Yes, I do admit that a group of two is even better. There is only one communicationline in a biangle. Only the lonely outdoes the group with no communication at all.

A group of three takes decisions easily. Usually, it is quite easy to find a majority for an idea. Individual qualities are not lost in group dynamics.

Group of 4 with 6 communicationlines A group of four gets a bit more tricky. The number of communicationlines doubles from three to six. Taking decisions is harder as the votes often get equally divided.

Group of 5 with 10 communicationlines Five is the absolute maximum for me. The total of 10 communicationlines is still quite clear. A majority is easy to find thanks to the odd number. Every individual will find a few fellow group members for joyful cooperation. Yet a group of five is still small enough for a strong mutual cohesion.

Group of 6 with 15 communicationlines Guess you feel where I'm heading at. A group of six drowns in all the ocean of communication and is too busy to work. The quality sinks down too, just like the productivity. The individual opinions are lost in the group dynamics.

1 takes charge over 5 As a provisional solution one of the members takes charge and narrows the number of communicationlines down to 5, quite clear again.

  • The direct, mutual communicationlines are lost.
  • The individual responsibility and commitment decrease.
  • The group of five tends to grow a collective insouciance.
So I doubt the added value of such a sixth wheel on the wagon. Group of 5 and individual The remaining five will feel inclined to arrange things among themselves. The group of five disintegrates into a fivesome and an individual.

This individual concludes: Six is a crowd.

Till next week!