In both academic and practical areas, researchers are putting forward serious studies on ensuring efficiency in business management and increasing productivity. For example, you open a factory, where the maximum number of employees is a healthy working environment and effective production conditions are provided?
You’re going to open a school in the area again. What strategy would be more effective, a big school in a single centre? or small schools scattered in neighbourhoods?
In particular, the scale economy, which is frequently discussed in the production of industrial goods, is to enlarge the factories and production opportunities… Because according to economies of scale, efficiency increases due to decreasing fixed costs as the capacity of the enterprise grows. In other words, when the inputs used in production are doubled, the output is increased by more than two times.
Adam Smith in the Wealth of Nations book, which he published in 1776, linked it to 3 fundamental variables:
- Use of specialized machines,
- Specialization of the labor force on the machine,
- Development of new equipment and machinery thanks to specialization in R & D area
There’s a concept called Channel capacity in cognitive psychology. According to this understanding, there is a certain capacity in our brain where certain types of information are allocated. For example, if a test is applied to you, and you are asked to classify 21 cups of different sugar levels in different cups, you will be asked 6 or 7. After the cup, it will be difficult to separate the flavours. With this situation, you will get the most perfume when you get the scent, after a few tries, the odour becomes indistinguishable.
Malcolm Gladwell Elaborates This issue with different examples in the spark memoir. For example, think of people who are the best around you, and when you lose, you’ll really regret it. How many people come into this class in your life? Another research conducted on this issue has been answered as an average of 12 people. Because being someone’s best friend requires a certain amount of time investment and emotional energy. Because it is very tiring to really value someone, there is also a capacity for the number of people we can really value in our lives. In other words, over 15 people are putting an excessive emotional burden on us and stressing us out.
150 limit in active communication
The researchers, who have brought these efforts further, are trying to find out if there is a limit to the channel capacity and the effective communication networks we can establish in our daily lives. The brain is investigating whether there is a relationship between Neokortesksi and the individual group size that is involved in conducting high functions such as conscious thinking and language. The result is roughly 147.8, reaching the 150 limits.
They have the same findings when they carry this research into different areas of anthropology and question them in social areas. For example, in a survey of 21 hunter-gatherers who have tangible historical information about themselves, they conclude that the average number of people in the villages is 148.4.
Gladwell, who mentions the same situation in the culture of organizing, gives the example that the functional units in a military organisation are not more crowded than 200. Researchers who saw this as a limitation of control and coordination ability have discovered that more people than this number are capable of recognizing and doing business.
In organizations created over the number 150, crowds bring about alienation. Alienation encourages people to go into the grouping.
To the boss of an American company called W. L Gore and Associates who implements this approach; When asked how they make their long-term plans; We are making parking spaces for 150 cars in our car park and we understand that we need to open a new factory when people start to park their vehicles on the lawn.
I wonder if this approach is from organizations, schools, hospitals, etc. Agencies and apartment sites, village places etc. Can it be tested in different areas, ranging from residential areas to urban planning?
Let’s leave the answers to the experts in the fields of this question…