Amazon founder, Jeff Bezos, has a two pizza rule for teams.
It goes something like this: if you can’t feed the team with two pizzas, it’s too big.
He really does have a point. Small teams can be eminently more productive, much happier and highly cost effective. Here’s five reasons why:
1. The level of trust will build
When you have fewer people in your team, it becomes far easier to get to know each other.
That doesn’t mean everyone will always get on harmoniously, but it does mean that, over time, an invaluable layer of trust will build.
Fewer people also means less communication leaks and little opportunity for people to procrastinate or avoid their responsibilities.
2. You’ll be kinder to the environment
As the world’s population grows, so does the amount of energy it consumes. In fact, it’s a rather frightening thing; the US International Energy Agency predicts a growth of 48% in energy consumption by the year 2040.
With all things being relative, you can of course scale that down to your team; the more people you have in it, the more energy they’re going to draw, and the bigger your organisation’s carbon footprint will become.
Equally, the more team members there are, the more cars you’ll find parked outside the premises.
Every business has a responsibility to look after the environment, and if you maintain a small team, you’ll be doing your bit.
3. Projects will move quicker
Although not guaranteed (nothing comes without hard work, after all), a smaller team can generally move a lot quicker when it comes to project completion.
This stands to reason; it’s easier to round everyone up in a small team and ensure they all know the role they’re playing and the impact their work has on the overall goal.
This makes accountability far more tangible and, as a result, should give the individual team members the incentive to do their bit swiftly, professionally and to the best of their ability.
4. Leadership will proliferate
Small teams are great for fostering a culture of mentoring.
Even in smaller teams, it’s likely that there’ll be a number of varying skill sets, experiences and personalities at play, all of which can interact with one another positively to ensure no one gets left behind.
Leadership doesn’t have to run from the top – it should proliferate throughout the team, and with fewer people, hierarchy becomes far less desirable (and that’s a good thing!).
5. You won’t be wasteful with technology
If you type your age into this online tool, you’ll find out what the smart city of the future will look like.
It tells us that by the year 2040, we’ll be working in buildings that rely on artificial intelligence to set everything ‘just so’ for the occupants. It’s an exciting prospect, but it’s also a reminder that we all need to make effective use of the wondrous technology that continues to be unveiled.
A small team is inherently good at this, because it will only invest in and use tools that offer a genuine benefit. That means far less wasted spend on apps and platforms that are thrown into large teams and left to gather dust.
Pizza or no pizza, smaller teams are becoming more desirable in businesses across a wide range of industries.
Is it time you switched from large to small (teams, that is – not pizzas)?
Mark Ellis is a freelance writer who specialises in copywriting, blogging and content marketing for businesses of all sizes. Mark’s considerable experience at director level and deep interest in personal and business success means he’s ready to comment on anything from freelance writing to workplace dynamics, technology and personal improvement.