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Have you ever been part of a meeting with a large group of people? Then it’s likely you’re familiar with wasting a lot of time discussing irrelevant issues when you could have been talking about more important matters. Often these meetings are not the most productive. This is a prime example of how working in smaller groups can be more productive. When trying to brainstorm or perform a task as part of a large group, there are so many distractions or conflicting viewpoints that you just get stuck in one place and it’s hard to move forward. Here are just a few of the reasons why working in a smaller team can be beneficial for productivity. The Ringelmann Effect According to the Ringelmann Effect, as the group’s size increases, the individual members of the team start to become less and less productive. This makes sense because as the number of members increases, the “bikeshedding” effect, which is wasting time on trivial details and ignoring important matters, increases as well. This leads to more irrelevant discussions, more chaos, more distractions, and more corporate politics. Obviously, this has a negative effect on productivity. Lack of Contribution and Recognition As the size of the group increases, it becomes difficult to identify the progress and contributions of each member of the team. The team members might not work as hard when they don’t feel like they’re being recognized. They may start to feel complacent and tell themselves “other people are contributing to this work, so I don’t need to do as much.” This results in lower quality work since members don’t feel like they need to put as much effort in. Less Social Distraction We are all aware of the gossip and conversations that go on in an office environment with many coworkers. And don’t get me wrong – this can actually be great for morale since it establishes a friendly and collaborative work culture. But sometimes it can be a bit too distracting. That’s why branching off into a smaller team with fewer distractions socially can be beneficial when it comes to brainstorming new ideas or focusing on the task at hand. This lets you step away from the conversation when you need to, only communicating with the small number of coworkers you need to. Clarity A small team will have more clarity when it comes to long-term vision and goals than a large team. In a smaller group, it's easier for everyone to be on the same page. They will be aware of the circumstances, the successes, the failures, and the expectations. However, this may not be the case with a larger team. Less Administration and Micro-management Since you need to recruit, hire, and train fewer people in a small group, you can spend more time on critical work and less time on administrating the group. This will not only help you achieve your goals faster but will also save you time and give employees more autonomy. Those are just a few of the benefits of small work teams. Have anything to add? Let us know in the comments!