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How many direct reports should you have?



How many direct reports should you have?

It’s essential to find the balance, to optimize your direct reporting team size and also be more strategic in developing your org.


Harvard Business Review has a great piece out that walks through this conundrum.

Think about it this way — you have to start growing upward with your organization as it scales, and get less tactical and more strategic over time.


As that happens, your time gets heavily impacted and technical items, hands-on help and similar tasks have to be culled from your calendar.


If you’ve done your job right, you’ll have grown a solid middle management layer to pick up your old duties and they will learn from you on how to follow your lead in developing talent too.


There’s some excellent ideas on talent development here and here.


Closing thoughts — growth and scaling have to be pan-organization for it to work. If your org grows faster than you or vice-versa, there will be severe growing pains. Keep pace and help everyone up the mountain, and you’ll all reach the top soon!



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