• Need more information? Ask an information specialist at rc@aha.org

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 331 other subscribers
  • Note:

    Information posted in this blog does not necessarily represent the views of the American Hospital Association
  • Archives

  • Categories

  • Top Posts

  • Top Rated Posts

Span of control: is 7 the magic number?

The average span of control for CEOs has increased from about 5 in the 1980s to nearly 10 in the 2000s, according to this study of Fortune 500 companies.  However, CEOs who are new their position tend to take on more direct reports and then decrease their span of control in later years.  A trend toward a decrease in the popularity of having a chief operating officer (COO) was also noted.  Other C-suite executives are more likely to report directly to the CEO than through a COO.  A “magic number” that is floating around for the correct number of CEO direct reports is 7 — but each company is different and CEOs have different management preferences.

Source: Neilson, G.L., and Wulf, J.  How many direct reports?  Harvard Business Review;90(4):112-119, Apr. 2012.  Click here to access the magazine: www.hbr.org/magazine  Posted by AHA Resource Center, (312) 422-2050, rc@aha.org

%d bloggers like this: