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PB JAM and Dunbar's Number

Updated: Aug 1, 2021

#TLDR: #PBJAM helps you to build meaningful network of professionals on whom you can depend for your entire career.

Back in 1980's British Anthropologist Robin Dunbar, provided an intriguing analysis of group sizing within primates. Based on observed data, he predicted that human brain has cognitive capability to form up to 150 meaningful relationships at any given time. This number, 150, has been called the Dunbar number and it has been heavily contested over past 30 years (see this article for the latest!).

Dunbar's number (whether 150 or 200) has a great significance for #PBJAM. We believe in helping our members develop meaningful professional relationships rather than the superficial professional contact that many currently available networking tools offer. We want our members to form such relationships over many years on our platform. On an average, we recommend to pursue 3-4 groups per year for each member. This implies that in a year, our members get introduced to 6-8 individuals. Of course, we do not assume that all of these would be meaningful relationships over long term, so we assume 5 new relationships per year. In a typical career of 30-40 years, this implies that #PBJAM has the potential to help you build 150-200 meaningful relationships. Our estimate is more conservative at 100 relationships over 20 years.

These 100 relationships are worth their weight in gold for your career! As these are the people who will know your #dailystruggles over years, your #PBJAM #facets of interest, #behaviors that you have worked on, your effectiveness in forming and completing #SMARTsteps and your ability to being a #CriticalFriend. They will also know how helpful your #feedback has been for them. In short, these are the people who won't mind having you next to them in a foxhole.

These are also the people whose recommendations carry weight than the casual/neutral references from your other contacts. They can be the mirrors that allow you to shine more brightly for your current job, next job, next assignment or next venture. We are excited to see you build your meaningful professional network via #PBJAM!

What are your thoughts on Dunbar's number? What cognitive limits have you faced while trying to connect with more than 200 people over a long stretch of time? What has worked for you? Write to us at or in the comments section below.

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