256 explained

Organizing for further growth


The theme for this Annual Report 2017 is 256. In diverse expanding systems, this is a scale at which a new structure is required, to facilitate further growth. 256 is a primary unit in computing. A 'byte' for example represents 256 possible values, from zero to 255. Digital 24-bit color schemes contain 256 possible values for red, 256 for green and 256 for blue.


The extended 8-bit version of ASCII contains 256 characters, an expansion of the original set of 128. The developers at the time expected that 256 characters would suffice to define all the codes and concepts they could imagine. Nowadays the ASCII system has various derivative branches to make room for new insights and developments.


For Schuberg Philis, 2017 was the year when we welcomed our 256th colleague. At that point, everyone felt that we had reached the limits of our self-management organizational structure. Mutual coordination and decision-making with more than 256 colleagues in one space would be complex, and incompatible with our need for freedom as well as our working methods as individuals and in Customer Teams. This Annual Report tells you more about how we have adapted for further growth. We now know that, at this tipping-point, momentous change is only to be expected.