Cross linked entries in the same table, e.g. Clients and Suppliers, Investors and Portfolio company

Topic Labels: Base design
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4 - Data Explorer
4 - Data Explorer


Is there a way to have two-way cross-references between entries in the same table?

For example, there is a table [Companies]. Each entry, a company, can have clients and suppliers. If a company has clients, it means that those clients have at least one supplier - the company. I'd love to be able to connect entries so that when I assign clients, those entries automatically get updated with supplier info—and vice versa.

Another example is Investors/Funds and Portfolio companies. I want to be able to add portfolio companies to a Fund and automatically have this Fund added as an investor to all its portfolio companies.

Such two-way cross-reference works fine if I have several tables, for example, [Investors] and [Companies]. Airtable shows all the investors associated with a company and all the portfolio companies associated with an investor.

However, I am looking for a solution to keep all the companies (portfolio companies, investment funds, clients, suppliers, etc) in the same table. 

Does anyone know a good solution?

Thank you in advance for sharing your recommendations.




4 Replies 4
6 - Interface Innovator
6 - Interface Innovator

In the first case are there 3 tables? companies, clients and suppliers? I don't quite understand how you want to put it together.

when you create relationship columns between 2 tables, the information appears in both. You can then "bring in" more information using look up columns

4 - Data Explorer
4 - Data Explorer

@Marcelo  Thank you for your response. There are only two tables - [Companies] and [Contacts].

However, I can't figure out how to create a relationship between two entries in the same table in the same way as it works when entries are in two separate tables.

And having two tables, [Clients] and [Suppliers], is impractical as the same company can be both a client and supplier.

6 - Interface Innovator
6 - Interface Innovator


If that kind of "double relation" happens 80% of the time (80-20 rule), you should create that relation in the same table. 

You can do it by creating a relation column in the Clients table (for example, and you should call it by other name)


then, link it to the same table.


My workspace is in spanish, but it's the same "Clients" Table.

So, i would this table "Companies". Then, this field should be "Clients", and then duplicate it (with right click on the column) and name it suppliers.


I tried this approach, and unfortunately, it didn't work for me because it is not bi-directional.

Specifically, when I link Company 1 and Company 2, assigning Company 2 as a client of Company 1, the record for Company 2 also should automatically indicate Company 1 as a supplier of Company 2.

Is there a way to automate the creation of such bi-directional connections?