Exponential growth in number of tables to support complex linking

Topic Labels: Base design
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5 - Automation Enthusiast
5 - Automation Enthusiast

Hello all,
I’ve gone from knowing nothing about Airtable to feeling I have a grasp of the main principles. I am building an ever more complicated database that has moved into the daunting complexities of off shore financing.

Upto now I have around 10 tables that handle People, Business names, addresses etc.

Till recently I thought a (2 way) linked relationship between people and businesses (in different tables) would work well but now I need the same 2 way link between different businesses. At the moment I have one table for all businesses and knowing the exponential growth in data Im not sure how best to move forward and still maintain the 2 way link philosophy. I thought to start adding more tables to create a hierarchy of businesses but that seems too much. I also thought about trying to use lookups but can’t figure out how that would work.

I tried a script that auto populates (children) linked fields based on the columns you point the script at but its not really ideal either.

Any ideas on how to move forward would be much appreciated…Am I now in the land of needing to write scripts which i’ve never done before?


6 Replies 6

Hi @Glen_Saberton,

Welcome to Airtable Community! :grinning_face_with_big_eyes:

You can link the businesses in the same businesses table. Why do you need another table?


Hi Mo,
Thanks so much for replying. My understanding was that I can’t have 2 way links if things are in the same table. So the upkeep to keep all the bussiness associations upto date is a bit overwhelming at this scale.

Does that make sense?

Hi @Glen_Saberton,

You can link records to other records in the same table if you want.

If you give me more info on what exactly you are looking to achieve as an end result I would be happy to help.


5 - Automation Enthusiast
5 - Automation Enthusiast

Hello again,
Im finding it hard to explain but bare with me…

I have a table called businesses. In this table I have a column which is a linked field to the same business table called ‘related businesses’

In the ‘related businesses’ column for Business1 I fill in a cell and type ‘Business2’ , Business2 doesn’t then populate with Business1

Does that make any sense?


Ya I understand now.

I believe this topic might help you create a script that makes that for you.

Is that the same ?

5 - Automation Enthusiast
5 - Automation Enthusiast

Hi again,
Glad I made sense :slightly_smiling_face:

Yeh I’ve tried that script, it’s not ideal for how I imagined having to approach this but it’s something that I think could work.

Thanks for the help,