Longest known chain of command? [closed]

What's the longest known chain of command length for any government, military, or large organization, (legal or illegal)? For example, WP's abstract military organization chain length is 11:

1. corporal
2. sergeant
3. lieutenant
4. captain/major
5. lieutenant colonel
7. major general
8. lieutenant general
9. general
10. field marshal/five-star general
11. Six-star rank/Commander-in-chief

This question was inspired in a contrary way by Is it really easy for people to get immunity?, which referred "an infinite loop" of bigger fish given immunity, which seemed absurd, since all hierarchies are finite. I started to comment with a guess as to feasible upper limits, having reckoned that 4 times that abstract military's 11 levels, (i.e. a length of 44), should be well above any reasonable upper limit, but then wondered if clandestine cell networks might have connecting levels consisting of a single person -- then cancelled my comment and posted this.

(If every level has more than one person, then calculation confirms that 44 is too high. Suppose a hierarchy allowed each member to command two people. If the world population is 7.6 billion, then a 33 level chain of command would contain all of them -- calculated by drawing a dot, then two branches each ending in a dot, and so on, then counting the total dots on and up to each level, (A000225).)

User James K. comments that "outside of the military people don't get commands.", and "Is a teacher in a chain of command that includes the Secretary for Education and the President?" Not in the same sense, no. But non-military organizations do have hierarchical powers which tend to increase as the level goes up. Rules of thumb might include powers to hire and dismiss lower levels, to increase or decrease rewards and budgets, and provide general or structural directives. Any one of which powers can exert a degree of influence that functions much like a command.

• Closers: Intuition fails me. Please elaborate as to how a question about governmental chain of command length is non-political. – agc Feb 1 '18 at 19:35
• How do you define "large organization"? That seems pretty arbitrary to me. You might want to limit your questions to government and/or military (ideally either-or, as otherwise the question seems a bit broad). – tim Feb 2 '18 at 22:02
• I feel like large organization is redundant, if it has a chain of command >5 layers then it is almost by definition large. Possibly need a disclaimer about not jokes. – Lyndon White Feb 3 '18 at 2:20
• @tim, Organizations with influence comparable to a nation. Nations, large multinationals, organized crime networks, terrorism networks, revolutionary armies, religious hierarchies... – agc Feb 3 '18 at 4:04
• I don't think this can be answered. Outside of the military people don't get commands. Even your example is questionable. Where is the secretary of defence and the secretary of the army. So even in the most clear chain of command, there is ambiguity. In corporations the situation is even less clear. Is a teacher in a chain of command that includes the Secretary for Education and the President? As for terrorist networks, they tend not to publish powerpoints for the benefit of the CIA. – James K Feb 5 '18 at 6:30