Let's say you want to find out who has the the smallest error rate in a production run at a factory or the largest salary in your department. There are several ways to calculate the smallest or largest number in a range.
What do you want to do?
If the cells are in a contiguous row or column
If the cells are not in a contiguous row or column
If the cells are in a contiguous row or column
 Select a cell below or to the right of the numbers for which you want to find the smallest number.
 Click the arrow next to AutoSum , and then click Min (calculates the smallest), or Max (calculates the largest), and then press ENTER.
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If the cells are not in a contiguous row or column
To do this task, use the MIN, MAX, SMALL, or LARGE functions.
Example
The example may be easier to understand if you copy it to a blank worksheet.
How to copy an example
 Create a blank workbook or worksheet.
 Select the example in the Help topic.
Note Do not select the row or column headers.
Selecting an example from Help
 Press CTRL+C.
 In the worksheet, select cell A1, and press CTRL+V.
 To switch between viewing the results and viewing the formulas that return the results, press CTRL+` (grave accent), or on the Formulas tab, in the Formula Auditing group, click the Show Formulas button.

A 
Data 
10 
7 
9 
27 
0 
4 
Formula 
Description (Result) 
=MIN(A2:A7) 
Smallest number in the range (0) 
=MAX(A2:A7) 
Largest number in the range (27) 
=SMALL(A2:A7, 2) 
Second smallest number in the range (4) 
=LARGE(A2:A7,3) 
Third largest number in the range (9) 

Function details
LARGE
MAX
MIN
SMALL
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