Speaking of Malawi cichlids....
I really believe they do best in groups of 12 - 18 fish, with multiple males, I don't really dwell so much on the ratio as I do the quantity of fish, of course you want more females, but you need multiple males too. Anything less ("pair" "trio" "Quad" etc) and anything can happen, just as you are experiencing with adult fish, a dominate male, and two females. More then likely it will be the loss of your females. The males will harass them to the point of no return. Raising up a group from fry is different then having adults and trying to merge more adults into the group it can be difficult, and females can be non-receptive and the males can be aggressive.
So the answer to the question is multiple males with as many females as you can muster. The more fish in your group the less likely one will get singled out. Multiple males so they can take some of that aggression out on each other instead of your precious females.