Objectives and Key Results (OKR) is a popular technique for setting and communicating goals and results in organizations.
Its main goal is to connect company, team and personal objectives to measurable results, making people move together in right direction.
Big part of OKRs is making sure each individual knows, what's expected of them at work. OKRs are kept public in front of everyone, so teams move in one direction and know what others are focusing on.
OKRs consist of a list of objectives. Under each objective then usually 3-4 key measurable results are listed. Each key result has a progress indicator or score of 0-100% or 0 to 1.0 that shows its achievement. See the example OKR report and OKR template below for how it looks like in practice.
Implemented initially in 1970s by the President of Intel Andy Grove it later spread across many tech companies. Nowadays it's used by teams and whole companies from SMEs to Fortune 500. Google, LinkedIn, Intel, Zynga, Sears, Oracle and Twitter are just some well-known OKR users who love them.
See this infographic for more about OKR history, users, quotes, best practices and examples.
Often OKRs are part of recurring (usually monthly or quarterly) planning and progress reporting process.
To implement Objectives and Key Results, use an online OKR software tool like Weekdone.
OKR structure is very simple:
Once defined, communicate OKR objectives and key results to all stakeholders and make sure they are understood. If needed, tune the wording together to have a common understanding.
As people start working, they update their result indicators regularly - weekly is a good period. An objective is considered done when 70-75% of its results have been achieved. If 100% of objectives results get done, it's not considered ambitious enough.
Review OKRs regularly, as needed. Be flexible. If your company, team or personal goals change, feel free to change the OKRs together as well. No process should be more important than common sense and everyday business.
See here how OKRs can be implemented in minutes in online OKR service.
The main benefit is to keep vision, goals and objectives always in front of employees.
When set up and used regularly, OKR is really simple to use and does not take much time to implement or follow.
It's often loved by leaders and managers seeing their people start moving towards important goals, not small unimportant tasks.
Employees love it for the clarity of knowing what's expected from them.
It's said if you're looking to implement just one best practice management tool in your team or company, Objectives and Key Results should be it. Whenever you want your people move in right direction, implement OKR and have the employees follow your vision. No wonder OKRs have taken Silicon Valley and the rest of the world by storm.
First introduced at Intel. Made mainstream and popular by being used all across Google. Loved by many tech and mainstream companies from startups and SMEs to Fortune 500. OKR users include Twitter, Sears, LinkedIn, Oracle, Zynga and many others.
Learn how other companies use OKRs to improve their teams. OKR Case Studies »