Implementing Your OKR
The OKRs you choose to employ in the goals and milestones your business aims to achieve should be simple and adaptable. If the OKR methodology you implement is too complicated and troublesome to interact with, then your company faces the risk of maintaining your OKR becoming too much of a task on its own. You don’t want to create a new burden that’s unrealistic to keep up.
Your OKR method should ideally mesh well with the goals, plans and initiatives already in place, but should serve to provide a structured goal-reaching environment with attainable, measurable results built into the structure itself. The idea is to provide a framework upon which to build and ultimately reach your company’s major goals.
The most common structure for an OKR implementation is to create up to five major objectives, each of which may contain up to five results related to that goal. After you have established your OKR and identified the key measurable results, then you have the structure for generating a realistic, achievable plan with actionable steps. Track your progress toward each key result on an individual basis and regularly refer to your overall OKR plan throughout its lifecycle.
In this way, OKRs can be an immensely valuable tool for companies and organizations to achieve big-picture goals and small measures alike. It can also help the decision makers to determine the priority of the tasks at hand, and can inform decisions as to what projects are worth taking on in the future.
When you introduce the idea of an OKR to your teams, it’s important that they understand their individual roles toward accomplishing the key results at hand, and allow significant input from your staff and employees toward establishing those key results, goals and timelines.
You want to both push your teams to ambitious heights, but also keep it realistic and remind everyone that the addition of this goal-achieving framework method is meant to be a helpful resource rather than a punishment.
OKRs are a valuable tool for both team settings and individuals to create powerful structures with attainable and measurable milestones for accomplishing their goals.
Always remember that the goals and key results that you establish as part of your OKR must be measurable, ambitious and flexible in order to achieve maximum effectiveness. The best OKR structures are the ones that can be linked to other goals and projects in progress within the company.
At the end of your OKR’s lifecycle, take the time to perform an evaluation as to what worked and what didn’t. Like any other valuable tool, determining what doesn’t work is just as important as determining what does in order to make the best use of the resources you have made available to your teams.
The three components of OKR
OKR is a proven method of goal management that provides a structured framework toward achieving small or large-scale objectives using the implementation of and initiatives. It is heavily focused on the practical implementation of measurable and quantifiable goals, and serves as an ultra-flexible goal management tools for organizations across multiple industries.
Companies who employ the use of an OKR framework see myriad benefits as a result, like streamlined strategic movement across multiple teams and departments, increased transparency and engagement, and a sharp increase in focus toward accomplishing objectives. Its simplicity provides the groundwork for
its effectiveness, and its ability to adapt to the changes in goals just about every business faces make it a go-to choice of goal management for many corporations all around the globe.
OKR’s contain two primary factors that drive their effectiveness.
- Objective. Every OKR starts with a clear, concise and achievable objective, and a timeline in which the company seeks to reach that objective. It can be as abstract, as small or as huge as the company wants it to be.
- Initiatives & Tasks. The introduction of initiatives into the framework of your OKR requires the structure of your goal management method to include an answer to the question, “How?” at every turn.
It can be tough to identify an objective structure that works well within the OKR you have established for your company.
It’s an intimidating prospect to try to identify what goals are both ambitious and attainable, both grand and realistic, and both exciting and measurable at the same time. Your OKR bears a heavy burden of laying out the framework for your major objectives, and the process of writing your OKR must begin with setting the right objectives around which to frame the plan.
Where metrics measure the progress toward the objective, the initiative provides the structure toward meetings. This also shifts the focus of your teams away from the idea of checking tasks off a to-do lists — which is not productive — and toward the concept of accomplishment.
OKR can be a powerful tool for your business to establish, reach, and manage the progress toward your primary objectives, no matter how big or small. But how does your OKR retain its level of effectiveness when your business objectives change?
To ensure good alignment, you must ensure that at some level, your lower level OKR’s link back to your manager’s or company’s OKR’s.