Introduction to
OKRs
and the
OKR Cycle​

Uncover the transformative power of OKRs and navigate the dynamic OKR Cycle with our comprehensive guide, revolutionizing goal-setting to drive organizational success and foster a culture of excellence.

Clarity and energy
are your drivers for
results.

Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) are a management
methodology that uses collaborative goal-setting to increase
clarity and energy in organizations.

Clarity comes through alignment, focus and transparency.

Energy comes through ownership, purpose and inspiration.

OKRs help organizations execute their strategies faster, and
with more predictability and profitability.

The OKR Flywheel​ ​

And current strategy execution approaches are not working.

0%

74% of executives believe their organizations struggle to bridge the gap between strategy formulation and its day-to-day implementation

0%

61% of executives see poor execution as the biggest hurdle to achieving their company’s strategic objectives

0%

​​67% is the estimated proportion of well – formulated strategies that fail due to poor execution

0%

$97 Million dollars is the average waste for every $1 billion invested in projects and programs due to poor execution, project management institute

0%

90% of organizations fail to execute their strategies

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95% of employees are unaware of or do not understand their organization’s strategy

This un-structured approach to running a company
leads to wishful thinking towards strategy execution

OKRs bridge the gap
between planning and execution

This structured approach to running a company
minimizes waste and leads to faster results

How to help your teams
Operationalize OKRs
to drive your long-term strategy to
Execution

Successful OKRs need three parts:​

What

Quantify Success

How

OBJECTIVES

Set for a quarter or up to a year

Tell us where we want to go

  • Qualitative statements of our intent that guide us in the desired direction
  • 3-5 max per team

KEY RESULTS

Set for a quarter

Tell us if we are on the right track

  • Measurable outcomes that provide tangible evidence of progress toward the objective
  • 3-5 max per objective

ACTIONS

Set for a week

Tell us what we will do to get there

  • “Hypothesis to our results”
  • Actions to be undertaken to achieve the Key Results

Key principles for setting
meaningful OKRs:​​ ​

Sharp Focus​

Short, iterative cycles​​

Directional & Inspirational​​

Measure what matters​​

Localization to team expertise​​

Sharp focus​​ ​

OKRs help teams stay on track and make meaningful progress by setting clear priorities. ​


Teams set 3-5 Objectives, each with 3-5 Key Results, to maintain focus on vital goals week over week. With OKRs, Less is More​

Short,​
iterative cycles​
​ ​

OKRs follow a short and focused cycle, allowing for frequent evaluation, adaptation, and continuous improvement. ​ ​ ​


The typical cycle length is a quarter, but many organizations decide to extend it to four months.

ALIGN & LOCALIZE​
Set and communicate OKRs across the organization​
ALIGN & LOCALIZE​
Concentrate efforts on key results and taking action to accomplish them​
ALIGN & LOCALIZE​
Evaluate progress, reflecting on outcomes, and refining OKRs for the next cycle

Directional​ & inspirational​

A clear direction outlines the path for what teams should execute against, while the inspiration drives team motivation. This mix fosters a clear and motivating vision for team progress. ​

Measure
what matters​​

While outcomes and impacts are the best indicators for success, it’s important to address inputs or outputs if they hinder progress.​ ​ Downstream Key Results are often leading indicators. But be aware – they alone are almost never enough. They need a corresponding outcome or impact KR!

Marketing Team Key Result Examples
Impact
Improved conversion rate from 3% to 5%​
Outcome
Increased website traffic from 768 to 1000 visitors per day
Output
Marketing campaign is launched
Input
Time, capital, and resources invested

Localization
​​to team expertise​

Teams’ Key Results shouldn’t simply transform into other teams’ Objectives, or vice versa, as they serve different purposes. OKRs work best when applied to specific team contexts, allowing each team to contribute their expertise for meaningful progress in their respective areas.​

Full
transparency ​

To ensure that everyone's OKRs are aligned and contribute to the same end goal, everyone's OKRs and their progress needs to be transparent - from executive team to each team.​ ​ ​

Company Objective​
We dominate our core markets before we expand through aggressive pricing​
Marketing Objective​
Drive expansion opportunities in our existing customers through targeted campaigns​
Product Management Objective​
Make onboarding and adoption of our products easy as pie by fighting our technical debt​
Global Sales Objective​
Engage the right customers by making it simple to buy from us​
Customer Experience Objectvie​
Keep and expand the T1 customer base through personalized engagement​

Key principles of an ​effective implementation approach:​​​ ​

Full transparency​

Balanced alignment

Vertical & horizontal tie offs​

Ownership through co-creation

Functional & cross-functional collaboration​

Balanced ​​alignment​ ​

OKR alignment doesn't require 100% uniformity. It's about adapting OKRs locally to teams' expertise and prioritizing effectively, rather than just passing goals down the line.

​​Ownership​ through co-creation

Ownership through authorship is the key to empowering teams. When teams have the autonomy to co-create their own OKRs, they develop a stronger sense of ownership and responsibility

Remember

  • Be mindful of drafting OKRs in advance
  • Ideal workshops follow the 2-pizza rule
  • Be sure to capture concerns, cross functional ideas, and notes
  • Share the stage with the team

​​Functional and cross-functional​ collaboration

OKRs can be set with functional and cross functional teams. When set with cross functional teams, break silos and align all stakeholders on top priorities

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