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Best Practices in Using and Implementing OKRs

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- Why Set Objectives?
- What are OKRs?
- OKR Implementation
- Scoring your OKRs
- Regular Check-Ins
- Running Meetings
- Alignment

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Best Practices in Using and Implementing OKRs

  1. 1. Atiim is an OKR goal-setting, tracking, and achievement platform for high-performing teams & organizations.
  2. 2. Best Practices in Using and Implementing OKRs #1 for Data-Driven OKR Goals Management
  3. 3. ™ Class 1
  4. 4. ™ Introduction
  5. 5. Why Set Objectives? Introduction
  6. 6. 50% of average workforce time is wasted on non-productive work 84% of companies are not using their workforce to its full potential 95% of employees do not fully understand the company’s goals or what’s expected of them 40% of global CEOs cite failure to align as the single greatest challenge to executing strategy Source: Brookings Institute & SHRM Research; Harvard Business Review: “Office of Strategy Management”, Robert Kaplan and David Norton; Harvard Business Review: “Why Strategy Execution Unravels”, Robert Kaplan and David Norton; PWC - Saratoga Institute / Corporate Executive Board Research: Measures that Matter. Challenges that companies face
  7. 7. Organizational Challenges • Executing strategy • Sustainable business growth • Being proactive in meeting new realities of the business • Threat of competition and disruption of your business • Internal alignment and everyone being on the same page • Improving employee engagement at work (which is <15% on average)
  8. 8. Manager’s Challenges • Effectively managing their direct reports • Setting clear objectives and ensure they are attained • Establish measurable progress indicators for the work • Alignment with their direct reports
  9. 9. • Clear strategy for the team • Is a good communicator • Does not micromanage • Discusses performance • Results-oriented • Good coach Source: Google reWork, Great managers still matter: the evolution of Google’s Project Oxygen, February 2018: https://rework.withgoogle.com/blog/the-evolution-of-project-oxygen/ Key takeaways from Project Oxygen on the behaviors of Google's best managers
  10. 10. Key takeaways from the “12 Elements of Great Managing” based on a study of over 10 million interviews on how great managers inspire top performance in employees • Connects the job to the organization’s mission • Sets clear direction and what is expected • Discusses progress • Recognition for good work • Enables learning and growth
  11. 11. • Clarify objectives • Develop others • Give praise • Strong results orientation Source: “Decoding leadership: What really matters”, By Claudio Feser, Fernanda Mayol, and Ramesh Srinivasan, https://www.mckinsey.com/featured-insights/leadership/decoding-leadership-what-really-matters Key takeaways from McKinsey’s research study called “Decoding Leadership - What Really Matters”.
  12. 12. Agile Goals / OKRs Progress Check-in Feedback Recognition Review Snapshots The Cycle of Effective Management 1. Set clear direction – set & track agile goals (i.e. OKRs) 2. Do regular 1-on-1 Check-Ins (weekly or bi-weekly conversations with coaching & development) 3. Enable constructive peer feedback 4. Provide regular recognition 5. Periodic performance snapshots (typically 2-4 times per year and grounded in data collected from regular check-ins)
  13. 13. What are OKRs? Introduction
  14. 14. What are OKRs? • OKRs (Objectives and Key Results) is a management goal-setting system and methodology that helps to focus everyone’s efforts on the most important priorities and connects the work of employees to what truly matters at the organization. • In basic terms, OKRs is a simple tool to align and engage everyone at the company around measurable goals.
  15. 15. OKRs are a critical thinking framework and ongoing discipline that seeks to ensure employees work together, focusing their efforts to make measurable contributions that drive the company forward. Source: Objectives & Key Results, Paul R. Niven and Ben Lamorte From OKRs Book by Ben Lamorte & Paul Niven:
  16. 16. OKRs A management approach used to align everyone at your company, focus everyone’s effort on what really matters and make all progress measurable so that you can achieve your top corporate objectives and accelerate your business performance and results.
  17. 17. Modernized and Improved MBOs
  18. 18. OKR video 500,000+ global views!
  19. 19. Benefits From Using OKRs - for Companies • Shifts focus from tasks and busy activities to business results • Disciplines the thinking of every manager about what matters • Creates awareness of your company’s strategic imperatives • Clearly communicates what is truly important to everyone • Enables a structured and agile goal-setting process at scale • Gets everyone aligned across the company and reduces silos • Improves everyone’s focus on priorities that truly matter • Accelerates performance and business achievement • Increases transparency at your company • Improves engagement of your employees • Enhances agility due to frequent cycles • Instills accountability into the culture • Makes work and progress measurable
  20. 20. From John Doerr’s “Measure What Matters” • OKRs surface your primary goals • Channel efforts and coordination • Link diverse operations, lending purpose and unity to the entire organization • At small companies, they are a survival tool, at mid-sized rapidly-growing companies they are a shared language for execution and clarify expectations; at larger companies, OKRs are neon-lit road signs, they demolish silos and enable connections among all far-flung contributors “OKRs are a potent, proven force for operating excellence” – John Doerr
  21. 21. John Doerr & 4 Superpowers of OKRs 1. Focus and Commit to Priorities 2. Align and Connect for Teamwork 3. Track for Accountability 4. Stretch for Amazing
  22. 22. In a Nutshell: 4 Biggest Benefits for Your Organization 1. Focus 2. Alignment 3. Accountability 4. Acceleration
  23. 23. Benefits From Using OKRs - for Employees • You know how you are contributing to the success of your organization • You feel how your work connects to your company’s mission • You have clarity about the company’s top goals and strategy • Prioritization as there is never enough time to do everything • You know what to focus on and you can work effectively • You are aligned with your manager on a regular basis • Your manager can help you and coach you better • There is no confusion about your top priorities • You can measure and see your own progress • You can celebrate your achievements • John Doerr: “Selective goal setting is the first line of defense against getting overextended”
  24. 24. Advantages of OKRs vs. MBOs or SMART Goals • OKRs are agile - Shorter Cadence - OKRs are set Every 90 Days / Quarterly - Frequent Cycles for Check-Ins (5-10 Minutes) - Eliminates the “set and forget” trap • Enables the all-around, 360-degree alignment • Transparent goals for better accountability • Accelerates growth more effectively
  25. 25. Don’t confuse OKRs with KPIs • KPIs (“Key Performance Indicators”) are metrics that help you track progress retrospectively • Standalone, KPIs are just lagging indicator metrics and not used as forward-looking targets to achieve (that’s what goals are used for) • In fact, KPIs are used in the “metric” Key Results and are set as a target and therefore with context of the “Why” they need to be achieved Source: Ben Lamorte describes this distinction at https://www.quora.com/Why-does-Google-go-with-OKRs-instead-of-KPIs-And-does-it-matter
  26. 26. At the company level, most OKRs are directly tied to KPIs. To illustrate, suppose a company has the objective: "Achieve Financial Targets" with the following 3 key results: 1. Double company revenue to $10M in Q2 2. Increase gross profit margin to 25% for Q2 3. Increase recurring revenue from existing install base as compared to prior quarter Each of these key results has the KPI in bold built in! KPIs emerge organically when companies set their OKRs. Ben Lamorte, OKRs.com Founder Source: Ben Lamorte, OKRs.com, Quora KPIs are Set as a Target in a Key Result
  27. 27. OKRs are “Open Source” Framework • No mandatory rules, no universal laws (it’s not GAAP Accounting!) • Mostly common sense principles and best practices too • Adaptable & flexible – do not be too strict or rigid about OKRs • Must fit your context and your company culture Source: OKRs are described as “Open Source Framework” on p.85 in the book Objectives & Key Results by Paul R. Niven and Ben Lamorte
  28. 28. OKRs are Meant to Be Simple • Remember that OKRs come from MBOs - they are not some entirely new, different or complex methodology • Some people have over-complicated OKRs, but they all come down to this – OKRs are just Objectives - Because of this, language can be flexible: you can call them Objectives or Goals, Key Results or Metrics • Set OKRs (Objectives) with common sense and business judgment • Should work with the way your company works
  29. 29. OKRs are a Tool to Help You • OKRs are not meant to be strict or used as “chains or blinders” per John Doerr • They are adaptable and are meant to be helpful guardrails • They are not the “only” thing you do, but the “must do”
  30. 30. The Three Stonecutters
  31. 31. Painting: The Stonecutter by Hendrik Jan Wolter (Dutch, 1873-1952)
  32. 32. Photo: La Sagrada Familia, http://tambiensomosasi.es/principales-sitios-de-interes-turistico-en-espana/
  33. 33. OKR Myths • Have to be aspirational – if you hit 70% then that’s good - NO - Can be Operational or Aspirational • Have to be [anything] - NO – it’s just Objectives and it’s Open Source Framework – there are no hard rules • You have to learn many rules - OKRs are just goals • You have to create a strict alignment - No – you can do basic alignment – Corporate, Team and Individual • You have to implement and make OKRs perfect - Perfect is the enemy of good
  34. 34. Definitions & Writing OKRs
  35. 35. OKR Definitions • Objectives (Os) - WHAT I want to accomplish - A concise statement, significant and action-oriented - The Objective is the direction (Andy Grove) • Key Results (KRs) - HOW I will achieve the Objective - A specific statement that must be measurable and verifiable - KRs help you measure your progress towards the Objective - A Key Result can be a Milestone or a Metric-based KR
  36. 36. We Want to: {Objective} as measured by this set of KRs: {1. Key Result} {2. Key Result} {3. Key Result}
  37. 37. Writing Down OKRs is Challenging • The first time is the hardest • Practice makes perfect • It gets easier over time • Muscle memory • No pain, no gain
  38. 38. Don’t mistake or confuse Goals with Tasks • A task (a “to do”) is something that you do • A project is an initiative – to complete your project, you have to do various tasks • An objective (or goal) is the desired future state - a Result - which you want to achieve - i.e. you have to complete a projects which include tasks (and allocate resources, schedules, etc.) in order to achieve your goal
  39. 39. “Never mistake activity with results.” - Lou Gerstner, former CEO of IBM and RJR Nabisco (Credited with turning around IBM’s fortunes) Image Source: Forbes
  40. 40. Writing OKRs - The Importance of Language • Try to word an Objective (i.e. the title/headline) that inspires the team to reach high and tap into their best performance • Use action verbs to start Objectives • Ideally, you want to word a Key Result as a statement of the result you will have want achieved if you succeed • Phrase the OKRs in the language relevant to the targeted group
  41. 41. Basic Way to Write KRs: Activity-Based KRs • Activity-based Key Results: Measure the completion of tasks and activities or the delivery of project milestones or deliverables. - Release beta version of the product - Launch a monetizing tab - Create a new training program - Develop a new lead generation campaign • Activity-based Key Results usually start with verbs such as launch, create, develop, deliver, build, make, implement, define, release, test, prepare and plan Source: Felipe Castro, OKRs, http://felipecastro.com/en/okr/success-criteria-types-key-results/
  42. 42. Advanced Way to write KRs: Value-based • Value-based Key Results: Measure the delivery of value to the organization or its customers. Value-based Key Results measure the outcomes of successful activities - Improve Net Promoter Score from X to Y. - Increase Repurchase Rate from X to Y. - Maintain Customer Acquisition cost under Y. - Reduce revenue churn (cancellation) from X% to Y%. - Increase Net Promoter Score from X to Y. - Improve average weekly visits per active user from X to Y. - Increase non-paid (organic) traffic to from X to Y. - Improve engagement (users that complete a full profile) from X to Y. • The typical structure of a Value-based Key Result is: - Increase/Reduce ABC-metric from X to Y Source: Felipe Castro, OKRs, http://felipecastro.com/en/okr/success-criteria-types-key-results/
  43. 43. Comparing Activity-based vs. Value-based http://felipecastro.com/en/okr/success-criteria-types-key-results/
  44. 44. Done is Better Than Perfect • It’s OK to start with basic wording and Activity-Based KRs • Kaizen Philosophy– Continuous Improvement - It’s OK to start at a basic level and continue to improve • The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step - Lao Tzu • And…walk before you run
  45. 45. How to Tease Out the Value-Based KRs • Think about the Outcome or the Result you are trying to achieve • Use the “5 Whys” method to bottom it out
  46. 46. Types of Key Results • Milestone – Often used to convert a binary outcome into a key result. For those things you can’t measure precisely. - Example - “Released push notification.” • Metric – The most common. These track quantitative outcomes designed to gauge success on your objectives. - Positive: Increased, grew, built, etc. - Negative: Reduced, eliminated, lowered, decreased, etc. • Range – Quantifiable, like Metrics, but focuses on Minimum and Maximum (or staying in the range). - Threshold: “Maintained a consultant utilization rate between 70 and 80%”, “Kept NPS above 60”
  47. 47. OKR-writing: Practice
  48. 48. A Few Action Verbs • Increase, Grow, Build, Achieve, Create, Craft • Develop, Produce, Gain, Advance • Decrease, Shrink, Eliminate • Maintain, Hold, Keep, Ensure • Set, Hit, Track, Write, Make
  49. 49. Objective: Increase quality of leads with relevant offers and communications Key Result - A quantitative statement that measures the achievement of a given objective – i.e. “How we will know we’ve met our objective?” Increase revenue per email sent by 10% “Add 3 new fields to marketing database” (?) “Send Better Emails” (?) “Improve Email Open Rate” (?) Key Result Examples Source: based on a presentation from Ben Lamorte & Paul R. Niven, authors of “Objectives & Key Results”
  50. 50. Two Very Basic Examples • Objective: Achieve our sales targets - Key Result: $50 Million in revenue • Objective: Measure and improve our customers’ satisfaction - Key Result: Increase the customer satisfaction rating to 90%
  51. 51. Example OKR for Customer Experience • Objective: Create an Exceptional Customer Experience • Key Results: - Improve the Customer NPS (Net Promoter Score) from 5 to 9 - Increase Repeat Customer Business to 70% - Maintain Customer error rate under 10%
  52. 52. Many Ways to Wordsmith OKRs – Part 1 • Objective: Recruit great people and improve our talent • Key Results: - Launch a new hiring and careers page - Screen 100 candidates and interview 10 - Improve the Employee NPS from 6 to 9 - Maintain employee retention rate of 90% - Reduce voluntary turnover to 5%
  53. 53. Many Ways to Wordsmith OKRs – Part 2 • Objective: Recruit 5 great people and improve our talent • Key Results: - Interview 10 qualified candidates - Hire 5 new employees - Improve the Employee NPS from 6 to 9
  54. 54. 1 Minute Exercise Think of an OKR for your team or yourself - Start with one Objective  What do you want to achieve? - Then add a 1-3 Key Results  How will you know that you’ve achieved your O?
  55. 55. • End of Class 1
  56. 56. ™ Class 2
  57. 57. Class 2 • Compensation • Planning Your OKR Cycle • Scoring your OKRs • Regular Check-ins • Running Meetings • What is alignment? - Introduction to Alignment 101: Basic Alignment
  58. 58. Strategy > Execution
  59. 59. ™ Vision without execution is hallucination Thomas Edison
  60. 60. Start With Strategy to Set Top OKRs • You should have a strategic plan in place before creating and implementing OKRs because strategy is the context for your Top Organizational OKRs • OKRs should never be created in vacuum and must be directly translated from your mission, vision and strategic priorities • Must support your drive towards the achievement of your strategic pillars/priorities and ultimate the vision • Decompose your 3-5 Strategic Priorities (aka Themes or Pillars) into Strategic Objectives which are your Top Organizational OKRs
  61. 61. Strategic Planning Will Help You Get to a Summary Strategic Plan Source: https://www.atiim.com/the-one-page-strategic-plan/
  62. 62. Technology Innovation Customer Focus Business Growth Talent& Culture Source: “Strategic Themes”, Balanced Scorecard Institute, by Gail S. Perry Financial Customer Internal Processes Learning & Development Vision Mission (Core Purpose) First, identify your Strategic Priorities
  63. 63. Balance Scorecard 30,000 Foot Level (Executive) 15,000 Foot Level (Dept. Managers) 5,000 Foot Level Department OKRs Team & Individual OKRs Then connect your Strategy with OKRs Source: the house analogy and “Strategic Themes” from the Balanced Scorecard Institute, by Gail S. Perry / additional by Bob Norton, author of C-Level Enterprises and AirTight Management
  64. 64. Visual Goal Alignment Chart: A Linked Hierarchy of Goals and Objective to Objective Alignment
  65. 65. The One Page Strategy (TOPS)
  66. 66. OKR Implementation
  67. 67. ™ Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe Abraham Lincoln
  68. 68. The CEO’s Commitment to OKRs is Absolutely Critical • OKRs require a public commitment by leadership, in word and deed • This system works provided the leadership of the company embraces it. If the CEO of the company doesn’t believe in OKRs and won’t pursue them, I suggest you not try • If the leader of the organization or the team sets personal OKRs as well as group OKRs, I daresay this is the most powerful tool you can have to achieve operating excellence and high performance in your organization Image source: https://www.bizjournals.com/sanjose/blog/techflash/2015/03/kleiner-sexism-trial-john-doerr-tells-how-he.html
  69. 69. Essential Success Factors in Implementing OKRs • There must be executive sponsorship and commitment • There must be a long-term view – it’s not an overnight project • Continuous Improvement - plan to start slowly and use over 4-6 quarters to get everyone truly acclimated to OKRs and make the process a routine • Discipline is the key because OKRs are not a “project” • Quality training must be available for all new users
  70. 70. No Really - It Takes Time To Get Good • Some companies take a full year or more to gain the full confidence and command of using structured goal- setting • Even Google managers have said that it becomes “work in progress” when someone new starts using goal- setting
  71. 71. John Doerr’s Advice “For a lot of organizations, the cultural risk and vulnerability that come with transparency, and that kind of accountability, is too big of a change. Even if an organization does want to adopt it, I strongly recommend they not go overnight to get 50,000 people to do it. Most companies start with a pilot. And if the leader’s not committed, don’t bother. Don’t even try. Stay with whatever you have.” Source: https://hbr.org/2018/05/how-vc-john-doerr-sets-and-achieves-goals
  72. 72. OKR Adoption Steps 1. Understand what you want to accomplish with OKRs 2. Define who will be your internal OKR Experts 3. Get the internal OKR Experts trained 4. Provide OKR training to others on the team
  73. 73. Steps in Setting OKRs 1. Define your Strategy, Strategic Priorities 2. Create your Top OKRs based on your Strategic Priorities 3. Communicate these OKRs to your departments and teams 4. Ask the initial OKR group to write down the v1 of their OKRs 5. Focus first on the basic directional alignment
  74. 74. Example Timeline for Planning Strategy & OKRs
  75. 75. Less is More • Objectives - Focus only on 3 to 5 Objectives  per Company  Department/Team  per Individual Person • Key Results - 1-5 Key Results per Objective
  76. 76. Focus We must realize—and act on the realization—that if we try to focus on everything, we focus on nothing. A few extremely well-chosen objectives impart a clear message about what we say “yes” to and what we say “no” to. Source: High Output Management, Andy Grove, p.111
  77. 77. Setting OKRs is a Bidirectional Process • Involve the team members / direct reports • Tap into the collective wisdom of the team • Get a better outcome and also a buy-in, understanding, empowerment and accountability • This helps turn your team or company into a high-performance organization
  78. 78. 3 Common Stumbling Blocks (That Every Company Faces When Starting OKRs) 1. Writing and wordsmithing the Objectives and the KRs - So, start out at a basic level, don’t go for “perfect” wordsmithing - It’s OK if they all sound like projects or tasks during the first 90 days - It’s a learning process, will always end up improving, taking care of itself 2. Figuring out how to align everything - There are many ways to do this - Don’t try to overcomplicate and keep it simple 3. Trying to do everything perfectly and taking time - Don’t take too long to try to make it perfect – just get started
  79. 79. Common Confusions • Making KRs a project or a task - Solution: KRs are Key Results so word them as measurable outcomes or results • Too many Os and KRs - Solution: Think of just a few “key” objectives – those that absolutely must be done but not others - If you have more than 5 at any level, you have too many and consider how to have the “Many to One” KRs to Objectives and how to structure higher level Objectives (go to 10,000 ft level / helicopter altitude) • Trying just one narrow way of getting it done - Solution: there is no absolute single right way – setting objectives is contextual and some levels or companies have less and others have more but there are guidelines that you should follow
  80. 80. Keys to Success 1. Walk before you run 2. Use common sense, business judgment & discretion 3. Mirror your company’s actual business hierarchy - OKRs simply reflect what you already have & shouldn’t be anything different than what you do 4. Done is better than perfect 5. Don’t force a square peg into a round hole 6. Remember, there are multiple ways to implement, align and manage OKRs successfully
  81. 81. Scoring your OKRs
  82. 82. Scoring Your OKRs • A key aspect that separates goals from initiatives, projects or tasks is the post hoc assessment and reflection so that you can learn and improve • The wrap-up consists of 3 parts: - scoring - self-assessment - reflection • Score scale of 0 – 10 - Measured in integer intervals - Your OKR may have made progress but you may still give a low score - Inversely, you may have made little progress but you may score high - Use sound management judgement
  83. 83. Keep It Simple • You don’t have to Grade / Score your OKRs initially – you can start out lite without forcing this - Instead, just focus on tracking OKR progress weekly to avoid the "set it and forget it" problem • Begin by tracking progress and then you can do Grading / Scoring after your team is more acclimated to using OKRs (perhaps after the first one or two quarters) Additional Resource: https://www.linkedin.com/groups/6578402/6578402-6087198347137925120
  84. 84. Scoring Objectives or Key Results? Scoring Key Results • The most advanced method is scoring Key Results • However, this can triple the task of defining your scores - 3 OKRs vs. 9 Key Results  If 4 scoring levels to define, 4 * 9 = 36 different scoring definitions! Scoring Objectives • Scoring at the Objective level has several benefits - Simple - Less scoring levels to define and do - More easily visible to peers
  85. 85. Do you need to score? Q1: Incorporate Incorporate regular check-ins check-ins Q2: Set OKRs OKRs Q3: Review Q2 Q2 and set Q3 Q3 OKRs Q3: Define Q3 Q3 scoring Q4: Score Q3 Short answer: NO! The important thing is looking retrospectively Do not incorporate scoring until you have practice setting OKRs
  86. 86. Regular Check-Ins
  87. 87. The key is to set and check-in on the OKRs frequently.
  88. 88. 7 Critical Benefits of Weekly Check-Ins 1. Know your progress regularly & avoid surprises 2. Identify obstacles before they snowball into problems 3. Address changes and course-correct early on 4. Encourages interaction between managers and employees 5. Recognition of good performance in real-time (not once a year) 6. Address any performance challenges in real-time 7. Coach and train employee skills based on measurable results Regular check-ins – preferably weekly – are essential to prevent slippage - John Doerr
  89. 89. Source: HR Technology Disruptions in 2016, Bersin by Deloitte, Josh Bersin
  90. 90. Running Meetings
  91. 91. Start With Goals • How is your progress on your top goals? • Do you think you’re on track overall? • What are the small wins you’re proud of?
  92. 92. Identify Problem Areas Early • Where are you stuck? • What are the bottlenecks where I can help you? • What goals are “At Risk” (in the red)? • How can I help you attain these goals?
  93. 93. Compensation
  94. 94. Should OKRs Be Tied to Compensation? Pros • Objective • Trackable • Goal-focused • Simple Cons • Sandbagging • Skewed incentives • Reduced motivation
  95. 95. Compensation: Bottom Line OKRs may be a simple and objective way of measuring performance BUT In some cases, incentive-based goals *may* decrease motivation AND It’s contextual – you must determine the right fit what is right for your organization and your culture
  96. 96. ™ Class 3
  97. 97. Alignment: Basic
  98. 98. 3 Levels of Alignment You can do any and all of these with OKRs: 1. Basic or Loose Alignment - Look at the a) Top, the b) Team and the c) Individual OKRs to ensure that the work effort correlates 2. Alignment through contribution via KRs – aka “KR Ownership” 3. Full Objective to Objective Alignment Hierarchy with KRs only at the bottom
  99. 99. Basic Alignment 101
  100. 100. Goals at Different Levels of an Organization Top Company Goals Team “Shared Goals” Individuals Level: Departmental “Shared Goals” CEO EVPs/VPs Employees Goal Owner: Team Managers
  101. 101. Should We Have Direct Alignment & Contributions? • Align when your OKR will contribute to the achievement of another OKR (typically your team or manager’s OKRs) • DON’T force alignment—not all OKRs need to be aligned • Basic Alignment 101 does not require mathematical contribution - However, alignment can use mathematical contribution • Alignment can skip levels, but typically should not
  102. 102. Each Objective Must be Owned by a DRI • Every Objective must have a Directly Responsible Individual - aka “Owner” • Can only be 1 person per Objective • “Without responsibility there is no accountability!”
  103. 103. Alignment Terminology • Cascading – the process of creating individual OKRs from team OKRs or of creating team OKRs from department or company OKRs. This is a top-down term, typically. • Alignment – the process of connecting one Objective to another. Alignment generally means connecting an Individual Objective to your Team’s Objective (an Objective “owned” by your manager). Alignment can be a loose relationship (as used in the Basic Alignment or the 101) or actual linked contribution like 201 and 301. • Contribution – the effect contributing the “% progress” from either a set of Key Results (201) or from Sub- Objectives (301) to the main overarching Objective whose progress is calculated based on these contributions.
  104. 104. Basic Alignment 101: Loose Alignment (No inter-linkage, no contributions) How does a large, complex organization like Google do alignment? Laszlo Bock, former SVP of People Operations at Google: Having goals improves performance. But spending hours cascading goals up and down the company, however, does not. It takes way too much time and it’s too hard to make sure all the goals line up. We have a market-based approach, where over time our goals all converge, because the top OKRs are known and everyone else’s OKRs are visible. Teams that are grossly out of alignment stand out, and the few major initiatives that touch everyone are easy enough to manage directly. * Laszlo Bock, Work Rules, https://www.workrules.net Additional Resource: Felipe Castro, http://felipecastro.com/en/okr/okrs-not-cascade/
  105. 105. This is a Very Simple Soft Alignment This is the Most Simplified Approach and Has No Linking • Mostly for informing everyone about the direction • Just look at the Top, Team and Individual Objectives • Anything that is grossly out of alignment will stand out • Over time all goals converge because the Top, Team and Individual OKRs are known and visible
  106. 106. 3 Levels of Objectives – Top OKRs / Team OKRs / My OKRs
  107. 107. Next Class: More Advanced Method – Alignment 201 • We will discuss in Class 3 how to do more advanced alignment - via KR Ownership capability - And via linking Objectives and Sub-Objectives in a Goal Alignment Hierarchy
  108. 108. Advanced Alignment
  109. 109. Advanced Alignment 201
  110. 110. • You can see your own Key Results that you are executing on another’s Objective Advanced Alignment 201: KR Ownership • Any individual can own a Key Result on an Objective of someone else • This significantly simplifies alignment in any organization
  111. 111. Example of Alignment via KR Ownership Q2 – Top Corporate Objectives • O1: Become a Customer Centric Company [Owner: CEO] - KR1: NPS of 10 from Existing Customers [Owner: ______] - KR2: Reduce installation waiting time to 20 days [Owner: ______]
  112. 112. Example of Alignment via KR Ownership Q2 – Top Corporate Objectives • O1: Grow Our Business Globally [Owner: CEO] - KR: Book $30M in Sales – USA [Owner: VP of Sales] • O1: Grow Our Business Globally [Owner: CEO]  O2: Book $30M in Sales – USA [Owner: VP of Sales] • KR1: Book $10M in Sales - East [Owner: Sales Director, East] • KR2: Book $10M in Sales - Central [Owner: Sales Director, Central] • KR3: Book $10M in Sales - West [Sales Director, West]
  113. 113. Advanced Alignment 301
  114. 114. Advanced Alignment 301: True Goal Hierarchy TM Objective to Objective Alignment Hierarchy • This method allows you to align Objectives at one level of the organization (whether vertically below or cross-functionally) to align and contribute algorithmically to another Objective • The linkage ensures that when progress is made on a Sub-Objective then it contributes in an equal measure or in a weighted measure to the parent Objective to which it aligns
  115. 115. How are KRs different from Sub-Objectives? • KRs end under the Objective and don’t cascade further • Sub-Objectives are “pass-thru” objectives - You can pass value through them by using KRs or further cascading sub-objectives that contribute to them
  116. 116. Visual Goal Alignment Chart: A Linked Hierarchy of Goals and Objective to Objective Alignment
  117. 117. Alignment 301: Cascading OKRs in Practice • At each level, what are you trying to achieve? • Then, how do you get there?
  118. 118. Cascading in Atiim • Write top company goals broad enough to cover all departments • Team and individual goals do not all have to align • Alignment does not have to be restrictive • Start at the top, but meet in the middle • Key Results will mostly be at the employee level
  119. 119. How “loose” should my alignment be? Loose Relationship Direct Linkage Linkage
  120. 120. Example of Alignment via OKR Hierarchy Q2 – Top Corporate Objectives • O1: Become a Customer Centric Company [Owner: CEO] - O2: NPS of 10 from Existing Customers [Owner: Exec A]  KR1… [Owner: ____]  KR2…. [Owner: ____] - O3: Reduce installation waiting time to 20 days [Owner: Exec B]  KR1: Constantly update the customer every week [Owner: Mgr. of Support]  KR2: Get out to visit the customers faster [Owner: ____]
  121. 121. Top OKR Mistakes
  122. 122. Common Pitfalls 1. Starting OKRs before being clear on Strategy 2. Not setting OKRs on a quarterly basis 3. OKRs without regular check-ins 4. Setting too many OKRs 5. Reaching for impossible targets 6. Ignoring a steady even if slow progress 7. Forcing all your KRs into metrics 8. Using KRs as task lists
  123. 123. OKRs are Part of the Full CPM Cycle
  124. 124. Agile Goals / OKRs Progress Check-in Feedback Recognition & Rewards Review SnapshotsData Continuous Performance Management 1. Agile goals (OKRs) 2. Regular Check-Ins (Weekly or Bi-Weekly) 3. Constructive Peer Feedback With Coaching & Development 4. Recognition & Praise 5. Periodic Review Snapshots & Self- Reflection (2-4 times per year) 5 Steps of CPM
  125. 125. ™ Thank you! Questions? hello@Atiim.com
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- Why Set Objectives? - What are OKRs? - OKR Implementation - Scoring your OKRs - Regular Check-Ins - Running Meetings - Alignment


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