what are OKRs?
OKRs are a goal-setting framework used to define and track objectives.
The 'O' represents Objectives, but it is often also referred to as the goal, result, outcome, target or initiative that you are trying to achieve. It is usually one statement and represents a challenge or push for the individual/department/organization trying to achieve it.
The 'KR' represents Key Results. Key Results are specific, often numeric, time-bound, measurable means to achieve the Objective, written as a statement.
What’s In It For You?
OKRs are designed to get teams excited by a sense of meaning, purpose, and progress.When employees clearly understand what is expected of them, politics and favoritism are minimized, and everyone can collectively focus on executing business strategy.
For you as an individual employee, OKRs are a great way for your team/manager/department to see the value you add when you check-in to your Objectives. This quantifies for your efforts and highlights the hard work you’ve been putting in.
Objectives are NOT individual tasks that need to be accomplished that lead to a bigger picture - they are the bigger picture, the result you want to achieve.
If my manager gives me the challenge (aka the Objective) of signing five accounts this quarter if I made my Objective: Sign five accounts this quarter, I’m saying the only result I’m striving for is signing five accounts.
Even better though, if I make my Objective: Reach My New Deals Target, the result is reaching my target and that target can be five, eight, 10, 20 new clients, and adjusted throughout the quarter. This Objective translates to a bigger picture of setting targets, developing a plan to achieve them, and reaching them; not just the result of signing five accounts.
Here's a full example using the scenario above:
Objective: Reach my New Deals Target
- Source 30 new leads via social media
- Metric: numeric /30
- Connect with 15 leads via phone for pitch and demo
- Metric: numeric /15
- Sign five new accounts during the quarter
- Metric: percentage /100% (each account worth 20%)
Now It's Your Turn!
Here are some resources for you to practice writing great OKRs.
(insert e-book Creating Objectives, a workbook.pdf)
link to blog articles
OKRs and 7Geese
So now that we've got our feet wet and our wings warmed up with an understanding of OKRs, let's check out how 7Geese works with OKRs.
Let’s start small and continuing to build our OKR writing confidence through a few examples. As a Team Member, you will see the screen below:
In Objective Outcome section, we need to put the big picture we are trying achieve. Here are a few thoughts based on the department you may be in:
Sales: Hit my Quarterly Sales Quota
Marketing: Increase Monthly Content Output
Finance: Improve Account Payable Efficiency
Product Development: Be a Better Front-End Developer
Human Resources: Provide More Value to the Employees I support
Now in the Key Results section, we define how that Objective is going to be achieved. Let’s focus on our Sales Objective of: Hit my Quarterly Sales Quota
Sales Key Result 1: Sell $10k in new business
Sales Key Result 2: Sell $1k in upsells
Sales Key Result 3: Complete process docs and present to team
In this area of our new Objective, we define just how we are quantifying hitting those measurements:
We have four options for measuring how close we are to our target:
Percentage (%) - great for objectives that are not so numeric in nature, but progress is still trackable
Numeric (#) - great for when we have a hard quantifiable target
Complete/Incomplete - great for black and white situations; did you or didn’t you do it?
Dollars ($) - great for hard dollar value targets, like Sales KRs 1 & 2
Next, we have an auto-reminder to Check-In option. Checking-in is so important to show all the effort you put in during the week and this prompts you so you don’t forget to celebrate the little wins.
Let’s check out the Show More Options options.
Description - this is a great place to expand with details, especially if your Objective is not linked to a Parent or Child Objective.
Labels - these are usually set up by your Admins to track the type of Objectives your organization is working on. Click in the box to see if any labels match your my Objective or create new ones that you wish to track.
Parent - by finding an Objective in the drop-down menu here (by knowing the exact name), you are aligning your Objective with this one and any progress you make on your Objective adds to the progress of the Parent Objective (unless the owner of the Parent Objective decides not have it add to progress, but it will still be aligned). There is another place to align to parent objectives if you don't know the exact name; we'll show you that soon.
Child - by finding an Objective in this drop-down menu (by knowing the exact name), you are aligning your Objective above this one and any progress made on the Child Objective will contribute to your Objective progress (unless you decide that you do not want it to count towards your progress, but still be aligned - more on this in a bit). There is another place to align to Child objectives if you don't know the exact name; we'll show you that soon.
Next, we move into some of the administrative settings of the OKR. We start with the type of Objective we are setting.
For us Users, we can create a Personal Objective, showcased with a blue bullseye, or a Department Objective showcased with a green bullseye if you Admins have allowed that permission.
Then we can select who the owner of the Objective is. If it’s a personal Objective it may be just you, but if it’s a Department Objective or an Objective you and a team are working on, you can select how many owners you want to be apart of the Objective.
Now we set the time frame. We can select with the Objective begins and ends with custom dates by clicking on the date or use the drop-down menu to pick from the preselected.
Lastly, for our administrative options, we have the privacy setting. Do you want this Objective to Public (recommended for accountability) or Private to only the Participants, Managers, and Admins?
One very last option for your Objective is to decide if you are done and happy with it or if you are still working on it. If you are still working on tweaking the words, measurements, maybe checking with your manager to make sure you are focused on the right things, in the top right-hand corner you can check the box for the draft. To move your Objective into a full-fledged progressing OKR you can either uncheck the box or complete your first Check-In (more on how to do that soon!).
There you go! Click save and you have you completed creating your first Objective in 7Geese!
Check out this video for a recap on what we just went through.
Up next we fly into the 7Geese Home Page, the 7Geese Objective Page, and a guide to Checking-in to your Objectives.
Module 2: Video on New Home Page, Video on New Objectives Page, step by step written module on inputting Objectives into Objectives Page, Guide to Check-ins
Module 3: The Big Picture
A quick recap of OKRs and check-ins, and what could come next (Recognition,
Feedback, One on Ones - this will depend on the organization)