OKRs are a management and alignment methodology made famous by Google.
The Objective is qualitative, and the KR’s (most often three) are quantitative.
They are used to focus a group or individual around a bold goal. The objective sets a goal for a set period of time, usually a quarter. The key results tell you if the objective has been met by the end of the time.
Your objective defined in a single sentence should be:
Key results take all that inspirational language and quantifies it.
You create them by asking a simple question “how would we know if we met our objective?”
You are looking for a sweet spot where you are pushing yourself and your team to do bigger things, and where you have a 50/50 shot of failing.
Much of the value in OKRs comes from the conversations on what matters, how it will be measured and what it means for the teams who are used to working from their own standards, apart from the business goals.
Individual OKRs are about becoming better at your job, as well as helping your product get better.
Often people fail ...
...because they set OKRs at the beginning of the quarter, and then forget about them until the end of the quarter.
...halfway through your bounded time period.
Changing them dilutes focus, and keeping teams focused is the entire point of the OKR.
OKRs aren’t just about hitting targets but about learning what you are really capable of. When missing a KR you've learned a ton about what works and what doesn't.
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