OKR Goal Setting A-Z: How to Set, Track & Achieve Goals | Raj Elakkara | Skillshare

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OKR Goal Setting A-Z: How to Set, Track & Achieve Goals

teacher avatar Raj Elakkara

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

39 Lessons (2h 18m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Congratulations! You Are Now An OKR Coach

    • 3. What are OKR's

    • 4. What are initiatives

    • 5. Warm Up: Lets Create Our First OKRS

    • 6. Why OKR's work so well

    • 7. Evolution of OKRs

    • 8. Moonshots vs Roofshots OKRs

    • 9. OKRs are not KPIs

    • 10. How Are OKRs Graded?

    • 11. Getting Leadership Buy-In

    • 12. Exercise #1 Workshopping Team OKRs

    • 13. Train Your OKR Muscles

    • 14. Define Your OKR Cycle

    • 15. Create A Rollout Timeline

    • 16. Choose a Champion

    • 17. Define Your Approach

    • 18. Implement OKRs In Trello

    • 19. Trello - Lets get set up

    • 20. Trello - Aligning OKR

    • 21. Trello - OKR Retrospectives

    • 22. Trello - Using Checklists & Waterfall Graphs

    • 23. Trello - Adding Members and Tracking Status

    • 24. Trello - Creating Objectives & Key Results

    • 25. OKRs vs Scrum

    • 26. Mistake #1 Too many objectives or key results

    • 27. Mistake #2 Including tasks as key results

    • 28. Mistake #3 Setting Only Top Down OKRs

    • 29. Mistake #4 Set it and forget it

    • 30. Mistake #5 Sandbagging okrs

    • 31. Mistake #6 Insufficient KRs

    • 32. Mistake #7 No OKR owner

    • 33. Mistake #8 Starting with individual OKRs

    • 34. Mistake #9 Not closing okrs

    • 35. Mistake #10 Trying to copy Google blindly

    • 36. Mistake #11 Not balancing roofshots and moonshots

    • 37. Mistake #12 Putting HR in charge of OKRs

    • 38. Mistake #13 Not using 1 on 1s

    • 39. Mistake #14 Not using experimentation

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About This Class

Welcome to OKR Goal Setting A-Z. In this course, you'll learn how to achieve goals with OKRs in a fun and engaging format.

What you'll get from this course

1. Why OKRs work so well for most companies in today's competitive and fast-changing business climate.

2.  I'll show you how to write effective Objectives, Key Results, and Initiatives - a skill you can use to help you realize both personal and professional goals.

3. It's good to aim high. But how high? We'll examine how to balance your moonshots and roof shot OKRs.

4. I'll also provide a proven approach for introducing OKRs to your workplace. We'll start with figuring out the approach right for your company, and then look at critical activities including creating a rollout plan, appointing an OKR champion, and defining out your OKR cycle.

5. I'll cover how to run effective check-ins. And how to score OKRs at the end of the cycle.

6. Finally, I'll show you how to manage OKRs using the free version of Trello.

Why Learn about OKRs?

While OKRs began in the tech sector, it's becoming widely adopted across industries. That's because most companies operate in a fast-changing environment and OKRs enable companies to be both flexible, and focused as they pursue their big goals.

What if I have questions?

I offer full support, answering any questions you have 7 days a week (whereas many instructors answer just once per week, or not at all). This means you’ll never find yourself stuck on one lesson for days on end. With my hand-holding guidance, you’ll progress smoothly through this course without any major roadblocks.

Ready to get started? Enroll now using the “Add to Cart” button on the right, and get started on your way to becoming an OKR pro. Or, take this course for a free spin using the preview feature, so you know you’re 100% certain this course is for you. See you on the inside.

Meet Your Teacher

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Raj Elakkara


My name is Raj Elakkara and I am super-psyched that you are reading this! Professionally, I'm a Entrepreneur/Product Manager with over ten years of experience in healthcare informatics, supply chain & geographic information systems.

I've had the privilege of working for large fortune 500 companies in the US and Australia, including FedEx and General Electric. I've also founded a few start-ups.

I leverage data to drive business strategy, revamp customer experience and streamline operational processes. From my courses you will straight away notice how I combine my real-life experience and academic background to deliver professional step-by-step coaching.

To sum up, I am absolutely and utterly passionate about all things related to Product Management and Data Science a... See full profile

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1. Introduction: Have you ever wondered how companies like Google, Amazon, and Spotify hit their targets? Meet OKRs, the Robin Hood of goal management, hay and welcome to my crash course on OKRs. My name is Raj and I will be your instructor. Okrs started in the US tech sector, but it's growing in popularity around the world across all industries. And every company has a goal, but not every company can execute on depth. And OKRs are the link between strategy and execution. In this course, I'll show you how to get the most out of this simple but effective framework for setting and realizing your goals. We'll start off by studying the theory behind OKRs. Answering questions like, what are objectives, key results and initiatives, and how do you correctly create them? We'll examine the two different types of OKRs and how they should be graded. And you'll get a chance to practice creating your own OKRs. The second part of this course will give you a repeatable, step-by-step approach to roll out OKRs at your own workplace. So if you're a founder, you can use this as a blueprint for implementing OKRs at your company. Or if you are an employee, you could use this section as a guide to drive adoption at your workplace. And we'll look at things like how to get leadership support, define your approach, appointed OK EI champion, creator rollout, plan and define your OKRs cycle and much, much more. The third part of this course, we'll show you how to use the free version of Trello to set up and manage OKRs. And I'll demonstrate how you can get all of your OKRs literally on the same page. And this approach works really well for small to medium-sized companies that really don't want to invest in expensive goal management software. Does that sound like something you'd be interested in? I can't wait to see you inside. So when you're ready, hit that button and let's get started. See you soon. 2. Congratulations! You Are Now An OKR Coach: Hey, look at you and congratulations because you've just been hired as an OKR coach. Your job is to get all the people in the company rowing in the same direction. And to do this, you need to implement a goal management system that will coordinate actions at all levels in the company and will ultimately enable the company to set and realize their big, ambitious goals. Now, the framework you'll be using is called Objectives and Key Results, or OKRs. And you may be completely new to OKRs and really not prepared to take on this coaching job. But that's okay. Don't stress because this course will help you every step of the way. The course is divided into three parts. In part one, we'll cover the theory of OKRs. So we'll walk through the entire OKRs cycle beginning with how company level OKRs has said and work our way down to team and individual OKRs will also look at how to write OKRs correctly and set a good cadence for reviewing OKRs. We'll check out how to track their progress and do things like check-ins and score OKRs at the end of the cycle. And then in part two, we'll examine how to implement OKRs at your workplace. And that'll include things like getting leadership support, deciding on your approach, creating a rollout timeline and defining your OKR cycle. We'll also look at how to run a workshop to set team level OKRs. And then in part three, we'll go beyond the theory and examine how to manage OKRs using Trello. Now the good news is that we'll be using the completely free version of Trello. So you won't have to invest anything but your time. And I'll show you how to set up Trello. So all OKRs within the company can be accessed from a single board. So that includes the company OKRs, that team OKRs, and all the employee OKRs. And once you complete this section, you'll be able to immediately apply what you've learned to setup OKRs at your workplace. Alright, when you're ready, hit next and we can get started. I'll see you soon. 3. What are OKR's: So what is an OKR? Okr stands for objectives and key results. The objectives from the what part of goal-setting, what are we trying to achieve? And it is qualitative and often set for a period of time such as a quarter. And the key result is the how part of the goal. How will we know that we have achieved this? And key results should be quantitative. That is, it should be measurable. And that's because the key results should tell you if the objective has been met by the end of the set time period. And US together, objectives and key results are sort of like the ying and yang of goal-setting. They work together to help focus and individual or group around a bold goal. But before we get into the question of what and how, we first need to answer the question of why? Why are we doing this in the first place? What is the driving motivation behind it? And in accompany, we can look at the vision to answer the question of why it is the bottom-line reason the company exists and is the driving force behind everything the company does. So at its simplest level, goal-setting is just about answering those three questions. Why, what, and how. Let's go a bit deeper. What does a good objective look like? A well-designed objectives should be a single sentence that is qualitative, inspirational, time-bound, and actionable by the team independently. That way they have no excuses for not getting it done. For example, if we had an objective of launching an awesome MVP in the next quarter, at first glance, this might look like a great objective for an engineering team. It's short, inspirational and time-bound. But the words alone won't tell us if the objective is a good one. We also have to consider external dependencies. Let's say for example, the engineering team is not complete and a critical devils still has to be filled or that MVP requirements are not ready. Well, that's not good because now we have two critical dependencies. Firstly on recruitment to bring in suitable candidates, and on product management to finalize climates. But we do have to be practical because in most companies, things move pretty quickly and they will be dependencies. But it's important to ensure that your objectives don't have any critical external dependencies. Now let's take a look at key results. What do good key results look like? Well, 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? And this will force us to define what we mean by Awesome. Typically you can have three to five key results, no more and no less. And the metrics associated with your key results can be based on things like growth and profit, quality, revenue, and engagement and performance. Notice that some of these metrics are opposing forces. For example, you can cut back on profit to focus on growth, or cut back on quality to focus on revenue. And the key results can be used to help balance such opposing forces. So Launch and awesome MVP in the next quarter could have key results that look like this. 30% of repeat users in a week. And NPS score of plus 50, 15% conversion rate. Now, the final criteria for evaluating your keen results is its difficulty level. Good key results should also be difficult to achieve but not impossible. And one great way to do this is to consider whether you can achieve the OKR On a scale of 0 to one and aim for OKRs that have a confidence level of 0.5. So a confidence level of 0 would mean never going to happen. And a confidence level of one would mean that it's too easy. And so you're really looking for a sweet spot where you are pushing yourself and your team to do bigger things and where you have a 50-50 chance of failing. So the idea is to aim high. And if the key results make you feel uncomfortable, then you're probably setting them correctly. All right, the next lesson will be a practical lesson to get you warmed up where we can create our first OKR. See you soon. 4. What are initiatives: So If an objective is a type of goal that answers the question, where do I want to go? And Key Results are metrics that help you to figure out when you're getting there than what's an initiative? Well, initiatives are sort of like to-do lists. They are the actions you will take and they essentially determined how you'll get there. So initiatives described a work that is needed to influence your key results. And while key results clearly measure progress towards an objective, initiatives are often just hypothesis or guesses as to what work might deliver the biggest impact. And they don't often have a direct connection to the objectives progress. And only by checking in with your key results will you really know whether you initiatives delivered the desired results or not? And if they don't, you might have to think about changing your initiatives. And one of the benefits of setting OKRs and initiatives is that there is a clear separation between outcomes. That is, what did we achieve and outputs, what did we do? So let's look at our earlier example. If our objective is to launch an awesome MVP this quarter, and our key results are things like 30% repeat users per week and an NPS score of 50, 15% conversion rate. Then our initiatives to achieve those key results might be things like building a version one of a prototype, or setting up NPS, tracking or recruiting 100 beta testers. And that's just a small example of some of the initiatives that might be needed to deliver this broad objective. You'll notice as you build out your OKRs and initiatives that they kind of take a pyramid shape in that you have a single objective at the top of the pyramid. And then you have two to five key results for each objective. And then you have many initiatives for the key results. Alright, let's stop here. In our next lesson, we will look at why OKRs work so well in today's business climate. See you soon. 5. Warm Up: Lets Create Our First OKRS: Let's create our first OKR. So take a minute to think about the most important thing you want to achieve. And that can be either in your personal life or your professional life. And let's use that to create our OKR. So optionally, we can use John Doerr's format for creating goals. And it looks like this. I will. And then you state your objective as measured by, and then you state your key results. So let me create 1 first to help you get started. And my objective will be set around the creation of this course. So I will create an awesome course on OKRs in two months as measured by a number one ranking in search results, a rating of at least 4.5 and a conversion rate of plus 15%. Alright, now it's your turn. Pause the video here and take a few minutes to create your OKR. All right, are you done? Now let's evaluate the OKR against the four criteria that we examined in the last lesson. Firstly, let's look at the objective. Is the objective is short and inspiring statement. That is desert inspire you. And does it have a timeframe? Also, are you able to achieve it with a high degree of independence? And if you answered yes, then you're off to a good start. Now let's do the same thing with the key results. Is it measurable? And by measurable, we can also include yes or no type answers because that's binary. And then the second question to ask yourself is, well, the completion of all the key results mean that you have achieved the objective. And then finally considered the overall difficulty of the OKR. If it makes you nervous, then you've got the right level of difficulty. And one thing to keep in mind is when creating key results, try to focus on the value created and not the underlying activity. Or in other words, key results should measure results and not effort. For example, if I said spent at least four hours a day working on the course, that would not be a good key result as it measures effort and not results. Okay, so if you're done then congratulations because you have created your first OKR. But building one for an individual who works alone is the easy part. As you add more people, as typically you would have in accompany, the complexity of managing goals increases exponentially because you now need to align your OKRs both vertically as well as horizontally across the entire organization. And then you need to figure out things like how often will they be reviewed and updated. But we'll cover that in more detail later. In the next lesson, we will look at why OKRs work so well in today's environment. See you soon. 6. Why OKR's work so well: So what makes the OKR special and why do they work so well? Today, most companies operate in an environment of uncertainty and rapid change. And this fast evolution of technology has impacted almost every industry. And to survive and adapt, companies really need to be flexible. Okrs allow companies to create agile goals. And instead of using annual Static Planning, OKRs take an agile approach by using shorter goal cycles. Companies are able to adapt and respond to changes. And in fact, OKRs recognize that strategy and tactics have different natural temples, since the latter tends to change much faster. And to solve this, OKRs adopt different rhythms. So a strategic cadence with high level, longer-term OKRs can be used for the company that's usually annual. And a tactical cadence can be set with shorter term OKRs for the teams, which is usually quarterly. And companies also use operational cadences for tracking results and initiatives, usually on a weekly basis. And another reason that OKRs had been so successful is that they really advocate transparency. Because the primary purpose of an OKR is to create alignment in the organization. And to do this, OKRs are made public at all levels of the company. That is, everyone has access to everyone else's OKRs all the way from the CEO of the company down to the Intel who may just have joined yesterday. And one of the natural benefits of transparency is that it allows companies to rethink how they align their goals. In a traditional top-down approach to goal setting. Goals are set from above and then they sort of cascade down the chain of command. This traditional top-down cascading model takes too much time and does not really add value. And that is why OKRs dinner really cascade. Okrs instead use market-based approach that is simultaneously bottom-up and top-down. And it does this through complete goal transparency. The company sets the strategic goals and shares them for everyone to see. And each team should then use the strategic OKRs to draft their own tactical OKRs. And then the lower level goals are then made visible to everyone. And so Tactical OKRs are constantly reviewed and updated to ensure that they align with the larger company strategy as well as to the goals of other teams. And this model really improves engagement while creating a better understanding of the strategy. And it makes the process simpler and faster than having to cascade goes up and down the chain of command. Another reason that OKRs do so well is that they are decoupled from rewards. And separating OKRs from compensation and promotions is crucial to enable ambitious goal setting. And so OKRs are viewed more as a management tool than an employee evaluation tool. And finally, the adoption of OKRs is not viewed as an event but rather a journey. As in any cultural transformation, change does not happen overnight, but it is possible to modify the company's dynamics in a few months, aligning and engaging teams. And we'll cover this in more detail later on when we get into implementation and the practical sections of this course, let's take a moment to quickly recap what we've covered in this lesson. Okrs are in effective goal setting framework for many companies today, because most companies today operate in an environment of uncertainty and change. And OKRs allow companies to achieve goal alignment through the use of different tempos. Four goals at an annual, quarterly, and weekly level. And OKRs also rely on complete gold transparency at all levels of the company, which in turn allows goals to be synchronized. Not in a traditional top-down approach, but in a more market-based as needed approach. And finally, OKRs are intentionally not tied to compensation to allow people to freed themselves to aim higher. And the adoption of OKRs is often achieved through a phased approach that allows time for the cultural and behavioral change that is needed at all levels of the companies for OKRs to succeed. Okay, in the next lesson, we will look at the origin of OKRs and check out some of the companies using them. See you soon. 7. Evolution of OKRs: And then on September 24th, 1999, on santa margarita Avenue in Menlo Park in California, three people met in a garage that was converted into an office. And their discussion sparked a revolution that has shaped how so many companies around the world today set their goals. And three people were Larry Page and Sergei Brin, the founders of Google. And the third person was John Doerr and investor with Kleiner Perkins. John introduced Larry and Sergei to OKRs. And the OKR system of goal-setting has helped support Google's growth from 40 employees in the year 2 thousand to over 100 thousand today. But to get to the origin of OKRs, we have to rewind the clock a bit further back because the boat of OKRs can be traced all the way back to 1954 when Peter Drucker created the MBO or management by objective system. And then in 1968, Andy Grove modify the MBO system by introducing the concept of key results. It was Google's success with it that really prompted adoption by other Silicon Valley companies. And today, thousands of companies around the world use OKRs. But the OKR system is not only for tech companies. For example, did you know that Walmart, Target, The Guardian, Dun and Bradstreet and ING Bank are all using OKRs. So if you decide to adopt OKRs, rest assured that you'll be in good company. In the next lesson, we will check out two types of OKRs, roof shots and moonshot, and see how they're different and why it's important to get a good mix of both. See you soon. 8. Moonshots vs Roofshots OKRs: How ambitious should you? Okay, RSP, let's talk about roof shots and moon shots. We can classify OKRs based on their difficulty level as roof shots and moonshot. A roof shot OKR is a goal that is hard but achievable, you know, up front that you can get it done. And they are also called committed OKRs. And roof shots are things that an individual or a team or an organization has agreed will be achieved. And so resources and scheduled will have to be adjusted to make sure they get done. And when graded, the expected score for a committed OKR is one. And we'll cover scoring in more detail later. But a one means that the OKR was fully achieved. And with committed OKRs, a lower score than one would require discussion. As it shows opportunities to adjust and improve in planning and execution. Moonshot OKRs, on the other hand, are really aspirational. And there are about how we would like to, well, to look with this type of ok. There is really no clear path to get there and no real knowledge of what resources will be required. And with a high degree of uncertainty. They may also have looser timeframes rolling over from quarter to quarter or from year to year. And sometimes they may even be reassigned to different teams. And the expected average score of an aspirational or moonshot OKR is 0.7. but with lots of room for variation. So why should we bother to set moonshot OKRs? Well, for one thing, research has shown that teams that set impossibly difficult tasks tend to perform much better. And that might be because they force the team to rethink the way they work and really question things and have those difficult discussions that are normally avoided by moonshot should be used in moderation. And with teams that are new to OKRs, they should be introduced gradually to avoid discouraging the team. And also OKRs should always be clearly labeled to indicate whether they are roof shots are moonshot to avoid any confusion. So in summary, roof shots or commitments and moon shots are aspirational. And they both graded differently. And like with cadences where team set OKRs covering different strategic and tactical timeframes. Team should also try to include a blend of roof shots and moonshot OKRs to ensure that they are balancing, aspirational type and regular business commitments in their goal-setting. 9. OKRs are not KPIs: So what is the use case for an OKR? The OKR is a tool to help you implement your strategy. It helps you to translate a longer-term strategy into short-term goals that teams and individuals can then work on. And OKRs are great way to measure your progress towards these goals. But to fully implement the strategy, you need two types of goals, OKRs and KPIs. So how are they different? Well, some companies make the mistake of believing that they can use OKRs to replace a KPI's, but that doesn't make any sense. And to illustrate this, the example that I like to use is that of a car. If you're driving your car and the car is, let's say your organization and your heading to your desired destination. And that destination is your ultimate vision. Than OKRs would be the tool that you'd use to map out your optimal path to that destination. But as you drive that car, you also need to keep an eye on your dashboard to make sure that the engine doesn't overheat and that you don't run out of gas. And these things that you have in your dashboard that you have to constantly watch a best measured using KPI's. You need to monitor them on an ongoing basis to make sure that they stay within predefined thresholds. So the use case for the OKR is to serve as a map to take you to your desired destination. Now, another common mistake made by companies is trying to use OKRs to measure everything. And okay, I should not be used to measure everything because they shouldn't be used to track day-to-day work. And a good way to think about this is to consider the goals that you have in your own personal life. You may want to save money for a trip, spend more time with your family, or let's say you want to lose weight. But I bet that buying groceries is not one of your goals. It's one of those things that you still have to do. And if you're trips to the supermarket start to take up so much of your time that it starts to jeopardize your personal goals. You have to change how you go about doing them. And when people say that they can't achieve their OKRs because the everyday work gets in the way. It's because they don't really understand OKRs. A good OKR forces you to re-evaluate low-priority or non-value added activities and reduce, automate or outsource them so that you can really focus on the things that matter. So to summarize, OKRs don't place KPIs but compliment them, and they should be used to track the high-value outcomes, not the low-value tasks to help you reach your ultimate destination. And that brings us to the end of this lesson. In our next lesson, we will look at how to go about grading your performance at the end of an OKR cycle. Bye for now. 10. How Are OKRs Graded?: Okrs follow a defined and repeatable cycle. At the simplest level, the cycle looks like this. You set OKRs, figuring out how to align them with others and do the work that's needed to achieve them. And when we reach the end of a cycle, the OKRs are graded. And grading OKRs is a chance to reflect on your accomplishments and consider what might be done differently the next time around. And low scores really force you to reassess things. And high scores provide empirical proof that you're on the right path. Now if you're using OCR software, the scores may be system generated for you. But if you're not, you have to do some math. No matter how you calculate your score. It's good to understand the meaning behind the numbers and where they come from. The Andy Grove method of grading OKRs is a simple yes or no approach. And to see it in action, let's check out this example. Now imagine that you're a product manager. You're OKR might look something like this for a quarter. See your objective might be to successfully launched Version three of a product. And your key results might be to get product reviews on 15 publications and to improve your sign-up to trial ratio to 25%. And to get your trial to paid ratio to plus 50% at the end of the cycle, here's how you could come up with a score. Let's say that the first, third key results are the only ones you completed. So you would say yes to the first one and then no to the second one and yes to the final one. And that's simple. Yes, no approach is what we call the Andy Grove way of scoring. But we can take a slightly more advanced approach where we can put our score on a scale. So to do that, let's create a scale where 0 equals failure. And one means that the objective was completely achieved. And within these metrics, each individual key result is graded and average. To score the objective. The scale looks like this. 0 to 0.3 is red. And that means that we fail to make any real progress. 0.4. to 0.06, which is a yellow, would mean that we made progress but we fell short of completing a goal. And 0.7 to one is a green, which means that we delivered. So let's say that for the first key result of get 15 product reviews, we achieved a ten out of 15. That is, we managed to get ten publication reviews. So that would give us a score of ten over 15, which is 0.7. and a borderline green. And for assign up to trial ratio, let's say that we managed to increase it by 15%. So we would score that as 15 over 25, which was our target. And that would give us a 0.06, which would be an incomplete score. And then for the trial to paid ratio, let's say that we actually managed to hit off 50% targets. So that would be 50 over 50, which would be one. And that is a perfect score. So to get the overall score for the OKR, who simply take an average of the key results cores, which in this case would be an 80% or a raw score of 0.8. Good passing grade. It is worthwhile noting though, that to successfully evaluate an OKR, you have to look beyond just the numbers and also look at some of the context. And when analyzing, okay, our performance objective data should also be looked at subjectively because for any goal they may be extenuating circumstances. For example, let's say that for your first key result, we only got one publication out of the 15. But the one is a really highly sought after publication, such as a cover page on the wired magazine. In that case, your raw score for the key result would be 0.1. what you might give yourself a 0.7. because you were able to get that highly coveted coverage that everyone else was after. And one final thing worth noting is that you wanna see variations in your key results. As stated earlier, 70% is a good score. But if you're seeing that everything is scoring a 100% or 30%, then that kind of homogeneous scoring would mean that something is wrong. And it may mean that you need to rethink how you set your stretch goals are completely re-examine how you do OKRs. And that brings us to the end of this lesson. In the next lesson, we'll check out some examples of good OKRs. Alright, I'll see you soon. Bye for now. 11. Getting Leadership Buy-In: Now that we understand the basics of OKRs, let's come back to our coaching job. We need to implement the OKR framework for our client. And that's what this section will focus on. And this is a good time to introduce the client. So meet rocket growth. They are an established software startup with a team of 200 people. Now bringing OKRs to accompany like rocket growth isn't just a matter of copying Google's approach, because Google isn't your average company. And they've spent almost two decades growing, scaling, and experimenting with how their internal goal-setting structure works. And because of that, how they use OKRs will be quite different than how you will. And that's because at its core, OKR is not a methodology, it's a framework. And so there is no set path or set of rules for introducing it to your workplace. Instead, it's a set of practices and ideals that you should look to incorporate. In other words, the route to success can be quite different for each organization. But there are six key requirements that every company should look to incorporate for a smooth and successful organization-wide rollout. So let's take a look at them. The first is to get leadership support as early as possible. And then to define an approach and appoint an OKR champion and to create timelines and train your OKR muscles. And finally, to keep your program simple. So this section will focus on covering each of these in more detail. So let's start off by looking at the first one, which is getting leadership support. It's quite critical to get leadership support as early as possible in your program. But if you are starting the OKR implementation in a specific team or department than getting backing from your department or team head is often all that's needed. But for rolling out OKRs organization-wide backing from the senior leadership, that is the CEO and fluid is an absolute must. Okrs can be a big change for an organization, especially for the traditional Hierarchical Enterprise. And OKRs require everyone across an organization to think differently about how they and others work. And without the commitment of senior leadership, the change that is needed in how the entire organization things will be missing and the initiative is likely to fail. But this doesn't mean that an organization cannot start working on OKRs if the CEO isn't convinced yet. In fact, I've seen many cases where a team leader implemented OKRs in their team. After weights, the enthusiasm quickly spread through the rest of the organization. And when this EUS all the positive results, they soon were sold on OKRs and approved the org wide rollout. But it is the CEO and senior leadership's commitment that is required for the organization-wide rollout. And although you can implement a pilot program initially without the senior leadership involvement, involving the sea level right from the start can really fast track you're okay or implementation. So over to you to start your implementation. Our client rocket road is not fully convinced about OKRs. So your job as coach is to also educate and win them over. And some ideas for doing this could include bringing them all together into a room and providing an introductory ok, ah, presentation that clearly outlines the benefits and business impacts for the organization. Presenting a case study to give them an idea of timing, budget, and impact. And then finally, let them all openly express a clear commitment. And once we have enough buy-in, we can then define our approach, which is what we'll cover in the next lesson. See you soon. 12. Exercise #1 Workshopping Team OKRs : This lesson will be a practical one. Let's look at how the run workshops for setting and scoring team level OKRs. And these workshops can be used by any team at any level in the organization, not just the leadership team. So our team consists of five executives and CEO. The OKR coach, which is of course you, and the OKR champion, which is the future you, once you leave the company and we are going to be setting the company level OKRs in this workshop. So for the one month pilot, we'll need to set up three workshop sessions. Firstly for setting OKRs and then for scoring them. And finally, we'll do a retrospective session where we'll look at what worked and what didn't and tried to improve upon the process before we roll it out to the rest of the organization. So let's run our first workshop, which is going to be the OKR setting workshop. To run the workshop, you'll first need a couple of things. You'll need one, a whiteboard, and then post it notes with markers and an OKR template, which you can download from this link, gaps quad.com slash OKR. So let's go check out this webpage. So this is the course resource page and all material for the course can be downloaded from this page. So here's the link to the OKR template. As you can see, it's a Google Doc. So very importantly to edit this page, you will need to first make a copy of it. So let's do that. And now we have a version of the page that we can edit. So let's come back to our workshop session and let's take a look at the agenda for session one. The archaea setting workshop will be a two hour meeting. And step one of this meeting will be to set the stage. So give yourself five minutes to reintroduce your team to the terminology of OKR and how the scoring system works. Remind them that OKRs are supposed to be uncomfortable. That is, they won't be fired for setting an ambitious goal and missing it. And show that the whole team understands OKRs and the basics before moving on to the next step. And you may need more than five minutes to do this depending on the knowledge level of the team and if the whole concept of OKRs is making the team nervous, that's good because that means that they are a little bit outside their comfort zone. And that's the only place where real growth can happen. And then in step two, take half an hour to figure out your team's objectives and pose the question, what are the most important impacts we need to make in the coming month? So spend a few minutes brainstorming ideas on sticky notes and posting them on a whiteboard or wall. And once all the ideas have been placed on the wall, you can examine and group similar ideas together. And from there you can distill your ideas down into three to five aspirational objectives. And to keep everyone focused, don't add more than five objectives. In fact, if you can aim for three, and remember that your objective should be high level qualitative statements that are aspirational, not tasks or granular outcomes. And then step three is to identify your key results. So give yourself about one hour for this. So for each objective, have the team members think about the results that they would like to see and measure. To ensure that they have achieved it. Again, this should not be tasks, these should be results. Also don't forget to mark your OKRs as moonshot or roof shot. And in the pilot stage, you can avoid moonshot. But during a normal OKR cycle, you should definitely try to include some stretch goals. And once you're done, assign each key result and owner on the team. And if a key result will require collaboration with another team, that's OK, follow up with them afterwards and make sure that they're on board. And then in step four, we will review the objectives and key results that you've built out and ask ourselves the question of whether they are ambitious enough. And if you feel totally confident, you can hit a key result, then maybe you should increase the target and make it a stretch goal and create a plan to try and hit it and make sure that the key results are articulated in such a way that they can be scored on a sliding scale. And hard numbers and percentages work great here. Also consider whether you have too many or too few objectives and key results. Normally we are aiming for three to five objectives with three key results each. And finally, in step five, to wrap up the meeting, ask your team if there are any loose ends that need to be tied up before you go into execution mode. Are there any place all the numbers that need to be firmed up or do you have to recruit people from other teams to be co-owners of a key result. Once all those questions are answered, you can then wrap up session one and session two, we'll focus on scoring OKRs. And this is not really a single session, but rather weakly checkpoints. At the end of each week, the team we'll check in on how they're tracking towards the OKRs and give each key result a predicted end of month score. For example, if you've got a target for a key result of increasing something by 10%. And you predict that you'll end the month with a score of 7% increase, then your score will be 7% over 10%, which is 0.7 for the key result. And that's the score you'll use for that week. Also, don't forget to include a bit of commentary as to how you came to that prediction and why it's changed since last week at Rocket road, they've all decided to do weekly updates informally using a verbal update that is given during a 15-minute standup session. And remember that the idea behind the weekly check-ins is to catch warning signs early and course correct. This is not really an exercise in covering your ass or trying to justify your actions. And the last session of the pilot IS a retrospective. So at the end of the month, we start off by giving each key result of final score and reflecting on your OKRs as a whole. And a retrospective approach is used where we pose some questions to the team, such as, were our objectives ambitious enough? We're the key results actually measurable. Did we set our targets and forget them? Were OKRs correctly aligned with the company's brought a strategy? Did we really feel connected to our OKRs? And what else have we learned over the month? And to run the retrospective, you can borrow a format from Agile teams. So on a white board, we can simply create three columns. The first one that shows what worked in that period, and the second that shows what didn't work and then capture actions. So during the brainstorming session, team members will take a few minutes to write on a post-it note what worked and what didn't. And then they'll discuss it. And as a group, they'll decide on what actions to carry forward. And that brings us to the end of this lesson. Let's recap what we've done so far. So we've obtained leadership buy-in for our aka plan. We've defined our approach. We've appointed a champion and we've created a rollout timeline. And we've looked at how we can practically implement the rollout program using workshops. In our next lesson, we will look at how we can go about taking all that learnings from the pilot program to create an OKR cycle. See you soon. 13. Train Your OKR Muscles: Writing good OKRs is probably one of the biggest challenges, especially if no one in the organization has defined OKRs are goals and milestones for their work before. And it's a good idea to see it as a muscle that you need to train so that you can quickly get better. So how do you get people to train their OKR muscles? As the Oka coach, you can set up ok are writing sessions and invite people to attend them. In terms of timing, these sessions could be held during the one week window where contributors are in the middle of drafting their OKRs. That way they have the option to share their drafts and get feedback. So let's go ahead and set up five sessions for rocket and put a cap of 30 maximum attendees. And then during the session, we will break them up into groups where they can draft and share their OKRs. And team members can then review and give feedback to each other. And of course, the whole thing will have to be moderated by the OK yeah, coach, which is you and the OKR champion. All right, that brings us to the end of section two. And we will have one final lesson to check out some of the popular tools used for managing OKRs. And then we'll move on to section three where we will look at how to setup OKRs using Trello, gradual making it this far. And I'll see you soon. 14. Define Your OKR Cycle: Let's now review the results of the retro rockets pilot program. On a white board. The team brainstormed what worked and didn't work, and decided on what adjustments to make. And the actions carried forward might be things like changing from using a whiteboard to using software to manage the OKRs and using biweekly OKR check-ins rather than weekly. And they may also decide to invest more time to train everyone on writing good OKRs. And maybe they decided also to adopt a visible when done Policy that we, teams and individuals don't have to wait for a deadline to publish their OKRs. They can make them available as soon as they're ready. And this will help to speed up OKR alignment within the company. And finally, they may also decide to go with a single cadence for individuals in the company. And by that we mean that each employee in the company will have a quarterly OKR with bi-weekly check ins. The use of a single cadence is a good idea, especially in the early stages. And as the company's use of OKRs matures, they may revisit this, but for now a single unified cadence keeps things simple. Ok, let's now take all of our learnings to create our OKR cycle. So we are planning for the quarter that starts in Jan and goes all the way to the end of March. And we can draw a timeline like this. So let's start from the month of November, about six weeks before the quarter and draw two months. So that's November, December, January, February, March, and April. And rocket will begin brainstorming and planning their annual and quarterly company level OKRs about four to six weeks before the start of the quarter. And in the retro, the execs all decided that they liked the workshop format, so they are planning to continue to do that for setting they accompany and team level OKRs. And then two weeks before the quarter, they finalize and share the annual and quarterly company level OKRs with all 200 employees in the company. And then the various teams will have two weeks to build out the team level OKRs based on the company level OKRs that were shared. So each team then has to figure out how to align with the company level OKRs and also figure out how to align with other teams. And there's an element of self-organization that happens here in that how they do this alignment is left up to the teams. So if a team, for example, decides that a key result needs to be shared with another team. They would then need to take the initiative to reach out to the team and have that discussion. And then at the beginning of Jan, the team OKRs are shared and then individual contributors have a week to create their OKRs. And remember also that all individuals in the organization, from the intern all the way up to the CEO, will need to have an individual OKR that aligns to the team and company OKRs. And they will often be an element of discussion and negotiation that has to happen between the employees and the managers before these OKRs are finalized. And then one week into the quarter, all OKRs are finalized and the company is now in full execution mode. And every two weeks they'll track progress towards the goals using 15-minute check-ins done in a standard format. And then in the middle of the quarter, around middle of FEB, leadership team will meet again to set the aquatic to company OKRs, which again will be shared two weeks before the start of the next quarter. And when the quarter ends at the end of March, OKRs will be scored and a retrospective will be held to see what can be improved with the overall process. And then the Q2 team OKRs will be shared and the whole cycle will repeat itself again. So that's the OKR cycle, which has been modified to suit the needs of rocket growth. And with that, we have come to the end of this lesson. And the next lesson we will look at why the OKR coach is also a kind of personal trainer whose job is to train people. It's okay our muscles to you soon. 15. Create A Rollout Timeline: Once we have obtained leadership backing, defined our rollout approach and appointed a champion, we need to create a timeline. Actually, we need to create two timelines. One for the rollout of OKRs and another one for the ongoing OKR cycle. And the rollout timeline should answer the question of when each team and individual within that team will be enrolled onto the OKR system. And the OKR cycle timeline shows us what a typical cycle would look like. And often, because there is an element of learning and adjustment that happens during the rollout. Okay, a cycle will only be finalized once we complete the pilot and start the robot. And creating and sharing this time might openly is critical because it impacts everyone within the organization and it ensures that everyone is aware of what to expect when, let's start with the rollout timeline, rocket growth has decided to go with a two-step robot. First, we need to define our timeline for the pilot project, and we need to find candidates for the pilot. The good news is that you've managed to convince the leadership team to pilot OKRs before rolling it out to the rest of the team. And that's a great outcome because a, it shows good commitment from leadership. And B, it helps them to get a foundational understanding of OKRs before they ask the rest of the teams to commit to it. So we have a team of six executives committed to piloting the OKR program. And this includes the CEO and five of our direct reports. And that's good because we then have the two highest levels in the organization and can test how to achieve vertical and horizontal alignment within this small group. So for the pilot, we'll be creating a one month or to be more specific of 4-week okay. A pilot instead of the typical quarterly OKRs. And we'll be doing this to try to speed up the feedback loop. So let's create a timeline for the pilot. It might look something like this. In week one, we'll kick things off with a half-day workshop where the team will get together to set their OKRs. And we'll focus on how to run this workshop in the next lecture. So don't worry too much about this will also have weekly check-ins that will initially be timebox to under 15 minutes using a standard format. And then in week three, the team will meet again to draft your OKRs for the next month. And then in week four, we'll close off and greater OKRs and hold a retrospective way. We will fine tune and approve the OKR process and consider rolling it out to the rest of the organization. Okay, so that's our rollout timeline. That next lesson will be a practical one way. We'll run a workshop to set our pilot teams initial OKRs. See you soon. 16. Choose a Champion: As with any organizational change, it's important to let someone lead the project. That's why you should appoint an ambassador to be responsible for the rollout of the OKRs and be the first line of contact if questions arise within the organization. And sorry, but it can't be you because you're an external consultant who will eventually leave once the OKR framework is set up, the champion would have to be someone who has a permanent employee status, who can fill your shoes when you leave. And also appointing and executive would not be a good idea because it needs to be someone in the trenches working at the operational level. Let's take a look at the role of the OKR champion. The OKR champion has several important tasks which are essential for the success of the implementation of OKRs. And the first is to drive adoption. Introducing any type of new process in an organization is never simple and it never happens. One of the key people in this process is the Archaea champion. And this person sets the milestones and deadlines and ensures the organization is moving along. This person also has to design the process. And because OKRs are a general approach for teams to align themselves and drive performance, they have to be tweaked to suit the organization and to really make it work, certain changes will have to be made that correspond to the culture of the company. And the archaea champion is the person that initiates and drives the changes. And some examples of tweaks are how often people should check in their results and what the planning cadence should look like. The champion also has to be the expert in resident. Because people will have questions on OKRs. New people will come on board and they will have even more questions. And okay, I champion is the person that every person can turn to and asked to check on their objectives or to get clarification on what objective confidences. And finally, the OKR champion is also the person who will choose and maintain the OKR tools. And regardless of whether the tool is a whiteboard and post-it notes or a full-blown ok, ah, solution. It is the Archaea champion that chooses them and make sure that the tool is adequate and fits the needs of the teams. And this role of champion is quite similar to a scrum master in an Agile software development organization. The objective of the LCA champion is to facilitate the OKR process, not to decide on the objectives. And as this rule involves a fair amount of coaching and mentoring. Most successful archaea champions are outgoing and well-known people in the organization that are passionate about OKRs. And while this role is essential, different organizations have different names for it. So don't be confused if you hear the term OKR aggregator or Archaea master. Alright, in the next lesson we will look at everything to do with creating timelines for your OKR. See you soon. 17. Define Your Approach: Broadly speaking, there are three approaches for rolling out your OKRs. And which option fits you best depends on the characteristics of your organization, its culture, experience with OKRs, and the level of commitment from senior leadership. So let's take a look at the options. The first one is a company wide rollout right from the start. And this works well if your organization is already familiar with OKRs are goal management in general. Otherwise, it requires that the benefits of OKR are clear to everyone. And you have a culture that is completely open to change. And young companies, regardless of their size, often qualify more easily for such an approach than the more mature or traditional companies. And usually as the number of employees within the company grows, this approach becomes less suitable. So once a company reaches around 1000 employees, the organization-wide rollout no longer becomes a viable option. Note also that this approach doesn't mean that everyone should get access all at once. It's still advisable to first set up the OKRs for senior leadership and then quickly roll it out to all the departmental heads and team leaders. And from there to all individuals. And it does mean that everything gets done in a very short timeframe, for instance, a month. And this is a great approach to not lose momentum. And the second approach is a two-stage rollout starting with a pilot team, after which everyone will join. So instead of a fast rollout, you can start with a team that pilots the OKR to work out the best approach for the rest of the organization and the pilot team might use one-quarter to collect the first learnings. Although I would recommend using a shorter timeframe like a month to learn faster. And once the approach is clear, everyone else can join. And this is a slightly safer approach than the first one. And you can still have the entire organization up and running in around three to six months. And the third approach is a gradual rollout, starting with a small team and scaling up over time. And in this approach and enrollment schedule, a setup starting again with a small team of around five to 10% of the organization. And instead of rolling out to everyone after the pilot, you gradually add more teams and departments. But the downside here is that you will need more time around three to nine months depending on sites. However, if you feel uncertainty or expect resistance from your team's, This could be the best option for you. It is important to note that there is no right or wrong. And you have to decide what you think fits your organization best. And at Rocket growth, they've decided to go with the two-stage rollout and whatever approach you choose. It's always a good idea to first get started with OKRs of the senior leadership at the company. And this shows everyone that the organization is serious about it. And you'll see that many people find it super exciting to be able to access and view the OKRs of the company and the CEO. And from here it should go down to the departmental and team heads who can then set up their own groups and group OKRs and then roll it out to their teams and departments, and then finally down to the individuals. Okay, in the next lesson, we will look at how to appoint an OKR champion and create a rollout time. I'll see you soon. 18. Implement OKRs In Trello: Hey, meet Trello and application that uses bodes, lists and cards to help you organize well, pretty much anything in your life. For example, here's a creative way to organize the various things you need to complete in a day. You could simply grouped them based on how long they take. So group the activities that take ten minutes or less in one list. And then another one for those that take less than 30 minutes and another one for those that take less than an hour. And the rest of it you can put into a separate list for those that take over an hour and you struggle to plan your meals for the day. Well, Trello can help you here also because you can create a boat to store your recipes and create a second mode where you can actually plan your meals. Really anything that needs a level of organization can go onto a Trello board. For example, you could organize your reading list or plan a vacation, or even plan your wedding. But that's not why you're here. So let's talk about OKRs. Why is Trello such a great tool for OKRs? Well, firstly, the free version of the product is really, really good. And if you haven't used it before, you'll see what I mean when we get into the details. And secondly, Trello really enables transparency and close collaboration within the team. With just a glance at the boat, you know, who's doing what and what needs to be done. And it's also quite easy to use with a really intuitive interface. So there isn't much of a learning curve. And did I mentioned that they also have a web version as well as apps for Android and iOS. And oh yeah, they have lots of power-ups which lets you integrate other apps that you may use. Okay, so you get the idea, let's get set up and that's what we'll do in the next lesson. See you there. 19. Trello - Lets get set up: There are a lot of good tools out there for managing OKRs. But for many companies, everything they need is available via a Trello board. And in the case of rocket growth, there are three main types of OKRs that they have to manage. The first is the company-wide OKR. So this is of course set at the highest level and impacts every employee within the company because everyone has to align to the company-wide OKRs. And then when we go one level down, there is the team or departmental OKRs which primarily impacts the people who work within that department. And then you have the individual or employee OKRs. In this section, we will focus on how to build OKRs at all three levels. And I'm gonna show you my preferred approach for setting up the OKRs so that we achieve a high degree of transparency and alignment within the company. Okay, so let's get started. So go to Trello.com. And if you don't already have an account, click on sign up. And I'm going to sign up using my Google account. And once you sign up, you're taken to this page where you have to provide a team name. So I will call my team Rocket growth. And I'm going to choose a team type of small business. You can invite team members, but I'll skip that part for now. Click on continue. And then on this page, Trello tries to sell you their paid gland, but I'm going to stick with the free plan. And to get the free plan, we need to click on Start Without business class. And you may see a different steps along the way because Trello is a product that is continually evolving. But there shouldn't be any significant changes. So progress through all the steps and get to this next screen, which was where you can actually begin working on your cello boat. So I'll click on get started. And welcome to Trello. So I'll start off by dismissing this. And this is your homepage where you can do things like create bodes, manage your members settings and other things also. So let's start off by creating a new boat. So let's give this board a title. So I'm going to call this bode company OKRs, which is the first thing we need to create. So we'll start off by building our company OKRs and look at how we can structure that in a boat. And then later on we will add on the team level OKRs and individual occurs. So I'll click on Create. Okay, let's start by checking out the layout. So this is the bode, also called the project. Yellow. You can create multiple modes and multiple projects. And from the boat you can click on home. And that'll take you to a view where you can view all your boards and create a new board. So let's go back in and let's take a moment to look at the layout of the board. So within a bode, you have lists, and within lists you can create cards. So as an example, I'll create one card. So you can create a title for the card. And when you click on the card, you can view the back of the card where you can add additional descriptions and do a lot of additional things like adding members two cards enables and checklists. But we'll go into those details later. So let's close out of that. And then we also have some options on who can view the Bode and access it. So we can choose to make it private or make it available only to the rocket growth team. Or we can also make it public so anyone can access it. So I'll keep it now restricted to only the members of the rocket growth team. And on the right side there is a menu. So if I click on show menu, you can see that there are a lot of additional things you can do here. One of those things is to change the background. So I'll create a background that works a little bit better for me. So I will go with something tropical and I'll pick that. So that's a very quick look at the layout of Trello. And what we're going to be doing in the next lessons is building out our company level OKRs. And so what we'll have essentially are lists that will represent our objectives. And within those lists, the cards will represent our key results. But we will go into those details in the coming lessons. And then we'll really begin to use the power of Trello by adding labels to show the status of key results and adding checklists and using waterfall graphs to check the progress of that key result. But we are done for now. And I will see you in the next lesson where we will begin to build our first company OKRs. See you then. 20. Trello - Aligning OKR: Okay, let's talk about transparency and alignment. As you roll out your OKRs and more people join Trello. You quickly find that it becomes difficult to find things. And at a company like rocket growth that has 200 plus employees, we need to set up our OKRs very carefully to ensure that people can quickly find what they're looking for. And so what I like to do is create a boat that essentially represents a company directory. So let's create a new boat and let's call it meet the team. Quickly changed that background. Okay, so the purpose of this boat is to firstly list out all the people who work at Rocket growth. So it serves as a company directory and also provides a jumping point for you to quickly get to their OKRs. So to achieve that, let's create a couple of lists. And what I like to do is start off by adding management. So that would be our executives. And then we can create a list for each department. So development team might have a separate list and a product team and marketing team. So let's just stop there. But you should have a list for each department. And of course, if you're a really large company, this approach won't work. But for a company like rocket road that has two hundred, two hundred fifty people, this approach will work really well. So the first thing I'll do here is add the CEO. But before we do that, we have to add members onto our team. So let's go back to the homepage. And in the previous lessons we added people to boat, but we didn't add them to the group. So you'll notice that we have a rocket row team that was created by default when we first signed up for Trello, but we never added anyone as a member to the team. So if I go into members, I have four guests, but no members. So the first thing we need to do is to add every single person who works at Rocket growth as a member of this team. Unfortunately, the only way to do that is to type or paste their email addresses here. I'm gonna go ahead and take my four guests who I invited to my boat's previously and just convert them to Members. So once we've added all our members, we can go back to the homepage and to the Meet. The Team bowed. And we can invite all members to that bowed. And once everyone has joined the Bode, the easiest approach would be to have them create their own card. So for example, if Tracy is the CEO of the company, she would create her own cod. And she could put our name and in parenthesis, put our title, created the card, and then add herself as a member of that card. And if car thief is the Head of Development, he would do the same thing. And then we would of course have to have the head of product and the head of marketing also joints. So I'll go ahead and do that. And together we want to add themselves to the directory. You might just send out a message to everyone either by email or by a messenger if you use that in your company, is I'm just going to add some random names here. But in the interest of time, let's hit fast forward. And I think I'll stop there. But once everyone has joined, then we would have them add their own OKRs here. So let's go ahead as an example. Use Tracy. So if Tracy, The CEO, wants to create her own OKR, she would essentially create a new board. So I'll call it traces OKRs said that to visible to the entire team and create the boat. And then Tracy can creator objectives. So objective one might be something like increase recurring revenue. And objective number two might be to improve employee engagement. And objective number three might be to raise new capital. And I'll add some key results also for these objectives. But to save you time, let's hit fast forward. Alright, and once Tracy is completed her OKRs, what she can do to share this with others on the directory is going to show menu and more. And then you have a link to the boat so she can copy that link and then go back to the directory. And then within her card, under descriptions, she can paste that link. And now anyone who accesses her card can also access her OKRs. And so if each employee of the company does the same thing, then the directory becomes a place where you cannot just view the details of a person. You can also view their latest OKRs. Now one final step that I'd like to take to achieve complete transparency is also to add the company level and team level OKRs to this directory. And I'll show you how to do that. So let's create a separate card and let's call this company OKRs. Track that at the top and go back to home to our company OKRs that we created previously, show menu and we'll do the same thing. Copy the link to the bode, go back to meet the team. And we can paste the link in the description. And we can do the same thing for each department OKR, so Dev team OKR, product team OKRs, and marketing team OKRs. So with this approach, we can now have a single place where you can view the entire company's OKRs at all levels from the company OKRs logically organized within lists that contain your executive list with the company OKRs at the top, and then the OKRs of the heads of each department. And then you have the OKRs for each department as well as the employees working within those departments. Now as an employee, I might be more interested in tracking specific OKRs. And so what I can also do is go into the OKRs that I'm interested in and choose to watch it. And you can see that Trello is dropped and I icon to show that you are now watching that card. And so this way you can follow the updates of those specific OKRs that you're interested in. And with that, we have come to the end of this section where we have covered off in quite a lot of detail how to manage OKRs using the free version of fellow. In our next lesson, we will do a recap of the entire course, including the key takeaways that you can take back with you to begin using OKRs at your workplace. See you soon. 21. Trello - OKR Retrospectives: Hey, there. In this lesson we will look at how to run retrospectives at the end of an OKR cycle. It's a good practice for teams to meet and run retrospectives that are a chance for the team to reflect upon their performance in that cycle. And look for ways to improve things by looking at what worked well and what didn't work well. And then identifying actions that can be carried forward by using retrospectives regularly at the end of each cycle. The team can then continuously improve upon the way they do things. So to run a retrospective in Trello, we can create a new board. So click on Create New bowed. And I'll call this OKR retrospective. And I'll change the background and click on Create bowed. And the first thing I will do is invite the team. So click on invite, create a link, copy and share that link with a team. And everyone's joins. So I can go ahead and create the list. So the first list will be what worked. And the second list will be what didn't. And the third list will capture the actions. So this is a standard format used in Agile teams. So if you're familiar with the way Agile runs, then you should be familiar with this approach. But if you are, and then I'll quickly walk through how retrospectives are run. So theme can solicit feedback from all the members in advance of the meeting so that each member then, as they experience an issue, can add what worked and what didn't. And the when they meet, they can discuss everything and choose actions to carry forward. Or during the meeting. The OKR coach can facilitate the meeting and ask each team member to firstly spend five minutes to list out all the things that worked. And then spend another five minutes to list out the things that didn't work. And then they can discuss everything and choose actions. So if I were then to feed back on the card, I could just put it on the title and that usually suffices, but if I have more detailed, I can put it in the back of the card. And just to make it clear to everyone who supplied the feedback, you can actually drag your own image and add yourself as a member to that card. So everyone can quickly see that feedback one was supplied by me. And once everyone supplies their feedback, then the team has to vote and decide on which actions to carry forward and to enable voting on Trello, I like to use a power-up. So go to show menu and click on power-ups, and search for voting. And then we can add this power up here, which enables people to vote on cards. So add that and you can see that the power has been added to the boat and I'll close out of that. And now if I wanted to vote on this car, I would just hover over it. Press the V key on your keyboard. And if I press V again, that vote is removed. And so if each team member then volts on what they think is the most important thing to work on. Then you'll get a democratic system for determining what actions to carry forward. The card that has the highest vote can then be carried forward as an action. And as with Agile teams, it's a good practice for teams running OKRs to carry forward at least one action in each cycle. That way you instill a culture of continuous improvement within the team. So that's a quick look at how to run OKR retrospectives using Trello. In our next lesson, we will look at how to solve one of the biggest challenges of OKRs, which is enabling transparency and alignment of your goals. When you have OKR setup at the company level and at the team level and at the individual level. Companies like rock growth, that means creating hundreds of OKRs. So how do you manage that? And Trello, we'll cover that in the next lesson. See you soon. 22. Trello - Using Checklists & Waterfall Graphs: Hey, there. In this lesson we will go a little bit deeper into tracking the progress of key results using checklists and waterfall graphs. So let's click on the improved Net Promoter Score queue result. And let's examine the checklist feature. With OKRs, I like to use checklists in two ways. Firstly, I use them to track initiatives and initiatives as a reminder, the main activities that have to be completed to achieve a specific key result. So in this example, we want to increase our net promoter score. And Let's click on checklist and I'll call this to-do and click on Add. And now we can add items to a checklist. So some of the activities that we might want to complete might include things like increase and PS, tracking frequency from monthly to weekly. And that would allow us to align the tracking with our weekly check-ins. And we may also want to set up a callback program for detractors who are the people that give us low scores. And maybe we're not tracking NPS across all our channels. So we might say turn on NPS tracking across all customer channels. So the checklist is a very useful way to monitor your initiatives or activities that have to be completed to achieve the key result. And the second way that I like to use checklists is to track the results of the weekly check-ins. And remember that weekly check-ins are a critical part of tracking the progress for OKRs because they allow you to identify problems early on and make adjustments and really increase your chance of actually achieving the accurate result. So let's add some check-ins here. So click on checklist. And let's call this weekly check-ins and add. And we could start off by putting a date, so June 20th. And you may recall that the weekly check-in follows a 15-minute stand-up format at Rocket road, where the people involved have an informal discussion about the progress towards that key results and then tried to make a prediction of the outcome for that key result. So in this example, if we are trying to increase our net promoter score from 60 to 80, we are trying to achieve a 20 improvement. So if this is our first weekly checking, we would essentially ask ourselves the question, what is the likelihood of us achieving that goal of AD? And if we are now going to hit that goal, what are we likely to achieve? So to figure that out, we need to look at our current progress towards that goal. If we look at the latest NPS score and say that score is 65, then we could make an educated guess as to whether we'll hit that final goal of 80. So let's say that based on our progress so far, we think that we are only likely to get to 70. We could say something like Projected score. Equals ten over 20 points, which is equal to 0.5. which would not be a passing grade. So in one line, we can then summarize our weekly check-in to show that the check-in was held on June 20th, and that we estimate that we will only achieve a 0.5. score based on our progress so far. And then in the next week we can have another check-in. And if we've improved our NPS score and we feel more confident, we could then show that. So rejected score might look like 15. So we now think that we're likely to achieve a 75 score at the end of this time period. And so we would say 15 over 20, which is equal to 0.75, which is a passing grade. So those are the two ways that I like use checklists. Firstly to track your activities associated with the key result and then to track your weekly check-ins. Now what do you do when you're dealing with a key result that cannot be easily tracked using a to-do list. So let's come out of this and go into the conduct 50 phone interviews key result. So in this example, a to-do list would not be as useful because we simply need to make a lot of calls. And more useful measure would be to use a waterfall chart. So what is the waterfall chart? Let's take a look at that. So a waterfall chart is a time series that plot a line graph that shows you where you are when you first set your goal on one end and then on the other end, it shows you where you want to be at the end of the time period. So with our example, we want to make 50 phone calls. So that's our goal here, 50. And when we set this goal, we've assumed that we've already made 14 calls. So we're starting not from 0, but from 14. And this green line plots are actual progress towards that goal. And the blue line is our guideline for achieving a perfect targets. So if we want to achieve a perfect score of one, we have to stay at or above this blue line. And then the red line shows us our eighty-five percent mark, and the yellow line shows us the 70% mark. So that is how a waterfall chart can be used. And what I like to do is before each check-in to take a screen grab of this chart and attach it to the key result in advance of the meeting so that the results can be discussed at the check-in. So let's go ahead and do that. I just quickly, we'll take a screenshot here on a Mac that is command control shift. And for let's go into our queue result. Create a checklist and call this weekly check-in. June 20th waterfall chart. And because I've copied the charter, the clipboard, I can't just use command and V and paste that into the description. And my waterfall chart has been attached both in the back of the card as well as on the front of the card. So the waterfall chart in summary, is a useful way to measure your progress for those key results that cannot be easily tracked using a conventional to-do list. Okay, in the next lecture we will look at how to run OKR retrospectives. See you soon. 23. Trello - Adding Members and Tracking Status: Hey, and welcome back. Now that we've created our objectives and our key results, let's take a look at how we can track the status of these key results. I like to use labels to track the status of each year result. So to do that, let's click on Show menu and more and labels. And what we can do here is build labels that we can then assign to each card to show us the status of that card. So the labeling system that I like to use is fairly simple. So for example, we can go with Dan for the green one and in progress for the yellow one and not started for the blue one. And we could also show something like locked using a red label. So once we've defined our labels, we can close out of that. And to apply a label, we just have to click on the card and select the label. So if this is in progress, I can select that. And on the card it indicates that the activity associated with this key result is in progress. And so we can do the same thing with others. I could show that the phone interviews HE result is blocked and that the survey responses are done. Now OKRs are meaningless unless we have a team to work with. And at the moment, the only person who has access to this board is myself. So what I need to do is invite others onto this board. And that can be done from up here. By clicking on this invite button. I can invite them by typing in their email addresses or by creating a link and sharing that link with them. So I'll copy that and send that across to the team and then wait for them to join. Okay, so now I have new members added to the boat and you can see them up here. And if I wanted to assign a key result to a specific member, I can just drag them to the card. And you can have multiple assignments to a card. So it's really quick and easy to do. And within seconds I can have all my key results assigned to members of the team. Okay, in the next lesson, we will look at how to use two other tools to manage the progress of our OKRs. And the first one is checklists and the second is waterfall graphs. See you soon. 24. Trello - Creating Objectives & Key Results: Hey, and welcome back. So let's build out our company level objectives. So if we said that we had three objectives at Rocket growth, we would then need to create three lists. Unfortunately, Trello has already done that. So by default we are given three lists and the less titles are To Do, Doing and done. So we need to add an objective title here. And the title has to be quite short. So we have to essentially capture the essence of the objective in just a few words. Okay, let's add some objectives for rocket growth. So our first objective could be to research and improve customer satisfaction. So the title I'll use here is customer satisfaction. And now let's add some results. So click on the cod and let's update the title first, first key result for this might be to improve our net promoter score. Now notice that both our objective title and our key results title do not really fit the criteria for well-defined objective or key result in OKRs. So for example, the objective is not exactly inspiring and the key results shown here is not measurable. But that's okay because the details are stored within the cards are together, they should meet the criteria for a well-defined objectives and key results. So let's go ahead and add more details. In description. Trello supports what's known as Markdown. And what that essentially means is that you can use these kind of special characters to format your description here. So if I were to do this and save that, you can see that it creates a line separator. So what I like to do for descriptions is to restate the objective for that key result. So I'll put a separator there and then type in the objective. And the objective would be stated out fully, which is to drive higher customer satisfaction across all channels. And when you save that, you've got a nice clean objective. And below that we can then add the key results. So for the key result, I'm going to use hash, which lets me create a header. So I'll use two hashes and that creates an H2 header. And the key result will be to increase net promoter score from 60 to 80. And if this is a very ambitious goal, I can also in parenthesis, indicates that this is a moonshot. And down below I will add another separator and can attach documents. You can add a link here, or you can also attach something directly to the card from up here. So we can close our adapt and create additional key results. So another key result might be to conduct 50 phone interviews with key customers. And we might also do things like get survey responses. So you get the idea. And then of course we have to create tumor objectives here. But in the interests of time, I will hit fast forward. Okay, so we now have an example of a company OKR with three objectives set and within each of them three key results. Remember that the best practices to aim for anywhere between 35 objectives. And next we will look at how to track the progress of an OKR using labels. And we'll also look at how to add team members and assign them to key results. See you soon. 25. OKRs vs Scrum: Let's talk about OKRs and Agile development. Most companies around the world today Bill software using agile approaches. And many companies struggle to fit OKRs with Agile. Although both of them seem to share the same philosophy. And teams using Agile often resist adopting OKRs because it appears to be redundant to them, but this is not true. The source of the struggle is a misunderstanding about OKRs and agile itself. But when used correctly, OKRs and agile are a powerful combination that can deliver full-stack Agile teams. When you consider the history of Agile, it was built a framework for delivering software and was an alternative to waterfall development for managing software projects. And the focus of Agile has always been on managing the delivery of software via stories of features and not really value or business outcomes. And this is one of the limitations of Agile. In fact, there is not a single ceremony in Agile for tracking results of that working software. And so in this way, the Agile Manifesto is misleading in that it tells people to measure deliverables. That is, working software is the primary measure of progress. And this assumption that all working software is valuable is flawed because some projects will deliver value and others won't. And uses will adopt some features while others will fail. And as a result of this approach, many companies are stuck in a feature factory model where teams have no focus on delivering value. And developers are sort of sitting in a factory cranking out features and simply sending them down the line. And the dire consequences of this kind of feature factory is that teams simply flesh out the details and code and test without really a full understanding of the bigger context of what they're actually trying to achieve. So they don't really have a deep understanding of the underlying business problems that they're trying to solve. When you look at an organization in the context of delivering goals, we could divide the organization into a stack of five layers. Culture, strategy, tactics, operations, and goals. Typically, goals permeate all of the other layers as they reflect how the company works and behaves and can be set at varying timeframes. In a traditional company, the stack would look like this. The culture would be top-down and command and control and strategy usually set using annual Static Planning. Gold would usually follow a waterfall approach where they set from the top and then they can flow down through the chain of command to the bottom. And tactics would involve making big bets with long feedback cycles. And operationally they would use waterfall development. And what Agile does is essentially replaced a bottom layer of the stack. So operationally, the delivery of those tactics via working software is done using agile development. However, the rest of the layers are still not agile when it comes to setting goals, the waterfall mindset is still the norm, or organizations might use Agile, but they still use an annual top-down process for creating static goals that is really in direct conflict with being agile and waterfall goals follow a static planning model. Usually they may start with a retreat where an executive creates annual company goals. And those goals cascade through the organization, creating a fixed plan for the year, which of course is the very definition of top-down waterfall goal management. To achieve full stack agility, companies have to replace all layers of the traditional organization stack. And in terms of culture, what that means is achieving a type of aligned autonomy with the teams, whereby the leadership does not try to control the detailed plans, but defines the desired end state, its purpose, and then empowers team members to figure out how to achieve it. And when it comes to setting strategy, it should be data-driven using an iterative approach that is trying to validate the hypothesis that is made. And the approach to setting goals would follow an Agile models such as OKRs and the tactics to achieve those goals in OKR terms, which would be called initiatives, would usually involve experiments that are run with short feedback cycles. And then of course, operationally, you would use a form of agile development such as Scrum or Kanban. Now what does this mean in terms of modifying how Agile teams operate? As an example, if you took a typical Kanban board, the traditional agile kanban board would look something like this. You would have a column to show things that need to be done, things that are in development, things that might be in testing and completed. But the key to becoming full-stack Agile is to focus on value. And value is not defined by working software. Working software is really not a measure of the ultimate progress. It's simply an output which may deliver the outcomes were seeking. And so there is really a column missing and the Kanban board, and that is the column which says, Did it work? Did that software achieved the outcome you're seeking? So you might create an additional column such as outcome achieved. And that way you're tracking not just whether the software has been delivered, but whether that software has delivered the outcome you're seeking. So this approach of combining OKRs and agile were really forced teams to consider why they're working on things. The magic question to be asked is, what are you working on and why? So if the team said we are working on x because Sam, the manager said it's important or we're working on X because we feel like it. Those are really the wrong answers. The answer that is correct would be we are working on X because we think it's going to impact y, which matters to the company because of zed, where y of course, are your outcomes that you're seeking. And zed is the alignment with the larger goals of the company. 26. Mistake #1 Too many objectives or key results: Hey, welcome back. In this section we will look at the most common mistakes made when implementing OKRs and of course how you can avoid them. So the first common mistake is to have too many objectives or key results. Now the OCR is not a laundry list of everything you need to do, but rather a representation of your top priorities. And so really less is more here. And usually when people will have to create OKRs for the first time, they might search the internet for help and then they run into all sorts of rules such as every objective should have three key results. But the problem with these rules is that there are sometimes difficult, if not impossible to apply. And so they should really be taken with a grain of salt. And remember that if objectives tell you where to go, key results are what you need to achieve to get there. And the key result is sort of like a GPS that you follow in order to navigate to where you want to be. So if GPS needs three satellites to accurately pinpoint your location, you could say that an objective also requires three key results too accurately let you know whether or not you've accomplished that goal. But that should be viewed as a guideline as opposed to a hard and fast rule. We have to keep in mind that every company and every team is unique and the challenges that they face can vary greatly. Sometimes this might mean that they have to use six key results for objective, which is completely fine. And it can sometimes also be the case that you only need one or two key results for an objective. And again, that's not a problem. What really matters is that you don't end up with collectively to many key results. And by that I mean that when you take all your objectives for the quarter into account, you should not end up with too many key results overall. And remember that one of the primary motivations for organizations choosing OKRs is to increase focus. And focus means that you have to say no to certain things. So if you have two objectives with six key results, each, you'll have 12 key results in total. And if you have four objectives with three key results each, you'll also have 12 in total. And since teams typically set OKRs every quarter to 12, key results, more or less means that your team has only one week to deliver a key result. And any more than 12 and you risk losing focus. And I've seen that 12 is the maximum a team is able to achieve consistently. So if you have more than 12, then you'll either struggled to focus or your key results will become too granular. So in summary, instead of focusing on the number of key results for an objective, focus instead on the total number of key results that you end up with for that time period. And moreover, makes sure that the key results that you set truly are representative of a measure of what you're trying to accomplish. So the key result should always show you whether your objective was actually achieved. 27. Mistake #2 Including tasks as key results: A common mistake that I see teams make when they're new to OKRs is to forget that key results are not tasks. A key result is not something that you do, but rather a successful outcome of what you did. And OKR goals on our tasks either there are outcomes or results and not activities. So remember the phrase that an activity does not equal a result. Being busy doesn't really mean that you have accomplished results. And so objectives on our tasks and Key Results are no tasks either. And OKRs should not be used as a checklist. They're not really intended to be a master task list. Instead, companies should use OKRs to define the impact the team wants to see and let the teams come up with the methods of achieving that impact. Also on a similar note, a common mistake found is creating OK ART using vague language. So OKRs that say things like increased sales are ineffective because that just can't be measured while it's a good and worthwhile goal to increase sales. But what percentage do you have to increase sales by and within what period of time? So it's important to structure OKRs in a way that answers the correct questions. Otherwise, it'll be impossible to track progress and to complete the objective altogether. So in summary, key results are not tasks, but rather they are like milestones that show you the outcomes that you need to achieve on the way to attaining your overall objective. 28. Mistake #3 Setting Only Top Down OKRs: The top-down approach of cascading goals is the traditional and old-fashioned way of doing things. And the biggest flaw of the traditional top-down approach was that essentially was a mandate passed down to people below that really didn't consider their opinions. While it's true that cascading goals to make up some OKRs, sum should also come from the bottom-up. Setting objectives that are only top-down will really reduce motivation and creativity among employees and giving them some level of autonomy, on the other hand, encourages independence and facilitates more growth opportunities. And so if you hire the right people and trusting them, your employees will have a good understanding of what their priorities need to be in order to drive results. So allowing them to have a voice in the OKR process is really important. And collaborating with them and encouraging them to structure their own OKRs so that all the objectives are supporting the overarching company goals will in the long run, create a better and healthier company culture. There are some instances where the top-down approach works really well. And one example is we're a company faces an existential threat that requires some sort of swift and decisive action. So for example, if you look at Intel in the 19 seventies, they were facing stiff competition from Motorola, who was making faster and easier to use microprocessors. And the threat was identified by a district sales manager who brought it up with management. And management created a detailed plan and cascaded there'll chaos throughout the company. And it took only four weeks for the company to completely reboot their priorities. And everyone at Intel, from the engineering team to the marketing department knew what they had to do and why they were doing it. And by the end of the 1980, Intel regain this part as the market leader. Top-down cascading can work and is an effective way to very quickly aligned people towards a common goal and has its rightful place in the correct circumstances. But as a general rule, companies need to employ both top-down and bottom-up approach if they wanted to create a healthy company culture in the long run. 29. Mistake #4 Set it and forget it: Don't reach your OKRs like a New Year's resolution. Don't set it and forget it. Okrs have to be a part of the culture of your organization and has to be tracked at a regular cadence. And one of the primary reasons that OKRs are so effective is that they make it easy for leaders to check in on progress. And the primary vehicle used to track progress is the check-in meeting. So let's examine this meeting. A regular check in meeting is the most effective success driver of any OKR process. The check in is a brief meeting with the purpose of talking about progress and learnings and hand it ensures continuous feedback, correctness of data, accountability, high level of engagement within the teams, and a quick check-in conversation format should be used to establish that continuous rhythm of giving feedback and tracking progress. And it's important to understand that check-ins are not about adding additional meetings, but about making existing meetings more efficient, data-driven, and result oriented. And so this is done by focusing on important priorities and value contributions. And by having all participants on one page with regard to what is to be talked about through a shot preparation. And so most successful organization will integrate their weekly or bi-weekly, okay, a check-ins into existing meetings. And this is key to remember because many companies prior to adopting OKRs will already have a lot of meetings. And so implementing OKRs does not mean adding more meetings, rather, changing how meetings are structured to incorporate OCHA check-ins as a part of that meeting. So let's look at the structure of a check-in in each shack in the team discusses the latest achievements, the learnings as well as roadblocks and how they can be tackled. And tasks and priorities from the next weeks are planned. And so it's quite important to ensure that you are well prepared in advance of the meeting, that you have all the data you need, and all participants had prepared. So the three basic questions that you might ask any check-in is, what did you work on? What are your plans and priorities? And are there any roadblocks? So to summarize this lecture, it's critical that companies do not have a set it and forget it mindset because that would result in everyone rushing at the end of the period to try to achieve the goals. Instead, the company should constantly, throughout the period, have regular check-ins where they are discussing and examining progress and any impediments and ensuring that there is a constant rhythm of progress being made towards that goal. 30. Mistake #5 Sandbagging okrs: Another common trap that companies, teams, and individuals often find themselves in is sand bagging. So what is sand bagging or sand bagging is the practice of trying to under promise and over deliver. And it's really a bad habit full countless organizations and teams and individuals. Because at first glance, this seems like a good defensive strategy. But what actually results is lackluster product development and subpar customer service. And this in turn leads to under-performing teams and underwhelmed customers. And if you look around, you can see the anecdotal evidence in almost every industry when markets are defined by a multitude of offerings that have really little distinction between the vendors, then you know that sand bagging is present. And it's really human nature, sort of rooted in the survival instinct to expand as little energy as possible to complete a task. But ultimately that then has a negative impact on the company's long-term survival, which of course has a detrimental impact to the employees. So how can you tell if your company has a sand bagging issue? Well, for one thing, if you're OKR grades are consistently above 0.7. then you've got Robin. Okrs By the definition, should include an element of moon shots. And the moon shots should be difficult to achieve and see your results of OKRs should be a mixed bag of successes and failures. And if your company has a problem with sand bagging, then you have to really stop and reevaluate how you're doing things. For example, the practice of tying bonuses to goals has to be re-examined. Now setting bonuses to roof shot goals is a common practice and it's quite acceptable because roof shots, by definition are achievable. And so the expectation is that they are achieved fully. But when you set bonuses to moonshot goals, then you create a culture that would encourage sand bagging. And the result would be employees and teams possibly tagging commitments as moonshot, setting low-risk moonshot goals, that is goals that are not truly moonshot and essentially trying to under promise and over-deliver. So in summary, when a goal is tied to compensation, employees will start playing defense and stop stretching for those amazing goals and in short tail sand bag. Another way also to consider whether your teams are sand bagging is to look at whether they consistently meeting all their committed an aspirational goals without needing all of their headcount or capital to achieve this. So if the company is not fully utilizing their resources, and this includes both people and infrastructure and all the tools available to them, then they're not really pushing themselves to achieve more. And the whole point of OKRs is to drive excellence and growth. They help you stretch and perhaps overdeliver, and they must by nature be uncomfortable and potentially unattainable. 31. Mistake #6 Insufficient KRs: A less common but still equally prevalent problem that many new teams face when building OKRs is not creating enough key results or not ensuring that key results together, collectively mean that that objective has been met. And one of the reasons for this is that teens may not have really thought through what needs to be done to achieve that objective. Or they may be taking the two to five key results per objective recommendation to literally. So the question that you really have to ask yourself is, if I achieved all the key results under that objective, would that objective be achieved? Companies typically tend to create two types of key results. The first is activity-based, which really measures the completion of tasks and activities or the delivery of project milestones and deliverables. For example, the release of a beta version of a product or the creation of a new training program are all activity-based. The second type is a value-based key result, which measures the delivery of value to the organization or its customers. And this measures the outcomes of those activities. And value-based key result is the correct way of structuring a key result rather than an activity-based. And teams do struggle when they tried to create value-based care result. And a good way to think about this when migrating from activities to value-based key results is to ask yourself the question, if you're successful with this initiative, what would that look like? So what will be the consequences of being successful with this task or activity? What would be the desired outcomes? So if we took an example of a migration of a platform, then we may say something like the successful migration to that platform would result in reduced infrastructure costs from x to y, or improving availability of that platform from 99% to 99.9% or achieving a revenue target of x. So in summary, an OKR should be constructed to ensure that the key results, collectively, when completed, will mean that that objective has been achieved. And those key results need to be value-based rather than activity-based. 32. Mistake #7 No OKR owner : An OKR is incomplete unless it explicitly defines who owns that occur. That is, who is ultimately responsible for ensuring that that OKR is completed. And this might be an individual or a group, and failing to assign a single person or group to be accountable for the OKR could result in finger-pointing and lack of discipline in ensuring that that OKRs achieved. Let's talk about shared OKRs. What is a shared OKR won widespread piece of advice on OKRs and goals in general is that you have to focus on goals that you can control alone. Most companies don't want, for example, the marketing team to say that they didn't achieve their goal because engineering didn't do their work. So they tell each team to focus on what they can control. The problem though, is that by definition, this approach creates silos if each team or individual focuses only on what they can control every issue or opportunity that requires cross team coordination gets left behind and whatever the organization structure is, there's always going to be whitespace between different teams and departments. And companies have to be able to manage that whitespace since there's always dependencies between people and the solution for managing the whitespace is shed OKR and watch shed OKRs ultimately do is achieved alignment between teams and in a shadow KR two or more teams might share the same OK, yeah, but each one might have different activities. So you could either shed a whole OKR, meaning the objective and a set of key results, or you can share just a single key result. So sharing can happen in various different ways. And when you decide on a shared OKR, you are creating an ad hoc team that will last as long as you have that shared OKR. So think of it as activating a virtual squad with all the teams or individuals required to achieve that shared OKR. So how do you decide if you need a shared OKR? Well, the first thing to look at is the dependencies that exist between your teams. Shared OKRs exist to solve dependencies. And the more dependencies you have, the more you need shared OKRs. For example, companies that are organized around functional structures usually need a lot more shadow KR as well. Companies that use cross-functional teams or squads tend to have fewer dependencies and thus fewer shared OKRs. So sharing is one of those hidden gems in the OKR world. It's not widely discussed, but it is a crucial concept that few organizations really do well. And some of the pitfalls to avoid when sharing OKRs is firstly, to not define all your dependencies. So assuring that all the team members involved in that shadow KR understand the dependencies that exist. And it's also important to ensure that you reach out and request the cooperation of the other team. So if you are a member of the team who's initiating the sharing request, then you have to gain consent from the other team to participate in that sharing activity. And this may seem like a no-brainer, but there have been many instances where I've seen teams that do not adequately communicate a shared OKR. And the end result is the teams do not really coordinate well. And another problem can arise if you try to create shared OKRs that are so big that diffusion of responsibility kicks in and individuals assume that others are responsible for taking action. And so it's quite important to break down the shed OKRs into smaller chunks. And if that's not possible to use a strong program manager to lead that shared OKR. So in summary, what we are saying is that an OKR is incomplete if it doesn't explicitly define who owns that OKR, and that could be an individual or in the case of a shared OKR, a group. 33. Mistake #8 Starting with individual OKRs: Another common mistake made by companies is to try to implement OKRs at all levels of the company. It doesn't really make sense for most companies to start off with individual OKRs. And that's because individual OKRs add additional complexity and overhead and are not really necessary when you first get started with OKRs. A company that is first getting into OKRs would be well-advised to begin with the company and team level OKRs and then leave the individual OKRs for later. In fact, many companies up to not use individual OKRs at all. For example, Spotify decided to ditch their employee level OKRs because they found that individual OKRs slow them down without adding enough value. And that was because the company has a very nimble culture where objectives change quickly and adapting and iterating them at multiple levels, all the way down to the individual consume too much energy and time that they couldn't afford. Additionally, a second argument can be made for why individual OKRs may not be needed at all. For many companies, there are essentially two types of objectives. The first is directional objective, where you're essentially putting a dot on the horizon so that everyone understands where to go. And these objectives might have a timespan of around a year. And they are your longer-term, either departmental team or company level objectives. And then the second type of objective is executable objective. And executable objectives have to align with the directional objectives. They push you in the right direction, they drive the progress of your directional objectives. And these are the objectives that people in your organization will actually be working on. And they tend to be shorter term, such as a quarter. And people often refer to executable OKRs as team or individual OKRs. And an argument can be made that when you go down to the individual level OKRs, most of the time, the kind of work that individuals work on are more initiative level activities. They are not so much OKRs that an individual works on, but rather activities or initiatives that an individual might be performing to help support bigger team level OKRs. So this argument is used by many companies that feel that at an individual level, the cost of maintaining OKRs is not worth the effort. And larger companies, especially my draw that conclusion. If you're working for a smaller company, it might make sense for you to go down to that individual level. But once again, I would strongly recommend that if you're starting off with OKRs, you begin with simply company and team level OKRs until the company is comfortable with OKRs. And you can then look to introduce individual OKRs and on the subject of differing advanced practices for later a couple of other things that you could differ when you first begin with OKRs, our setting stretch goals, and the separation of OKRs from compensation. So stretch goals, which we know are an essential component of OKRs, can be deferred when you first introduce OKRs because that can discourage teams because there may not be familiar with working with stretch goals where your target is not a 100% achieved, but rather 70% achieved. And so you may choose to differ moon shots and focus instead on your roof shots and leave the moonshot for later. And similarly, you may also decide not to change your compensation structure right away because that's too much chain to introduce at 1. Instead, learn from your OKR implementation and update your system of compensating people later. So in quick summary, what we're saying is when you first start rolling out OKRs, don't bother implementing OKRs at the individual level because that's going to create too much overhead and confusion. And also question whether you need individual OKRs at all or are they worth the extra overhead? And do individuals tend to focus more on initiative level work rather than objectives. 34. Mistake #9 Not closing okrs: Let's talk about closing OKRs as you approach the end of your time period, let's say a quarter. And I'm going to use a quarter as an example in this lecture. You start to approach the time where you have to begin to think about wrapping up your OKRs for that current quarter and to start thinking about your upcoming priorities. And the first and most important part of this process is closing your current OKRs. And closing your OKR really forces you to pause and reflect and collect and share your learnings before you start focusing on something new. So taking a moment to step back really allows your entire company to lift their heads up and observe what's been going on and collect new learnings and insight, and then make an informed decision on what to do next. And pausing also means you have a chance to choose your move next. Without this period of reflection, you are sort of doomed to constantly react instead of acting. And this pause also gives a great opportunity for leadership to give recognition and praise to those who deserve it. So when should you close an OKR? Well, in general, you should close it when you stop working on it. So if you stop working on an opium, mid cycle, so mid quarter in this example, it's best to close it right at that moment. You may stop working on it because you've achieved it or it may no longer be relevant. And so the OKR and it's contexts are still fresh. So it'll be easier for you to capture your learnings and write up your closing notes if you do it immediately after the OKR is completed or you decide no longer to continue work on it. And it's ideal to close the OKRs for the current quarter in the first week of the new quarter at the latest. And there are some exceptions to this, which we will discuss in a moment. But often you do see people in the last weeks of the quarter giving their OKR a final push. And they may even need the first few days of the new quarter to wrap things up and that's fine because that's human nature. The deadline is the ultimate motivator. And by waiting for the first week of the new quarter, you can be sure that your final results are in and the effort to drive progress for that OKR have come to an end. You definitely want to avoid a situation where people say things like, Yes, I've only progressed 40% at the end of the cycle, but I still expect to do a couple of things and push it up to 60%. So I'm hoping for that to happen. And there are certain circumstances when it's okay to close your OKR at a later point. Especially when you have lagging key results that need more time to really show the results. So who should close the OKR? Well, it should really be closed by the person who is responsible for that OKR. That is the OKR lead or the owner of that archaea. And you really want to be systematic in how you go about closing the OKR, making sure that all individuals and teams follow the same process. So the OKR, champion within the company is responsible for making sure that there is a systematic process for closing OKRs. And this also ensures that the right information surfaces and is easily available to everyone to digest the gathered information. And when you close your OKR, You have to ride up closing notes. And your closing notes really should answer three basic questions. So firstly, how did you rate your execution? So if you're a OKR rated poorly, it might have been an issue of execution and you want to definitely put that in your notes. Secondly, what did you learn? And there's always important learnings that you don't want to get lost. So be sure to put that in your closing notes. And then finally, what have you decided based on those learnings? Learnings really empowered decision-making. And it's important to write those details in the notes for others to see. And you might also hold a quarterly all hands meeting where team leads can briefly present the closing notes of the OKRs that his or her team had been working on. And it's also a great moment to share how the KPIs have profound and what the team's working on next. And also to give recognition to people who have achieved really good results. So in summary, OKRs should be closed using a systematic process. And the time to close it is when you stop working on it, either because that OKR is no longer needed or because it's been completed. 35. Mistake #10 Trying to copy Google blindly: In the world of OKRs, one size really does not fit all. And by this, I mean that companies really should adapt OKRs as a framework for their own organization. And many non Silicon Valley companies struggled with OKRs because they try to copy Google blindly. They say if it worked for Google, it should work for us. So let's simply follow their approach. And by approach, that means what they learned from watching and online video. But Google is a unique company and it's certainly not conventional. And some of its cultural traits are very hard to emulate. And so adapting it means recognizing that it's not a methodology but a framework, and that you have to really not take a one-size-fits-all approach, but really see it as a set of customizable building blocks that you can use to transform how you manage your goals. And understanding those building blocks is critical because without that understanding, companies really set themselves up for failure. So the first thing I would do as a company that is trying to adopt OKRs is ask myself a couple of questions. Firstly, what is the nature of the industry and working in? Is it fast-paced like software? And to what extent do things change and how much uncertainty and complexity is there? And based on this, we can answer other further questions such as, do goals have to be annual and do we need to set goals in days or weeks instead of months? And how should we align goals? Should we cascade them up and down, or should they be an element of bottom-up component? And do all the goals have to have the same rhythm? Should we set shot tactical goals or do we need longer strategic goals? So what is the right mix that would be appropriate for your company? So most companies use quarterly OKRs, but some choose different tempos. Some companies set OKRs every 3045120 or even 180 days. And different business units might have different cadences to fit their needs. And in addition to cadences, you also have to consider what type of tracking ceremonies are needed. And this also depends on both the culture and the nature of the industry that the companies operating in. And it's also OK for a company to set kind of variations within the company. So for example, a company may want more ambitious goals from teams and product or engineering while they expect more predictability from accounting or sales, instead of moonshot, those teams might focus on roof shots that has goals that are hard but achievable. So to summarize, when you first implement OKRs, don't blindly copy Google because that will be setting up for failure. Instead, tried to adapt OKRs to suit your company's needs by asking yourself some questions to assess your situation and then modifying the building blocks of OKRs to suit your needs. 36. Mistake #11 Not balancing roofshots and moonshots: Another mistake made by companies is not consciously considering how ambitious they're okay or should be. As we mentioned before, one of the primary purposes of OKRs is to help you achieve your ambitious goals. And so it's quite important to include stretch goals. But what exactly is a stretch goal? So to recap what we have discussed before, we can think of the characteristic of stretching. So while you're stretching, it feels uncomfortable and can even be slightly painful. And you're taken out of your comfort zone while you're doing it, you're uncomfortable, but you feel good afterwards. And the whole idea of stretching is to try to reach a place that you couldn't reach before. And you have to keep trying to reach it even though you can't reach it now. And after stretching regularly, you start reached further than you could before. And eventually you start to achieve things that you couldn't. So how does this apply to goal setting? So when you think about this analogy, you can say that stretch goals are goals that take you out of your comfort zone and that make you go after targets that you really don't think you can achieve, at least not yet. And stretch goals should be hard, but not as hard as to harm you or to demotivate you. So you could think of stretch goals as goals that are so hard that they make you rethink the way you work. And really make you ask hard questions and have difficult conversations with your teammates. And a study was conducted of 35 years of empirical research by Edwin Locke and Gary Latham. And they found out that the host difficult golds produced the highest level of effort and performance. And it's one of the reasons that Google put so much energy into finding independent thinkers and people who are not afraid of setting big goals. And we have discussed earlier that the sweet spot for a moonshot is around 0.7 or 70%. And so if someone consistently gets one or a 100%, their OKRs on ambitious enough. But this does not really mean that 70% is now the new, a 100%. In other words, by allowing someone to achieve a 70% target does not mean that they should only aim for 70%. They should in fact be aiming to achieve a 100% even though they realized that they may not achieve it. Now the problem with only including moonshot is that you can firstly demotivate your team and only achieving 70% of your OKRs can initially be demotivating people, especially who are very driven, are not used to failing. And secondly, moon shots can also lead to a lack of accountability and commitment because people say, hey, it doesn't matter, it's just a stretch goal. And people may misinterpret moon shots. Thinking that it's a company culture where you don't really have to reach your goals. And it can also create alignment issues and tensions between teams. So where you have activity-based key results, moon shots can create alignment problems between two teams where one team is unable to deliver to another team because they say, Hey, it's just a stretch goal. So it's quite important as a company to balance roof shots and moonshot. And one approach I like to use is to set one moonshot key result per OKR. Others can all be roof shots. But the approach that you use really depends on your company. That is, their risk appetite, the urgency for the company to achieve some results. So if they're a company that is in survival mode, they may need to take some moon shots to stay alive. But if you're starting off with OKRs, I do strongly recommend that you start by only using roof shots to develop a results focused culture where you can begin to achieve your goals and overtime, as the culture is more mature, you can evolve to moonshot, where you can start questioning how far the organization can go. So in summary, when a company decides on roof shots and moon shots, it should be an active decision of how to mix them as opposed to leaving that decision to employees. And, and the mix will depend on things like the company's appetite for risk, as well as their current circumstances. 37. Mistake #12 Putting HR in charge of OKRs: Some companies believe that the execution of an OKR program should be left to an HR department or a team within an HR department. And when you first think about it, that seems to make sense because OKRs are all about managing people. But here's why I believe that it's not a good idea. The OKR is a tool for delivery strategy. And strategy delivery is a completely different topic than people Performance Management, which is what HR department is responsible for. And strategy delivery is about your organization. It's about mapping your strategy so that you have a clear roadmap to success that everyone in the organization can access. And it's about aligning your resources behind your strategy and empowering your employees to focus on the outcomes that will deliver the strategy. So strategy delivery is about creating overview and accountability so that you can see how everything and everyone is progressing. And while HR can play an important role in this, they shouldn't really be driving this initiative. Okrs are a critical tool for executives to help them with their core responsibility delivering the company strategy. So they really can't afford to outsource that responsibility to HR, where the human resource department can help is in championing the archaea program, has ambassadors. So the HR department often can perform the role of the OKR champion, where they educate everyone in the organization, making sure that everyone's sets, they are OKRs on time and so on. But the responsibility of driving the OKR programs should fall upon the executive team. And a second reason why I would discourage companies from putting the OKR program inside the HR department is that the HR department is viewed as responsible for determining the performance as well as the compensation for an employee. So at the end of the day, employees view the role of HR as one of hiring, reviewing, and firing people. So when an OKR program is managed by an HR team, there is a high risk that people will view that as a performance tool. And so individuals will have a difficult time separating the OKR program from their compensation, which is a critical part of success with OKR. So in companies where the HR department is owning and driving the OKR program, there is a likelihood that employees will not really stretch and push themselves because they assume that HR department will view failure as a signal that they haven't performed and ultimately that would result in poor performance reviews and will impact their compensation. So in summary, what we are saying is that the HR department in a company can play a critical role in supporting an OKR program by acting as an OKR champion. But they should not ultimately be viewed as owning the OKR program. Because firstly, it's critical to strategy delivery. And secondly, to ensure that employees do not view the ok. program as a performance management tool. 38. Mistake #13 Not using 1 on 1s: As a manager, you really want to make sure that people that report to you feel well it worked, but you also want to ensure that they perform well. And within the context of OKRs, a regular one-on-one with your direct reports is a simple and effective tool to really ensure both of these things. And there are many ways that you can run a one-on-one. But this lecture will focus on some tips of how to run a successful one-on-one meeting. So firstly, I don't recommend using a one-on-one for simple work status updates, because that can easily be accomplished via email, but it is entirely appropriate to include progress towards goals as a standing agenda item for your one. And once your team member has goals that are closely tied to the goals of the team and the company. And so it's very productive to understand the results that the team members achieving. And when it comes to KPIs, my suggestion is to save yourself time by only looking at the KPI's that are unhealthy. That is, those that are below the target value. A critical KPI associated with an individual's OKRs are unhealthy. You want to have a constructive conversation around us. And to have a constructive conversation. The direct reports should have done some research already so that he or she can explain why turn unhealthy. Ideally, they already have some ideas of how to get it on track again. And also you want them to record their answers so that you can keep a good historical record and keep the overall organization informed. And remember that initiatives are really the activities that you take to try to drive your OKRs forward. And so what you need to do in the one on one is to really examined the initiative. Ultimately, you and your direct report should be both examining the initiatives that are currently being worked on and should have some sort of an agreement that these are the right things to work on to drive those OKRs forward. So I recommend that you review the initiatives per objective. And when do we initiatives first look at the ones that have been completed since the last 101. Did it result in progress on some of the key results? If not, why? And was it not the right thing to do? And if it wasn't, then that's a learning opportunity. And then after that you can look at the ones that are in progress. How are they progressing? Other any blockers? What about the initiatives assigned to members of other teams? Are they still on track and where you have dependencies with other teams also, it's critical to examine whether those dependencies are at risk. And if they are then as a manager, you could reach out to the other teams to ensure that those teams are prioritizing the initiative to deliver on those dependencies. So to sum it all up, my recommendations for one on ones is to ensure that firstly, the meeting is regularly held, either weekly or bi-weekly between the manager and his or her direct report. The meaning should be scheduled for at least 30 minutes to make sure that there is enough time. But this doesn't mean that you have to use the full 30 minutes and the meeting shouldn't be canceled unless someone is on holiday. And if there's nothing to discuss, it's still valuable to sit down even if it's just for five minutes. And also 101 should happen in person if possible. Of course, in today's climate, this is difficult. But under normal circumstances, in person, one-on-one, work the best. And for the most part, the 101 is a meeting to benefit the direct report and not the manager. So that direct report gets to decide what the agenda is. The meeting always should start with the direct reports, agenda items to make sure that his or her points will be addressed. So once again, this is quite important to reiterate that the OKR is not a tool for performance management. It's a tool for empowering your employees. And by allowing the direct report to set the agenda, you're setting the right tone for the meeting, ensuring that the things that they care about and are concerned about are discussed first. And you always review progress towards goals by pulling up the direct reports, most recent check-ins. So in conclusion, a one-on-one is a great and simple tool for a manager to ensure that his or her direct reports are doing well and performing well at work. And while the direct report should own the one-on-one agenda for the most part. It is also important to always review progress towards goals. And this is done by examining the initiatives that are underway. 39. Mistake #14 Not using experimentation: Okrs, by their ambitious nature, often push teams and individuals into the realm of the unknown. And wild teams may be able to come to an agreement on what an objective should look like and what the metrics associated with acute results should look like. They may not really know what will move those metrics. And this is why it's critical for teams to use experiments when determining what initiatives to work on. Most teams running OKRs don't have a fixed list of deliverables to implement. Typically, if I have a key result with an metric x that I want to move, I would have to run some experiments with different initiatives to try to see what actually moves the needle. And employees need to learn how to set up and structured experiments so that they don't waste a lot of time and money going in the wrong direction. And typically the way experiments can be setup is like this. Firstly, a company or a t would have an agreement on what an OKR will look like. So they have an objective and they have some metrics associated with key results that they want to influence. And then they would come up with ideas, ideas of initiatives that might actually move those metrics. Now, each idea has a hypothesis behind it, and there are often risky assumptions behind the hypothesis. For example, if I were to build feature a, that means the customer will do B, which in turn would then move my metric C by X percent. In that simple example, there are a number of assumptions that have been made. And so the goal of an experiment is to really use the minimum time and resources necessary to examine and either validate or invalidate the hypothesis. And with teams, I recommend that you don't simply dictate list of experiments to run. Instead, once you have an outcome that you want to achieve, allow the team then to use this skill and creativity to figure out what are the experiments that we run to achieve that outcome? How should the experiments be setup and how should we report on the progress towards that outcome? That way, you can then go back to your stake holder with the hypothesis. You can explain the experiments you ran, the outcomes you observed, and what you recommend next. So in summary, what we're saying here is Initiative, which are the activities that drive OKRs usually involve a lot of uncertainty. And so the best way to minimize risk is to experiment with initiatives to see what exactly works and what doesn't. And that way you can just focus on those initiatives that will actually deliver the results you seeking.