OKRs a unique approach for goal setting

Traditionally, companies set high-level organizational goals at the start of the year, then everyone forgets about them within a month. This leads to passive management. It becomes difficult for leaders to measure and track the progress and achievement of their employees' goals. Executives and managers struggle to understand which teams or individuals are achieving, exceeding or not. It becomes difficult to align different teams and individuals and split goals across business goals so that people feel disconnected from the bottom up. There is little clarity among workers on how their actions relate to what matters to the organization. It's also difficult to build a measurable, predictable and repeatable business model working this way.

To combat the problem, companies are trying to set goals in Excel and then communicate those goals via email. This is a very static process and many companies are unable to manage or track goal progress with this approach. With static approaches goals aren't available or visible to everyone in real time, people can't connect their work to invisible goals. To combat this, many companies have adopted the OKR goal setting methodology, techniques for tracking OKRs and keeping their goals aligned.

What is OKR?

OKR stands for Objectives and Key Results, a popular objectives management framework that helps companies implement and execute their strategy. The benefits of the framework include a better focus on the results that matter, greater transparency and better strategic alignment. OKR achieves this by organizing employees and the work they do around the achievement of common goals. An OKR consists of a goal, which tells you where to go, and several key outcomes, which are the results you need to achieve to achieve your goal. Initiatives are all the projects and tasks that will aid to achieve your key results. The framework includes several rules that help employees prioritize, align, and measure the outcome of their efforts. OKR helps companies bridge the gap between strategy and execution and move from a results-based working approach to a results-based approach.


A goal is a description of something you would like to achieve in the future. An objective sets the direction as a destination on a map. Goals shouldn't be technical and shouldn't contain metrics, so everyone understands where to go.

Key Result

A key result is a measurable result required to achieve the objective. It contains a metric with a start and a target value. Key results measure progress towards the goal like a sign indicating how close you are to your goal.


Initiatives are tasks or projects that guide to achieve a key result. Imagine your organization is a car. The goal is your destination, the key results show if you are heading in the right direction and the initiatives are what you will do to move your car forward.

Impact of OKR

Business impact

Current research shows that when comparing groups of employees who used OKR to those who did not, those who used it were found to be significantly more effective at their jobs, leading to better performance and increased sales. In fact, the group that did not use OKRs actively requested to be involved in the process in future cycles.

Culture impact

The biggest impact of using OKR in most organizations without goal management already in place is a cultural shift from output to results. OKR creates quality vision, transparency, accountability, and alignment towards organizational goals. The result of all this is an increase in employee performance and engagement.

Benefits of OKR

  1. OKRs help with measurement, accountability, and transparency.
  2. With OKRs, analyze the root causes why objectives are not achieved.
  3. Align and connect employees to fulfill corporate goals.
  4. Confidently set clear and specific goals for individuals
  5. Give clear direction to Boost individuals’ engagement and empowerment through your goal-setting process.
  6. OKRs capture cross-functional dependencies across groups in different departments.
  7. Increase insight and transparency across the organization for top to bottom level executives.
  8. OKRs help to use regular weekly updates to gain vision and insights.
  9. Monitor how goal progress aligns with the company’s vision, strategy, and top priorities.
  10. OKRs make it simpler to monitor and act fast to achieve organizational goals


Before you start using OKR, it's important to fully understand the challenge you want it to solve and the benefits you expect from it. For most companies, OKR solves the challenge of implementing and executing the strategy in a way that is clear to all employees, measurable and transparent. To be successful, OKR implementation and management must have an owner within the organization. This person is usually called the Ambassador. Your role is to ensure that everyone who will use OKR is properly trained, engaged, and has ongoing support and guidance when needed. OKR is a framework, but it is also a learning process that often involves a fundamental shift in the way people think and measure the work they do, moving away from focusing on results to focusing on results.