in People, Process

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With 2017 rapidly approaching it is time to consider how to make the most of the coming year. I am a big fan of using the Objectives and Key-results method  (OKR’s) in managing people and objectives.

Here is why I recommend you adopt the OKR method for managing your people and goals:

  1. It is effective in supporting the growth and innovation agenda while motivating the employee as it is structured around stretch goals that are mutually defined
  2. It aligns well with the Balanced Scorecard system, a management system already in use by many Fortune 500’s.
  3. It is relatively simple to implement, easy to communicate and manage and easy to understand by employees.

How to use the OKR system:

  1. Together with the employee define no more than 4-6 objectives for the quarter. The objectives should be aligned with the goals of the company and be ambitious in nature, i.e. achieving only 60% of the objective would be satisfactory and achieving 100% would indicate a lack of ambition.
  2. Define three key results per objective, i.e. answering the questions:
    1. What to do
    2. How to measure progress towards the objective
  3. Manage progress on a bi-weekly/weekly basis through one on ones. The primary purpose of the meetings is for the manager to help the employee overcome obstacles and to coach.

The OKR method was made famous by John Doerr in his work with Google and is by many considered to be a pillar in Google’s operational effectiveness.

Other Fortune 500’s and fast-growth startups that use OKR’s for people and goals management include:

  • Intel
  • Spotify
  • Box
  • Event Brite
  • LinkedIn
  • Zynga

Below is a full presentation on OKR’s 

Good luck in your planning for 2017.