OKR stands for Objective and Key Results.

OKRs are meant to set strategy and goals over a specified amount of time for an organization and teams.

An OKR consists of an Objective, which defines a goal to be achieved, and Key Results, which measure progress towards the Objective in an actionable way.

Each OKR can be linked to Projects, which describe the work required to drive progress on the Key Results.

To make it simple:

OKR = Objective + Key Results + Projects

Which means "I will achieve ___ measured by ___ by doing ___."

  • Objective describes the goal or the outcome to be achieved within a given timeframe. It sets a clear direction that provides the greater purpose for your team. It communicates that this goal is important now and requires collaborative effort (ambitious and qualitative).

  • Key Results are a set of metrics with a starting value and a target value that measure your progress towards the Objective (quantitative and measurable).

Here's an OKR example:

Objective - Successfully implement the weekly newsletter

Key Result 1 - Finalize the content strategy, key messages and topic structure for next 6 months

Key Result 2 - Grow subscriber base at least 5% per week, getting to 50000 readers

Key Result 3 - Increase the CTR% to above industry average 3.5%

It is a question of defining a major objective, pursued by the entire company, and developing a strategy to achieve it. This strategy will then be broken down into several small tasks, each associated with objectives which results must be measurable. Each small task performed is a key result that, articulated with all the others, enables the final objective to be reached and thus the company's mission to be fulfilled.

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Related articles

Enhancing Holacracy-driven environments with the use of OKRs
(Gabriela Krupa, Sep. 2016)

Using OKRs for Holacracy strategy and targets
(Ruben Timmerman, Aug. 2016)

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