Many of the most successful companies in the world, like Google, utilize one not-so-secret weapon – OKR (objectives and key results). OKR is a goal-setting methodology that can help teams focus on business areas that need to be improved.
OKRs can be crucial in evaluating remote teams. It can also help in keeping them aligned, focused, and engaged. They can translate your company's strategy into bite-sized and straightforward pieces so that all of your employees know that they are working on the right thing.
In this blog post, we will walk you through everything related to OKRs, including exactly what they are, how to write, and how to implement them at your remote company.
What is OKR Exactly?
OKRs or Objectives and Key Results are a two-part system for setting goals. The first part, the O, stans for Objectives. Objectives are your company's aspirational goals. For example, an Objective could be to increase sales in the next six months.
The second part - Key Results, are measurable outcomes that you set and use to define how a successful Objective looks like. Key Results are your goals that are more specific. An example of a Key Result is Increasing the number of products sold by 50 per month.
In other words, Objectives are the main goals that have to be achieved, and the Key Results are metrics you keep an eye on to ensure that you are still on the right track to reach the Objectives.
Understanding both of the terms on its own is simple and from anything special. But utilizing them together is what makes it magical. The real power of OKRs is in them guiding you through setting your goals each quarter. OKRs put goals into the context of your company (or your team) as they relate to each other.
What Are the Benefits of OKRs for Remote Teams?
OKRs can help you align your team and adapt to the ever-changing business world.
Faster Learning and Adaptability
Right now, when we are in a challenging and unpredictable situation. For a remote company to survive, they need to learn fast and adapt to changes even quicker.
This could include everything from restructuring some of your workflows or processes to even changing your entire business model. Since OKRs are set quarterly, it is possible to do changes quickly if something your company does is not delivering the results you expect.
Clarity and Direction
It might be hard for your employees to figure out how to work the right way so that they can achieve their own and company goals. But since OKRs set priorities, they also help set the team in the right direction.
If your employees know what they are doing at all times, it will help them feel calmer and more secure.
Seeing the Real Results
If you focus Objectives on the real areas of your business that need improving and if the Key Results are truly measurable outcomes, then seeing the actual progress and improvements can motivate your team to achieve even more.
Alignment and Prioritization
OKRs should be set with the entire team. No matter what they do, and what their tasks are, the end goals for everyone should be the same.
OKRs can also boost the motivation of your remote team. Since OKRs set the priorities, whenever an employee is not sure what task to do first, they can reference OKRs to make that decision.
How to Implement OKRs in Your Company
To implement OKRs into your remote company, you first need to introduce the methodology to your employees and ensure that all of them understand it. Only if all of your employees are aware of the benefits, they can be engaged with OKRs.
Next, all of you need to come up with some OKR ideas. They do not have to be complete OKRs just yet, but everyone should participate in the brainstorming process. When everyone has laid out their ideas, all of you need to discuss them and choose which of them will be turned into OKRs. This process will give your employees a better feel of what OKRs stand for, and what they are exactly.
Once you have a general idea about your OKRs, you need to create specific Objectives. Based on those Objectives you have just established, you should work on finding measurable outcomes that will help you achieve your Objectives.
Measuring the Progress
When you have set the goals, you need to work with your team to make them happen and measure the progress of your employees. The best way to follow the progress of OKRs for each of your remote employees is by knowing how to monitor employees working from home.
You can use Workpuls, a workforce productivity and analytics tool, to measure how your employees progress with their team and company-wide OKRs.
OKRs can be a tremendous methodical tool for almost any company. The more your employees understand company goals, the better will you be in achieving them. OKRs can help you in doing just that.
The key to being successful with OKRs is to implement them in the right way from the start. Take the time to plan carefully and adequately assess each of them. OKRs are only as effective as you are willing to commit to them.