At Auxin, all our coaches are comfortable with helping clients identify objectives and setting goals. Yet we all felt that there must be a better way of tracking progress and making them happen. So, in 2016 we started looking at OKRs.
It stands for Objectives and Key Results and is easy to define.
- An objective is: A simple sentence that explains what you’re trying to achieve as a business. E.g. Make Auxin a national OKR led consultancy business.
- A Key Result is: A quantifiable measure that will show how successful you have been.
E.g. Generate 60% of Auxin revenues from outside of the North East by February 2019.
The concept is simple. The execution is hard because it requires a mind shift to take place in most businesses – including ours. As the late Peter Drucker correctly pointed out:
“Culture eats strategy for breakfast.”
We started by applying OKRs to Auxin before introducing the concept to our clients and we are now benefiting from the results. Our initial efforts, however, were poor.
It’s not quite that easy to do
In the beginning, we overcomplicated things and were guilty of thinking like individuals rather than as a team. So, we started again…and again until we all had clarity about where we were going.
Once we had created the big vision or moon-shot goal it became easier to see what needed to happen in the next quarter to set us on the right path.
We are now helping clients all over the UK adopt an OKR mindset and we will expand on our experiences in further posts.
For now, I’d like you to think about these six statements. Are any of these true in your business?
- We start lots of projects, but we never seem to finish them
- Everybody thinks their priorities are the most important for the business
- Strategy meetings have a Ground Hog day element to them. Same post-its just different walls.
- We have great planning sessions, but things always get dropped when we get busy
- Our culture makes it hard to change our internal processes
- We could be way more productive if everyone put their minds to it.
If at least three of these statements have you saying:
‘Yes, that’s us!’
Then we should talk.