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What is OKR?

OKRs (Objectives and Key Results) is an agile goal-setting system used by BMW, Google, and many large and small profit and non-profit organizations. It is a simple tool that creates alignment and engagement around measurable and ambitious goals.

Is there a big difference between traditional strategy and goal-planning methods?

OKRs are frequently set, measured, tracked, and evaluated, usually every quarter. They are a simple system that aims to enhance engagement and unleash team members’ creativity.

Bridging the execution gap and creating alignment with strategies in the organization is one of the main benefits of OKRs. The aim is to ensure that every team member moves in the same direction and with clear priorities.

OKRs were introduced by Andy Grove, former CEO of Intel, and brought to Google by John Doerr, a venture capitalist. OKRs have supported Google’s growth from 40 employees to over 100,000 today.

However, the Objective and Key Results framework is not only for startups and tech companies. BMW, Walmart, ING Bank, Siemens, and GE also use OKRs and non-profit organizations like the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Simple Goal Formula

I want to achieve X, as measured by Key Metrics, and I will do x things to achieve these Key Results.

A good goal must describe what you will achieve and how you will measure this achievement. Measurement is what makes a tangible goal. Without measuring your progress, you do not have a goal; all you have is a dream.


OKR has 2 Components:



Objectives are memorable descriptions of what you want to achieve at the end of your OKR Cycle. Objectives should be inspirational, engaging, and easy to understand. A good objective should motivate and challenge the team members.

Key Results

Key Results are a set of Key Metrics that measure and track your progress toward the Objective. For each Objective, 2 to 5 Key Results are recommended.


First and foremost, we need to establish an objective. For example, we could aim to “Enhance the customer experience on our website.” This sounds promising, but how can we determine if the experience is exceptional? It’s important to remember that we lack a clear goal without measurement. That’s why we need key results. How can we measure whether we have delivered an outstanding customer experience? Net Promoter Score (NPS) and Churn Rate Reduction are good options for measuring this. Do our clients feel so satisfied with our products or services that they would recommend and continue doing business with us? However, relying solely on NPS and repeat purchases could send the wrong message. It might encourage us to prioritize customer satisfaction at any cost. Therefore, we should also include a measure such as Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC). We aim to have satisfied users or clients while managing costs effectively.

The complete example would be:

Objective: Create an Awesome Client Experience

Key Results:

  • Improve Net Promoter Score (NPS) from X to Y
  • Increase Returning Customer Rate from X to Y
  • Maintain Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) under Y
another example: Now consider a team that wants to increase client engagement with a service

Objective: Delight our clients

Key Results:

  • Reduce Churn Rate from X% to Y%
  • Increase Net Promoter Score from X to Y
  • Improve average monthly users from X to Y
  • Increase organic traffic from X to Y

What is unique about OKrs?

OKR is a simple system to create Alignment & Engagement around Measurable & Dynamic Goals.


Focus and Commit to Priorities
Align and Connect for Teamwork
Empower Team Members – Ownership
Stretch for Amazing
Track Progress
Drives motivation/engagement
A clear connection between strategy and operations
Drives innovation

Common OKR mistakes

Performance Culture Change
Pilot Group
Measure Progress
Giving up when it gets tough
OKRs were added late in the setting process without the same amount of discussion and refinement as others
Set and forget OKRs
Failure to focus on OKRs and the discipline to stay focused
Untestable key results
Lack of planning
Missing Strategy
No accountability
Limited cross-functional communication
Focus on deliverables, not outcome

Become a Certified OKR Expert

Learn how to draft strong OKRs and align your teams towards your strategies. Learn how to become an inspiring leader in empowering team members in the OKR system.