13 Reasons Why OKRs Are So Important

Here are some of the amazing benefits of OKRs.

The Meetingnotes Team
December 7, 2023

Objectives and Key Results are a way to align your company’s strategy to its goals.

They are a way to measure progress against a set of measurable targets.

“Objectives and key results are the yin and yang of goal setting.”
—Measure What Matters by John Doerr

The reasons why OKRs are important are:

1. They are easy to understand.

OKRs help take a complex business strategy and boil it down to its essence: a measurable goal.

2. They can be used for many different types of goals.

The OKR goal-setting framework is flexible enough to accommodate the needs of any business.

3. They are easy to implement.

While the acronym OKRs may sound intimidating, the foundations of the OKRs framework are simple and easy to adopt. As you get better at setting and tracking progress with OKRs, you can go further and get more complicated with how you use this system.

4. OKRs can be used in many different ways.

Some teams may want to start small and simply track their most important goals with OKRs. Others will create goals at a high level, and then under them, other teams and individuals will have goals that ultimately relate to helping achieve the highest goal.

“By clearing the line of sight to everyone’s objectives, OKRs expose redundant efforts and save time and money.”
—Measure What Matters by John Doerr

5. They can be used to track progress over time.

Because you set and review OKRs periodically, you can look back at your OKR performance in the past and see how you have improved.

6. OKRs can be used to compare success across teams.

Teams need to measure success in different ways. A team of developers may have a goal to ship code faster, or with fewer bugs. A marketing team might want to increase web traffic and leads. With OKRs, both can have separate goals, but still compare whether they were able to reach their targets.

7. They can be used to help align strategies to business goals.

Because the business strategy is at the forefront of the "why" in an OKR, business goals are inherently part of the OKRs framework. No vanity metrics here, please.

“OKRs are clear vessels for leaders’ priorities and insights.”
—Measure What Matters by John Doerr

8. They can be used to help set priorities.

The targets set in OKRs help to define a priority list. This can help teams understand what they should focus on and what is less important.

9. They can be used to allocate resources.

OKRs can help allocate resources effectively. It is easy to see how resources are allocated when comparing them to whether the resources are positioned to help achieve the company's goals.

10. They can be used as an accountability tool.

OKRs are a way to hold people accountable for their actions. You can track your progress against targets, and if you don't meet the OKRs, you can hold people accountable for their actions

11. They can be used to help create a culture of continuous improvement.

By tracking progress against goals in an ongoing way, you're demonstrating to your peers and team that improvement and goal-setting is part of your company culture. This will ultimately trickle down to other areas.

12. They can help you identify and prioritize opportunities.

OKRs give teams the level of focus they need to really dig into an issue and find opportunities. Have too many things to do? Well, how many relate to your main OKR? This makes decision-making easier.

13. They can help you identify and prioritize risks.

Just as OKRs can help you find opportunities, they also expose risks. What are some of the reasons why a key result may not be achieved? When you pick a KPI to measure, suddenly it exposes reasons that KPI may trend in the wrong direction.

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