Get started with OKRs with ease 

Objective and Key Results
Objectives and Key Results

Objectives and Key Results (OKR):

 This OKR methodology, popularized by John Doerr by his book “Measure What Matters” helps for a cultural shift at your organization to an environment that is a goal-oriented, with your Objectives driving day-to-day work. For this to happen, leadership must be bought-in to the program and drive decisions and execute with goals top of mind. To know more about objectives and key results (OKRs) visit our website.

Find samples:


Objectives are memorable qualitative descriptions of what you want to achieve. They should inspire and challenge. For example: “Double the revenue to create a profitable and sustainable organization”.

Key Results:

 The metrics that measure progress towards the objective, and tell us if we’re getting there. For example. “Increase revenue from 10m to 20m USD”.

Refer our other article related to this topic: article


Type can be organization, team or individual ones. Type indicates the level at which the goal and key results (metrics) are at priority.

Time period:

They are timebound. Time periods help you plan, check-in and review the goals and its metrics at the right cadence. The goals and metrics (KR / KPI) have 4 Quarters time periods in a year and followed with Annual overall employee performance cycle.


Owner is the person accountable for the success of the objectives. It is good to have a clear owner even for a team or organization level objective.


You can measure progress as a percentage (0 to 100%) or as a KPI. Select KPI, if you are looking to move a metric from a starting to target number. For example, increase revenue from 10m to 20m USD.

Average Score: 

When the the goals are closed at the end of the quarter and the score is generated. Those un-closed Objectives and Key Results can be cloned and cascaded to next quarter based on the decisions.


OKRs Alignment

Alignment is one of the most powerful features of OKRStars. By aligning your Objectives at an individual, team and organization level, strategically aligned Objectives and Key Results rapidly get everyone on the same page, working towards results that matter.

Goal Transparency: 

An employee can see the goals of anyone in the system, including the CEO, managers, and peers. Transparency promotes openness and eliminates work conflicts and redundancies. Employees can see how their work connects to the organization’s overall strategic goals.


The summary of the over all goals appear on the OKR tool as shown below. We will write more details in coming blogs about it.

OKRs Dashboard

How can I ensure OKR (Objectives and Key Results) success at MY company?

  • OKR Champions: Quite often, it’s the effort of one key person in an organization (it could be you!) that takes initial ownership of a project and ensures its success. It could be a Chief of Staff, operations lead, or the most organized person in a given department. We love our OKR Champions and strive to give them all the support they need.
  • Leadership Support: While the energy of the OKR Champion is key, we’ve found that most successful rollouts also gain support from upper management / CEO. Thus, it’s critical that senior leaders educate their organization on the value of OKRs, explain why they are being implemented, reflect on their current culture, and identify key stakeholders.
  • Use the right SaaS tools: We believe OKRs are the best way to set goals, and that OKR Stars™ is the best tool to manage your OKRs. Why? Unlike spreadsheets or manual processes that quickly become unwieldy, Ally scales with your business and provides transparency across your organization.

Why have OKRs lead to success at so many companies?

Modern business moves at breakneck speed, and entire industries are being disrupted through new customer behaviors, aggressive competition, and changing market dynamics. 

OKRs provide a framework to allow companies large and small to set goals, stay agile, and make sure employees are on board with the latest strategy through the 5 superpowers mentioned in this video.

  • Focus: Because OKRs focus on just 3-5 goals per quarter, it forces organizations to focus on only the work that matters — and make hard choices to eliminate the tasks that don’t matter.
  • Alignment: Research shows that only 7% of employees understand their company strategy. OKRs help align company goals from top to bottom so that everyone is rowing in the same direction.
  • Tracking: OKRs are driven by data. Gone are the days when a manager and employee would set an annual performance goal. Today, agile companies use data to inform action and guide strategic decisions.
  • Transparency: A core tenant of OKRs is that anyone can view the goals and progress at any level of the company, from CEO to individual contributor, fostering accountability and collaboration.
  • Stretch: When employees are encouraged to set stretch goals to achieve what might not seem possible — and receive support when things fall short — amazing things happen.

Integration steps and summary of OKR framework implementation:

  • O and KRs (OKRs) setting with time periods (example: quarterly plans: Q1, Q2, Q3 & Q4)
  • CFR Automation (integration with      Microsoft Teams,      Slack tools & mobile apps) for instant goal updates visibility on team collaboration channels
  • Manual or Automatic Check-ins through KPI data source software integrations (example:      Jira Software). You can update progress of an O and KRs automatically by Jira as a data source or via rollup from children.
  • Continuous Performance Management options: Private & Public CFR automation, Check-in activity trends (goal status & metric)

Read more: Google Story, Scale Agile, Moonshot OKRs for VCs, CFR (Conversations, Feedback and Recognition).

Types of performance management system with tips and templates

employee performance management software
performance management system

Various employee performance management approaches for 2020 and beyond

When getting started with PMS (Performance Management System), the most frequently asked questions are how to choose, implement and adopt a suitable PMS. To help our customers we are glad to share various PMS approaches with examples, so that you can get started easily and implement a suitable PMS. Don’t worry our Full PMS Services such as Workshops, Coaching, Training and Consulting retainership provide all these artifacts custom developed to help your organization. Moreover, we have made examples for these re-usable PMS artifacts library available inside our software application as well, to make it more convenient to adopt.
For CFRs (Conversations, Feedback and Recognition) we provide guidelines, templates and best practices including inside our Skills2Talent™ Software/Add-on modules, which will make easy to orient, train and institutionalize PMS & CFR. Most popular PMS approaches that are adopted widely across organizations are listed below;

OKR based PMS: “OKR” (Objectives & Key Results). Objective: Where do we want to go?, Key Result: How do we know if we are getting there? –> Checkout our OKR Stars™ Full OKR Services – OKR Examples.

OKR was popularized by John Doerr, USA:

Our earlier blog on OKR by our OKR Coach:

SMART Goal based PMS: Goals should be straightforward and state what you want to happen. The goal has to be specific and define clearly what you are going to do. Use action words in goal such as direct, coordinate, achieve, complete, deliver, organize, lead, develop, plan, accomplish etc. For more details on SMART goals you can visit our other blog

Company Core Values Alignment Based: Core values often reflect your organization’s ethical standards, culture, or mission statements. Evaluating on core values reinforces the organization beliefs and ensures every employee demonstrates the same standards during the employment.

Job Specific & Behavioral Competency Based: Competencies in the context of Performance Management System is they are qualities that employees get rated on. Competencies can be mapped to R&R (Roles & Responsibilities) / JD (Job Description) and used as part of their development path (SMART Individual Development Plans).

Multiple Content Sections Based (with Weightage): Although performance reviews can be planned to include sections tailored to the needs of the organization, the best practice performance review includes four main content sections (A, B, C and D). These contents cover objectives (SMART goal plans), core values (alignment with the organization’s vision, mission, and value system), job specific competencies, and behavioral competencies (approach/ indicators/ attributes/ components). The organization must use at least one section, if not many/all. If any content section has “zero” weightage, it will be hidden from the performance management form (template) in Skills2TalentTM PMS. Each content section receives a weightage of 100 percent of the overall performance score. These content sections can be different for different groups of employees based on business needs (i.e., the percentage can be different based on work groups’ business requirements).

Exclusively Competency Based (Mapping & Assessment): An important part of Competency Mapping is making sure that the competencies that are important for an organization and/or a job are used in a lot of different ways by the organization. The mapping process includes figuring out which skills are important for each job and mapping them with their proficiency levels (rating scale). Employee and manager competency assessments (Target Vs. Actual) can be done as part of the assessment framework, which can then show the skill matrix and where there are gaps. It can also get input from other people in the group, the programme office, and people who know about the subject. Meta competencies can also be given weights to help people figure out which skills are important, and which aren’t. Evidence and references can also be used to show that these skills are important (soft copy attachments). Matured organizations can use a focused competency-based assessment to deal with the biggest issues that affect their PMS (Performance Management System) through data that helps decision-makers and links to Learning & Development initiatives, such as the People CMM Ver 2.0.

Questionnaire Based: The questionnaire-based assessment, like performance conversation-based assessments, helps to approach differently but in a meaningful and structured manner. The questionnaire can be designed to cover a wide range of topics, such as job, work output, role, stretch goals, agility, culture fit, feedback based, employee satisfaction, aspiration, soft skills, leadership capabilities, and personality, among others. To obtain unbiased 360° views, the same questionnaire can be re-framed to collect feedback from specific target people such as matrix managers, programme office, peers, cross functional team, or internal/external customers. Weightage can be assigned to categories in a prioritized questionnaire to make a balanced assessment while providing evidence/references (soft copy attachments).

For more tips to implement various PMS (Performance Management System) approaches that suits your organization you can check out our website for the detailed content.

For details contact us!

Vaidyanathan Ramalingam | |

Read more: Get started with OKR, Scale Agile, Top 4 Performance Management strategies

Up ↑