If you work in digital product, chances are you’ve come across the OKR framework. Shorthand for ‘objectives and key results’, it’s an approach to setting, and tracking goals, designed to help product teams monitor their progress.
At 383, we use it to help us plan the big picture things we’ll be focusing on every six months, making sure we are dreaming big, measuring what matters, and keeping ourselves accountable along the way.
At heart, it’s a simple enough concept – you outline each objective, identify some key results to support them, and then track your progress each week. In reality, though, they can be quite tricky to get right. It’s easy to fall into the trap of creating a big list of outputs and actions – things you want or just need to get done – instead of using OKR to align and focus the team on the big picture view.
We’ve spent the last year or so reading everything there is to know about OKRs, trialling the approach, and seeing what works and what doesn’t for us. We’ve definitely learnt a thing or two along the way, and we packaged all of those lessons up into this handy little Miro template: our OKR toolkit.
Introducing your new OKR best friend
This toolkit is designed to help product teams plan, refine and manage their goals using the objectives and key results (OKR) framework.
It’s super useful for product teams who:
- need to focus and prioritise their goals
- need to align their product vision and roadmap
- are just getting started with OKRs, or don’t feel like they are getting the most out of them
- want to keep everyone updated and aligned on progress
There’s a few different sections to this toolkit.
Section one: An intro to OKRs. This section runs through some ‘need-to-knows’ about OKRs and some of the assumptions we’ve made when pulling this together. We recommend starting here, so you get the wider context of how and why we use this toolkit, and what OKRs mean at 383.
Section two: OKR workshop planning. This section contains some notes, guidances and tips on how to run OKR workshops, with some things to keep in mind.
Section three: OKR workshops. This section is where the fun really starts…! We’ve outlined three workshops to run with your team to uncover and refine your objectives, key results and initiatives.
Section four: OKR tracking. This section provides templates you can use to track your OKR progress. We use it as the basis for our weekly OKR sync to keep everyone updated and accountable for completing initiatives, driving key results, and ultimately achieving our objectives.
If you’re looking for more OKR and goal-setting resources, here’s some useful reads we’ve found on our travels (plus a few from our own smart cookies, too).
- Outcome vs. output thinking. How focusing on outcomes can help product teams build the right thing.
- The ultimate OKR guide from Perdoo
- The beginner’s guide to OKR by Felipe Castro