Be it Google, LinkedIn, Zynga or a Spotify. There is a very important reason why OKRs worked for these successful companies. All of them had values that resonated with the underlying philosophy of OKRs. These companies believed strongly in transparency, they were eager to disrupt their industries & the most important one – they had unwavering faith in their teams. Even today, many of these companies are known to be great places to work.
As a gross generalisation, below is the list of a few important values/behaviors that the companies should put in practice if they want to succeed in OKR adoption.
Rather than the traditional – share only what is necessary, default policy for these companies is to share (almost) everything with their employees. This tends to foster an environment of trust & helps align the overall direction.
Clarity of purpose
Be it through vision or mission, these companies have a crystal clear purpose that the individuals can relate to. This makes all the difference in the world when decision making powers are delegated through the hierarchy.
Trust among stakeholders
This one is easier said than done & definitely hard one to measure. Through various trust building practices (not just some values written on office walls) these companies ensure success for every stakeholder involved.
The ‘stretch goals’ aspect of OKRs is meant to make the goal setting process exciting for disruptors & ambitious. These companies believed in challenging the status quo & in the process made the world a better place.
High engagement at work
This is sort of ‘chicken & egg’ problem. High engagement helps in OKR adoption and at the same time, OKR adoption helps in increasing employee engagement. Survey questions from the last lesson will help you out in finding the engagement factor.
One key takeaway for all companies is that if OKR adoption is forced without paying heed to the underlying values, chances of failure increase drastically.
Success in OKR adoption is tightly co-related with the values your company puts into practice. Unless your values espouse the underlying philosophy of OKRs, chances of a successful adoption are slim.