Whether you are new to Objectives & Key Results (OKR) integration or are looking for new ways to transform your company’s workflow, there’s no denying the effects this methodology can bring to your brand. According to Trello, ideal OKR workflow management will help you achieve around 70% of your initial goals, while achieving 100% of set milestones can be considered under-ambitious. The reason for this is simple – OKR is a versatile, performance-driven workflow methodology capable of creating an autonomous environment where each team knows how to contribute to the bigger picture.
Some of the greatest brands in the world are relying solely on OKR in their companies which helped them stand the test of time and adjust to shifting trends in their respective industries. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the experiences of OKR implementation in the offices of giants in order to find out what makes this methodology uniquely suited for consistent growth and peak performance.
Workflow Benefits of OKR Implementation
Let’s talk briefly about how OKR came to be such an important part of corporate culture and some of the main advantages it can bring to the table. Objectives & Key Results is a theory set by Google’s early investor John Doerr in 1975 and it was immediately recognized as an effective and streamlined management tool by his peers.
Fast-forward several decades and OKR has become the must-have workflow management methodology due to its autonomous nature and ability to clearly outline and present goals to all stakeholders. Coupled with writing platforms such as Evernote and Trust My Paper, an OKR environment can be created with ease and precision and edited on the fly as bottlenecks and additional milestones come into play. As such, there are several concrete advantages we can attribute to OKR implementation, including the following points:
- Allows for greater individual and team focus
- Easy and quick to set up and modify ad hoc
- Streamlined alignment with business goals
- Decentralized, autonomous milestone management
- High return on initial time and resource investment (ROI)
Companies with OKR Implementation in their Workflow Management
It’s no secret that one of the founding fathers of Google is a heavy proponent (and original creator) of the OKR theory. As such, Google has made sure that OKR is an integral part of their corporate strategy and a major reason for their global success over the years. The way in which Google implements OKR revolves around assigning 4-6 OKRs to each employee on a quarterly basis depending on their specialty, department and job description.
Annual OKRs are also in place depending on current business strategy, brand culture and long-term goals for the company. Different OKRs are also in place for company-wide networking, teamwork, project management and other tasks which are universal regardless of individual JDs. This has created a dynamic and progressive environment for the company and its many subsidiaries and departments across the globe.
Although it delves into original program production via its cloud-based Prime branch, Amazon has stood the test of time as the de facto leader in the eCommerce industry. The company’s main postulate is to buy and sell items in an affordable and timely manner in all forms of physical products. Amazon’s founder and CEO Jeff Bezos integrated OKR methodology into his company in order to ensure brand alignment and long-term company goal focus in day-to-day operations.
OKRs have ensured that miscommunication and unclear goals are kept to a minimum in everyday workflow management which is important for large international companies such as Amazon. Their service portfolio differs from Google’s in an important way and as such, their implementation of OKR and its focus on providing professional eCommerce services requires a different approach. Regardless of the variation in their portfolios, both companies found an effective way to align their internal strategies with OKR theory for the benefit of their continued growth on the global market.
Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn, is a strong supporter of OKR in a multitude of aspects when it comes to running his social networking platform. In his words, OKRs are used “to create urgency” for both back-end development as well as social networking users on the platform itself. In practice, this means an increase in focus on what the current bottleneck or challenge is, rather than thinking long-term. Paired with writing platforms such as Grammarly and Best Essay Education, OKR theory can be implemented into businesses of various scales and industries regardless of their main body of work (i.e. services or products provided to the market).
Weiner effectively implemented OKR into his platform in two distinct ways. Firstly, OKRs in LinkedIn’s workflow ensure that the company’s mission is actionable and attainable at all times. This is important because the platform’s portfolio effectively revolves around professional networking and is not focused on concrete products or services sales. Secondly, OKRs are used to ensure that each individual employee of LinkedIn feels important and that their jobs matter as much as anyone else’s. This is achieved through individual OKR goals and interpersonal tracking where employees work as each other’s coaches and motivation rather than competition. Lastly, Weiner uses OKR to run board meetings and other official get-togethers in the company to ensure effective time management and productivity in all aspects of running his company.
Lastly, it’s no wonder that the global tech giant Microsoft and its founder Bill Gates heavily rely on OKR for guidance in terms of corporate goal management. Gates goes as far as to recommend John Doerr and his book “Measure What Matters” publically, referring to its influence in his managerial style of running Microsoft. This is due to the fact that Gates was a very talented programmer but lacked the managerial skills necessary to make his dreams come to fruition.
There’s no denying that OKR has helped Microsoft in its continued growth and management over the years thanks to its vast plethora of products and services which require different approaches. Microsoft has gone a step further than most companies which rely on OKR and integrated it into its cloud-based services dedicated to remote collaboration and team management. OKR is now readily available on Microsoft’s team cloud-based team platforms as a means for remote individuals to combine their knowledge and reach higher professional goals in a strategic and goal-oriented environment.
If you think that your company has nothing to look for in the big leagues occupied by industry leaders such as Google or Amazon, just remember that they started small and worked their way up to the top. In many ways, OKR theory is what contributed to these brands’ success stories as it continues to make a huge impact on the corporate market at large.
Look for OKR resources, audit your company culture and work your way out from there. Before you now it, you will have found the perfect approach to OKR implementation in your own workflow and day-to-day operations management.