The guide will show you how to:
- Correctly format OKRs
- Create cascading OKRs down to the individual level
- Monitor progress to ensure things are on track
Identify potential OKRs
OKRs for your organization should be:
- Aggressive: Your OKRs should push you out of your comfort zone. Be ambitious!
- Measurable: Dates, percentages, dollar amounts — every key result needs to have a number attached to it.
- Visible: The entire company should be able to see your OKRs, not just direct reports. Visibility is the key to collaboration and innovation.
- Graded: At the end of the process, use your results data to grade each key result on a scale from 0-10.
You can have multiple objectives per quarter, but no more than 5.
Here’s the basic format of an OKR:
— "Measurable key result 1" — current progress: __ % grade ___
Build Your OKR project
- Hold an OKR planning session and use real-time, collaborative task editing to get the entire team involved. Create new tasks as you conceive them, add key details, and assign them straight away so nothing is lost or forgotten.
- Once you’ve settled your team OKRs, set up a shared folder within your department folder and reorganize or create your finalized team OKRs into appropriate tasks and subtasks.
- Create a public Space to hold company objectives and collect every team and department's OKRs. Each department can tag their OKR folder into the OKR Space.
- Encourage the team to comment on the tasks or @mention colleagues to offer support or advice.
Create OKRs for Individual Team Members
Once company and department goals are set, individual employees should start considering their contributions for the next quarter to support and further those goals.
- Create a folder in your team’s Space called “[Your Name]'s OKRs.” Within that folder, create a series of new tasks, one for each objective.
- Create a subtask for each key result so it’s connected with the objective. Keep in mind that you can create multiple levels of subtasks if you wish: the objective task, key result subtask, and a third layer of subtasks listing activities related to achieving the key result.
Discuss Individual OKRs With Managers
Allow your team to build out their own individual OKRs based on the team’s objectives. Schedule individual meetings with employees to discuss and negotiate the specifics of individual OKRs.
- Ask your team to inform you when they’ve completed their first draft — either by assigning it to you or @mentioning you in a comment. You can then discuss the details in person, comment directly in the tasks, or collaboratively edit the specifics within the task description.
- After your meeting, group all personal OKR folders under a parent folder. That way their colleagues can see their objectives and contribute whenever possible. This also gives clear visibility into how every task relates to larger goals.
Track Your Progress and Make Adjustments
Hold a mid-quarter check-in meeting with your team to share progress and make any corrections. If the assumptions you made when creating your OKRs didn’t turn out to be accurate, there’s no need to stubbornly see them through. The benefit of Wrike is that you can follow up, share successes, ask for feedback, and make adjustments every single day so you don’t sink time and effort into misguided work.
- For your individual OKRs, you can create a “My Objectives” dashboard widget to keep your goals and critical tasks front and center.
- To track an entire team's OKRs (or the entire company's), create and share a separate dashboard with an overview of all OKRs.
- Check the Table view to see every task related to a specific OKR folder, start and due dates, task duration, task status, and assignees. You'll see everyone involved, how long high-priority tasks will take, and key stats. If something looks off, you can step in before it’s too late.
- If changes need to be made, drag and drop tasks within a task list (or drag and drop the order of subtasks) to easily shuffle priorities. Everyone involved will instantly see the changes reflected in their workspace, keeping the whole team aligned on the most important tasks.
Grade OKRs and Report on Results
At the end of the quarter (or year), hold a wrap-up meeting where everyone shares their grades, explains their results, and outlines the adjustments they’re going to make for next time.
When it comes to grading, focus on the numbers. If the OKR is to “Decrease the number of customer complaints by 20%” and you successfully decreased it by 10%, your score is 0.5. You can average the key-results grades to determine total progress toward your overall objective.
- As you start hitting goals and marking your KR subtasks complete, the green progress bar will fill up on the objective parent task. You’ll see a quick visual on how far you've come and how far you have yet to go.
- Wrike Business and Enterprise users can take advantage of custom fields to see which team or company objectives each task or project supports. Use those custom fields to easily generate reports showing how your team’s efforts impact big-picture goals.
- Create a folder in Wrike where you collect all your experiences, whether it’s suggestions for how the OKR process can run smoother, tips on generating reports, or a summary of your team’s successes. Create a mini-knowledge base as a shared folder within Wrike, adding a new task for each lesson learned, and ask your team to add their own experiences. Take a peek at this folder periodically (or whenever you feel overwhelmed) to remind yourself of all you've accomplished and how far you've come.