Should we work with objectives or not?
This is a big question in many companies today, especially technology companies. These types of companies have very diverse professional profiles, especially in terms of personnel. Some of the people at these companies may not feel 100% comfortable working under this methodology, since they may consider that these measures call into question key work elements that are not necessarily measurable, such as effort or perseverance.
Additionally, it can be difficult to hire talented people in these types of companies, because companies often cannot afford to have work methodologies that good profiles automatically reject.
Furthermore, when a company culture is driven by objectives, they can be linked to a variable remuneration modality based on the objectives achieved, not on the hours worked. This can cause resentment and provoke rejection on the part of many workers who come from more traditional sectors or more archaic companies.
It should be noted that this model, as we have mentioned, is mostly applicable in technology companies. More specifically it is found in their marketing or sales departments, where the members are usually more accustomed to working by projects rather than by working hours.
Although many companies are still struggling to see how to fit this methodology within their company, the implementation of a work by objectives model has many advantages, including the management of working time by the employee or the possibility of teleworking.
If we make the decision to apply this methodology, it is essential to choose a model that facilitates the implementation of the same. The former CEO of Intel provided us with a widely known work management methodology: the OKRs. (👉 Here's the famous video.)
OKRs is the answer
OKRs, also known as "Objectives and Key Results", allow companies and their employees to put into daily practice the key goals of companies. It is a method that starts from an achievable goal in a time frame, and from there it is broken down into tasks. The purpose of OKRs is that they are tasks that lead to action.
The advantages of the OKRs methodology are numerous, which is why this method is so widespread and used by companies such as Google, Amazon, LinkedIn, Twitter, Spotify, Airbnb, Accenture, and Netflix. One of the main reasons for this is that it does not have to do with metrics and quantitative evaluation, but rather it is directly related to the tasks and actions to be performed, which is key and essential to achieve the company's goals.
"OKRs are valuable as a tool to prioritize initiatives and define the desired outcomes from those goals. OKRs establish the purpose (objective) and the desired outcomes you want to affect with your work (key results)." – Chen Rekhi (Executive Coach)
At Gretel we work with OKRs and some of the advantages we have found are:
- They allow us to work on specific tasks, i.e. small actions with a beginning and an end
- They are standardizable, the same OKRs can be used for different work teams
- They indicate the sequence to follow, and they explain the steps one by one in achievable and measurable tasks over time
- They allow for better teamwork since everyone knows what to focus on and what is a priority
- They encourage continuous improvement and feedback on the work done
- They improve team performance management, as they are often a very useful and flexible alternative to work schedules
- They allow for full transparency, as tasks are clear and visible to the entire team
- They guarantee involvement and alignment with the company's mission, since everyone knows the reason for their tasks, and towards what end they are directed
Example of OKRs
A real-life OKRs could be:
- Objective: Significantly increase the number of high quality lead.
- Key Result: Improve leads from 30 to 50 leads per week
- Key Result: Reach 75 contacts per day
- Task: Prepare a contact list of 1,000 prospects
- Task: Daily follow up to the reached contacts
- Task: Review all the contacts have received the link to schedule a meeting with us
- Task: Report the number of answer messages
In this article you can access the complete list of advantages: https://gretel.co/community/articles/stay-focused-with-okrs/.