Strategic OKRs

Niklas Olsson
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management team writing okrs

Strategic (or organisation) OKRs are created by the management team on an organisation or division level. Their purpose is to set the direction and measurability for the entire organisation as well as to act as the starting point for all team OKRs that are created in the organisation.

Most common sources of information to craft these OKRs are:

  • Budget – the organisations budget sets different kinds of expectations and limitations on what is to be achieved in the upcoming period that needs to be part of the goal setting
  • Strategy – strategies come in many different formats and are often a mix of ambitions, larger projects, key metrics and more. This is many times the most practical starting point for the strategic OKRs since it spells out the main challenges and movements needed to push forward towards a preferred position.
  • Vision & Mission – Great strategic / organisation OKRs are heavily influenced by the organisations vision and mission and many times lend language from these. This way, the create a clear path between the common goals and the long term goals of the organisation.
  • Current challenges and internal processes – many times there are internal challenges to address that isn’t always spelled out in the company strategy but that need focus and measurable follow-up. This can be issues with employee retention, compliance projects or anything that is deemed of core importance but is not part of the strategy.
  • Last cycles OKRs – when the organisation has run with OKRs for at least one cycle, this usually becomes the starting point of crafting the next cycle OKRs.

Beyond these artefacts, there are naturally several more potential sources for great strategic OKRs. There could be input from the entire organisation with ideas for topics or there could be large initiatives that take precedence over strategy and more. It is common to look at the four perspectives customers, internal processes and learning, product and financials for example to ensure the strategic OKRs cover the most important areas of the organisation.

As strategic OKRs, the ambition is for most of the teams in the organisation to see that they can contribute to at least a couple key results. There is a challenge in being broad enough for all teams to understand their role in the upcoming goals while at the same time keeping focus.

O: Grow in our core market to establish market dominance

  • KR1: Increase revenue from €10M to €12M
  • KR2: Increase brand awareness from 10% to 12% in quarterly survey
  • KR3: Have 5 new sales team members having sent their first customer offer

The OKR above could be a typical strategic OKR with both financial and people focus.

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Niklas Olsson
Get started with OKRs

We are happy to offer 30 minutes of free OKR coaching to set you on track for your implementation!

Schedule 30m intro

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