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[OKR] Why "No hiding and no hesitation!!!" is needed

High Output Management

I read this book, written by Andrew S. Grove, former President of Intel Corporation, a long time ago, and I didn't realise that it was the source of the OKRs (Object, Key Results) used by Google and others. In Grove's book, he refers to MBO (Management by Objectives), but John Doerr, who later wrote a book on OKRs and worked for Grove, says that the MBO Grove used is the same as OKR.

Google's summary of OKRs and Doerr's book state that OKRs are good for 60% success, are not incorporated into employee appraisals and require key results to be set at most quarterly. This is detailed in the book by Grove, the originator of OKRs. Firstly, the Objective is the vision itself, the destination we want to get to and by when. The key result is markers to help us judge whether we are on track to get there. Grove writes, using the example of a plane ride. The Objective is to reach the airport to board the plane in one hour. The key result is to pass through the three cities between your home and the airport in 10, 30 and 40 minutes, respectively. You have most likely taken the wrong road if you have not arrived at the first city after 20 minutes.

OKR is fundamentally optimistic because it runs a company that allows organisations to make great strides. Optimism means that the objectives are set in a place where they can be achieved or not. 60-70% is about right for OKRs. We will no longer be able to evaluate our employees on the basis of whether they have achieved an objective or not; otherwise, employees create an objective that is not a big leap forward. Similarly, key results are achieved 60-70% of the time. To understand whether the speed at which they are achieved is appropriate, it is necessary to set key results as a benchmark for a quarter at most.

As key results are landmarks, everyone should be able to see if they are being achieved. The organisation should also be open enough for another employee to point out situations where the employee is not likely to achieve them. In the first place, OKRs allow you to set your own goals and create your own key results, so the management clock has been shifted from senior management to each individual.

OKRs, where each employee sets their own goals and time allocations, is a way of running a company that is very well suited to the pandemic situation, where remote working is becoming more and more common. However, it would be difficult to accept in a society where people are taught to be angry if students make mistakes, not to talk back to their teachers. So, first of all, we need to increase the company's transparency and create a corporate culture where people are never emotionally angry when they make mistakes.

No hiding and no hesitation!!!

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