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#1 New York Times Bestseller Legendary venture capitalist John Doerr reveals how the goal-setting system of Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) has helped tech giants from Intel to Google achieve explosive growth—and how it can help any organization thrive. In the fall of 1999, John Doerr met with the founders of a start-up whom he'd just given $12.5 million, the biggest investment of his career. Larry Page and Sergey Brin had amazing technology, entrepreneurial energy, and sky-high ambitions, but no real business plan. For Google to change the world (or even to survive), Page and Brin had to learn how to make tough choices on priorities while keeping their team on track. They'd have to know when to pull the plug on losing propositions, to fail fast. And they needed timely, relevant data to track their progress—to measure what mattered. Doerr taught them about a proven approach to operating excellence: Objectives and Key Results. He had first discovered OKRs in the 1970s as an engineer at Intel, where the legendary Andy Grove ("the greatest manager of his or any era") drove the best-run company Doerr had ever seen. Later, as a venture capitalist, Doerr shared Grove's brainchild with more than fifty companies. Wherever the process was faithfully practiced, it worked. In this goal-setting system, objectives define what we seek to achieve; key results are how those top-priority goals will be attained with specific, measurable actions within a set time frame. Everyone's goals, from entry level to CEO, are transparent to the entire organization. The benefits are profound. OKRs surface an organization's most important work. They focus effort and foster coordination. They keep employees on track. They link objectives across silos to unify and strengthen the entire company. Along the way, OKRs enhance workplace satisfaction and boost retention. In Measure What Matters, Doerr shares a broad range of first-person, behind-the-scenes case studies, with narrators including Bono and Bill Gates, to demonstrate the focus, agility, and explosive growth that OKRs have spurred at so many great organizations. This book will help a new generation of leaders capture the same magic.
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Superpower 1: Focus ＆ commit to priorities
Superpower 2: Align ＆ connect for teamwork
Superpower 3: Track ＆ discuss for accountability
Superpower 4: Stretch ＆ disrupt for amazing
Benefits: OKRs key benefits
Table of Contents
High performance organizations and people have a knack for homing in on what's important and letting everything else fall by the wayside. OKRs force leaders and individuals to make hard choices. That makes OKRs a great way to communicate within and between departments, teams and individuals. OKRs reduce the fog and give the focus that's required to win.
The first attribute of OKRs is they force you to clarify what is the most important thing for your organization to achieve in the next three or six or twelve months. Successful organizations, teams and individuals always focus on the one or two initiatives which can make a real difference rather than worrying about all the various less vital alternatives floating around. Great companies commit to and stand firm behind a few key objectives.
Most of the time, OKRs will come from the senior leadership but good ideas are never bound by hierarchies or by organizational charts. he most energizing OKRs may come from frontline contributors. If that happens, you'll be well on your way to establishing and growing a meritocracy rather than expecting the senior leadership to have an exclusive on good ideas.
There are several reasons why OKRs work so well:
1 OKRs force everyone to communicate with clarity – there is no confusion about what your top-line goals are and what that means for everyone involved. A good OKR will concisely identify your top priorities nd how your progress towards that goal or goals will be measured and evaluated. Everyone will understand the what and the how.
2 OKRs are the yin and yang of goal setting – they specify both the strategy and the logistics involved. You get a healthy mix of vision and execution with OKRs. Or put another way, OKRs keep your long-term goals honest by specifying what needs to be done here and now.
3 OKRs have variable time-frames – you can have long-term OKRs which specify the strategic direction to head paired with quarterly or even monthly OKRs which drive the day-to-day work. There is no one-size-fits-all approach.
4 OKRs have limited shelf lives – you can modify them at will and even scrap them at any time if something more compelling becomes available.
5 OKRs bring to life the maxim less is more – they force you to have just a few vital goals or objectives. Once OKRs have been committed to, managers can't just keep adding more and more objectives without addressing the workloads of their people. OKRs stop everyone getting overextended.
"When you're the CEO or the founder of the company, you've got to say 'This is what we're doing,' and then you have to model it. Because if you don't model it, no one's going to do it." – Bill Campbell, former Intuit CEO and Google board member and mentor
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