10 OKR Best Practices for Businesses in 2024

OKR Best practice

Are you tired of setting vague and ineffective objectives? Feeling overwhelmed with the lack of direction and accountability in your team’s goals?

Or maybe, you are frustrated by the disconnect between what you set out to achieve and what actually gets done

We’ll delve into the fundamentals, including ‘What Are OKRs?’ Learn why you should ‘Adopt OKR Best Practices’ and understand the ‘Benefits of Implementing Best Practices for OKRs.’ 

We’ll also walk you through ‘Best Practices for Writing OKR Goals’ and ‘Best Practices for Implementing OKRs’ to transform your goal-setting process.

OKR Best practice

What are OKRs?

OKRs are a popular framework used for setting and tracking goals within organizations. Objectives are the goals that an organization or team aims to achieve, while Key Results are specific, measurable steps that demonstrate progress toward the objective. 

The OKR framework helps align the goals of individuals and teams with the overall objectives of the organization, fostering transparency, focus, and accountability. It is widely used in the business world to improve performance and drive results.

Let’s break it down further with an example. Imagine you work for a company that wants to improve its customer satisfaction. The Objective, in this case, is to “Enhance Customer Satisfaction.” This is your big, overarching goal, the destination you want to reach. It’s essential to keep it simple and clear so everyone understands it.

Now, to measure progress and success, you need Key Results. Key Results are specific, measurable milestones that help you track your journey toward the objective. For the customer satisfaction objective, some key results could be “Increase customer survey scores by 20%,” “Resolve customer complaints within 24 hours,” and “Achieve a Net Promoter Score (NPS) of 50.” These key results are like signposts along the way, indicating that you’re making progress and getting closer to your goal.

Benefits of embracing OKR best practices

Adopting best practices for OKRs is crucial as it provides a clear structure and guidance during implementation. Embracing these practices offers several key advantages.

Implementing the best ways to use OKRs can really help your company in many ways. When you use these well-known methods, you can make sure that the steps, plans, and overall way you use OKRs are right for your business.

Using a plan that has already worked well before can make it more likely that you’ll reach your goals without problems.

Also, when you show the good things that have happened because of using OKRs, it can encourage your teams to keep using them. 

When your employees see how using OKRs has helped the company succeed, they’re more likely to use them, too. This can create a culture where everyone works together to reach their goals.

Getting advice from OKR experts can also help you set better goals. When you use their knowledge, you can make your goals fit better with what your company needs. 

This approach makes sure that your OKRs work well for your company, making them better at helping you succeed.

Using an OKR software program can make it easier to set, track, and measure your OKRs. This means your teams can spend more time creating good goals and less time on the other stuff. 

When you combine good planning with the help of technology, you can make using OKRs easier and your company more efficient. This can save time and help your company do better in the long run.

Best practices for writing OKR goals

When setting Objectives and Key Results goals, it’s essential to keep certain best practices in mind to ensure effectiveness and alignment within the organization. Here’s a comprehensive guide to crafting strong OKR goals:

Best practices for writing objectives

Start by clearly defining the main goals of your organization. These should be the strategic targets that require collaboration and coordination among different departments and teams in your company.

Encourage each department and team to focus on three to five specific goals. Having too many goals can cause a lack of focus and hinder the achievement of important objectives.

Ensure that your goals are both realistic and ambitious. Aim for challenging goals that push your teams out of their comfort zones. The discomfort signifies the necessary effort to achieve significant targets.

It’s a good idea to have three to five Key Results for each goal. These Key Results should contribute to the achievement of the goal, making sure they are measurable and directly linked to the broader organizational goals.

Promote a culture of transparency and accountability within the teams by aligning their individual goals with the overall organizational objectives. 

This helps create a shared sense of purpose and encourages collaboration towards common milestones.

Regularly monitor the progress of the goals and Key Results, providing feedback and making necessary adjustments to ensure that the teams stay on track to achieve the desired outcomes.

Best practices for writing Key Results

Make sure that each objective is accompanied by three measurable key results. These key results are important benchmarks for tracking progress and are crucial steps toward achieving the set objectives.

Remember that key results are not just tasks but measurable outcomes that indicate the successful completion of an objective. 

They should be specific and quantifiable, allowing teams to accurately assess their progress.

Don’t forget that aligning the entire OKR process across different levels of the organization is vital. 

By connecting team objectives with company objectives, you create a unified approach that encourages collective progress and a shared sense of purpose.

Promote a balanced approach to setting OKRs, allowing for a combination of top-down and bottom-up goal setting. 

This fosters a culture of innovation and engagement among employees, as they have the chance to contribute to the organization’s overall objectives.

Regularly review and evaluate the progress of both the objectives and key results, offering constructive feedback and support to ensure that teams stay on track and remain motivated to achieve their goals.

Encourage a sense of ownership and accountability within each team and individual by actively involving them in the creation of their OKRs. 

This involvement empowers employees and cultivates a stronger commitment to successfully achieving their goals.

Best practices for implementing OKRs

Implementing Objectives and Key Results effectively involves following certain best practices to ensure successful adoption and integration within your organization. Here are some key best practices for implementing OKRs:

1. Get support from everyone involved

Make sure everyone, from top executives to team members, is on board with the OKR plan. When everyone supports the goals, it creates a team effort where everyone feels responsible for the success. 

Open communication and active participation are important for everyone to feel involved and committed.

2. Connect team goals with company objectives

Each team’s goals should contribute to the bigger goals of the whole company. This helps everyone work together towards the same mission. 

When everyone’s efforts align, the company can achieve its overall mission more effectively.

3. Gain leadership support and a champion

It’s crucial to have the support of the top bosses. When leaders show they value OKRs, it sets a good example for everyone else. 

Having an OKR champion can also make the process easier, as they can guide and support teams as they work towards their objectives.

4. Encourage transparency with your goals

Being open about your goals and progress is important. When teams share their goals and updates openly, it encourages teamwork and feedback. 

This helps everyone learn from each other’s experiences and work together to solve problems and reach their goals together.

5. Educate and involve everyone in the OKRs process

Make sure to teach everyone about OKRs and why they are important. By involving all team members in setting OKRs, you make them feel included and empower them to contribute to the company’s success. 

This approach helps everyone understand what’s important and creates a shared sense of responsibility.

6. Start with a few well-defined objectives

Instead of giving teams too many goals, it’s better to begin with a manageable number of clear goals. This helps teams stay focused on the most important objectives without feeling overwhelmed. 

By focusing on quality rather than quantity, teams can concentrate on achieving meaningful results that bring the company closer to its main targets.

7. Focus on goals, not just tasks

Rather than getting caught up in specific tasks, it’s crucial to keep your attention on clear and measurable goals. This mindset helps teams stay focused on results and stay on the same page. 

By emphasizing the desired outcomes, teams can remain flexible and explore different ways to achieve their objectives effectively.

8. Encourage employees to set their own OKRs

When employees have a say in creating their own OKRs, it makes them feel more responsible and involved. It also helps them understand how their work impacts the company. 

By letting employees define their OKRs, they become more motivated and committed to reaching their goals, leading to better performance and job satisfaction.

9. Conduct weekly team OKR check-ins

Having regular meetings every week to talk about how the team is doing with their goals is very important. 

These meetings give everyone a chance to talk about what’s going well and what challenges they might be facing. 

By talking openly and working together, teams can keep learning and getting better. It’s crucial to solve any problems quickly to make sure the team reaches its goals.

10. Share updates on progress regularly

Sharing updates about how the goals are going is also very important. These updates help everyone in the company know what’s happening and step in if there are any issues. 

Being open and talking about how things are going helps everyone trust each other and feel responsible for achieving their goals together.


In summary, OKRs are a helpful tool for setting goals and tracking performance in organizations. When organizations follow best practices for OKRs, it can lead to greater transparency, focus, and accountability, which ultimately improves productivity and communication. 

Using specialized OKR software makes it easier to create specific, ambitious, and measurable goals with quantifiable key results that directly relate to objectives, guiding companies toward their strategic targets.

To make OKRs work effectively, it’s important for everyone in the organization to get on board, from top management to individual teams. 

Regular check-ins and open communication, facilitated by OKR software, are key to keeping teams engaged and motivated throughout the OKR cycle. 

Cultivating a culture that values learning and adapting strategies based on changing conditions and challenges allows organizations to fully harness the potential of OKRs and the accompanying software for continuous growth and success.

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Gaurav Sabharwal


Gaurav is the CEO of JOP (Joy of Performing), an OKR and high-performance enabling platform. With almost two decades of experience in building businesses, he knows what it takes to enable high performance within a team and engage them in the business. He supports organizations globally by becoming their growth partner and helping them build high-performing teams by tackling issues like lack of focus, unclear goals, unaligned teams, lack of funding, no continuous improvement framework, etc. He is a Certified OKR Coach and loves to share helpful resources and address common organizational challenges to help drive team performance. Read More

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