Alignment of OKRs

According to a Harvard Business Review, companies with highly aligned employees are more than twice as likely to be top performers. However, 100% alignment is difficult and rate to achieve. According to a poll of global CEOs, lack of alignment is the number-one obstacle to execute a growth strategy.

Vertical Alignment

In a "command and control" structured organization, goals are set at the top and handed downwards with strict focus on goal cascade. Agility, flexibility and creativity become a casualty when strict cascading is practiced.

Modern, agile organizations encourage a healthy balance between alignment and autonomy, common purpose and creative latitude.

John Doerr, in his book "Measure What Matters", says, "High performing teams thrive on a creative tension between top-down and bottom-up goal setting, a mix of aligned and unaligned OKRs."

Whilst 100% autonomy is utopian, a 50-50 mix of top-down and bottom-up goals help teams innovate and thrive.

Horizontal or Cross-functional Alignment

As companies become large and intricate and projects or initiatives require complex orchestration of interdependent teams, unacknowledged dependencies remain the number one cause of project slippage.

When OKRs call out cross functional dependancies in a transparent and visible manner, troubled spots can be attacked quickly and localized innovations can be extrapolated as best practices.

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