The benefits of OKR Coaching for a fully optimised transformation

OKR Coaching is a specialist type of coaching that focuses on uplifting the skills and capabilities of your people to yield maximum value from an OKR transformation.

23 February 2023

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The fundamentals of coaching and OKR coaching 

Before we get into what OKR coaching is, and its value to the organisation, it’s worth referencing the ‘common thread amongst different types of coaching’, that we discuss in more detail in our ‘Benefits of Coaching to the Organisation’ article.

This refers to the two most significant outcomes of coaching in any capacity; progressive development and increased self awareness.

When we discuss these desired outcomes of coaching from a business perspective, the tangible result is ultimately improvements in organisational impact metrics.

This could also be true of OKRs, and their value to the organisation. But in both cases, we can also talk about wellbeing and engagement of an organisation’s workforce as resulting benefits.

At 1ovmany, we like to describe OKRs as being a framework for creating, communicating, constantly validating and adapting corporate strategy.

But just as importantly, the OKR framework is designed to install and maintain a mindset and culture at all levels of the organisation.

Mindset and culture are the operative principles here, as in many of the cases we’ve seen, these lead to increased employee engagement, more alignment throughout the organisation and an overall better employee experience.

OKR coaching is no different to the fundamentals of any type of coaching, in that its main two outcomes are progressive development (of a team or organisation operating with OKRs) and increased self awareness (of each team member for their role and purpose in the process of implementing and executing strategy).

What is OKR Coaching?

Making the decision to implement and operate with OKRs - in some circumstances - can be a no-brainer. The benefits to an organisation’s growth, development and Strategic Management Framework can include:

  • alignment;

  • transparency;

  • fast data-driven decision making;

  • focus on desired outcomes; and

  • connecting different parts of the organisation to each other.

But, like most things, working with Objectives & Key Results has its challenges, not least of all for the employees.

The introduction of new processes and ways of working amidst a large-scale transformation can be overwhelming, especially if a team or any of an organisation’s employees don’t have a direct line of communication to a specialist or expert in the field.

An OKR Coach is an individual who has had additional training to inhabit the mindset, responsibilities, tools and techniques to help uplift the skills and capabilities of the people across an entire organisation.

What are the benefits of OKR Coaching?

In many cases, an organisation’s people don’t fully understand how or why they’re using OKRs, which can often lead to resistance and ultimately failure to implement OKR methodology across the business.

Our ‘Preparing your Organisation for Implementing OKRs’ article cites a conversation with McKinsey senior partner Harry Robinson, where he states that 70% of all transformations fail, as ‘people throughout the organisation don’t buy in and don’t want to invest extra energy to make change happen’.

We, at 1ovmany, strongly endorse two great ways for countering any such resistance and/or lack of understanding the OKR process and its value to the organisation;

Communicate the story & rationale

Those making the decision to work with OKRs need to clearly articulate why the change is needed, what is changing and how it will address the issues indicated and extra benefits it will bring for the organisation and its people.

In this case, OKR coaching helps save business leaders time, by instead of having to constantly reinforce and reinstate the reasons and rationale of introducing the use of OKRs to team members across the entire organisation, the OKR Coach would be responsible for reinforcing that message on a regular and tiered basis.

Ensure you have the necessary expertise & support available to be successful.

The OKR Method is complex and requires an advanced understanding of how to navigate change, as well as a level of OKR expertise to help make the team around them confident and successful in their actions.

An OKR Coach’s job is, as previously stated, is to use their expert knowledge of OKRs and how to successfully operate with OKRs, to help uplift the skills and capabilities of the people across an organisation.

Not unlike any more traditional types of coaching, the end result of OKR coaching in both the above cases is progressive development and increased self-awareness.

OKR coaching is a perfect way of instigating these solutions for countering change fatigue, helping to optimise the impact of OKRs and increasing the success rate of an OKR implementation.

OKR coaching engagement with 1ovmany

At this stage you’re probably wondering what a typical OKR coaching engagement might look like, as well as the process for getting you from OKR-curious or OKR-primitive, to optimising your OKR strategy and integrating it into a highly dynamic and impactful Strategic Management Framework.

This is how we do it

Familiarisation period

Our OKR consultants start with a short investigation period to understand your culture, immediate challenges and ideal outcomes for OKRs.

Design an OKR engagement for your environment

We establish how OKRs (will) operate in your environment, with supporting events, tooling, artefacts and potential roles;

Then provide an OKR operating model fit for purpose in your environment.

Design the coaching deployment

Finally, we create a coaching plan for the organisational adoption of the OKR approach, aligned with agile ways of working to support the organisation’s goals.

OKR coaching engagement | 1ovmany OKR coaching engagement | 1ovmany

Our fundamental design principle regarding OKR coaching, and to the same extent OKR training, is that of ‘sustainable transformation’.

1ovmany’s OKR coaches have practical experience working in all scales of OKR transformations, with a goal of ensuring our capability is offloaded to your teams to accelerate the engagement and enablement of your people.

The OKR Method we operate by is open source, providing you with freedom, flexibility and the added advantage of lowered costs.

Our industry experts have worked with hundreds of teams and organisations, helping them to embrace agility and more progressive ways of working, in the form of:

  • Facilitation;

  • OKR Writing techniques;

  • Leading teams using OKRs;

  • OKR Operations; and

  • OKR Critical thinking.

Get in touch with us today to discover more about our OKR Coaching courses and Organisational OKR Coaching.

1ovmany Communications Team

About the author

1ovmany Communications Team

We help organisations reach their full potential through continuous and sustainable transformation in customer delivery and product excellence

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