Vision-jective: we will save the world
Objectives like we’ll save the world, we’ll make the best app in the world, change the industry. An objective should specify the company vision for two, maybe three years. It shouldn’t be the whole vision. Many people new to OKR treat objectives like the company vision board and when people read the objective, they roll their eyes and stop working with you.
Huge aspiration: the biggest e-shop in the world
Nowadays, everyone wants to have the best and the fastest app in the world. The new Uber, AirBnB. Be more realistic. Higher aspiration can encourage people, but be careful not to overdo it. Just like the vision-jective types of OKR, huge aspirations might cause detachment from work.
Small aspiration: 1000 clicks, just enough
The exact opposites are small aspirations. They’re very easy to think of and usually come to mind first. But after giving it more thought, you’ll realize that completing an objective like this will have no effect on the world around you.
A real-life example:
Our objective is to have the best people in the right position. We’ll achieve this by publishing a value triangle with our principles.
How do we know we achieved the objective and the principles work?
We have 1000 employees, so we’ll have 1000 clicks on the value triangle.
But does everyone clicking on it means we completed the objective?
No, that is only the outcome. We can’t know if people work by the principles only by knowing they read them.
Small aspiration that comes to mind quickly but doesn’t have any real effect on the world around you.
Delivery-jective: feature XYZ available
Common mistake in product-oriented companies that need to implement new features often. They start using OKR as task management and delivering a new feature translates to completing an objective. But be careful, new version doesn’t mean we made user’s life better.