✅ Aligning goals: Loose alignment to give visibility on which goal helps achieve organisation goal. Not all goals need to forcefully align to company or other team goals.
🚫 Cascading goals: Trying to link all goal to a parent goal such that they fit like a tree map.
Aligning goals is important cascading is not.
Once the Organisation OKRs are set, teams get a clear direction and then decide how they can contribute to those OKRs.
Each team then defines their OKRs that contribute to the organisation’s OKRs and that loosely align with them. The team can have their OKRs based on their planning process that doesn’t align with the company’s OKRs. This is completely OK. Trying to align everything is wrong and takes up a lot of time and energy. this is one of the common mistakes why OKRs fail
On the topic of goals, academic research agrees with your intuition: Having goals improves performance. Spending hours cascading goals up and down the company, however, does not. It takes way too much time and it’s too hard to make sure all the goals line up. We have a market-based approach, where over time our goals all converge because the top OKRs are known and everyone else’s OKRs are visible. Teams that are grossly out of alignment stand out, and the few major initiatives that touch everyone are easy enough to manage directly. So far, so good!
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