Objectives and Key Results (OKR) is a framework that helps organizations prioritize, align, focus and measure the outcome of the work they do and communicate strategy to employees in an actionable, measurable way. It helps organizations to move from an output to an outcome-based approach to work.
An OKR consists of an Objective, Key Results, and Initiatives:
An Objective is a description of a goal to be achieved. It sets a clear direction and provides motivation.
A Key Result is a metric with a starting value and a target value that measures progress towards an Objective. It shows you how you’re progressing towards your Objective.
An Initiative is a description of the work you’ll do to influence a Key Result. It describes what you’ll do to achieve your Key Results.
If this sounds familiar, it is basically a Balanced Scorecard without the four perspective of Finance, Customer, Process and People or the distinction of a measure (what you are measuring) and the metric (how you are measuring it).
It is a kind of Balanced Scorecard Light. A good place to start if you have never done a Balanced Scorecard but want to start put rigor around your strategic objectives.