OKR #101 in crisis times

Don't skip the exercise 

Focus, alignment and discipline is key in these times. This is OKR's home turf. 

Less is more

You probably have less capacity, less bandwidth to do things but more options. Limit the amount of OKRs for all levels. We recommend 1 or 2 Objectives with max 3 Key Results.

Trust & directions

When strategy and goals are clear (only then!), teams organically align and contribute towards it. Despite all challenges, trust your people and allow teams to create their OKR drafts independently and in parallel. Don't fall back into a pure autocratic leadership style and dictate top-level OKRs for everyone to contribute towards it. If necessary ( e.g. when your recent strategy needs to be adjusted due to the new situation), draft 2 or 3 high level Q2 Objectives ( just as themes) as a reference for departments and teams.

Remote creation

We recommend the following flow for teams:

* download template for a collaborative OKR document here


As people work mostly in their home offices, you anyway need a clear structure on how and when you connect as a team and for 1:1s. Start to be very disciplined here, set clear times and time box these calls. You should never need extra meetings for the sake of OKRs, just use your regular meetings and start these sessions with OKRs. In crisis times, we clearly recommend to do weekly check-ins on OKRs. 

Changes during a quarter

Three months planning tend to be very long when everything is uncertain. Some O's or KR's might become obsolete or new options and directions pop up. The sum of all OKRs set the from for the quarter and all this is aligned. Always make a thorough decision before you change your OKRs. Discuss and agree on the impact this would have on your current OKRs and decide if it's worth to pay the price to drop a couple of OKRs. If so, inform contributors and cross-functional dependencies about the decision. Stay pragmatic and never organise new workshops to re-formulate all your OKRs during the quarter. Just agree on what to stop or pause and what to start.


Hannes Albrecht

Phone: +491729733253

eMail: hello@how-to-okr.com

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