Setting ambitious, measurable goals is an important exercise for all teams, but when it comes to simultaneously maintaining day-to-day responsibilities while aggressively pushing toward new objectives, even the most focused teams may fall off track. Here are three simple best practices to help teams move forward, even while juggling many tasks.
Create Meaningful Measures of Progress
Task trackers and continuous performance systems are powerful ways to help teams stay organized and keep track of progress after OKRs, or Objectives and Key Results, are set. By breaking each key result down into specific tasks that individual contributors on the team must accomplish, it becomes much easier to track progress toward the goal.
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Is the team 50 percent there? 80 percent? Which tasks are holding up progress and creating a bottleneck for other team members? Is a key step that needs to be accomplished in progress, or has it not even been started? By laying out all the steps and dependencies, it becomes transparent for all team members to see how they are operating together towards the goal.
Automate and Offer Intrinsic Motivation Wherever Possible
While having a full-time project manager to document and track all the tasks needed to reach an objective would be ideal, not all teams have the resources available. Automation is a powerful way to reduce the manual workload for keeping track of contributions from individual team members. Reflektive is a tool that integrates directly into workflows, allowing team members to applaud one another for work that is completed and automatically compiles all the real-time feedback from teams into performance overviews.
Gamifying tasks so that teams feel a sense of accomplishment on the way to the quarterly objective is also an effective means of ensuring progress is made with as little friction as possible. Taking the engineer’s scrum approach where teams report on what’s been accomplished, what they’re working on, and what’s up ahead helps keep everyone accountable while adding gamified incentives to each micro-victory can help fuel the momentum of the team.
Schedule Consistent Check-Ins
Especially when teams are moving quickly to achieve a quarterly objective, having consistent check-ins to ensure that everyone is on the same page and work is integrative instead of duplicative is crucial. Check-ins should take place in the following forms: weekly meetings, daily stand-ups and break out meetings as needed.
Weekly meetings are an opportunity to review objectives and overall progress, as well as identify major roadblocks or concerns as a team. Feedback collected from various tools from tasks throughout the week can be shared and reflected upon. Daily stand-ups should be in place to help teams report on what they are working on and what they hope to achieve. Breakout meetings are essentially work sessions for a team to collaborate on a solving a problem that requires a deep-dive together to resolve.
By putting these guidelines in practice, teams can work together effectively to actually achieve the OKRs they set at the beginning of each quarter in a transparent, collaborative way.