Why do OKR check-ins mean much more than you think?

Why-do-OKR-check-ins-mean-much-more-than-you-think Blog Post

The two typical reasons behind the failure of OKRs are that they are not structured suitably and that OKR check-in sessions are not held on a regular basis. Yes, OKR check-ins are as significant as structuring the OKRs in a correct manner because when it comes to the OKR methodology, the setting and forgetting approach won’t work. 

Why-do-OKR-check-ins-mean-much-more-than-you-think Blog Post

Importance of OKR check-ins

Before we understand why they’re so crucial, let’s go over what they actually are. If you’re new to the OKR management framework, you’ll likely be setting quarterly objectives. Regular check-ins are required to monitor the progress of these objectives. 

During a check-in, which should last 30-40 minutes, you and your team should be given a safe space to have a deeper dialogue, provide feedback on your goal, and be recognized. These OKR check-ins are nothing but a periodic assessment of progress made on their OKRs. To get everyone on board with the OKR framework and make it work for the organization, OKR must be firmly integrated into the organizational culture and values. 

Your organization’s needs will determine the frequency of these OKR check-ins. As a result, the frequency of check-ins that leaders should do with their teams will differ from one organization to the next. Doing these check-ins regularly assists you in comprehending: 

  • Is the objective on the desired track?
  • How far has your team progressed?
  • Were there any challenges along the way?
  • What worked well?
  • What must be altered?
  • What were the learnings?
  • Did you gain any new information?
  • What are your next steps?

One of the most important things about OKRs is that organizations aren’t afraid to change if something doesn’t work. It’s critical to be able to acknowledge and adjust your OKRs if the customers’ needs change, the landscape moves, or you gain new information and understanding that shows what you’ve been doing isn’t working.

1. Keeps everyone accountable

Having regular check-ins with your team assures that everyone communicates and works transparently. Everyone knows what other teams and employees have been doing and how far they have progressed. It also assists employees in understanding that the achievement of their objective is directly tied to the success of the team’s OKR. Check-ins make employees more accountable as they have to show the progress of their OKRs to everyone, and as a result, accountability becomes a part of the organizational culture. 

2. Ensures the process remains agile

Making the OKR process rigid can be challenging for employees and detrimental to OKR’s success. OKR check-ins help to keep the OKR framework agile. Your teams’ OKRs may need to be adjusted as the business landscape changes. Furthermore, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to applying OKRs. The the OKRs should be adaptable enough to change and evolve as needed. This is where the check-ins come into the picture, as they help you change the course of action wherever and whenever needed. 

3. Makes the workforce engaged

OKR check-ins allow every team member to participate in the goal-setting and monitoring process. It helps them to obtain knowledge to move the needle of their goals strategically. As team OKRs are interconnected, each team must contribute their individual parts to meet the corporate goals. Furthermore, the check-ins increase transparency in the framework and open up the possibility of regular recognition. OKR check-ins make employees feel involved and driven to perform better by instilling a sense of purpose in their work.

4. Spotlights the high-impactive priorities

OKRs are centered on your organization’s goal and vision. You don’t want your employees to be sidetracked from your vision at any stage along the way. To ensure your shared vision remains on track, you must have frequent OKR check-ins with your teams. Without OKR check-ins, your workforce may struggle to progress toward their goals consistently. Frequent OKRs will assist you in detecting and resolving any indicators of trouble your teams face. 

Now that you understand the multitude of the significance of OKR check-ins let us glance at the mistakes to avoid in your check-ins. 

Mistakes to avoid in your OKR check-ins

1. Using OKR check-ins for reporting and not problem-solving

Many organizations commit the mistake of using check-in meetings to provide current facts and have superficial discussions throughout the cycle. This type of meeting is generally time-consuming and of limited benefit, and hence should take place before the actual check-in begins. The check-in should be used to identify and resolve problems or challenges and share learnings.

2. Doing OKR check-ins and multiple weekly meetings

OKR check-ins can be readily integrated into current meeting setups. This way, no more work or concentration time is lost. As previously said, OKRs are continually looking for the most efficient ways to apply them. This includes incorporating them into existing workflows. The whole purpose of OKRs gets defeated when an organization sets aside certain time slots for check-ins when they are already doing multiple meetings weekly. 

3. Undermining the importance of OKR check-ins

This could be due to the misperception that defined efforts are always kept in mind and are so thoroughly defined that no further action is required. Check-ins are even more beneficial for teams new to the OKR management framework. It will not only help you understand everyone’s progress but also help you understand everyone’s weaknesses and strengths and much more. 

To gain more insights on OKR check-ins or to get OKR software for your organization, book a consultation call with the experts today. 

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Gaurav Sabharwal


Gaurav is the CEO of JOP (Joy of Performing), an OKR and high-performance enabling platform. With almost two decades of experience in building businesses, he knows what it takes to enable high performance within a team and engage them in the business. He supports organizations globally by becoming their growth partner and helping them build high-performing teams by tackling issues like lack of focus, unclear goals, unaligned teams, lack of funding, no continuous improvement framework, etc. He is a Certified OKR Coach and loves to share helpful resources and address common organizational challenges to help drive team performance. Read More

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