I was browsing through the management books section at a mega book store in a sprawling Bangkok mall in November 2019. That is when I came across this amazing New York Times bestseller book authored by John Doerr ‘Measure What Matters’. As I was on holiday, I swiftly grabbed this book, placed myself in a vibrant and eclectic café on bustling Sukhumvit Road, Bangkok, and immersed into this impactful book while sipping onto a cappuccino.
At this point we were operating almost 10 restaurants in Jaipur, India across four brands like Kebabs \u0026amp; Curries Company, Thali \u0026amp; More, So Hi and K Fine Catering – our outdoor catering vertical. And, I was in search of an effective tool that I could implement with leaders and managers at the head office level and the outlet level to make each and every one of our team members responsible and accountable towards their role in our growing organization serving hundreds of guests daily.
Balance score card (BSC), Key Performance Indicators (KPI), Key Result Areas (KRA), Management by Objective (MBO), etc., were few goal setting and team accountability tools that I had used (in my previous workplaces), learnt or heard about previously. Still, I was looking at a tool, which, would be more flexible, dynamic, create better managers\/ leaders and fuel our company’s growth manifold across our brands and outlets.
Objectives \u0026amp; Key Results (OKRs) – a stellar concept promised an exponential 10X growth when implemented well across the organization. This was the promise that the book offered, and I simply got hooked onto the concept of OKRs for my whole organization. The 10X growth was an intriguing idea and I wanted to give it a serious shot.
After completing the book – ‘Measure What Matters’, I indulged in many more videos online, other content available on OKRs and also read another book ‘In the Plex’ – which was a book on Google’s working and thinking style. By now I had a fair idea of how could OKR be made a part of our daily lives across our outlets and teams.
Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) were a superb way to propel our teams in the right direction on the path of improvement and explosive growth. Google and many other small and big organizations had used OKRs as a tool to achieve all these marvels and it was now our turn to use this magical formula at (Kebabs and Curries India Pvt. Ltd) KCCO Group.
Below I am sharing a few key highlights that a restaurant owner may use to implement OKRs in their eatery or chain of outlets – first for themselves as the top head and then cascade these OKRs to the rest of the team too.
Select three to five bold, aspirational and smart objectives. Fewer objectives may lead to diffusion of effort and too many objectives may lead to over-extended teams. I have set-up five objectives for myself and for the team too.
Objectives should be always tangible and unambiguous. For example: “Motivated, ever learning and growing team members across KCCO Group.”
OKRs allow us to stay flexible as these are set for each quarter. These could be revisited frequently to adapt the direction of our focus and work as per the situation. OKRs differ from annual goal setting, wherein, it is not easy to revisit the goal in between the year, if there is a variation in business circumstances.
Each objective should be supported by three to five key results.
Please remember that key results express measurable mileposts which, when achieved, will directly contribute to the objective.
Key results should be numerically measurable and describe outcomes and not activities. Impact of the activities should be defined. For example: “Increase the guest satisfaction rating by 2 points compared to the current rating.”Measurable milestones should include evidence of completion and this evidence should be easily accessible and credible. For example: “Increase revenue by 10% across our outlets month on month”. In this key result, it is very easy to access and discover the growth in revenue through the revenue data available to the team. There is no ambiguity whatsoever.
Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) allow an organization to completely align the team from top to entry level. Each and every team member can see each other’s OKRs and this level of transparency breeds faith and allows creation of trusting teams. These trusting teams can very well play the Infinite Game and continuously achieve new heights in business while pushing the envelope.
I am delighted and thrilled to launch OKRs across our outlet teams and head office leadership and sky seems to be the limit as we get going with our OKRs. As we continue to keep business growth strong, I’d recommend this book ‘Measure What Matters’ as a must read for entrepreneurs who are building or aspire to build some strong brands in the days to come.
Varun Behl is a Jaipur based restaurateur operating a chain of restaurants and QSRs (Quick Service Restaurants). Varun is a seasoned food \u0026amp; beverage and hospitality management professional with experience spanning over 17 years; a decade of which is with Marriott International in India and its global operations. Food and beverage and entrepreneurship are his forte – which he lives every day and is keen to share his insights with peers and mentees alike.