OKRs: What I wish we’d known at the start

OKRs: What I wish we’d known at the start

Neil Vass, Senior Project Manager at the BBC

OKRs are used in [namedrop huge successful companies] to great effect – would you like to try using them too?

This session will take a detailed look at how we’re using them on the BBC Children’s web team, covering everything from how the high-level goals are set down to how OKR processes interact with the daily and weekly ceremonies of our Kanban process. We’ve learned a lot about what works well and what pitfalls to look out for, and will be sharing that experience here.

Having clearly defined objectives can give the whole team a unified focus, and help to make the work outside of the near-term development tasks visible to everyone. And by concentrating on moving the right key results, team members start incorporating data-driven decisions into everything they work on – how are we going to tell whether this feature has helped us towards our goal? And what will we do if it hasn’t?

As part of this tutorial, you’ll get a chance to try out techniques to elicit and shape objectives and key results that can be used with your own team. You’ll also get a chance to evaluate your ideas based on the criteria we’ve found to be important, and a range of lessons learned that other companies have shared.

About Neil
Neil is an Agile Project Manager for the BBC Children’s web team, responsible for the CBeebies and CBBC websites. Previously, Neil has worked in a variety of roles on Waterfall, Agile, and Fragile projects, using a wide range of techniques from each. Previous project experience includes automating medical image analysis, specifying laboratory information management systems, and building a motion-tracking toothbrush to study brushing technique. It’s people problems that are the most interesting though.