How to think about OKRs
If you've read some of the other posts out there, they provide examples of OKRs that focus on outputs rather than outcomes. That is not the way to do it.
Here's how you shouldn't formulate your key results:
"Wake up at 6.30 AM every day"
You see, this is merely just a summarized todo-list of one waking up at 6.30 each day.
Key results should be stretch goals
Day-to-day initiatives are things you believe will take you closer to reaching goals
Not that we can agree on that, let's jump into some OKR examples for personal growth.
Example 1: Weight loss
This first example is focused on losing weight. Something that a lot of people can relate to. The same idea could also be used for gaining weight e.g. in relation to strength training, etc.
Objective: Become happier with your own body
Key Result: Achieve a 5kg weight loss
I know losing weight isn't easy, and I believe that I need to build routines and habits for me to get in the proper mental state for losing weight. As so, I decide on these OKR initiatives for my first week:
Fill water bottle in the morning and after lunch and bring to the desk
Prepare a bowl of fruits as an evening snack
Go for a walk during my lunch break
Now, as you can probably tell, these initiatives related to my personal OKR key result leave no guarantee of losing weight. But the idea here is to build easy habits. Habits that I know will make me eat fewer snacks and get at least a little exercise each day. Remember, small things compound over time.
Example 2: Book reading
I've always enjoyed reading books once I got started, but getting started is the tricky bit. So I set up this personal OKR for me to achieve:
Objective: Become a happier and more frequent reader of books
Key Result: Reach a 1 book/month reading pace
I know reading is all about getting in the right environment. I used to read a lot before bed, so what I set up as my first week initiatives were:
Set alarm for going to sleep 10 minutes earlier each night
Read at least 2 pages each night before bed
I know doing these two things would make me reach much more than 2 pages. Allowing myself to only read 2 in cases where I might be extremely tired or haven't got the time, ensures that I still feel like I have the momentum to keep going. Once I get started, I'm sure I could easily read 5-7 pages each night, and voila! All of a sudden I'm reading a small to medium-sized book each month.
Example 3: Writing blog posts
I've always enjoyed writing, but often there have been long periods of time where I just haven't prioritized it enough. I know writing is good for me, both in terms of getting thoughts on paper, but also in terms of sharing what I know with people around me and getting visitors from search engines. And so, I decided on the following OKR:
Objective: Reach all-time high visitor count on blog
Key Result: Reach the 100 visitors/week run rate
I've often struggled with knowing what to write about. So I decided that I would just write about what interests me. Now, this is a great example of the relationship between KRs and initiatives. These initiatives won't guarantee that I get there. But I believe they are something that will take me a lot closer to my goal. So this is what I've decided to do in the first week:
Create a spreadsheet with the top 5 categories that interest me
Make light keyword research on those categories and note down ideas for blog post subjects
Start each morning by writing at least 50 words on one of the subjects
I know that for my posts to get traffic, they need to be about something that people search for, hence the keyword research. I also know that SEO wizards often recommend around 1500 words for a decent blog post. So with this cadence, I'll have one post finished each month, which I'm totally fine with. The reality is that I've put out so much more, but these initiatives got me started and set me up for success.
Getting started with OKRs
Now you've gotten some inspiration for your OKRs. Next, it's time to get started creating and tracking them.
Head over to our templates page and find a template that matches a tool you're used to using. It's important that it's as easy to get started as possible, so we want as little tool friction as we can.
So there you have it! Three great examples of personal OKRs that anyone can set and achieve. Remember, these are just examples and you should tailor them to fit your unique goals and situation. But, if you're looking for some inspiration, hopefully, this article has given you a few ideas. Thanks for reading!