Below you’ll find our 2018 OKR’s so you can understand how I think about building the company and what it might be like to think about goal setting for your company or any startup.
First, OKR’s are just an acronym for Objective: Key Result(s). Essentially, it’s setting a high level goal, with more tactical goals to get there.
For example, Elon musk might set a 2018 OKR to build 5,000 cars a week, and to get there — they need to operationalize and streamline the assembly line, hire 1,000 new workers, and reduce time to build each car by 20%.
Objective 1: Establish Product Market Fit
- KR1: Ship 1,000 units
- KR2: Collect & Analyze feedback
- KR3: Understand KPI’s (key performance indicators, jargon for metrics you want to track to see if the thing you are building is doing well) such as LTV, Churn, Usage, AOV, CAC, COGs, NPS and others.
Objective 2: Establish Manufacturing & Supply Chain/QA
- KR1: Operationalize manufacturing with 1 month lead time
- KR2: Establish scaleable QA program within factories
Objective 3: Grow Company
- KR1: Increase People
- KR 2: Increase Product
- KR3: Increase Process
Now, very few goals are perfect and there is a lot more granularity and nuance associated with each objective and each goal. Shipping 1,000 units itself isn’t necessarily indicative of PMF at all — but it’s a means to get there, and unblocks a lot of the other things and is a meaningful step. Plus, it’s our minimum order quantity! It’s more about the feedback and usage we get that will determine pmf and about the demand around it.
Similarly, increasing people and increasing process aren’t great key results in and of themselves; if we don’t need to add headcount, then it’s obsolete. Never add process just to add complexity or process. But part of operationalizing and scaling and growing the company does mean that it’s important to put in place processes that help us all be more efficient in our jobs. You don’t want a new employee or anyone to have to reinvent the wheel each time they have to do something.
I hope this helps you understand what it’s like to set goals for a company or a product, or at least understand more about Simtek and our goals for 2018! I always think back to ‘what are we really trying to do?’ and that makes it simple to think about plans for the future.
Setting good goals is a post in itself — but the general rule is make them SMART. Specific, Measureable, Actionable, Relevant, and Timely.
I’ll post a follow up closer to EOY on our results.