7 min read

Top 5 OKR Podcasts

Top 5 OKR Podcasts
Listen your way into the world of OKRs

We’ve come up with a playlist to help you get an understanding of OKRs. When you go through this playlist, you’ll get the answers to these common questions - 

  • Should you be getting on the OKRs bandwagon? Is it a good time? 
  • How could you transitioning from an older framework like KPIs to OKRs? 
  • Are you suited to following Agile practices in your organization? 
  • What should you do if you are completely new to strategy execution frameworks? 

We’ve got plenty more questions answered for you – hope you’re just as excited about finding out. This playlist, paired with our newsletter and blogs, should get you up to speed on OKRs in just a couple of hours! 

Here are some favorites from our growing list of podcasts from wonderful speakers. At Fitbots OKRs, we do a bi-weekly podcast recording and share it with our listeners. Follow us on LinkedIn to get regular updates on this! Also, please do write to us if you’d like to share your own thoughts on OKRs/your experience around it! 

Before we get started, let me introduce you to our lovely host, Vidya Santhanam. Vidya’s the Co-founder and CEO of Fitbots OKRs. She’s written about whether podcasts are even a good idea 😬 you can read her article here

Without further ado, let’s dive into this list of OKR podcasts categorized by either team, industry, segment, or supporting framework! 

#1 OKRs for startups 

Start-Ups = Growth. Growth is fueled by Alignment. And OKRs drive Alignment

Building a startup is hard work and requires a well-orchestrated engine of Sales, Product, Engineering, Customer Success, and Product Marketing to work toward the common goal at all times. As leaders of a SaaS start-up, your initial days might consist of trial and error, until you reach that predictable and repeatable formula that launches you onto the path to successful returns and customer acquisitions. For example, your success formula could help you go beyond the $1 Million revenue mark, and your next milestone is to get to the $10 Million ARR. So, what might get you there?  

To grow your business at an aspirational, achievable fast but sustainable pace, you need to optimize your operational output and focus on efficiency growth. A practice that we see tons of successful founders and CXOs adopt is: Setting SaaS OKRs early to increase the focus and impetus around growth-based initiatives and minimize inefficiencies or misalignments that could be key derailers to organizational growth. OKRs is a great framework that aligns teams and propels them towards that 10X growth that everyone wants! 

Tune into this conversation with Nigel Miller, a results-driven executive with over 30 years of experience in both Fortune 500 companies and startup organizations. With multiple successful exits, he has proven himself as a cross-functional team player, able to lead organizations to success through strong go-to-market strategies, international channel development, and the assembling and coaching of strong sales teams. There are some compelling arguments here for why your startup will do better with OKRs. 

👂🏼 Tune in here - https://www.fitbots.com/audio-podcasts/okrs-for-startups

Additionally, there's a specific take on it, by Tejas Mehta, co-founder of SocialPilot, if yours is a bootstrapped startup. You can find it here

#2 OKRs and Agile 

Time and again, new management techniques have emerged, sometimes as improvements and alterations to existing systems. Sometimes, the concepts are radically different and end up changing the status quo. But before we dwell further, let's quickly examine the origins of Agile and how we need to alter its changing world. 

What’s Agile? 

Agile project management originated from the open-source community and was loosely based on the principles of SEI and TSCM. This new style of working was born in the 1980s, and it includes all the following points: working in rapid iterations, collaborative teamwork, daily stand-up meetings, frequent releases, autonomy for programmers and developers, flexibility in schedules, etc. All these are nowadays known as Agile methods or software development processes (SDPR). The core concepts of Agile revolve around working and communicating with a team to get better software by quickly delivering products. To achieve the best results, Agile emphasizes the importance of cross-functional teams and continuous customer feedback. In short, Agile is an approach to improving software development productivity.

“In a Hybrid World, Agile Is Fragile Without OKRs.”

Doesn’t this sound like a very bold statement to make?

Well, if you go to the genesis and first principles of Agile, there is a huge overlap between OKRs (Objectives & Key Results) and Agile practices. Yet, they remain fundamentally different.

At Fitbots, we have worked with hundreds of teams following Agile practices. Project teams may feel more susceptible to burnout at work as they have to produce iterative outputs every week/two weeks in the name of deliverables. What’s the solution? It is more than just OKRs and making sprints truly agile. 

Here are 5 simple ingredients that make it work.

  • Organize your Sprint backlog and Epics focused on OKRs
  • The Product Owner should not own the OKRs, rather, OKRs should be owned by the team members who are executing the OKRs
  • Celebrate outputs and recognize outcomes 
  • When you fail, celebrate and re-evaluate your work
  • Exchanges notes on how to drive outcomes over outputs 

We’ve dived into the relationship with Agile and OKRs deeper in this blog as well as in this wonderful podcast with Jim Apodaca (We love trailblazers who set out on the path of creating success stories with OKRs). So, let's hear from the founder of Apodaca Consulting, OKR Coach, Agile Strategist, and Change Management Leader, on how companies should go about implementing the OKR framework.

👂🏼 Catch the conversation here - https://www.fitbots.com/audio-podcasts/ep-16-connecting-the-dots-between-agile-and-okrs

As a Scrum Master, if your team is exhibiting types of anti-patterns then you need to ask why and what can we do to correct these issues. Are you sacrificing team alignment and doing a tremendous disservice to your teams? Here’s another interesting read by Jim!

#3 OKRs and KPIs

When it comes to OKRs and KPIs, both frameworks measure performance and the aim of both approaches is to focus on company growth. However, KPIs allow for getting details at an individual level, whereas OKRs are usually set for teams and for the organization as a whole and shift the focus from ‘me’ to ‘we’. KPIs focus more on input vs. output. But, sometimes output and input might not lead to the intended outcomes. In contrast, OKRs align teams to company-level metrics, encourage collaboration to achieve common outcomes, and remove the unhealthy competition from within the company. 

When moving out of the ‘existence’ mode and into the competitive mode, companies are often faced with the dilemma of choosing a management strategy. There are almost too many options out there - KPIs, MBOs, 4DX and so many more. This article will explore the differences between KPIs and OKRs, and provide you with enough information to decide which framework (or maybe a blend of both) might be most suitable for your company.

Another thing to consider is the transparency and alignment between the two frameworks. KPIs are usually focused on individual roles and work and might not be always shared or transparent between teams. However, OKRs are visible to all members of the company. It’s highly possible that even when all your employees achieve their KPIs, the company’s metrics do not grow. Successful OKR implementation will connect employee activities to company metrics on a weekly basis with check-in meetings. You could dive deeper into this topic with this blog.

Until then, catch Ankit Prasad - CEO and Founder of Bobble AI, and Dr. Rakshita Shharma - CHRO, Startup Advisor and Angel Investor, in conversation with Vidya, about the difference between OKRs and KPIs.

👂🏼 Jump into the podcast - https://www.fitbots.com/audio-podcasts/transitioning-from-kpis-to-okrs

#4 OKRs for Hybrid and Remote Teams 

The world is still reeling from the effects of the Great Resignation and fears of the upcoming recession with a record number of people leaving their jobs since the beginning of the pandemic. 

To survive the pandemic, companies had to rely heavily on the ability to rapidly shift their culture while performing at a sustainable rate. This meant adopting remote or hybrid work policies. For most traditional setups, it marked the end of an era because they had never implemented hybrid work.`What they learned was that when done right, remote work allows teams to focus on what really matters— the company’s performance and growth. Over the last two years, organizations have come to agree on one thing: They must figure out effective ways to overcome the limitations exerted by distance, and aligning remote teams in the right direction is crucial to the success of a remote or hybrid workplace.

But then, uncertainty and unpredictability have always been vital parts of any business journey. Smart leaders know that only great risks can yield great results. While uncertainty can paralyze decision-makers, it can also create a platform for resilient players to emerge victorious by calculating their risks and playing to their strengths. A good leader already knows when to engage with risks and uncertainty and create opportunities for success.

Aligning hybrid teams which are dispersed as per location, time zones, and mode of working, many of whom would be virtually onboarded and remote forever, requires deliberate thinking, and a strategic approach toward connecting the company mission to metrics that most matter. This is where OKRs (Objectives and Key Results) come in.

Here are 4 reasons why companies choose OKRs to empower their remote teams:

  • Focusing the attention of a global pool of employees 
  • Managers go beyond managing - they become better leaders and coaches
  • OKRs keep employees engaged by celebrating their efforts
  • OKRs use Connect and Align to enable collaboration and innovation

In this podcast, George LaRocque, Founder of WorkTech talks about his entrepreneurial journey, performance in a new hybrid workplace and how OKRs (Objectives and Key Results) played an important role. You'll discover what's the best thing for the business and how we can be flexible, find and hire and then retain talent in your organization.

👂🏼 Tune in here - https://www.fitbots.com/audio-podcasts/performance-in-a-hybrid-workplace-ft-george-larocque

#5 Sponsoring OKRs

Founders spend days and nights with business in mind. All that matters is, taking their baby and seeing it succeed. They experiment, measure, optimize, coach teams, rinse and repeat. Despite all the literature out there on what not to do, there continue to be ‘data debacles’ that one can fall into just on the charade of moving towards decisions backed by data. That is where OKRs come in.

Founders, CEOs, COOs, Chiefs of Staff, or Chief Strategy Officers make the best sponsors of OKRs. The OKR sponsor defines the success criteria for the OKRs program.

The truth of the matter is that companies have put in enormous amounts of time and effort in trying to figure out growth, PMF, and most importantly deciphering the relationship between efforts and outcomes to answer the key question of why they have not attained the success that they desire. The obstacle lies in the fact that in this digital age, we have lost the art of goal-setting and have instead replaced it with relatively vague goals such as “Make things better.”

Take a listen to Brett Pharis, Digital Media, and Affiliate Marketing Advisor and former COO at Clearlink, in conversation with Vidya Santhanam.

Brett digs into his experience with introducing OKRs into Clearlink and implementing it within several layers of the organization. Find some insightful nuggets on how you can be successful at piloting OKRs, there's definitely some advice for both large and small teams and organizations.

👂🏼 Take a listen -  https://www.fitbots.com/audio-podcasts/okr-sponsors-guide-learnings-from-the-trench

About the Author

Bani is an OKR enthusiast who anchors content and marketing at Fitbots OKRs. She loves spreading the love of OKRs to enrich workplaces and collaborating to create engaging content for her readers.

Get your OKRs right with

TRY IT FREE
Book a demo