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One of the frequently asked questions I get from teams starting out to adopt the OKR framework – Objectives and Key results, is how to distinguish between an objective and a Key result.

Additionally, how do we word these – so that there is less or no ambiguity.

While a detailed treatment of OKRs would need to go beyond a blog post, in this Chow, the following exercise to tag statements as an Objective or Key Result would help understand better.

To oversimplify the difference, consider Objectives as the equivalent of Outcomes desired. Outomes normally also have an association expectation of a change in behavior, such as a purchase decision or changing a habit.

The Key Results would be indicators that can be measured – or, sometimes, sensed and can act as interim steps or goals. these may indicate specific actions to be taken by the team owning an objective or outputs to be created,

Check your understanding with the fun quiz below.