Koan helps you set goals and measure progress. Once you have written incredible
OKRs, it's time to add them to Koan and (where it makes sense) link them to parent goals.

To learn how to add and link goals in Koan, keep reading. To view FAQ about adding and linking goals in Koan, scroll down to the bottom of this article.

Adding your OKRs to Koan

There are two essential parts to creating OKRs in Koan. First, you must add the titles and due dates of an objective and its associated key results. Then, you must edit the objective and each key result to add essential details by linking to a parent goal, noting the other team's working on the goal, and assigning leads and contributors.

Follow the steps below to learn how to do this!

1. Navigate to your team's Goals page and select the '+ Objective' icon.

2. Add the title and due date of your first objective in-line. Then select the 'Save' icon or click 'Enter/Return' on your keyboard to begin entering in your key results.

3. Next, enter the title and due date for each of the objective's associated key results. We'll automatically assign the same due-date as your objective to all of it's key results to cut down on the initial setup work you'll need to do.

4. Now you will have to go back and add essential details to your objective and to each key result. First let's start with the objective. Select the kabob icon to the right of the objective (the three dots) and click 'Edit Objective'.

5. Now you will want to add the following essential details to your objective:

  • Add a description to the objective. This will help your organization have a better understanding of what this goal is and why it is important.
  • Change the due date. If you forgot to enter a due date in the previous step, or want to change the due date, this is the place to do that.
  • Link to a parent objective. This is a very important step if this objective has a parent objective. Under 'Link to a parent objective or key result', you will need to search the full name of the parent goal you are looking for. The goal may not automatically populate in the dropdown menu immediately, you may need to search the full title of the parent goal in order to link to it. To learn more about linking goals in Koan, go here.
  • You will have the opportunity to add additional teams to this goal. You will want to assign other teams to the goal if individuals directly working on this goal belong to other teams and not your own. To learn more about multi-team goals, go here.
  • Assign a lead to the objective. (Assigning a lead to the overall objective is optional; however, assigning leads and contributors to the key results is required).

6. It is time to edit each key result! Select the kabob (three dots) icon to the right of the key result, and select 'Edit Key Result'.

7. You will want to now add the following essential details to the key result:

  • In the goal details, you will want to add an action plan as to how you will execute this key result. This details section will also communicate to the rest of the organization how you expect to complete this goal. Note that key results are not tasks, for this reason every key result will require sub-tasks that we suggest you manage either in the details section of the KR, or by adding a link within the details section to a project management or task-tracking tool.
  • You will need to add metric information. This includes the starting metric and the target metric. You can also edit the symbol of metric (to number, percentage, currency). You can update your metrics through the API if you'd like to have them automatically stay up to date. You can also set the key result to have no metric, but we suggest against this as it is best practice that all key results are metric based.
  • You can assign additional teams to this key result as well. You will want to add other teams to this goal if anyone directly working on the goal does not belong on your team. You will only be able to assign leads and contributors to this key results who are also members of the teams associated with the goal. To learn more about multi-team goals, go here.
  • You will need to assign a lead and contributors to the key result. There should only be one lead assigned and this individual should be the lead facilitator of this goal's execution. All contributors assigned to this goal should be working directly on the key result. The lead and contributors will all be asked on a weekly basis to submit a confidence rating for this key result.

8. That is it! Save your updates for all of the KRs, and then your OKR is complete. Now, repeat this process for every OKR that you have on your team.

Frequently Asked Questions about Adding and Linking Goals

Why can't I find my parent goal when trying to link my objective?

When linking your goals, there will be a dropdown menu of goals to choose from in addition to having the search bar option. Note that the dropdown menu does not contain all of the goals in the organization. If the goal you are looking for is not in the dropdown menu, you must search the name of the entire parent objective. By searching the whole name of the parent objective, the parent objective should become visible in the dropdown menu, and can be selected as a parent goal.

Should all goals be linked together?

Generally speaking, no! A strict hierarchical (tree structure) of goals/OKRs across your whole organization is simply too rigid in most cases. Even worse, it can force a "cascading" goal-setting process that is time-consuming and frustrating for everyone involved. Instead, try setting a few key top-level goals and then let each team use those as inspiration when setting their own. In the cases where goals are directly aligned, link them! There will be many other cases where teams are working on important goals that aren't directly related to the company's top-level goals -- find and encourage the right balance of behaviors and don't worry about making a perfect tree of goals!  

How do I view goal links? How do I know if a goal has a parent goal and/or child goals?

You can view the goal links in a few different places. If you are interested in seeing the big picture of linked goals throughout the organization, check out Tree View on the Organization Homepage. If you are looking at a specific goal, you can view child goals by selecting the goal itself. This will open up the goal's fly-out will additional information about its parent and child goals. For more information on viewing goal links, go here.

Can Objectives in a single team be linked?

Yes! Parent objectives in a single team can be linked.

How can I create top-level company/organization goals?

Goals usually inside individual teams. In many cases, your company-wide goals might live in an Executive team. In other cases, each department might own and be accountable for one of your top-level goals. We suggest that you take team-owned goals and promote them to company goals that will be showcased on the Organization Homepage. You can learn how to do this here.

What is the difference between assigning a team to a KR and assigning leads and contributors to a KR?

This is a common question, as many people think that assigning a team to an objective or key result is the same as assigning all the members of that team as responsible for the execution of the goal. This is not the case. Assigning a team and assigning a lead and contributors to a KR are two separate steps. If you assign a team to a goal, it makes that goal visible under the team's goals page and signals to the rest of the organization that the goal is primarily being executed by that team. That being said, assigning a team to a goal does not mean that the whole team is working on that goal. Of the members on the team(s) associated with the goal, you must assign a lead and contributors to the KR, they will be the ones responsible for executing the KR and for providing confidence and metric updates.

Do you have a question that isn't answered in this article? If so, send us a message directly by opening the chatbot in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. We will get back to you as soon as we can.

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