You do not rise to the level of your goals, you fall to the level of your systems*

OKRs, aided by Microsoft's Viva modules, streamline strategy execution, enhance performance, and boost employee retention, making goal attainment systematic, efficient, and effective.

The journey towards achieving greater goals can be a daunting one. Establishing an effective system to bridge the gap between ambition and execution is what often makes the difference. Goal setting lends direction, offers clarity, and forms the basis for informed decision-making. However, grandiose goals, despite being measurable and precise, can make us overlook the underlying process that catalyzes accomplishment.

Frederica Mathewes-Green insightfully stated, 'Everyone loves transformation, but no one wants to change.' The habits and behaviours you currently exhibit define your existing results - it's their intrinsic design. The challenge lies in transitioning to new behaviours that can propel you towards your new objectives. BJ Fogg's method promotes gradual steps - each stride assuring immediate benefits for those fostering new habits.

Strategic intentions are great, but without a systematic approach that monitors your daily habits and curates behaviour patterns to benefit you, you'll perpetually operate at the level of your current systems.

In the domain of OKRs (Objectives and Key Results), the Viva modules by Microsoft offer the allure of small steps and immediate benefits. Viva Goals facilitates a seamless process to articulate your strategy, the steps involved, and the progress you're making. This keeps everyone focused on top priorities, promotes teamwork, ensures accountability, motivates for better results and enhances execution agility.

Viva Topics allows every team member to understand the essence behind every vital work term or idea, connecting you with internal experts and external resources for easy adaptation and learning. Copilot serves as a tool to source information from both internal and external databases, providing quick, context-specific answers to every query.

Modules like Viva Glint, Insights, and Pulse empower everyone to learn about the company's attitudes, examine digital workplace information and take rapid surveys to assess whether the small steps are driving us in the right direction.

The brilliance lies not in the individual applications, but in how they interlink to create an intricate web that smoothly transfers information across modules. This interconnected ecosystem of tools allows for dynamic updates to the strategy over time and significantly reduces the effort to generate these intellectual assets.

The real magic unfolds when your leadership team uses an AI tool like Copilot to validate the reasonableness of a strategy against historical performance, existing constraints, and global experiences in similar industries and markets. Viva Engage processes this refined strategy and enhances its narrative by connecting it with historical activities and initiatives. Viva Amplify then repurposes this enriched story across various channels for both internal and external stakeholders.

Furthermore, Viva Topics organizes data into clickable data cards and in-depth content, which can be shared with Viva Learning, facilitating easy access for employees. Finally, Viva Connections serves as a portal on Teams, providing relevant data at the click of a button.

What difference does this interconnected web make? Research shows that the Viva suite reduces your team's administrative load by approximately 20%, freeing up valuable capacity. Moreover, the implementation of OKRs significantly increases the chances of correct strategy execution by threefold, boosts performance by 20%, and enhances employee retention by over 35%. The effective integration of OKRs with Microsoft's Viva modules promises a seamless journey from goal setting to successful execution.

*Note on the tile:  Adapted from the Greek poet Archilochus: “We don't rise to the level of our expectations, we fall to the level of our training.”

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Brett Knowles

Brett Knowles is a thought leader in the Strategy Execution space for high-tech organizations. His client work has been published in Harvard Business Review, Forbes, Fortune, and many other business publications.

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