Dear Andy,

My question is regarding transparency and visibility of my OKRs. I manage four functions and have respective team members. Should I publish my OKRs to all the team members, even if they are not related internally? Also, from a visibility aspect, should this be visible to all the layers of the hierarchy? If yes, won’t it be over information, and could there be a scope of this being published in public domain? (Certain OKRs could be confidential, hence the question.)


We're sharing reader questions, answered by the team. Named in the honor of Andy Grove, the creator of OKRs.

Hi Keyur!

Thanks for writing in and for your great question. Transparency and visibility are extremely important to the OKR process, so there’s much to discuss regarding your question. Let’s dive in.

At What Matters, we think it’s vital for OKRs to be plainly visible to the rest of the company. This is especially important for an organization’s top-level OKRs because they are the basis for the rest of the company. Make it possible for anyone to connect their contributions to the organization’s broadest goals.

Some organizations host their OKRs on an internal wiki. Others create a universally shared document. By enabling the entire organization to see every OKR at every level, you’ll foster accountability and align priorities.

Shareable OKRs help teams avoid silos. Often, one or more of your KRs directly affects another team’s work. External teams could have skills you were unaware of that could make achieving a KR much easier. Visibility helps remind everyone that you’re all in this together!

There may, of course, be circumstances where an OKR needs to remain confidential. Private OKRs are common when companies go into crisis mode. Things like budget cuts, layoffs, and company-wide restructuring can constitute OKRs that aren’t widely publicized – at first. In events like these, start with a private OKR that’s only visible on a need-to-know basis. Once the wider company has been informed of the changes coming up, add the private OKR. Just make sure everyone who needs to know is informed beforehand.

Thanks for writing in, Keyur, and best of luck to you on your OKR journey.


Billy from the What Matters Team

We're sharing reader questions, answered by the team. Named in the honor of Andy Grove, the creator of OKRs.