Each quarter I take a deeper dive into my goals. In this post, I will look briefly at my December 2020 results and extensively at my performance from October – December 2020.

This post is long and worth the read. My hope is that you’ll steal my process for goal reflection and use it to boost your leadership.

OKRs are a leader’s secret productivity weapon.

If you’d like some 1:1 coaching establishing your OKRs, create a plan to achieve them, and accountability to track results, send me an email (daniel@betterleadersbetterschools.com)

Past dashboard results:

December 2020 Results & Q4 OKR Reflection

Service

The mastermind stayed steady and one leader from the edupreneur mastermind as well as 1:1 hit pause. Both promised to return in early 2021 so the service side of things are great.

Platforms

Email. A slight downturn here. BLBS adds plenty of new subscribers each month, but we also lose old subscribers who no longer want our emails or just want a tidier inbox. To date I haven’t run advertisements to increase subscribers to our emails, I may look into that in 2021.

Podcast. Both podcasts continue to perform. I’d go crazy if I put too much stock into one month’s performance. For example, BLBS was up 21% and the School Leadership Series was down 14% in December. When I look at the annual performance BLBS was up 17% for the year and SLS was up 74%. I’m happy with that performance.

Book Sales. 20 books seem to be what educators buy without running any ads. The majority of purchases come from audible. The next book I do will have much more marketing behind it so I can serve more leaders.

Website. Overall this category was up for the year. The hard work putting in with my team is reaching a new segment of school leaders who don’t know the podcast and discover BLBS via a web search.

Productivity

To be honest, I barely did any work in December. I posted my first percentage under 80% and I didn’t really track my effort. It’s good to hit the ground running with this post in 2021.

Q4 2020 OKR Results & Takeaways

Scoring

“The simplest, cleanest way to score an objective is by averaging the percentage of completion rates of its associated results.”

John Doerr in Measure What Matters

Google uses the following scale, so I stole like an artist and used it too:

  • 🟢 0.7 – 1.0 = green (I delivered).
  • 🟡 0.4 – 0.6 = yellow (I made progress, but fell short of completion).
  • 🔴 0.0 – 0.3 = red (I failed to make real progress).
🟢 OBJECTIVE 1: HELP MORE SCHOOL LEADERS LEVEL UP [76%] (1.0+1.0+0.6+0.2+1.0 = 3.8/5)
KEY RESULTS (Q3 2020)
🟢 Form mastermind coach team and begin training by November 30 [1.0]
🟢 Add one 1:1 coaching client by November 30, 2021 [1.0]
🟡 Grow “Edupreneur” mastermind to 10 members by December 31 [0.6]
🔴 Watch 1-2 videos a week in WBECS [PAUSED]
🟢 Read Coactive Coaching to sharpen my coaching skills [1.0]
🟢 OBJECTIVE 2: CREATE VALUABLE CONTENT [80%]
KEY RESULTS (Q3 2020)
🟢 Complete first draft of manuscript by November 15 [1.0]
🔴 Launch Season 1 Better Leaders Better Schools archive [0.2]
🟢 Publish one guest blog on my site a month [1.0]
🟢 Launch new website by October 31 [1.0]
🔴 Create content for new website [PAUSED]
🟡 OBJECTIVE 3: INCREASE BRAND AWARENESS [63%]
KEY RESULTS (Q3 2020)
🔴 50K downloads a month for BLBS by December 31 [0.5]
🟢 20K downloads a month for SLS by December 31 [0.9]
🟢 2500K organic visitors a month to the website by December 31 [0.9]
🔴 Increase domain score to 47 [0.2]
🟡 OBJECTIVE 4: NURTURE EXISTING STUDENTS [63%]
🟢 Weekly postcards [0.8]
🟡 Weekly phone calls [0.6]
🔴 Research other creative ways to connect [0.5]
🔴 OBJECTIVE 5: Improve Fitness [0%]
🔴 Cardio or HIIT 4x/week [0.0]
🔴 Yoga 3x/week [0.0]

Self-Assessment

In the self-assessment, I give the objective ratings a soul.

OKRProgressScoreSelf-assessment
Help more leaders level up76%0.8I’m happy with where things are. We created a mastermind coach team this quarter so the focus of building the infrastructure to meet the coming demand for coaching and mentorship was a good use of time.

In the next quarter, I need to nurture this group and get serious about growing the mastermind community for school leaders and edupreneurs. I know what’s worked in the past and I will get to that this quarter.
Create valuable content80%1.0I focused on my new book which was the right choice. Adding more to my plate here isn’t a good use of time unless I can delegate those action items (e.g. maybe run ads to boost downloads of the podcasts?).

It felt good to ship the first draft of my next book on time. This quarter will be focused on the 2nd draft and making it better.

I will commit to creating new content for my new website. This will be short form posts so the time investment will be minimal. I also want to create more video which will be fun. I hired someone to do the editing so besides recording, this also isn’t a major time investment.
Increase brand awareness63%0.8Quarterly, the results were lower than I like, but annually this was a great year for brand awareness. Podcast downloads grew for both shows and I am working with more sponsors on the podcast. It is probably time to invest some dollars into advertising to grow the podcast because this is the most leverageable tool I have to serve more school leaders.
Nurture existing students63%0.8I started painting original postcards for existing students. This has been a great creative outlet and way to show my appreciation for them. I didn’t research other creative ways to connect, but the cards and calls are enough for now.
Improve fitness0%0.0No excuses. I didn’t make this a priority. My weight is solid, but my fitness is garbage. In preparation for 2021 I have bought a pull-up bar and kettlebell. I need to make time for Yoga which I enjoy (but is harder to do minus the community aspect). I think I may have talked my wife into buying a Peloton, although I don’t need it to get into better shape. I would like it because of the competition/community aspect. I know that would motivate me.

Did I accomplish all of my objectives? If so, what contributed to my success?

I delivered on 2-of-5 goals this quarter. From a performance standpoint, this has been the worst quarter since I started tracking my progress in 2019. Coaching and creating content is what I do best, so it’s no surprise those were my highest categories.

If not, what obstacles did I encounter?

I didn’t focus and execute like I usually do. I was the obstacle.

If I were to rewrite a goal achieved in full, what would I change?

I need to launch new cohorts this year. So that will be contingent on 1) getting the word out and 2) making sure we are ready internally for the demand.

What have I learned that might alter my approach to the next cycle’s OKRs?

I continue to write here the importance of focusing on less. This is still a struggle, but as I end this reflection and switch to thinking about Q1 2021 I commit to fewer goals so there is nowhere to hide.

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