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Measure What Matters

How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs
Narrated by: John Doerr, full cast
Length: 7 hrs and 56 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (112 ratings)
Price: CDN$ 30.70
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Publisher's Summary

Legendary venture capitalist John Doerr reveals how the goal-setting system of Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) has helped tech giants from Intel to Google achieve explosive growth - and how it can help any organization thrive.

In the fall of 1999, John Doerr met with the founders of a start-up whom he'd just given $12.5 million, the biggest investment of his career. Larry Page and Sergey Brin had amazing technology, entrepreneurial energy, and sky-high ambitions, but no real business plan. For Google to change the world (or even to survive), Page and Brin had to learn how to make tough choices on priorities while keeping their team on track. They'd have to know when to pull the plug on losing propositions, to fail fast. And they needed timely, relevant data to track their progress - to measure what mattered.

Doerr taught them about a proven approach to operating excellence: Objectives and Key Results. He had first discovered OKRs in the 1970s as an engineer at Intel, where the legendary Andy Grove ("the greatest manager of his or any era") drove the best-run company Doerr had ever seen. Later, as a venture capitalist, Doerr shared Grove's brainchild with more than 50 companies. Wherever the process was faithfully practiced, it worked.

In this goal-setting system, objectives define what we seek to achieve; key results are how those top-priority goals will be attained with specific, measurable actions within a set time frame. Everyone's goals, from entry level to CEO, are transparent to the entire organization.

The benefits are profound. OKRs surface an organization's most important work. They focus effort and foster coordination. They keep employees on track. They link objectives across silos to unify and strengthen the entire company. Along the way, OKRs enhance workplace satisfaction and boost retention.

In Measure What Matters, Doerr shares a broad range of first-person, behind-the-scenes case studies, with narrators including Bono and Bill Gates, to demonstrate the focus, agility, and explosive growth that OKRs have spurred at so many great organizations. This book will help a new generation of leaders capture the same magic.

Read by John Doerr, William Davidow, Brett Kopf, Jini Kim, Mike Lee, Atticus Tysen, Patti Stonesifer, Susan Wojcicki, Cristos Goodrow, Julia Collins, Alex Garden, Joseph Suzuki, Andrew Cole, Bono, and others 

©2018 John Doerr (P)2018 Penguin Audio

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Life Changing

This is likely to be the single most important book I have ever read. The message is clear, OKRs are the way to get things done. But not just for getting things done, for creating a culture of openness, clarity, honesty, safety.
This book has a full cast of narrators who have talked the talk and walked the walk. They provide the evidence for the system. They make you care so deeply about each element and make the listening experience enjoyable and engaging.
John Doerr has become a hero to me after listening to this, I will implement the lessons learned in this book for the rest of my life and try to spread this message.
I cannot recommend this book enough.
I am so thankful to everyone involved in creating and making this book available.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • TKP
  • 2019-01-20

Good read. Nice takeaways.

A good introduction to OKRs with some good examples and explanations. This book is a solid initial resources on what to start with and what to think about while adapting and expanding your OKR initiative.

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Highly recommend this!

A client introduced this to me and it was definitely well worth the listen #Audible1

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Great intro to OKRs

The books is a really good introduction to the concept of OKRs (Outcomes & Key Results) and how they can benefit your company. I particularly liked the use of multiple narrators, it kept the material more interesting. It isn't necessarily a really deep book, but if you want to learn about OKRs and how they have helped numerous companies it is worth listening to. #Audible1

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Wonderful Insights into the Benefits of OKRs

I purchased this audio book (#Audible1) to discover insights and tips with focus and achieving results. I knew nothing about OKRs. I had never actually heard about OKRs before, in any business book. Now I wish I knew about OKRs 15 years ago.

I have come across other internet reviews that mention this book doesn't go deep enough. Those were mainly from OKR coaches/consultants. But for me - an IT professional, an entrepreneur, a dad, a husband ... this was just the inspiration I needed to start using OKRs in both my professional and personal life. The stories in the book offer great insights into the benefits of OKRs. And the stories are very inspirational. Sure, there are subtleties and nuances to implementing OKRs that might not be touched on in this book. But I don't think that's the point. Those answers will come as you dive into using OKRs on a daily basis. And as John Doeer indicates frequently, the process is customizable.

This is a great read for anyone looking to increase focus and results in any area of life - whether that be a professional or personal. But the benefits of adopting OKRs for a business of any size are many. And this book is a perfect starting point. Learning about OKRs from the people that know them the best.

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Thought-provoking and practical

I was introduced to this book my a new employer who implements the OKR system. As someone who values thoughtful, intentional planning and execution I found this book challenged me to think about those topics in a different way. It teaches you, through interesting story telling, how to be a more effective contributor and how to rally a team around better execution. #Amazon1

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Practical & thought-provoking

I've read (listened) to the book twice now. The primary narrator, also the author, makes for easy listening. The real-world examples and breadth of different types of companies helps recognize that the framework is achievable no matter if you are just starting up a business or having hit a plateau in a large well-established organization. Worth the investment of time...twice over :)

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Great book.

A lot of great information and insight a bout some of the most successful businesses in history. Great book #Audible1

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a little slow narration but a great book

a little slow narration but a great book. For business or if you love business success history. you'll live the book.

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Nothing but marketing material for OKRs

They should really be paying us to listen to this drivel, it’s truly nothing but a long form infomercial for OKRs.

The stories go on and on, without really helping anyone actually understand how to implement an OKR process in the real-world.

There is absolutely no critical evaluation of OKRs in the sense of their limitations, how they compare with other processes empirically (e.g. are OKRs 10% better, 50% or negligibly better than process XYZ?).

Skip this book, there’s much better practical and free OKR material just a google search away!

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • James S.
  • 2018-05-08

Educational, inspirational, entertaining, ~dry..

As one of the preeminent Oracles on turning nothing into something, when John Doerr speaks, it's "probably" best that we pay attention. And in this audible, John has help from many high-producing people who tell their own stories.

Following the "Ideas are cheap, execution is everything" ideal, this book is somewhere between an exhibitionary, to an in-depth guide, on how to produce lasting results in any area of your life. Here is what I got out of it:

Educational- How and why to implement OKR's (Objectives and Key Results) and CFR's (Conversations, Feedback, and Recognition), ideas originated at Intel by Andy Grove.

Inspirational- Hearing the pragmatic parts of real success stories is always inspirational.

Entertaining- This audible includes a full cast of characters; some as necessary imitations, but mostly the originals.

Dry- For me it was a bit dry at times, as "educational" topics sometimes are; so depending on your taste, you might want to prepare to rewind many times so you don't miss out something important. Worth the rewinds, though.

In all, we are very lucky to have access to such invaluable experiences as exhibited in this book.

37 of 39 people found this review helpful

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  • Dan Richards
  • 2018-06-08

Last chapter covers what matters most

Last chapter covers what matters most and with more detail; the rest of the book is anecdotes.

48 of 52 people found this review helpful

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  • BC
  • 2018-05-29

OK

Glad I read, but OKRs are concepts that could be grasped in a paragraph. Thoroughly explained in a few pages. Felt unnecessarily long.

18 of 20 people found this review helpful

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  • John Moncada
  • 2018-05-29

Blueprint for working smarter

ideas vs execution. Andy Grove's statement about all the hard work that's done by so many but not effective execution hit home

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Gvido
  • 2018-05-07

Inspiration and knowledge on OKRs

This is a great resource on extensive OKR knowledge. From historical explanation on the subject, to hands on explanation on how to use and apply OKR now within any organisation - small or large. The book is full of examples from players like Google and Intel to mention few. As an extra spice it is in part read by Bill Gates, Bono and many others who use the OKRs within their organization. An amazing book!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Aimee Brookshire
  • 2018-06-13

Well done!!

Great book!! Loved the variety of narration by story owners (was a nice touch). John truly has a passion for the subject and a keen insight as well. Glad to have read this book and will likely read again.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Jiri Klouda
  • 2018-06-06

Unstructured

Teaching by examples is nice and the summary at the end somewhat makes up for it, but this is mostly a collection of stories. The approach to OKR is experimental rather than systemic and it would be so much more useful if the book went into much more detailed examples of OKRs, followed a team over time as their OKRs are developing and changing as a result of internal interactions. Even if this information was 10 years old, it would be much more useful as connected block than the sampling and wild jumping around in this book.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2018-05-17

Thank you! Great job!

Perfect audio, nice to hear speakers with their stories and the author's voice. Interesting, well paced, super mix of theory and examples. Excellent!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • T. Wendland
  • 2018-11-01

Valuable content. Tough listen.

Too long, somewhat repetitive, terrible audio editing. But, the core content is worthy. Buy this one in print...skip the audio.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • julian
  • 2018-10-22

great

but difficult to follow with all those acronyms. great that the real life experiences are read by those who experienced them

1 of 1 people found this review helpful