What do iconic fictional villains have in common? They (almost) always lose in the end. In our Villains of OKR series, we analyze the mistakes in their strategy execution and learn from their successes and failures through an OKRs lens. Welcome to our summertime “Beat the Heat” series!
“I’m indeed the future of the planet. I’m the necessary shot to the system. I am human evolutionary change. Bulletproof. Superhuman!”
Name: Brixton Lore, AKA “Black Superman,” AKA “Future of the Planet”
Credentials: Former MI6 agent. Genetically modified bad guy.
Brixton Lore came close to achieving his Objective multiple times, but he was unable to neutralize the threat to his success by completing Key Result 3 — Kill Luke Hobbs (The Rock) and Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham). Brixton posts a measly 62.5% on his OKR, despite dominating the protagonists of Hobbs & Shaw for the majority of the film.
Brixton was ruthless in his pursuit of The Snowflake, a bio-engineered virus capable of killing around half of the human population. The Snowflake was Darwinistic in its intent, meant to clear the path for the genetically superior humans on earth. Hattie Shaw — Deckard Shaw’s sister and MI6 agent — injected The Snowflake into her body to prevent Brixton from getting his hands on it.
Hobbs & Shaw
’s plot? Extract the virus before it kills Hattie or falls into Brixton’s hands. And drink at the worst times.
Although Brixton failed to capture Hattie in London, and secure Hattie to extract the virus at the laboratory, he consistently pushed to rectify his mistake. Brixon sought to extract The Snowflake for Eteon, an unseen commanding terrorist organization that gave him his superhuman capabilities. Brixton ultimately succeeded at having the virus extracted (thanks to the Hobbs’ family), but failed to retrieve The Snowflake, being decommissioned (terminated) in the process.
Which two major flaws caused Brixton’s failure with his OKR?
Brixton had henchmen from Eteon working with him at all phases of his pursuit. London. The laboratory. Samoa. While he had a “team,” he never created a strategy to work AS a team. Brixton was a lone wolf pretending to be a leader, especially for the critical fight in Samoa.
None of his henchmen had a coordinated counterdefense against Hobbs and Shaw. In London, his men are taken out after they breached the window and while they rappeled down the skyscraper. In the laboratory, Brixton’s soldiers had Hobbs, Shaw, and Hattie captured, yet they seemed clueless as soon Professor Andreiko came out with a flamethrower and Hobbs/Shaw/Hattie were free.
In the final crescendo, as Brixton battles Hobb and Shaw 2-vs-1, his henchman stands around holding Hattie at gunpoint. She has the extraction device attached to her, making her a minimal threat. Had Brixton thought of teamwork, his henchman could have easily been the equalizer in the Hobbs and Shaw final battle (thanks to his weapon).
In business, running a team without a unified focus is like everyone paddling a boat in different directions. Brixton’s henchmen serve as an example of what happens without a common Objective uniting a workforce. OKRs allow us to create personal Objectives that tie into a larger team or department-specific OKR. This allows for collaboration between team members on the methods to achieve the Objective.
OKRs keep us focused on throwing the punches
expecting punches in return. Brixton’s henchmen worked in a dictatorship. They had no orders when the bullets started flying from the other side, and no unified Objective to pursue independently. A major impact on Brixton’s OKR failure was choosing brazen confidence over teamwork.
He tried doing too much at once
Brixton’s second OKR flaw comes when he loses focus on his Objective and what mattered to accomplish it. Kidnapping Hattie and keeping her in one place long enough, away from the formidable duo of Hobbs and Shaw, was a nearly impossible task. His relentlessness made his plan
bulletproof. Attempting to recruit Hobbs and Shaw through torture (a task) had nothing to do with the retrieval of The Snowflake.
He had the good guys apprehended. He had his targets, Hattie and The Snowflake virus, secured in one location. Disposing of Hobbs and Shaw instead of torturing them would have removed the opportunity for Hattie’s escape. Brixton focused entirely too much on Eteon’s Objective — recruiting more genetically eligible soldiers — and it cost him The Snowflake and his life.
In business, ambition is a significant driver of culture. It’s great to have an ambitious team or be an ambitious leader. However, a common flaw with OKRs is setting too many of them. For professional OKRs, we recommend that each individual is only responsible for one OKR per quarter.
OKRs are meant to give us focus. They force us to answer the questions:
does this really matter?
How does this tie into the
Anything more than one OKR quickly turns into an extensive task list of outputs, or a chaotic frenzy of trying to get everything done. In Brixton’s case, a team OKR would have been ideal for his pursuit — time was of the essence, but his teams lacking a clear Objective was a weakness. Brixton demonstrates, even as a superhuman, it’s easy to lose focus on what truly matters.
And none of us are super-soldiers with advanced genetic capabilities.
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