Building World-Class Operations as a COO with OKRs

Chief Operating Officers are great firefighters. At least, that’s what our COO of Gtmhub Seth Elliott insinuated on The Horizontal Thinkers Roundtable: COO Edition: 

“The COO is about strategic growth acceleration and cross-functional efficiency. And putting out fires.” 

But world-class operations are built on more than reacting to what’s happening in your organization. Excellence in the COO role, as Seth said, requires building cross-functional teams, balancing efficiency, and effectiveness, and keeping growth at the forefront of operations. To borrow from Seth again:

“It’s about optimization for the mountain and not the hill.”  

COOs need a framework that can manage these expectations. The only one that holds up? OKRs .

As a COO, you’re tasked with rapidly disseminating information and optimizing the process behind what teams do with that information. OKRs grant the greatest transparency and alignment possible in a framework, which means they are already optimized for the COO role. 

However, successful operations require trust and a degree of autonomy from the COO, not micromanagement. OKRs enable teams to pursue their process with a focus on outcomes rather than outputs. Teams can discover their own “how” when they are aligned with the COO’s “why,” using a culture of transparency to drive alignment and take pressure off the COO.

If you haven’t put 2+2 together, OKRs are a COO’s secret to building world-class operations! We’ve created the resources below specifically tailored to Chief Operation Officers and improving operations. 


For OKR examples by role and team, visit our OKR Examples page.



OKRs: COOs Can Drive Sustainable Change with This Breakthrough Approach 

📝  Whitepaper  

Great if you’re looking for: 

  • An overview of OKRs from the Chief Operating Officer’s perspective
  • Lessons on amplifying your effectiveness as COO
  • How to supercharge your operations with transparency and accountability through OKRs
  • Sustainable change as a practical benchmark for your organization

The Horizontal Thinkers Roundtable: COO Edition 

 📽 Roundtable  

Great if you’re looking for: 

  • Discussion from Chief Operating Officers best practices
  • Frameworks for COOs should use to manage operations and account for scale
  • Goal setting and creating focus at the company and personal level
  • How to align and engage teams for better operations

COOs, Orange Juice, and OKRs: Getting the Most Squeeze from Your Operations  

📜  Blog post  

Great if you’re looking for: 

  • How OKRs optimize the organization and operations for Chief Operating Officers
  • The problems that OKRs solve for the COO specifically
  • Why OKRs create engagement, eliminate redundancy, and save resources
  • An introduction to setting the OKR framework for your organization

OKRs Turn COOs into Transformation Leaders  

📜  Blog post  

Great if you’re looking for: 

  • An understanding of the spectrum for managing OKRs
  • Why Chief Operating Officers are becoming the focal point for OKR rollouts in organizations
  • How to create methods for adopting and wielding OKRs across the organization

Gtmhub Marketplace: Become a world-class supplier management organization  

🖇️  OKR Template  

What this does for you: 

  • Demonstrates a live template for a Chief Operating Officer OKR
  • Provides a launching point for your personalized OKR

Looking to get started with OKRs? Try Gtmhub FREE for 7 days!