Objectives and Beer Results (OBRs) for 2021

Beer Smack by | January 17, 2021
Graphic by Todd Alström. Inspired by the book: Objectives and Key Results by Paul R. Niven and Ben Lamorte

Most New Year’s resolutions will never happen. Why? We humans tend to focus on big, strict, unrealistic goals that fill us with short-lived motivation just before we settle back into our daily ruts. Instead, we should be focusing on smaller, flexible, realistic goals throughout the year that support our long-term goals and have results that can easily be measured. In business, this goal management framework is referred to as “Objectives and Key Results” (OKRs) and often applied on a quarterly basis, but you can simplify the process and apply them to life goals too.

So, with that in mind, I’m going to kick off the new year by setting three (less is more with OKRs!) personal Objectives and Beer Results (OBRs). Yeah. I went there. Anyway, my overall goal (resolution) is to learn and share more with the BeerAdvocate community in 2021, so my objectives need to support this and the beer results (the outcomes) of each objective need to hold me accountable and provide me with an easy way to measure my success.

Objective #1: Walk the walk by reviewing more beers

For a bunch of reasons, I’ve been slacking with beer reviews for a while. Attempts to get back into reviewing last summer were met with discouragement as goals were set too high. Now it feels awkward whenever I rally all of you to review more beers and the learning obtained from recording my experience with a beer is sorely missed. Hell, it’s how BeerAdvocate started! This needs to be fixed.

Beer Results:

  • Increase my beer reviews on BeerAdvocate by three a week.

Nothing crazy. Just three beers. If I do more, cool, but no pressure.

Objective #2: Talk the talk by writing again

Back in the day I reported on regional beer news for beeriodicals like Yankee Brew News and Ale Street News, penned a weekly beer column in Boston’s Weekly Dig for over a decade, followed by a weekly column in the Boston Phoenix before it folded, and I’ve had the honor to write for several other publications too. Most notably, from 2007-2019 I published and contributed to 134 issues of BeerAdvocate magazine (RIP, still mourning the loss) with an awesome team and highly-talented pool of freelancers. It was fun, I learned a lot, and I miss the hell out of it.

Beer Results:

To get motivated, I recently published I Miss Beer Fests and Finding Clarity in 2021: Beer Trends & Predictions. It worked, as the next four articles are now in progress.

Objective #3: Level up my knowledge of lagers

My love for lager is no secret, but it’s time to take it to the next level by dedicating more time to exploring lagers and using any learnings to support my other objectives.

Beer Results:

  • Four books about lagers read by the end of the year.
  • Four lagers reviewed each month.
  • One lager-centric article published each quarter.

As you can see, my OBRs are simple and flexible, yet powerful. I’ve also turned my resolutions into realistic goals with results that are measurable, hold me accountable, are designed to help me succeed, and support my overall goal of learning and sharing more with all of you this year.

So what are your OBRs for 2021?

(Whatever they are, I hope you find plenty of good beer, success, and happiness in the new year!)