The SWOT Analysis

William Meller - The SWOT Analysis
A SWOT analysis is a compilation of your company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.

For a successful business, you should regularly analyze your processes to ensure they are running efficiently. 

A SWOT analysis is one of the most effective ways to assess your company.

Any company action, whether exploring new initiatives, revamping internal policies, considering pivots, or altering a plan in the middle of its execution, can benefit from a SWOT analysis. 

To improve your business operations, it's sometimes wise to perform a SWOT analysis just to check on the current landscape. 

The SWOT analysis identifies the forces influencing a strategy, action, or initiative based on the four elements of the acronym. 

Companies can communicate what parts of a plan need to be recognized by understanding these positive and negative elements.

A SWOT analysis is typically created by listing each impacting element side by side in four columns for comparison. 

There is no guarantee that listed strengths and weaknesses will match opportunities and threats verbatim, although they should correlate since they are ultimately connected.

Strengths
 - What do you do well?
 - What unique resources can you draw on?
 - What do others see as your strengths?

A strength is something your organization excels at, or something that distinguishes you from your competitors. Think about what makes your organization unique. A strong set of manufacturing processes, the motivation of your staff, or access to certain materials might be some of these factors.

Weaknesses
 - What could you improve?
 - Where do you have fewer resources than others?
 - What are others likely to see as weaknesses?

Weaknesses, like strengths, are inherent features of your organization, so focus on your people, resources, systems, and procedures. Identify what can be improved, and what should be avoided.

Opportunities
 - What opportunities are open to you?
 - What trends could you take advantage of?
 - How can you turn your strengths into opportunities?

An opportunity is a chance for something positive to happen. In most cases, they arise from situations outside your organization and require you to be aware of what might happen in the future. You may encounter them as a result of advancements in the market you serve or in the technology you use. Opportunities can make a huge difference in your organization's ability to compete and lead in your market if you can spot them and exploit them.

Threats
 - What threats could harm you?
 - What is your competition doing?
 - What threats do your weaknesses expose you?

There are many threats to your business from the outside, such as supply-chain problems, changes in market requirements, or a shortage of recruits. Preventing threats and taking action against them is essential to avoid becoming a victim of them and stagnating your growth.

A SWOT analysis can be broken into several steps with actionable items before and after analyzing the four components. 

It does not make any sense to have a SWOT analysis if you are not prepared to take real actions that will change your business strategy accordingly.

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