The Foundation For Your SWOT Analysis

Identifying your current situation is the first step in developing a successful and long-term strategy.

A detailed assessment of where you are now as an organization, establishing where you want to be at a specific time, and then devising a strategy to get there are the keys to successfully identifying areas for development.

Where do you want to start? When following a map, for example, the first thing you notice is where you are at that precise moment. You conduct a SWOT analysis when reviewing your existing business situation.

Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) are acronyms for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. You may take the required measures to build a successful growth strategy after you know what your talents are, where you could use additional work, where your vulnerabilities are, and what market openings you can exploit.

Capture the Data you Need

‘Data is king,’ as the phrase goes. It is correct. Transforming and assisting decision-making processes is one of the most important benefits of data. You’ll have to sift through a lot of data to identify internal and external data that will help you grow. Internal data refers to the elements that contribute to your company’s performance. Circumstances beyond your control that have an impact on your business are known as external forces.

Examples of Internal Factors

  • Profitability
  • Employee insights
  • Customer insights
  • Consumer analytics
  • Current revenue, past revenue and future projections

Examples of External Factors

  • Labor markets
  • Economic forecasts
  • Competitor data
  • Real estate
  • Government & industry regulations

Strengths

Your company’s strengths are the things it does well and can use to its full potential. Your competitive advantages are your strengths, and they’ll be crucial in developing a growth strategy.

Let’s pretend your customers are impressed with your delivery times. How can you modify your operations to lower turnaround time to three days if you were delivering things in seven days?

Evaluate your organization by department and search for strengths in each one to uncover your core competencies. Don’t be concerned if there isn’t one in a certain department. The goal is to be objective and critical.

Consider the total company: what about your team is more than the sum of its parts?

Weaknesses

Internal constraints that limit or disturb your planned future state are known as weaknesses. This is one of the most difficult aspects of a SWOT analysis since it necessitates objectivity and frankness. Nobody like admitting that they are inadequate. However, by viewing your company through the eyes of an outsider, you can identify areas where you may be falling behind.

An Excellent Place to Start Can Be:

  • Company workflows
  • Efficiency levels
  • Operational inefficiencies
  • Customer reviews
  • Employee feedback (especially exit interviews and surveys)

When you know your weaknesses, you can identify where they stem from and how to address them. Remember, ALL companies have weaknesses, including your biggest competitor. A weakness may be a tradeoff to a core strength, or indicative of where you are in your company maturity. 

Opportunities

Opportunities are external influences where your organization is better positioned to act upon and benefit. You need to gather and understand past, present and future trends and how you can leverage them to get ahead of your competitors—the current economic state, political state, supply chain, and financial markets, among others.

Another tip is to look at customer feedback. What services do your customers wish you provided? Are you in a place to offer them, and if not, how can you make it possible in the shortest time before a competitor beats you to it?

Threats

Threats are external influences that can have a detrimental impact on your business. Despite the fact that risks are beyond your control, you can limit their impact and establish contingency measures. Global supply chain challenges, labor market issues, and technological advances are just a few examples.

Don’t sit back and relax once you’ve completed each stage of the SWOT analysis. You’re only at the beginning of your journey. The next stage is to figure out how each of your strengths, weaknesses, threats, and opportunities fits into your overall strategy.

Strengths provide opportunity to take concrete actions toward realizing your company’s full potential.

It’s much easier to come up with ideas that can eventually take your company to the level of growth you desire when you break down your approach.

Are you a “strategic rookie” or a strategist who can perform a SWOT analysis but is unclear about the next steps and implementation? You’re in good hands with Hudsuite. You can add team members, set interrelated goals, and ensure that all work is aligned with the strategy using our planning templates. You can also allow everyone to see their valuable contribution to the vision while gaining project assistance and expertise.

Hudsuite is a simple, adaptable, and customized strategy software that covers all of the major components of strategy management and gives you the tools to use them to build your organization.