Performing a SWOT analysis when you start creating or building your business is an important key to the success of your business. A SWOT analysis is a strategic planning method that is typically used for any major decision making situation. It consists of analyzing and determining what internal and external factors have both positive and negative effects on that project or venture.
S.W.O.T. is actually an acronym that stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. Using these four categories will help you determine what goals and objectives you are trying to achieve for your business. Strengths and weakness provide information that revolves around internal factors that can affect you business venture. Opportunities and threats provide information that revolves around external factors that can affect you business venture.
S = Strengths
Determining your strengths is the first thing you need to do. They are the characteristics that provide an advantage over others. What are you good at? What comes naturally to you? What do others feel you are good at? These areas should be the focus point of everything you do in your business. All of your services you provide and products or content you create should be based on your strengths. This is what will propel your business forward. Knowing your strengths and how to build upon them and leverage them can only lead to growth.
W = Weaknesses
Determining your weaknesses will help you identify the areas that you need to improve. These are characteristics that can place you or your situation at a disadvantage to others. What are your faults? What do you suck at? (sorry for being so blunt) What do you keep trying to do and never have any success at? Identify these things and evaluate if an improvement could turn things around or do you need to just let it go. Recognizing your weaknesses will prevent your business from failing.
O = Opportunities
Opportunities are elements that your situation can use it its advantage. Finding them can benefit your business in a great way. Some will be presented to you and some you will just fall from above while others you will have to seek out and find yourself. No matter how they come to fruition, take advantage of them.
T = Threats
Threats are elements all around you that cause nothing but trouble. There are tons of threats out in the world against you and your business. They come in all shapes and sizes and are very good at disguising themselves as opportunities. You have to be alert and aware of things at all times. Knowing what works and what doesn’t work is a good start. Once they present themselves, take action to avoid disaster in your business.
When was the last time you performed a SWOT Analysis for a major decision making situation?
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