SWOT your way to success!

 

What is a SWOT Plan? SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. It is tool used in risk planning to identify and resolve any threats to a project or business. More often than not, I have seen SWOT plans diligently planned and created, only to be electronically filled away and forgotten. Do not do this!

A SWOT is a power tool that should be reviewed periodically at each critical stage (beginning, middle and end) of your project. For businesses, a SWOT plan needs to be reviewed quarterly.

Through some examples let’s talk about practical ways to use each SWOT component.

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What is a SWOT Plan? SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. It is tool used in risk planning to identify and resolve any threats to a project or business. More often than not, I have seen SWOT plans diligently planned and created, only to be electronically filled away and forgotten. Do not do this!

A SWOT is a power tool that should be reviewed periodically at each critical stage (beginning, middle and end) of your project. For businesses, a SWOT plan needs to be reviewed quarterly.

Through some examples let’s talk about practical ways to use each SWOT component.

Strengths

You have a beyond average customer retention rate. Your customers typically stay with you about 6 months longer than the industry standard. Does that mean you coast on your laurels and enjoy the added profits? No, this is a great opportunity to query customers about what your company offers that appeals to them. Capitalize and build on what makes your company unique and beneficial to your clients.

Weaknesses 

The accountant told you that you have limited cash flow for operational use. A fire or flood can easily put you out of business due to limited funds to repair damaged equipment. Perhaps it is time to be pre-approved for a business line of credit? That way if disaster strikes, you have funds available to replace equipment and supplies.

Opportunities

Your sales manager reported that since the last quarter, there has been an uptick on sales for a particular service. Why is that? Perhaps there is a growing demand for that service? Do your research and find out if this is a fad or truly a burgeoning need from your customers.

Threats 

You were the only grocery store within a 10 mile radius but suddenly a hip, new restaurant/corner market appeared nearby. In addition to there competitive prices, they have superior customer service and a friendly atmosphere. Does that mean that you offer deep discounts in order to lure customers back to your store? Not necessarily. Perhaps the time has begun where you will conduct a random poll asking existing customers of both customers (yours and your rival) about their thoughts about each business. Learn more about how to differentiate and offer value to continue to stay relevant in your area.

Let a SWOT plan be your ticket to business success! 


Have you had success or failure using a SWOT plan for your business? I would love to read it. Please drop me a line in the comment section below.

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