How to carry out a personal swot analysis for a successful life

SWOT analysis or a SWOT matrix is a framework and tool for analyzing the internal and external situations of an organization, a particular business strategy or directions and decisions, a product or a brand, or a specific project or activity, among others.

As an acronym, SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities. Strengths and weaknesses correspond to internal situations while opportunities and threats correspond to external situations. The primary goal of a SWOT analysis is to identify and list down beneficial and detrimental situations and/or factors, thus paving the way for determining the most appropriate strategic direction.

SWOT analysis is a popular tool used by organizations and individuals because of its simplicity. However, despite its apparent universal application, this analytical framework has its fair share of shortcomings.

Advantages of SWOT analysis

1. Factor identification

The primary advantage of using SWOT analysis is that it allows an organization or its individuals to become familiar of their internal and external situations and/or factors that are favorable and unfavorable to their goals and objectives. This familiarity equips them with knowledge needed to support decisions or directives.

Using the SWOT framework essentially stimulates critical and reflective thinking. This allows an organization or individuals to understand and appreciate where and how they currently stand. This framework also helps in assessing core competencies and deficiencies.

2. Wide application

One of the advantages of SWOT analysis is its wide applicability across a variety of organizational requirements. For example, aside from providing an overview of the internal and external situations of an entire business, SWOT has also been used to analyze the situation of a particular department or function within the business, a specific project, processes and practices, people or a team, resources and capabilities, the geographic market and the target market, or a brand or a product, among others.

The wide applicability of SWOT analysis makes it a staple element in different strategic directives or business planning to include but not limited to feasibility studies, strategic planning, marketing strategy, product development, opportunity analysis, and analysis of possible sources of competitive advantage.

3. Simplicity

Using the SWOT framework as an analytical tool does not require technical skills or special training. Essentially, any individual or a team with the right amount of knowledge about a particular object being analyzed can easily perform a SWOT analysis.

The same simplicity of using SWOT means that it is inexpensive. An organization can simply task people from its talent pool rather than hiring an external consultant to perform this analytical tool. The simplicity of SWOT also means that it can be performed within a relatively short amount of time.

4. Expandability and integration

Expandability through integration is another advantage. Take note of data integration as an example. Quantitative and qualitative data from different sources can be used to substantiate the requirements of the SWOT framework. A data-driven analysis means that directives are always based on informed decisions and opinions.

SWOT can also be integrated in other analytical frameworks or used to expand other tools used for situational analysis such as Value Chain analysis, RBV analysis, PEST analysis, and Five Forces model, among others. This means that the SWOT framework can improve the quality of internal and external analysis.

Disadvantages of SWOT analysis

1. Prone to ambiguity

A key disadvantage of SWOT analysis is its susceptibility to ambiguity. Performing a SWOT generates a long list of strengths, weaknesses, threats, and opportunities relevant to the object being analyzed. However, the entire framework does not provide any mechanism for ranking the items within the list or determining which of the identified factors have more weight.

There is also the problem with the tendency to stir a one-dimensional perspective. Under the SWOT framework, a factor is usually seen as a strength, weakness, opportunity or threat. However, a factor can be both a strength and opportunity or a strength and a weakness. An opportunity can also be a threat. The SWOT framework does not provide a mechanism for dealing with overlaps.

2. Tendency to be subjective

Although performing a SWOT does not require technical skills, it is important put emphasis on the fact that this framework should be driven by research and data. However, inexperienced and indolent individuals have the tendency to rely on questionable data such as anecdotes and hearsay, as well as statements or descriptions expressed as generalizations.

The use of data might also be limited to the inevitable personal or cognitive bias of an individual. Some individuals have the tendency to identify favorable factors, especially if they are analyzing a particular object that fancies their interest. This bias is often reflected on the long list of strengths and opportunities as opposed to insubstantial list of weaknesses and threats.

Because it is simple to use, another disadvantage of SWOT analysis is that it can be quickly designed and performed without critical thinking, thus leading to misrepresentation of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.

Conclusion: The advantages and disadvantages of SWOT analysis

Take note that the advantages and disadvantages of SWOT analysis also applies to a SWOT variant called the TOWS matrix or the TOWS analytical framework.

Nonetheless, the ability to link the internal strengths and weaknesses of an organization or its particular element with its external opportunities and threats is the key advantage of SWOT analysis. This is a critical element in strategic formulation or situational analysis.

The critical disadvantage of using SWOT analysis, however, is its limitation due to its tendency to produce ambiguous and subjective data or information. This analytical tool cannot be used on its own because it does not define the strategic implication of the identified strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.

It is important to remember that SWOT analysis is not an actual strategic process. Instead, it is an analytical tool used for generalized internal and external situational analysis, especially a tool for facilitating critical and reflective thinking and brainstorming or exchanging of ideas among decision makers.

Acronyms can be the bane of a business owner’s existence. From “PNL” to “A&P,” it seems every function has its own acronym and if you’re in the know, you use them all with aplomb. We’re about to throw another one at you: SWOT.

SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. A SWOT Analysis is a common tool used by businesses of all sizes and types to really examine not only their current situation, but external factors as well.

Additionally, SWOT Analyses are valuable for businesses facing some type of decision, whether it’s a major or minor one. From deciding to partner with a new vendor to adding employees to closing an office location, SWOT can help businesses clearly outline the positives and negatives of such a choice.

What Is a SWOT Analysis?

SWOT Analyses are a listing of all of the different strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that currently face your business whether internal or external. Primarily, strengths and weaknesses are measured by comparing your organization to whatever you’re evaluating, be it another company, an opportunity, etc. Opportunities and threats are measured against external factors for both your company and what you’re comparing it to.

When Should You Use It?

There are many different situations that call for a SWOT analysis, and it should be noted that they all don’t need to involve a multi-million dollar deal. Here are some of the most common situations in which SWOT might be the most helpful.

1. Determining Your Competitive Advantage

Throughout your business’ lifecycle, starting from day one, there will be many different outside factors that could challenge your position in the marketplace. A SWOT analysis is a great way to take your organization back to basics and determine what you do best and what others may do better.

For example: A well-established consultancy firm is hearing very positive buzz surrounding a newer firm entering your business’ market and industry. In this case, by examining your organization’s strengths and weaknesses against what you know of this new competitor, you can reaffirm or adjust your position in the marketplace as needed.

Your strengths and weaknesses should be brainstormed under the lens of this new competition, while your opportunities and threats will focus on the new company and what their presence may do to your market share.

Consider the alternative situation, where you are a new company looking to enter the marketplace and face some stiff competition from established businesses. Even when the role is reversed, you can still use a SWOT analysis at the start of the process to help you find answers for your concerns.

2. Analyzing a New Market

Your product development team comes up with a great opportunity that would reach a new segment of the market. This is a perfect time to use SWOT. It gives you a chance to assess the risks and opportunities before you take the leap and launch a new product line, which can save you money and time.

3. Changing Vendors or Negotiating New Contracts

A variety of circumstances can lead you to needing to change vendors or reevaluate your current contracts. In the case of changing vendors, a SWOT analysis can be helpful depending on how different the two vendors’ offerings are, or if one rate is noticeably higher than the other. You want to take all the factors into account to make a smart and informed decision.

4. Writing Your Business Plan

If you’re struggling to draft your business plan, conducting a SWOT analysis might help to focus your thoughts and get you on track. It’s typically required to include in most plans anyway. But even if it isn’t, it can help when writing sections regarding market overview and your initial marketing plan.

How Do I Conduct a SWOT Analysis?

There are a variety of online resources that clearly state methods for conducting a SWOT Analysis. Aside from worksheets, templates and outlines, here are some key points to follow:

  1. Try to keep each category to a manageable number. Copious lists of strengths, weaknesses, etc., can make the process interminable and in the end, won’t provide much clarity. Try and distill each list to the most important factors.
  2. All items must be as specific as possible. Try to avoid hyperbole and zero in on each statement’s key principle. For example, stating that you have a well-liked product is not a valuable strength. Stating you have a product that averages $50 million dollars in annual revenue, which is number three among your competitors, however, is much more valuable.
  3. Just the facts, ma’am. All of your items should be based in facts. Maybe it goes without saying, but “they’re mean to their customers” is not a good competitor weakness. However, “they’re poor customer service leads to a 66% attrition rate year-over-year” is.

Most SWOT analysis methods include placing all the results in a grid format so that strengths and weaknesses and opportunities and threats can easily be measured against each other.

Why Should I Conduct One?

In one word: perspective. Depending on whether you ask others in your organization to participate or you conduct the analysis by yourself, the insight and perspective you’ll gather of your own business—and the competition’s—can prove invaluable. A SWOT analysis forces you to ask questions, some of which may be uncomfortable, to get the answers you need.

It’s important to note that any analysis is only as good as the information that produces it. If the organization finds it difficult to be as honest about its weaknesses as it is with its strengths, SWOT may not be the right option. Also, members of your finance team may view SWOT as too “gray,” whereas the numbers they can provide are black and white.

That’s why asking them to participate is important, because including that kind of clear cut thinking can be helpful. But remember that profit and loss statements do not wholly encompass your organization, and they won’t do so in the process of conducting a SWOT analysis either.

If you’ve been in business for a while, a SWOT analysis gives you a reason to take a step back and reevaluate. Even if things are great, there could be opportunities close at hand that you might be missing due to your day-to-day responsibilities. Take a moment to gain perspective and see what happens.

As with most business tools, a SWOT analysis will offer different benefits for different organizations. You may find them immensely useful and find yourself conducting one every quarter. Others may find the information helpful, but possibly not the format. Regardless of how you choose to review the information, however, no one can deny that having a strong understanding of your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats is important for any business’ ongoing success.

A SWOT analysis is just one way of learning about your business and the opportunities waiting for it. Check out our business planning section for more types of analysis that provide even more insight.

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Personal development is an essential step for making yourself more appealing to employers and customers. It also helps boost your self-image. People apply many different tactics to stand apart in this sea of candidates. They want to secure the top position, but it not as easy as it sounds. Individuals often conduct the SWOT analysis.

SWOT is seen as an analytical framework which can help companies facing great challenges. It helps to find the most promising new markets. The analysis was created by business gurus Edmund P. Learned, Kenneth Andrews, C. Roland Christensen and William D. in the 1960s. They wrote about it in their book “Business Policy, Text, and Cases.”

Even though SWOT was originally used for business, it can help assess a person’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats too. This kind of simple analysis structure will provide guidance. It looks at internal and external factors. Do not take the SWOT analysis light.

Self-analysis is perhaps one of the most complicated things. But, it plays a very significant role in personal progress. The personal skills SWOT analysis will help you to learn more about you. Carrying out a personal SWOT analysis is an important step towards finding life and career direction.

Follow all steps seriously and create your Personal SWOT analysis.

Before you allot precious time in the process, make sure that you are ready to provide honest answers to yourself. While we easily scrutinize companies, jobs, employers and colleagues, criticizing ourselves is the first step here.

Dig deep and identify what your own contributions really are. The analysis entails finding out what you are good at and what you are terrible at. SWOT is a tool for you. After you learn all the necessary details about yourself, you can make an effort to make positive changes which will lead to new opportunities. Basically, SWOT analysis provides a better picture of all pros and cons you have.

The outcome will depend on how you react to the findings. For example, you can react in 2 ways after you list all your weaknesses. You can either understand how they can be threating to not only your career but also your personal life, or you can work to overcome the weakness. It is always wise to think positively. Act proactively to turn the weakness into strength. Also, try to eliminate all threats. Give importance to your strengths and take advantage of the opportunities.

SWOT for personal development can help the following people:

  • Students
  • Managers and Owners
  • Professionals, Executives
  • Career Starters
  • Practitioners and HR
  • Doctors and Engineers
  • Employees
  • Husband and Wife
  • Parents

The elements of a Personal SWOT analysis

A SWOT analysis focuses on the 4 elements included in its acronym. Knowing about these positive and negative factors can help you make changes more effectively. Typically, a SWOT analysis is done by creating a table, divided into 4 columns. Usually, the strengths and weaknesses do not match the opportunities and threats listed. Remember that pairing external threats with the internal weaknesses can help highlight the most serious issues.

For each of the SWOT elements, ask yourself some questions. I have listed some example questions below, but they may vary.

Strengths

  • What benefits do you have which others do not have? This could include skills, education, or connections.
  • What are you better at than anyone else?
  • What personal resources do you have access to?
  • What do other people see as your strengths?
  • Which achievements are you most proud of?
  • What values do you believe in that others fail to show?
  • Are you part of a network no one else is involved in? What connections do you have with powerful people?

Weaknesses

  • What work do you usually avoid because of lack of confidence?
  • What do people think you weaknesses are?
  • Are you happy with your education and skills training?
  • Do you have any negative work habits?
  • Which of your personality traits hold you back?

Opportunities

  • What new technology can assist you?
  • Can you take advantage of the market in its present state?
  • Do you have a network of strategic contacts to offer good advice or help you?
  • Is any of your competitors failing to do something important? Can you take advantage of it?
  • Is there a need in your company which no one is filling?
  • Could you create an opportunity by offering solutions to problems?

Threats

  • What hindrances do you currently face at work?
  • Is any of your co-workers competing with you for projects or roles?
  • Is your job changing?
  • Can technological changes threaten your position?
  • Could any of your weaknesses lead to threats?

The Advantages of Conducting a Personal SWOT

The main purpose of a SWOT is to promote the identified strengths, reduce weaknesses, exploiting the opportunities and having contingency plans to minimize threats.

There are many benefits and advantages of using SWOT Analysis for personal development. It is good for your success and betterment. Some of the most common benefits of conducting a personal SWOT analysis have been mentioned below.

  • Helps to develops strategies to attain your goals
  • You can be better than your friends and colleagues
  • Shows where you currently stand on the path of success
  • Measures your scopes of reaching desired goals
  • Boosts your career, life and personality
  • Helps to better understand who you really are as a person
  • Maximizes your strengths and diminishes your weaknesses
  • Explores and also enhances your soft skills and hard skills
  • It helps you understand your preferences and personality traits.
  • Focuses on your attitudes, abilities, skills, capabilities and capacities

There are many other advantages of this analysis. Apply it to your situation and enjoy the awesome benefits of personal SWOT analysis.

How to carry out a personal swot analysis for a successful life

One of the most powerful personal and professional development tools is the SWOT analysis. But what is SWOT analysis? Learn all about it here: How to Carry Out a Personal SWOT Analysis for a Successful Life

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The internet is filled with bright, shiny objects. Many of them end up here! A @toddlohenry project. Be shiny. View all posts by Todd Lohenry

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Todd Lohenry

The internet is filled with bright, shiny objects. Many of them end up here! A @toddlohenry project. Be shiny.

Diagram for Business
  • Create Value Stream Map
  • Create TQM Diagram
  • Make Fishbone Diagram
  • Draw Timeline
  • Draw Pyramid Diagram
  • Create Customer Journey Map
  • Create Sale Funnel
  • Creating SIPOC
  • Create Force Field Analysis Diagram
  • Perform Situation Analysis
  • Make Product Marketing Plan
  • Value Chain Analysis
  • Six Sigma
  • SWOT
  • Ansoff Matrix
  • Urgent-Important Matrix
  • BCG Matrix
  • Deming Cycle/PDCA

How to carry out a personal swot analysis for a successful life

How to Do Personal SWOT Analysis

Carrying out an individual SWOT Analysis puts a powerful tool at your disposal to develop action plans to achieve personal and professional objectives. Every person is like a “brand”, also requiring self-analysis and “marketing” in order for himself to improve and succeed. This is a great way to learn the inner side of you and warn you to be always careful about your bad behavior which may cause failure.

Step 1. Define Your Aspiration and Goals

First of all, define your aspiration and goals. Don’t just do what boss tell you to do you need to take the initiative. Don’t just rely on luck and hope but take control of you own life. Take some time and think about these questions deeply.

  • What were my hopes and dreams in childhood?
  • What are the things that matter to me in life?
  • What can make me feel happy and fulfilled?
  • What am I good at accomplishing?
  • What are the things I don’t like to do?
  • What personalities I don’t want myself to have?
  • Three to five years from now, what kind of person do I want to be? What could I envision myself doing? What would I like to have achieved?

Step 2. Set Goals Properly

Secondly, after thinking about these questions, you are ready to figure out your goals, which are the step-stones and motivation to your destination. Although we often say that anyone is possible to become the next president, you need to define goals properly to be effective. Here is a useful technique – S.M.A.R.T.

S – Specific. Goals should be explicit and detailed. You had better divide them into many small goals and obtain one at a time.
M – Measurable. You ought to set goals with specific outcome against which you can measure the progress.
A – Attainable. To stretch yourself doesn’t mean to press yourself too hard. Have reasonable and practical goals.
R – Relevant. Avoid meaningless goals.
T – Time-bound. Define the deadline to accomplish your objectives otherwise you may be dragged behind by laziness.

Step 3. Carry out SWOT Analysis Based on Goals

Then, analyze your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats according to your goals. Here is an example for your reference.

How to carry out a personal swot analysis for a successful life

Download this personal SWOT analysis example:

  1. PDF Format
  2. Editable Format

Strengths

To help you learn your strengths, think yourself as a brand in the competitive marketplace. What are your selling points? What are customers’ requirements? A personal strength is an asset to you as a product and can be used as a way to stand out from others when interviewing or trying to obtain your other goals. Examples of strengths: Strong project management skills, foreign language proficiency, experience and training in presenting to large audiences, proven successful sales abilities and so on.

Weaknesses

No man is perfect. No awareness of your shortcoming can be annoying and lead to failures. Just imagine you are dating with the one you adore. If you are often late, lose control of your temper, do not listen to and even do not respect your partner, you may be abandoned (get fired in job market).

Opportunities & Threats

Picture yourself as an athlete in competition, then judge be as objective as possible. You can also ask other’s opinions. Or take advantage of the performance assessment results from your current company. Try to seizing every opportunity and determine methods to overcome threats. For instance, your opponent has got strong body, you can think about doing more exercises. In contrary, you can move faster for body flexibility. You may not be as experienced as the competitor so you should learn from him and other players. But at the same time, you may be able to endure heavier pressure for youth. In a word, your threats may be your opportunities meanwhile, if you look at it from another perspective. And your opportunities will slip away soon if you don’t capture them soon enough.

To recap the general goal of individual analysis is to polish your personality, improve your thinking way, refine your behavior and enhance your working method so that you can have greater success and better life. It is truly worthy of doing. Why not have your own SWOT Matrix?

Blank SWOT Analysis Templates

Edraw has built in many predefined SWOT Matrix symbols, eliminating the need to draw shapes. Users can save a lot of time thanks to the drag-and-drop function. Check out these amazing shapes below.

Making the Most of Your Talents and Opportunities

Chance favors the prepared mind. – Louis Pasteur

You are most likely to succeed in life if you use your talents to their fullest extent. Similarly, you’ll suffer fewer problems if you know what your weaknesses are, and if you manage these weaknesses so that they don’t matter in the work you do.

So how you go about identifying these strengths and weaknesses, and analyzing the opportunities and threats that flow from them? SWOT Analysis is a useful technique that helps you do this.

Click here to view a transcript of this video.

What makes SWOT especially powerful is that, with a little thought, it can help you uncover opportunities that you would not otherwise have spotted. And by understanding your weaknesses, you can manage and eliminate threats that might otherwise hurt your ability to move forward.

If you look at yourself using the SWOT framework, you can start to separate yourself from your peers, and further develop the specialized talents and abilities you need to advance your career and help you achieve your personal goals .

(You can find out how to carry out a wider SWOT analysis for your organization in our article here .)

How to Use the Tool

To perform a personal SWOT analysis, first print out our free worksheet, and write down answers to the following questions.

Strengths

  • What advantages do you have that others don’t have (for example, skills, certifications, education, or connections)?
  • What do you do better than anyone else?
  • What personal resources can you access?
  • What do other people (and your boss, in particular) see as your strengths?
  • Which of your achievements are you most proud of?
  • What values do you believe in that others fail to exhibit?
  • Are you part of a network that no one else is involved in? If so, what connections do you have with influential people?

Consider this from your own perspective, and from the point of view of the people around you. And don’t be modest or shy – be as objective as you can. Knowing and using your strengths can make you happier and more fulfilled at work. See our StrengthsFinder article for more help on this.

And if you still have any difficulty identifying your strengths, write down a list of your personal characteristics. Some of these will hopefully be strengths!

Think about your strengths in relation to the people around you. For example, if you’re a great mathematician and the people around you are also great at math, then this is not likely to be a strength in your current role – it may be a necessity.

Weaknesses

  • What tasks do you usually avoid because you don’t feel confident doing them?
  • What will the people around you see as your weaknesses?
  • Are you completely confident in your education and skills training? If not, where are you weakest?
  • What are your negative work habits (for example, are you often late, are you disorganized, do you have a short temper, or are you poor at handling stress)?
  • Do you have personality traits that hold you back in your field? For instance, if you have to conduct meetings on a regular basis, a fear of public speaking would be a major weakness.

Again, consider this from a personal/internal perspective and an external perspective. Do other people see weaknesses that you don’t see? Do co-workers consistently outperform you in key areas? Be realistic – it’s best to face any unpleasant truths as soon as possible.

Opportunities

  • What new technology can help you? Or can you get help from others or from people via the internet?
  • Is your industry growing? If so, how can you take advantage of the current market?
  • Do you have a network of strategic contacts to help you, or offer good advice?
  • What trends (management or otherwise) do you see in your company, and how can you take advantage of them?
  • Are any of your competitors failing to do something important? If so, can you take advantage of their mistakes?
  • Is there a need in your company or industry that no one is filling?
  • Do your customers or vendors complain about something in your company? If so, could you create an opportunity by offering a solution?

You might find useful opportunities in the following:

  • Networking events, educational classes, or conferences.
  • A colleague going on an extended leave. Could you take on some of this person’s projects to gain experience?
  • A new role or project that forces you to learn new skills, like public speaking or international relations.
  • A company expansion or acquisition. Do you have specific skills (like a second language) that could help with the process?

Also, importantly, look at your strengths, and ask yourself whether these open up any opportunities – and look at your weaknesses, and ask yourself whether you could open up opportunities by eliminating those weaknesses.

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How to carry out a personal swot analysis for a successful life

How to carry out a personal swot analysis for a successful life

A SWOT analysis is a tried-and-true method businesses use to identify internal strengths and weaknesses and external opportunities and threats. The assessment is included in any business or marketing plan worth its salt because it provides critical information needed to create a strategic plan for growth.

This important exercise can also be helpful for individuals. Whether you’re looking for a new job or trying to climb the corporate ladder, a personal SWOT analysis can help you achieve your goals. It’s a creative method of self-assessment to help you assess where your career is and where it could go.

How to carry out a personal swot analysis for a successful life

A SWOT can help you better understand how to play to your strengths and manage your weaknesses, as well as uncover opportunities for growth and eliminate threats that could keep you from moving forward.

To perform a personal SWOT, divide a paper into four quadrants (one each for strengths, weaknesses, threats, and opportunities).

How to carry out a personal swot analysis for a successful life

To fill in each area, try answering the following questions:

Strengths (don’t be modest):
● How do your education, skills, talents certifications, and connections set you apart from your peers?
● What would your boss or coworkers say are your strengths?
● What values or ethics do you have that your peers often lack?
● What achievements are you most proud of?

Weaknesses (be honest):
● Where are your education, training, or skills lacking?
● What would your boss or coworkers say are your weaknesses?
● What are your negative work habits and personality traits?
● What do you avoid because you lack confidence?

Opportunities:
● What trends are affecting your industry?
● In what areas is your industry growing?
● How could new technology help you advance?
● How could your connections help you?

Threats:
● What obstacles do you currently face in your career?
● Who is your competition?
● Will new technology or certifications demands slow your progress?
● How is your job or industry changing in ways that could affect your advancement?

Consider asking people who know you well and whom you trust (a spouse, friend, or coworker) to review your completed matrix and provide honest feedback.

Use your SWOT analysis to match your strengths with opportunities and take aggressive action in those areas. Or, match weaknesses with threats to discover situations you should avoid. You can also use the information to convert weaknesses into strengths and threats into opportunities, when possible.

Want to really level up your professional game? Use this exercise each time you look for a new job, consider a career shift, or approach a new goal or project. You’ll walk away with great insights, action steps, and laser focus — a recipe for success.

Jodie Shaw is Chief Marketing Officer for The Alternative Board , a global company providing small- to medium-sized business owners and leaders help and advice with facilitated monthly business advisory boards together with one-on-one coaching. She is currently writing her first book, All Leaders Make Mistakes. Read the introduction on LinkedIn Pulse . Comments always welcome.

How to carry out a personal swot analysis for a successful life

Related

  • How to Analyze the Market Sector for a Business Plan
  • How to Write an Advertising Situation Analysis
  • How Do the Functions of a SWOT Analysis Work Together?
  • How Will a Situational Analysis Help Create the SWOT Analysis?
  • Relationships Between PEST and SWOT

A SWOT analysis analyzes the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. SWOT helps you to plan your strategy to meet your goals by maximizing strengths and opportunities. It also gives you the tools and insight to adjust your course during a project to address any weaknesses or threats. You can complete the analysis in 10 steps.

SWOT Use

First, decide how you will use the SWOT analysis. Use this type of analysis to evaluate employees, business models, projects or companies. It may also be used on a personal level to improve performance at work or other areas of you life.

Prepare a Chart

Divide a piece of paper into four sections by dividing the paper in half both horizontally and vertically. Label each section: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.

Strengths

Consider and list your strengths on the chart. If this is a personal analysis, this would include things such as education, experience and character traits that give you an edge over others. If you are doing a business analysis this would include things such as patents, capital, accreditation or other recognition and reputation.

Weaknesses

Next consider your weaknesses. On a personal level this may include gaps in experience or education and poor work habits such as lateness. On a business analysis this includes factors such as financial problems, poor morale or a small, unprofitable customer base.

Opportunities

Consider what opportunities are available or coming up. For a personal analysis this may include training opportunities or a new job or promotion. Business opportunities may include access to new technology, new regulations opening up global trade or trends moving customers toward your business.

Threats

Record any threats or things working against you or your business. Personal threats may include outsourcing or technology threatening your job or a personal medical condition or family situation preventing you from reaching work and personal goals. Threats to businesses include things such as a new competitor, losing a supplier or new or changing laws that may negatively impact your business.

Internal Factors

Now that you have a list of things affecting you or your business, analyze your internal factors or strengths and weaknesses. Determine how your strengths help you reach your goals and how you can use them most effectively. Then analyze what steps you can take to minimize or overcome your weaknesses.

External Factors

Next analyze the opportunities and threats or external factors affecting you. Decide which opportunities would be best to pursue and create a plan to minimize or neutralize threats facing you on a personal or business level.

Planning

Use your action steps and analysis of internal and external factors to determine the best direction for you or your business to take. Analyze internal and external factors together to decide how to best use your strengths to pursue the best opportunity available to you and to avoid threats.

Finally, look at your list of factors in each category in reverse order beginning with threats then moving on to opportunities, weaknesses and strengths. Analyzing negative aspects of threats and weaknesses before opportunities and strengths offers a different point of view and may make it easier to see how to turn threats into opportunities and weaknesses into strengths.

Maureen Malone started writing in 2008. She writes articles for business promotion and informational articles on various websites. Malone has a Bachelor of Science in technical management with an emphasis in biology from DeVry University.

How to carry out a personal swot analysis for a successful life

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A SWOT analysis analyzes the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. SWOT helps you to plan your strategy to meet your goals by maximizing strengths and opportunities. It also gives you the tools and insight to adjust your course during a project to address any weaknesses or threats. You can complete the analysis in 10 steps.

SWOT Use

First, decide how you will use the SWOT analysis. Use this type of analysis to evaluate employees, business models, projects or companies. It may also be used on a personal level to improve performance at work or other areas of you life.

Prepare a Chart

Divide a piece of paper into four sections by dividing the paper in half both horizontally and vertically. Label each section: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.

Strengths

Consider and list your strengths on the chart. If this is a personal analysis, this would include things such as education, experience and character traits that give you an edge over others. If you are doing a business analysis this would include things such as patents, capital, accreditation or other recognition and reputation.

Weaknesses

Next consider your weaknesses. On a personal level this may include gaps in experience or education and poor work habits such as lateness. On a business analysis this includes factors such as financial problems, poor morale or a small, unprofitable customer base.

Opportunities

Consider what opportunities are available or coming up. For a personal analysis this may include training opportunities or a new job or promotion. Business opportunities may include access to new technology, new regulations opening up global trade or trends moving customers toward your business.

Threats

Record any threats or things working against you or your business. Personal threats may include outsourcing or technology threatening your job or a personal medical condition or family situation preventing you from reaching work and personal goals. Threats to businesses include things such as a new competitor, losing a supplier or new or changing laws that may negatively impact your business.

Internal Factors

Now that you have a list of things affecting you or your business, analyze your internal factors or strengths and weaknesses. Determine how your strengths help you reach your goals and how you can use them most effectively. Then analyze what steps you can take to minimize or overcome your weaknesses.

External Factors

Next analyze the opportunities and threats or external factors affecting you. Decide which opportunities would be best to pursue and create a plan to minimize or neutralize threats facing you on a personal or business level.

Planning

Use your action steps and analysis of internal and external factors to determine the best direction for you or your business to take. Analyze internal and external factors together to decide how to best use your strengths to pursue the best opportunity available to you and to avoid threats.

Finally, look at your list of factors in each category in reverse order beginning with threats then moving on to opportunities, weaknesses and strengths. Analyzing negative aspects of threats and weaknesses before opportunities and strengths offers a different point of view and may make it easier to see how to turn threats into opportunities and weaknesses into strengths.

Maureen Malone started writing in 2008. She writes articles for business promotion and informational articles on various websites. Malone has a Bachelor of Science in technical management with an emphasis in biology from DeVry University.