The formulation of the SWOT tool has been credited to Albert Humphrey in the 1960s, but this attribution remains debatable and therer is no universally-accepted creator.
The SWOT analysis is an important exercise that can be used both for organisations and individuals. Whether you are trying to build a business or a career, the SWOT analysis tool can help you achieve your goals.
The key idea is to separate out your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats as follows;
Strengths refer to the positive internal aspects of a business that give it an advantage over others, such as a unique product or service, a talented workforce, or a strong brand reputation.
For an individual these could be education, skills, certifications, connections, emotional intelligence, aptitude, values and ethics.
Weaknesses are internal factors that may hinder a business’s success, such as a lack of resources, insufficient management, or poor market position, lack of talent, poor systems and controls.
For an individual these could be the lack of education, skills, certifications, connections, emotional intelligence, aptitude, values and ethics.
Opportunities are external factors that a business can take advantage of to grow, such as a growing market demand, new technology, or favorable economic conditions.
For an individual these could be new technology or connections than could develop their potential.
Threats are external factors that may pose a risk or challenge to a business, such as increased competition, changes in regulations, or economic downturns.
For an individual these could be obstacles you currently face, competition, oversupply of labour in a particular market or the technological skills being outdated with the rapid pace of change such in the technology sector.
SWOT analysis is used to assess the overall position of a business and identify areas for improvement. It is a useful tool for decision making, strategic planning, and identifying potential challenges and opportunities.
Use the SWOT analysis to match your strengths with opportunities to take action and match the weaknesses with threats to discover situations you should avoid.