The reasons I love SWOT analyses is they’re all about looking at the present to divine the future. And leaders need their crystal balls to:
- Identify trends,
- Anticipate change,
- Be open to possibilities, and
- Enable more effective, impactful work.
Sounds good, yes? But, let’s face it, it often seems easier to stick with the status quo. Crystal ball gazing and divining is not so easy. That doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be done.
Taking an honest look at what’s working/what’s not working can be a very liberating thing for an organization to do. Once people agree on what’s not working, there is a freedom to abandon time-consuming processes not yielding substantial results or significant satisfaction. This opens up whole new possibilities for allocation of resources, and can be a very exciting time within an organization.
Leadership is key!
SWOTs help leaders prepare for the future systematically and strategically. We’ve a lot invested in doing what we’ve always done. It takes courage and determination to ask the hard questions that break us out of old patterns and ruts. A structured approach can help.
A good SWOT gets all the stakeholders engaged in moving forward strategically. A good SWOT is not static. It’s a multi-step process. If you’re not familiar with a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats), this is what it is in a nutshell:Details