Use this SWOT Analysis template guide to jumpstart strategic planning and evaluate your company against internal and external influences.
This template worksheet demonstrates the SWOT methodology and assists you in identifying the strengths, opportunities, weaknesses and threats through over 50 questions that can generate meaningful information. The purpose of the SWOT analysis template guide is to know clearly the competitive advantages, market gaps, improvement points and factors that may threaten business continuity.
How does the SWOT Analysis contribute to strategic planning?
SWOT Analysis or SWOT Matrix is a strategic planning technique used to identify, measure and predict the impact of internal and external factors on your business.
Internal factors are those that you can act to improve and that can be changed through management: your process, workflow, team, resources, image, etc. External factors are those that can not be controlled, but through management it is possible to take advantage of or protect from them: your competitors, legislation, culture, market, etc.
Know the 4 steps of SWOT Analysis:
The SWOT Matrix has 4 dimensions related to your business environment: Strengths, Opportunities, Weaknesses and Threats.
The first one, STRENGTHS, is used to map the most important advantages you can offer in relation to the market. This dimension is about the competitive differential of the company, which can be the know-how of a particular segment, access to available technologies, qualification of employees and partners, reputation, physical and intangible resources or other internal factors.
The second, OPPORTUNITIES, is fundamental to map how your strengths can lead to business opportunities. In this stage, you can evaluate possible solutions to problems without adequate service in market niches, taking into account social, economic and technological influences, as well as any other policies that may be favorable to the business.
The third, WEAKNESSES, is related to factors that prevent potentially better results. This dimension is used to map aspects such as customer complaints, sales losses, inefficiency of marketing campaigns, operational bottlenecks, low productivity issues, among other internal factors are verified.
The fourth, THREATS, is used to evaluate factors that could represent threats to the business. From your weaknesses, evaluate which are those that, if not properly addressed, may become a threat to the business model. This includes economic factors, environmental changes, adaptations to new technologies, cultural shifts and regulation changes, among other external influences that can represent some degree of threat to the business.
Apply it on your business!
Using this methodology, you may identify complex issues, e.g. legislation problems or cultural shifts, that require elaborate solutions. These are signs that indicate that it may be necessary to rethink and reinvent the business in the medium or long term.
It is also possible, on the other hand, to identify timely issues that trigger immediate results, such as changes in processes that generate more productivity, or even seasonal sales opportunities that increase sales. In these cases, a correct analysis of the environment and proper market positioning can have a great impact on results.
With the SWOT Analysis template you can clearly see what the best of your company has to offer to the market and what are the points of attention. These are important information to develop your planning and think about your business strategically.
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