Ready To Expand? Master the SWOT Analysis
Whether your business is just getting off the ground, or you have an established customer base and are looking to expand into new markets, it is important to know where you stand. From this foundation, you can outline the strategic, functional and operational goals of your company.
When your company begins to develop its strategic vision for the future, it is vital that you perform a situation analysis, dissecting the internal and external elements that potentially impact your business. The internal environment of your business includes all controllable aspects of the organization. To many, this is the starting point for any situation analysis. By assessing your operations, employees, facilities and other assets, you can gain a clearer picture of what can be improved and how to make the necessary changes to do so.
Determine the strengths and weaknesses of your firm – what sets you apart from your competitors? Are your employees superiorly trained and skilled? Do you provide better products at competitive prices? These questions help you take stock of where your business currently stands, and provide a foundation upon which you can being to improve and expand your operations from within.
Equally important is the analysis of any external factors that impact your business. These exogenous factors are uncontrollable, presenting potential threats to success or opportunities for you to capitalize upon. Recognizing and understanding the external environment better prepares you to tackle problems before they occur and informs you of upcoming market trends or events that can keep you ahead of the competition.
After you have completed a thorough evaluation of the internal and external environments surrounding your business and drafted a detailed SWOT analysis, use the data to set targeted objectives based on the explicitly defined attributes of your company.