Get from Here to There

Quick Insight

SWOT analysis provides an analysis of your company and business environment from which to set and prioritize strategies. I explain four common strategies and when to use or revisit SWOT.

Last week I explained why SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Strengths) is important. This week I’ll show how it helps you set your company’s strategy.

SWOT is a brutally honest assessment of the realities of your business. It is not a strategic plan. However, it provides an analysis of your company and business environment from which to set and prioritize strategies. It provides a crucial early step in a complete strategic planning process.

Each of the four quadrants of SWOT lends itself to different types of strategy:

  • Strengths: Maintain and build on them
  • Weaknesses: Reduce or eliminate them
  • Opportunities: Capitalize on them
  • Threats: Monitor and mitigate them

SWOT is like looking at a map with a dot that says “you are here.” Your vision is the destination (your “there”). In strategic planning, you decide how you will take your company from “here” to “there.” 

Perform a SWOT analysis at the beginning of a strategic planning session. Then review it later when starting major initiatives. Your strategic plans may need to be changed because the assumptions made in an earlier SWOT analysis changed. A quick SWOT update can save you substantial time and money.

I wish you clear vision of where “there” is for you. I wish you the discipline and perseverance to get “there.” I wish you well.

- Rob Stephens

Further Insight

CFO Perspective Resources

  • Free Download: SWOT Analysis Template - The SWOT template pack comes with five documents to help you quickly conduct a SWOT analysis.
  • Free Download: One Page Strategic Plan Worksheet - This simple PDF template allows you to quickly define in one page the key items for a strategic plan.
  • Course: ACE - Strategic Planning for Small Businesses - Small business strategic planning should quickly lead you from defining where you are going to deciding how to get there. Getting there takes a well-built strategy and implementation plan. Get planning and management tools with the basics of how to use them.

Get all the CFO Perspective resources with a FAST (Finance and Strategy Toolkit) membership.

Accelerate your success with FAST

FAST (Finance and Strategy Toolkit) is a membership program that

gives you access to a massive collection of resources

for small business advisors and staff to lead their company to

profit, growth, and purpose.

The right tools save you time, reduce your stress, and improve your effectiveness.

Success message!
Warning message!
Error message!