Accelerate your career by taking a fresh look at SWOT.
SWOT is a simple format to assess your competitive position. Corporations and organizations use SWOT to identify areas opportunities and set strategies for innovation and growth. While SWOT is common in corporate strategic planning, it can be even more powerful when applied to your career development. Use SWOT to identify areas for your personal strategic plan.
A SWOT crash course:
SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.
- Strengths are positive internal assets. Ample cash and a good reputation are examples of strengths.
- Weaknesses are negative internal aspects. A lack of experience may be a weakness.
- Opportunities are positive external circumstances. A booming market or net technology may be opportunities.
- Threats are external potential dangers. New competitors or the potential for catastrophic change can be threats.
Use this established business tool to focus, structure and promote your career. Zero in on your personal strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Assess your competitive edge. Use the following 12 questions to jumpstart your thinking:
- What are your technical skills?
- What are your positive personal traits?
- What assets do you bring to the table?
- Compared to your peers, what knowledge do you lack?
- What important credentials are missing?
- What personal traits threaten your professional promotion?
- What opportunities do you see emerging in your current organization?
- What opportunities are on the horizon in your industry?
- What new developments do you see in the business community?
- Who is a threat to achieving your professional goals?
- What external developments can jeopardize your career path?
- What is the worst thing that can happen?
The Nest Steps:
Use your SWOT profile and develop a strategy to accelerate your career. What action should you take right now to reach your professional goals?
- Which of your strengths are most applicable to promoting your career? What can you do to enhance these?
- What are your glaring weaknesses? What will you do, and when, to address or neutralize these?
- What opportunities are most likely to come to fruition? What will you do now to capitalize on these?
- What threats have the highest likelihood of occurring? Which would be the most devastating? How will you protect yourself against these?
Identify two or three key areas, and take action. Continually assess your progress and re-evaluate your competitive position.
Target your activity. Invest your time and resources to make a significant difference in your career. Take your professional planning to the next level. Use resources such as mastermind groups or professional retreats to gain new perspectives on possibilities identified with SWOT. Be strategic. Act now to achieve the future you envision.