Find your strengths and weaknesses, analyse opportunities and threats

TIME REQUIRED45 Minutes + Worksheet

DOWNLOADS Personal SWOT worksheet click here 

essential previous learningSelf-Leadership

Free Article – Individual SWOT

Build on your strengths

Key Learning Outcomes

  • Learn about the purpose of a SWOT analysis and how it can help your business to achieve its objectives.
  • Recognise the value of discussing your SWOT with someone who will challenge you with the aim to get the best out of you.
  • Develop key goals for the short to medium term based on the results of your SWOT analysis.
  • Assess your self-leadership skills in addressing the outcomes of your SWOT analysis.

Article

In any area of personal development, the more self-aware we are, the more likely we are to succeed in the pursuit of our goals. A SWOT analysis is an excellent tool for identifying areas of strength that we can take advantage of, and areas of weakness that can be addressed. You undertake a personal SWOT in much the same way that you would do for a business, although it is important to note that sometimes it can be harder to self-analyse.

Strengths

The first thing to look at is your strengths. Some people find this part of the exercise hard as most of us tend to easily find fault with ourselves. It is important to make the effort to think carefully about  your strengths, taking a moment to look at yourself from the outside. The following questions will get you started.

  • What are you good at?
  • What do you do better than other people you know?
  • What do you know you can achieve successfully?
  • What do you think others would see as your strengths?
  • What types of things do people often compliment you on?
  • What do you really enjoy doing? (We tend to enjoy the things we are good at.)

Weaknesses

The next step is to look at your weaknesses. It is important to be honest with yourself, try and take a helicopter view and look at yourself objectively.

  • What do you think are your weaknesses?
  • What do you know you are not good at?
  • Are there any skills that you wish you had?
  • What do you think others would identify as your weaknesses?
  • What areas could you improve on?

Opportunities

Opportunities can come from both your strengths and weaknesses.

  • Is there something that you do well that you are not taking full advantage of?
  • Is there an area of strength that could be further developed?
  • Can you identify any key areas of improvement?
  • Are there areas that you can potentially upskill in?
  • Can you do a course or ask someone for help?
  • Can you outsource something that you are not good at?
  • Look at each strength and weakness and look for the opportunity to either enhance or capitalise on a strength, or work on improving or eliminating a weakness.

Threats

When we are doing a personal SWOT, some threats may not be within our control, just like threats to a business. You need to consider all of these in order to plan and be prepared.

  • What are the consequences if you do not address some of the weaknesses?
  • What outside influences may hinder your progress in certain areas?
  • What could happen if you do not make necessary changes?
  • What things could threaten you achieving your goals that you cannot control?

Action plan

After completing the SWOT analysis it is important to spend some time on your self-leadership and goal setting. Use the exercise to help identify key goals for the next 6 to 12 months.

  • What are you going to do?
  • What needs to change?
  • Who do you need to help you?

A good guide is to look at what you need to stop doing, what you need to start doing and what you need to keep doing.

If you feel comfortable you may want to share your SWOT with someone who knows you and will add value to the process. Rather than picking someone who will make you feel good, you should choose someone who will challenge you and push you forward. Ideally, you will find a like-minded person who you can partner with, allowing you to keep each other accountable.

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