As 2017 comes to a close, it’s a great time to put thought into planning for 2018. If you are a successful business owner, you’ve likely already started, but if you haven’t, a great way to effectively prepare and strategize for the coming year is to conduct a SWOT analysis with your team.
SWOT, which stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats, is an analytical framework that can help your company face it’s greatest challenges and find its new markets. Do a SWOT analysis based on your 2017 numbers. What went well? Where does your business need to make improvements?
Hopefully none of this information about the year’s hits and misses will be news to you, but now you are looking with an eye for making future moves. Make a plan to build on your successes. Map out how you will refine or totally rethink approaches that aren’t working.
The SWOT analysis leads to business awareness and is the cornerstone of any successful strategic plan.
In Mustang The Story, Bill Higgs illustrates Mustang Engineering’s SWOT at the end of each section of the book. Higgs believes, “your team should objectively agree on the top 5 strengths and weaknesses internally, then do the same looking externally at opportunities and threats. Now you have topics to discuss what needs to be done to stay healthy in 2018.”
Planning is the key to success on every level of an organization, but plans mean nothing if they don’t spur action and direct hard work.
After you defined your career aspirations and goals, you can also use a SWOT to understand more about yourself and set personal goals. Here is a great post about How to Conduct a Personal SWOT.
We wish all Mustangers great success in 2018 and a very Happy New Year!