SWOT analysis is a common tool in the business world. But very few people use it for the introspection to take a deeper look at themselves, as well as to overcome personal and professional limitations. Benedict Spinoza, a Dutch philosopher, and rationalist, who lived in the 17th century, made a simple conclusion: “The clearer you understand yourself and your emotions, the more you love what is.” The SWOT especially useful because it helps to identify those opportunities in our world that at first sight do not seem to be those. It also assists in the business development.
One of the main reasons why people are dissatisfied with their jobs, careers, social environment, and their life in general, is that they lost the close connection with their personalities. In the fast-moving modern world that thrives on competition, the main reason that motivates people to be like everyone or better than a certain class of people. It is crucial to determine what you need, what exactly you want, and how you are going to get it. In short, you need a personal analysis of the SWOT. The model considers four characteristics:
S – Strengths;
W – Weaknesses;
O – Opportunities;
T – Threats.
The SWOT analysis is a fairly common practice in the business world at present days. Large corporations use it to evaluate and predict their profits in order to develop a new product that is going to be launched and also to understand why a particular product has failed. At the same time, it can help you in assessing many aspects of your personality. In addition, to help you evaluate your personality, it will also assist you to realize your goals and lead you to the self-improvement. The SWOT analysis is a template that you can use to take a deeper look at yourself from a personal point of view as well as from the outside.
Strengths present what I can do. You will find out what makes you apart from others and what helps you to be more professional. The key questions are as follows: What can I do well? What features do people appreciate in me? What are my professional achievements? What are the advantages of my education? What are the positive features that stand out in my behavior and in my work? What are my three best physical signs that people usually notice? How can I use my positive traits, physical and psychological, to achieve what I want to achieve?
Weaknesses are what is bad in me and what acts as a barrier between me and my goal. What am I most afraid of, personally and professionally? What are the three things I need to improve, according to other people’s opinion? What are the things that I avoid doing because I have a feeling of fear? Why do people reject my help? I really believe in the things that people say about me, and does it affect my general behavior and personality?
Opportunities are what I dispose to improve myself and my life. I can find out what will help me to gain more confidence in myself and my abilities. How can I find out about ways to work on my shortcomings? What can I do to highlight my strengths, but not weak ones? Who are the people to whom I can apply for help to eliminate my shortcomings? What are my professional opportunities, in order to prove my courage, colleagues, and superiors? To whom and how can I help in the performance of their work, to show that I can be active and useful? What can I do to feel good?
Threats are things that prevent me from succeeding in what I do. What can be done about this? What prevents me from doing everything possible, in that I do? What is the threat to my professional life? Is there a threat in my personal relationships? What obstacles prevent my progress at work? Who are my direct competitors at work?
After you have done an exhaustive analysis, you will know which people you need to exclude (threats) from your life in order to get rid of the negative influence (weakness), feel “modernized” (strengths), and eventually get new opportunities (abilities). This is the first step on the way to the personal development, and it will certainly help you find yourself again. You can achieve success in life if you use your talents in full. Also, you will need to cope with your weaknesses so that they should not interfere with your life and job. For these purposes that the SWOT analysis was moved from the practice of business in the field of the self-development. When you use the strengths to realize the opened opportunities, you get a tactical win. The strategic win you earn when strengthening the weaknesses by working on the most critical one, taking care of your effectiveness in the future. When you are eliminating threats, it provides a long-lasting opportunity to be effective. And use the possibilities, if you are ready for them.
The analysis of SWOT is a great way to find the starting point and explore yourself. It lets you see the truth with your own eyes, even if sometimes is unpleasant. The SWOT gives you the opportunity to focus on strengths, minimize weaknesses, avoid threats, and take advantage of the opportunities provided.