SWOT Analysis - Definition, Advantages and Limitations
SWOT is an acronym for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. By definition, Strengths (S) and Weaknesses (W) are considered to be internal factors over which you have some measure of control. Also, by definition, Opportunities (O) and Threats (T) are considered to be external factors over which you have essentially no control.
SWOT Analysis is the most renowned tool for audit and analysis of the overall strategic position of the business and its environment. Its key purpose is to identify the strategies that will create a firm specific business model that will best align an organizations resources and capabilities to the requirements of the environment in which the firm operates.
In other words, it is the foundation for evaluating the internal potential and limitations and the probable/likely opportunities and threats from the external environment. It views all positive and negative factors inside and outside the firm that affect the success. A consistent study of the environment in which the firm operates helps in forecasting/predicting the changing trends and also helps in including them in the decision-making process of the organization.
An overview of the four factors (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) is given below-
Advantages of SWOT Analysis
SWOT Analysis is instrumental in strategy formulation and selection. It is a strong tool, but it involves a great subjective element. It is best when used as a guide, and not as a prescription. Successful businesses build on their strengths, correct their weakness and protect against internal weaknesses and external threats. They also keep a watch on their overall business environment and recognize and exploit new opportunities faster than its competitors.
SWOT Analysis helps in strategic planning in following manner-
SWOT Analysis provide information that helps in synchronizing the firms resources and capabilities with the competitive environment in which the firm operates.
Limitations of SWOT Analysis
SWOT Analysis is not free from its limitations. It may cause organizations to view circumstances as very simple because of which the organizations might overlook certain key strategic contact which may occur. Moreover, categorizing aspects as strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats might be very subjective as there is great degree of uncertainty in market. SWOT Analysis does stress upon the significance of these four aspects, but it does not tell how an organization can identify these aspects for itself.
There are certain limitations of SWOT Analysis which are not in control of management. These include-Internal limitations may include-
- Personal SWOT Analysis
- SWOT Analysis of Google
- SWOT Analysis of Starbucks
- SWOT Analysis of Blackberry
- SWOT Analysis of Amazon
- SWOT Analysis of IKEA
- SWOT Analysis of Nike
- SWOT Analysis of Microsoft
- SWOT Analysis of China Mobile
- Competitor Analysis
- BCG Matrix
- Porters Five Forces Model
Authorship/Referencing - About the Author(s)
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