When was the last time you gave your business a good SWOT?
Now I know we all have different parenting skills for raising our solopreneur babies. You may be the overly nurturing type that wants to spoil that offspring of yours in hopes that it will buy you a big house and send you on fancy vacations when it becomes rich and famous.
But, I’ve parented a few businesses (and babysat quite a few others) in my time, enough to know that if you don’t apply consistent discipline to this baby of yours, chances are that instead of it taking care of you in your old age, you will be paying its bills for a long time to come.
So what can you do? Give it a good SWOT.
SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. A SWOT analysis supports a goal that you want to achieve in your business. The purpose of the SWOT analysis is to paint a realistic picture of what you have going for you and what you are up against in reaching your goal. This quick visual analysis stimulates strategic planning to take advantage of your strengths and opportunities while mitigating or eliminating your weaknesses and threats.
For example, you may decide that you want to reach a goal of $10,000 a month consistently in revenue. As the diagram above shows, you will create a four-square analysis comparing your strengths and weaknesses with the external opportunities and threats that exist for that specific goal.
The first key ingredient to a successful SWOT analysis is to make sure that you set a realistic, obtainable short-term goal. Your longer-term, bigger goals and strategies are in your business plan, right? If you don’t have a business plan, we can argue that point later, but at least give a good look at my Planning page.
The second key ingredient to a successful SWOT analysis is honesty. When you are listing your strengths and weaknesses, you need to be honest with yourself. Don’t worry, since you are a solopreneur, no one else is watching. You will do yourself a big favor by setting the ego aside.
The third key ingredient is don’t hold back when creating your list for each section. Write down everything that comes to mind. You don’t want to edit as you go along. This can lead to frustration and writer’s block. You want the ideas to flow first, then save the editing for later.
What do you edit out? Anything that doesn’t apply to your goal.
Once you have a clearer picture with your SWOT analysis, you can start to formulate strategies for reaching your goals. This is an excellent method for setting appropriate goals and re-energizing your efforts.
And as always, if you find that you are struggling with a SWOT analysis for your solopreneur business, don’t give up. Your business needs your attention. Write me back. I am here to help you through this.
All The Best,
The Solopreneur’s Guide