Send in the SWOT Team

This wikipedia entry defines a SWOT Analysis as a "strategic planning tool used to evaluate the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats involved in a project or in a business venture or in any other situation of an organization or individual requiring a decision in pursuit of an objective. It involves monitoring the marketing environment internal and external to the organization or individual..."

This article from netmba.com explains:

"[Internal] factors should be evaluated across the organization in areas such as:

Company culture
Company image
Organizational structure
Key staff
Access to natural resources
Position on the experience curve
Operational efficiency
Operational capacity
Brand awarenes
Market share
Financial resources
Exclusive contracts
Patents and trade secrets...

The article identifies changes in the external environment in the following area may present opportunities or threats:

Market trends
Social changes
New technology
Economic environment
Political and regulatory environment"

This article from quickmba.com adds:

"Examples of...strengths include:

strong brand names
good reputation among customers
cost advantages from proprietary know-how
exclusive access to high grade natural resources
favorable access to distribution networks

The absence of certain strengths may be viewed as a weakness. For example, each of the following may be considered weaknesses:

lack of patent protection
a weak brand name
poor reputation among customers
high cost structure
lack of access to the best natural resources
lack of access to key distribution channels...

Some examples of...opportunities include:

an unfulfilled customer need
arrival of new technologies
loosening of regulations
removal of international trade barriers...

Some examples of...threats include:

shifts in consumer tastes away from the firm's products
emergence of substitute products
new regulations
increased trade barriers"

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