What is SWOT analysis ?

What is SWOT analysis and what does it do?

Many branches of knowledge have the keywords that it is impossible to imagine those sciences without those words.

For example, if we extract supply and demand from the economy, there will not be much left of it, despite the massive body of this knowledge.

In the same way, if we take strategy, opportunity, threat, strength, and weakness, we have diminished an important part of the strategy. The four terms commonly referred to as the first letter of their English equivalents, as a SWOT or SWOT matrix:

  1. Opportunity

  2. Threat

  3. Strength

  4. Weakness

The SWOT matrix can be considered as the oldest strategy tool, and the SWOT analysis based on this matrix has become the standard part of most of the books and official references in strategic thinking and strategic thinking.

Although we often have enough familiarity with this tool, we focus on a brief overview of this tool, with the aim of making the subjective image of friends complementary to the SWOT analysis as well as the formation of a common language in this field.

SWOT matrix

The first step in using the SWOT analysis is to list the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, each one individually and accurately. The two terms of strength and weakness refer to the internal state of the business, and opportunities and threats speak of the external environment of the business:

A SWOT matrix to be used later for SWOT analysis. But its framework needs to be changed

Therefore, the following can be examples of strength and weakness in a business (SW):

  • High / Low liquidity
  • Access to or lack of technical and specialized knowledge
  • Owning a strong base among customers
  • A high or low share of human resource costs in the structure of business costs
  • Simple or difficult access to vital resources for businesses
  • Motivated by the high or low labor force
  • High quality or low products
  • Accessor lack of access to a powerful distribution network

By contrast, the following can be examples of opportunities and threats in a business environment (OT):

  • The fluctuation of the rial against the dollar
  • The stability or instability of the laws in the field of the activity of a business
  • The presence or absence of large rivals with state support and subsidies
  • The prevalence or prevalence of the culture of using a business’s products
  • Changes in population pyramid and demographic characteristics of the community
  • Changes in the technological infrastructure of the country
  • Advances in the field of Information Technology
  • Strengthening or weakening the country’s political relationship with other countries
  • If we put the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats in a slightly higher framework, we will come to this matrix:
  • Sample SWOT matrix completed

SWOT analysis

SWOT matrix should not be confused with SWOT analysis. This matrix is just a way to show the status of a business. But the main goal of listing strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats is to look at strategic options for a business. Otherwise, the listing of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, by itself, can not be miraculous and influential.

For this reason, the next step after determining the components of S and W, and O and T is to consider their relationship with each other and their effect on each other:

SWOT analysis

Strategic thinking

Strategic thinking

Strategic Thinking Cognitive Map
Strategic thinking has been considered less than other issues and strategies related to the strategy.

Strategic thinking
Strategic thinking

Usually, when we hear the name of a strategy, issues such as strategic planning, implementation, and implementation of the strategy, or even strategic control, are in our minds, but strategic thinking has a small contribution.

Even many of the books officially introduced as strategic thinking eventually replicated the details of strategic planning.

In addition, given the importance we attach to strategic thinking, we decided to devote an independent chapter to this discussion.

What is the purpose of strategic thinking?

The goal of the lesson is strategic thinking, teaching thinking, and thinking based on the principles of strategy.

Strategic thinking, as its name implies, teaches us a better way of thinking. Help us better see and evaluate our resources and maximize the opportunities that exist in our environment.

What are the lessons for strategic thinking?

Contrary to some of the complementary lessons that are not available without offering the project in the proposed courses, we do not have any limitations on this subject.

However, we believe that studying and familiarizing with the concepts of system thinking and decision making can help in the deeper understanding of this subject.

At the same time, strategic thinking is a prerequisite for a business strategy lesson, and by studying and learning it can understand the concepts of business strategy better and deeper.

Is strategic thinking useful only for executive executives?

Although many examples of strategic thinking lessons from the business environment have been chosen, strategic thinking is not just to improve business management. From this perspective, gender can be considered as a systematic thinking lesson.

System thinking can also be used extensively in the business environment and effective. But we know well that thinking is not systematically limited to business and can affect other aspects of our lives.

Rich Horwath, whose books are also one of the sources of a strategic supplementary lesson, defines an interesting story.

“Do you see strategic thinking and see yourself as a strategic thinker?”

He asked participants in seminars and seminars.

Interestingly, the response pattern of the respondent is almost always the same.

Senior managers say confidently: Yes! Certainly! Of course!

Intermediate executives shake their heads a little bit, and somehow they confirm them to a certain degree.

Those at the bottom of the organization usually silence this question.

It seems that we were somewhere in the corner of our minds that someone in high standing should be a strategic thinker and someone who has no strategic thinking ability (or not in a position that does not need this ability) )

Strategic thinking is not for managers and is required at all levels of the organization

What is the relationship between strategic thinking and strategic planning?
If you expect a clear and precise answer to this question, unfortunately, your expectation will not be met.

Although writers and thinkers in the field of management simply and repeatedly use the two words of strategic planning and strategic thinking, there is no agreement on the difference between the two and the relationship between the two concepts.

The definition and attribute of strategic thinking vary from source to source.

If you look at the world of books and articles and top masters in this field, you will find four different answers (and even contradictions) for this question.

Prerequisite for Strategic Thinking for Strategic Planning

People like Henry Mintzberg believe that strategic thinking and strategic planning are two different ways of thinking, one of them (strategic thinking) is another prerequisite (strategic planning). In other words, we first understand and understand the strategic thinking of space, and then, relying on strategic planning, we find out what we have learned and operational.

The separation of strategy in thinking and planning is not beneficial

The second group includes people like Michael Porter who argue that strategic thinking is an analytical and fully-designed approach. When you see someone like Porter, you realize that the third concept is used instead of strategic thinking and strategic planning, which is strategic analysis. Michael Porter examines the strategy in two sections:

Diagnosing and analyzing the industry and its current and future status
Choose the position you want (or can) with your business in the industry

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