Get Naked

It’s that time of year again. Time to figuratively strip down and take an honest look in the mirror.   If everything in your business is “perfect” you and your company are an anomaly.

If your business can benefit from making a few tweaks or wholesale changes, the first step to set the stage for a successful 2017 strategic plan is to SWOTT IT! No, I’m not talking about preventing the Zika Virus, West Nile or any other insect carrying disease. I’m talking about doing a comprehensive, transparent SWOTT analysis.

Too often executives skim over this important process or skip it all together. When was the last time you completed a hard core SWOTT of your business or functional area? Heck, when was the last time you completed a SWOTT on yourself! Have you ever completed a personal SWOTT? Hmmm, something to think about.

For those fully committed to getting an honest and up to date appreciation of core priorities and business pressures, make the time to list the following. Next, have your functional leaders to the same. Finally, rollup the findings, force rank each and take action towards building a strategic plan you can be proud of.

For those that need a quick refresher, read on!

  • STRENGTHS – List the 12-20 core strengths you or your business can hang your hat on
  • WEAKNESSES – List the 7 – 12 areas of weakness or liabilities your business needs to acknowledge and manage
  • OPPORTUNITES – List the 12-20 BIG opportunities the market is yearning for. Pretend there are no limitations. Simply dream. If your company could fill all market wants, needs and desires (within your core competencies) what would they be? Be complete and be clear
  • THREATS – Guess what, your competition (current) or those pesky entrepreneurs (spare bedroom start-ups) are out there lurking, scheming and planning to disrupt your business and/or entire industry.   Do you have a comprehensive handle on the potential new entrants or market shifting dynamics that could impact your company? Remember, not long ago the record industry scoffed at a crazy music sharing concept called NAPSTER.   Enough said.

Now here is where things get personal and powerful. The word SWOTT was intentionally spelled with an extra T. What might that extra T stand for?   Look no further than the last sentence in the second paragraph.

  • TRANSPARENT – To complete a powerful SWOTT analysis you must get naked. You must strip down all the politically correct or superficial past perceptions in your business. It’s time to get down and dirty and face your reality, as it exists!

If you and your team are committed to success, you must be clear on where you are. Then, and only then, can you build a plan to take your company where you want it to go.

There is no such thing as THE way; there is only A way to scale the summit of success. What is most critical is to plan your path and execute with energy.

Your journey begins by getting naked and then SWOTTing it.