How to use SWOT analysis to greater effect

Eric Garland Uncategorized Leave a Comment

Futurist John Mahaffie has a short, useful piece on how to use SWOT – one of my least favorite techniques – so that it includes analysis of the future.

Used in the typical way, SWOT analysis can do more harm than good. Why? Because the tool too easily forces thinking that ignores the future.

Using the four SWOT categories; strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats is a recipe, if you don’t take care, for a firm focus on the present. It gives you an organizational assessment, at best.

I have seen SWOT analysis as an impediment to insight, not a tool for growth, more often than not. Still, it’s a recognizable framework – and if people are going to insist on it, at least bring them better value.