Welcome back to the Business Greenhouse and our week on SWOT, the SWOT Analysis. So that’s the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.

In a previous episode, I talked about strengths and how to identify the strengths in your business and why that’s important. And I encouraged you to fill those in, in the SWOT template that was in the show notes.

Creating a SWOT Template

You can easily create your own SWOT template. It’s literally four squares, strengths and weaknesses in the top, opportunities and threats in the bottom. And so if you listened to the previous episode then you should have filled in your strengths.

Why its good to identify weaknesses in your business

And now we’re going to talk about weaknesses. Now, weaknesses, I mean, to some people that sounds like quite a negative thing, but I actually love identifying weaknesses in my client’s business because then I know what I need to focus on to help them to grow. Because once you know what your weaknesses are (if you identify the weaknesses that are critical to the business’s success) then you can make sure that you sort them out!

So actually this is a really, really great process and it’s actually, I think, a great start because it means that you’re going to be sorting out the problems that are stopping you from growing your business.

Questions to ask yourself are things like, where are we wasting money? Where are we wasting time and resources? What do our competitors do better? What are our top customer complaints? And where do we lack efficiency?

Examples of Weaknesses in a SWOT

And I’m just going to give you a few ideas about weaknesses. If any of these resonate with you, you can write them down. Obviously, I work with a whole range of clients in different industries and of different sizes, but a lot of my clients come to me, they choose me, because they want help with their marketing and they want help with digital. So quite often there might be weaknesses in those areas.

It could be things like they don’t have a proper marketing plan in place, they don’t have a proper structure and process around their marketing. It could be things like they’re not measuring their marketing properly, they’re not reporting on their marketing and business results properly. They’re not doing things like monthly or quarterly business reviews.

It could be weaknesses like issues with the website or SEO, which is search engine optimization issues. It could be weaknesses like not having a clear content strategy or not having a clear social media strategy. And it could also be finance-focused weaknesses, so potentially not clear finance processes, not a good enough accountant, not a good enough bookkeeper, maybe the founder is not very clear on how to read financial statements and that is a weakness, obviously, and something that needs to be addressed.

It might be around the Board of Directors. Maybe there’s not a diverse enough board. I talked about the board of directors and strengths and I think a diverse board who’ve got lots of experience working in different companies can be a real strength. And I suppose the opposite is if you don’t have enough experienced people on the board, that could be a weakness.

Other weaknesses that I see would be things around the customer journey. The customer journey is so important – the way that you look after your customer from the minute that they hear about you to the time that they buy from you and after that. And I did an episode on the customer journey, so go and have a listen.
Most clients that I start working with that definitely is a weakness and something that we need to address.

So have a think, do any of those weaknesses that I have talked about resonate with you?

Is there anything else you can think about  – potentially to do with the team of people? Maybe they need training or maybe you haven’t got the right structure in place.

Maybe you’ve got issues with your tech?

Have a think about the weaknesses that are relevant to your business and pop those into the second quadrant in the SWOT Analysis.

And in the next episode, we’re going to talk about opportunities.