Pass the SWOT Analysis: Example of Project Management
You’ve just been given a new project “from scratch” and you are wondering how to go about getting started. Do not panic! Here are all the tips to get things straight and get your project off to a good start. You will discover how to pass the SWOT analysis (Strengths-Weaknesses – Opportunities- Threats), and how to apply this matrix to the initial crucial phase of project management.
Project Management Kit
1- The essential crucial phase
2- What is SWOT Analysis?
3- Fields of application of SWOT Analysis
4- Example: Applying the SWOT analysis to project management
The Essential Crucial Phase
My daughter, who left for Shanghai in China, told me about the Chinese method of project management, she explained to me that the Chinese spend a lot of time analyzing, thinking, studying, and lot. less time to complete.
The reflection phase is indeed long and the action phase very fast. It’s a flat curve that takes off sharply.
Here, many managers and project leaders ignore the preliminary reflection phase and this is one of the causes of project failure.
So, even if it may seem overwhelming or a slowing down factor, know that it is not a waste of time to reflect on your strengths, budget, to plan your project before you start it.
What is SWOT Analysis?
Do you know the SWOT matrix (Strengths | Weaknesses | Opportunities | Threats?
A SWOT analysis is a structured reflection and assessment tool used to identify internal factors: your strengths and weaknesses, along with external factors: your opportunities and threats.
Internal factors of SWOT analysis
The SWOT matrix is concerned with two types of factors:
External factors of the SWOT analysis
Fields of Application of SWOT Analysis
Originally, SWOT analysis was a tool for business strategy. You can then use it before you start a business, to assess and grow your current business or before launching a new product, or to improve a system or process.
I applied for the first time a few months spent in Geneva, Switzerland. Where we analyzed a new business being created according to the SWOT matrix. And present the strengths and weaknesses of the business on the one hand and the opportunities and threats of the markets in which this company operates.
However, you can use SWOT analysis in all situations that require decision-making.
In addition to the strategic positioning and evolution of a business, you can use it to develop a communication or marketing strategy, or on a personal level to progress or change careers and improve your financial health.
SWOT Analysis can also be used in project management.
Example: Applying the SWOT analysis to project management.
The SWOT model can be very well adapted to the management of your project in its upstream phase.
For this, it is necessary to determine:
The internal strengths you have to succeed in this project in terms of internal resources, budget, and material, what are the weaknesses in terms of shortage of resources, budget, and material.
External opportunities that arise (a favorable legislative environment, appropriate subsidies, a new partnership, etc.) and external threats (a competitor more advanced in the launch of the service which is taking market share, unfavorable legislative environment, etc.)
Think about how to turn weaknesses into strengths and threats into opportunities as much as possible.
This can, for example, involves adequate communication of the future benefits of this project to those initially hostile.
Preparation of the SWOT Analysis
To succeed in the SWOT analysis, start by asking yourself the objective (s) to be achieved:
What are the products and/or services that will be implemented by my project?
Who will be the Customers/users of these products and/or services and how will they be used?
The questions to ask by yourself now are:
Which segment of people will use my project?
What need (s) will it meet?
Who will use my project?
One of the essential strengths is your motivation.
It is important to question the ethics of the project on which we are about to manage.
Learn More about Project Management
Are we in agreement with ourselves?
No need to accept every project if the goals are not consistent with our personal ethics because we are not going to be motivated to manage it.
In the event that the project stems from an idea we originated from, the problem of initial motivation does not arise.
In particular, for the business creator, he is generally in accordance with his own choices and therefore initiator, an engine of his own projects, and a motivating force.
A Prerequisite: Feasibility of the Project:
Let’s say that we approve the objectives of the project and that therefore the initial motivation is there. You still have to keep your feet on the ground, think about the feasibility of the project.
Do I have the skills or the possibility of surrounding myself with skills to complete this project, will I have enough budget or the possibility of obtaining it, and is this challenge within my reach?
Once these doubts arose, let’s get to the heart of the matter.
SWOT Opportunities and Threats
How to achieve the objective (s) of my project?
What are the opportunities and threats of my project?
Who will be the stakeholders favorable and unfavorable to my project?
How to circumvent the threats?
More information on stakeholder management strategies for a project:
We enter the part of the opportunities and threats or even external factors that will influence your project.
Think about human opportunities. Think about the people who can come into play without working directly on your project, they are stakeholders in your project.
These are the living opportunities for the success of your project. These actors can be, for example, department managers because you are going to call on a few people from their team part-time;
They can be the future sponsors of the project even if of course you will owe them accounts by telling them about the progress and monitoring of the project, etc…
Think about legislative opportunities. Your project may be part of a specific process, such as innovation, such as environmental protection, and which entitles you to grants.
Identify all the people who could benefit from your project and benefit from it.
These people can become allies, contributors to the success of your project.
Likewise, identify your project’s threats, or risks. Think in particular of all the people initially hostile to your project and work as much as possible to present to these people the benefits for them of this project in the long term.
If the threat to your project is a lack of money, it could hamper the launch of your project.
If you can’t get a bank loan or a grant, consider checking out Crowdfunding sites such as Kickstarter provided your project falls within the scope of fundable projects.
These sites offer the possibility of finding funding from individuals who support your project.
You can end up with a SWOT matrix:
Now you have all the elements for a successful SWOT analysis.
And have you taken the time before getting on the execution of your project, to think about the objectives of your project, to analyze the strengths and weaknesses at the start? Have you identified the opportunities, who will be your allies for the success of your project, and the blocking factors?
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