Which Step is this?

Don’t sweat the parts you don’t understand because there is someone out there who does understand! – AP Business Consultants

With all the steps that we go through to start a business we can become overwhelmed with information. Logos, LLC’s, & social media may not be things that you excel at but there are always people who can either teach you how to do it or that can do it for you. First things first…………can you put on your CEO hat and be completely honest with yourself? Can you remove the “S” from your chest without taking a hit to your ego? It’s a step that tends to create fear since most business owners chose to work for themselves after a long internal fight. Can I handle this? Will I succeed? Now after finally making the choice to move forward you have to take time to determine what you can and cannot do on your own. So which step is this?

This step is the one where you learn to understand your strengths and weaknesses which is a step that most business owners skip over or don’t use it to its full potential. It should be one of the first steps a business owner takes because understanding your strengths and weaknesses allows you to better budget company finances, build a better business plan and have more confidence in your brand. What contractor advertises that they can build a house or even remodel a bathroom without first knowing their own personal abilities? No matter where you are in your business journey, this step can propel your business. At the end of this post I have a list of SWOT Analysis questions that can assist you in this step.

SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats) is an analysis that business owners do when completing their business plan or when they are working on their budget. It allows them to honestly look at the areas of their business that may need more help.  Help is not the naughty bad word people believe it is. Yes there are pitfalls and scams that people fall prey to everyday but that is not where it ends. As a business owner we must look at each situation as an opportunity. An opportunity for growth, an opportunity to learn something new or the opportunity to realize that we are human.

Here are a list of questions to think about as a business owner:

Strengths

  • What makes you better than others (for this mission)?
  • What actions do you do well?
  • What are your competences? What knowledge, skills and attitude do you have that can help you?
  • What do other people say you do well?
  • Why should you of all people undertake this mission?

Weaknesses

  • What could you improve in order to achieve this mission?
  • In what ways are you not efficient?
  • What don’t you do well?
  • Where are you incompetent? What knowledge, skills and attitude are you missing?
  • What should you avoid doing?
  • Why shouldn’t you undertake this mission?

Opportunities

  • What real opportunities are present today?
  • What is going on around you that seems to be useful?
  • From which recurring tendencies can you profit and how?
  • What could be done today that isn’t being done?
  • What is missing on the market?
  • Who can support you and how?

Threats

  • What are the negative tendencies in play today?
  • What obstacles do you face in your mission right now?
  • Who might cause you problems in the future and how?
  • What is the competition doing that might cause difficulties for you?

“But each one must examine his own work, and then he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another.” ~ Galatians 6:4

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