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Get to know yourself through SWOT analysis

By Klemen Marinčič, mag.

SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. It is primarily used in business as a technique for strategic planning. However, you can also use this strategy on yourself. We recommend that SWOT analysis should not be the first tool that you use to learn about yourself. Start instead by taking one of the questionnaires described in the article Do I know myself well enough and why is that important? When conducting a SWOT analysis, it’s important that you be honest with yourself, that you take enough time, and that you be aware and accepting of your limitations and abilities.

Studenti_SWOT analysis_picture

SWOT analysis can thus serve as a starting point for identifying and enhancing your strengths, identifying and eliminating your weaknesses, identifying and seizing opportunities, and identifying and avoiding threats. To conduct a SWOT analysis, draw a table with four cells and list (example):

STRENGTHS

WEAKNESSES

  • What are my strengths
  • What do I do well and fast?
  • What makes me unique?
  • What areas do I feel confident in?
  • Which actions/achievements have I received recognition for?
  • What can I build upon?
  • What have I been praised for?
  • What do I still need to learn?
  • What are my weak areas?
  • What am I doing poorly and slowly?
  • Where can I improve myself or enhance my abilities?
  • What do I get negative feedback for?

OPPORTUNITIES

THREATS

  • What is my challenge?
  • What can I use to benefit myself and my career?
  • What can make me stronger?
  • What can I set as my goal?
  • What trends are favourable for me?
  • What dangers I might encounter?
  • What are my threats?
  • What external factors might stop me from achieving my goal?
  • What might get worse?

 

 

Once you recognise our strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, you can take your next steps in several directions.

  • Explore your advantages; your strengths, already acquired competencies, work experience, contacts and people you can turn to.
  • Be aware of your weaknesses; what are your shortcomings and weak points, what skills do you need to upgrade, where do you have room for improvement.
  • Recognise opportunities; opportunities for additional education (seminars, workshops, lectures, etc.), linking and networking (social networks), current employment trends, gaining work experience while studying.
  • Anticipate threats; negative economic trends, rapid changes in knowledge in your field of expertise, competition, health.

 

Source: Personal SWOT Analysis; Making the Most of Your Talents and Opportunities, available at: http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_05_1.htm, September 2020