Reference #252: The First 90 Days


While SWOT is a useful framework for conducting strategic analysis, it is equally misunderstood.

SWOT is an acronym for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats; the framework enables individuals and groups to assess both internal capabilities and the external environment, identify strategic priorities, and create plans to address them.

Many practitioners carry out the analysis in the order of the acronym; this is an ineffective way to apply the framework. In doing so, they attempt to analyse their strengths and weaknesses in the abstract, fail to do so, then fail to give proper attention to opportunities and threats.

Instead, the analysis should be performed as TOWS. First assess the external environment, then use that as a reference from which internal capabilities are evaluated.

Watkins. The First 90 Days, 2013. (151-152)

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