Owning and running a business is hard. As an entrepreneur or small business owner, you’re constantly dealing with the competition, cash flow, employee issues, changing technologies, surprises, busyness… not to mention the economy and government interference. That kind of constant complexity is par for the course when it comes to owning your own business – but you have to learn how to manage it. Letting the stresses of business ownership get to you is the best way to burn yourself out. Owning a business – when done right – can give you a tremendous amount of flexibility, freedom, fulfillment and financial success. Aren’t you ready to embrace those benefits?
At The Growth Coach, we urge our clients and friends to do what they can to keep from being overwhelmed by the challenges of being an entrepreneur. After all, having these issues isn’t actually the problem. The real problem is when you don’t know how to HANDLE these challenges. You have to have a simple framework in place to identify and address business issues. You need systems in place to help you manage the ever-changing landscape of your company. You must be able to rely on an effective and consistent method to tackle problems and seize opportunities.
Let’s get back to the basics. You can learn to manage your business challenges by implementing a tried and true strategy – the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) Analysis. Rather than spending your days REACTING the issues with your business, put a SWOT Analysis plan in place to deal with challenges as they arise. Here’s a series of questions to help you with that analysis:
- What are your personal and company strengths, unique talents and money-making assets?
- Which are the most promising strengths – personal and corporate – to pursue now?
- How can you effectively leverage, maximize and multiply these strengths?
Weaknesses (Don’t spend too much time on weaknesses or they’ll just become strong weaknesses!)
- What are your personal and company weaknesses and liabilities?
- How can you effectively neutralize, delegate or outsource these weaknesses?
- What are your money-making opportunities at hand right now?
- Which are the most promising opportunities with the greatest ROI?
- How can you go about effectively seizing these opportunities?
- What are the greatest threats/dangers facing you and your business?
- How can you effectively eliminate or minimize these threats?
Once you have this SWOT Analysis in place, you’ll be able to refer to it whenever you’re facing a business problem. Having this simple process at your fingertips will help you focus on the most important elements of your business without getting overwhelmed!