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Self-awareness is one of the most essential instincts necessary to achieve success in business. For instance, before a company can secure financing from investors, it has to demonstrate self-awareness by way of preparing a business plan. Even at the individual level, before landing a job, every employee of every company in the world has to demonstrate self-awareness through introductory protocol such as resumes, cover letters and interviews. This principle applies particularly to the responsibility of supervision. Before a manager can coordinate a team or department, they have to understand the personalities and skills of team members. Managers also have to speculate how each member’s individual characteristics could potentially affect cohesion. Virtually no idea in business can be seen through to its logical conclusion without a comprehensive understanding of the stakeholders or multiple ! external factors that influence general performance.

Don’t Just Guess, Make a Plan:

Understanding how to achieve self-awareness methodically is an invaluable skill which facilitates effective decision-making. Gaining self-awareness isn’t just a process of random assumption. Rather it should involve fact-based, honest examination of cause and effect. It is extremely important for leaders not just to identify the capabilities of their subordinates, but also to leverage any discovered talents advantageously towards a tangible purpose. Methodical self-awareness can be achieved through a variety of techniques. One of the most popular approaches is a method known as SWOT Analysis.

How SWOT Analysis Works:

SWOT is an acronym for the terms Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. When faced with an ambitious situation or event, evaluating each of these factors enables decision-makers to compose realistic objectives and position themselves to practically accomplish set objectives. Measuring Strengths involves defining any assets or resources which firmly establish strategic advantage. Measuring Weaknesses involves defining any obstacles which stand to hinder performance. Measuring Opportunities involves identifying external factors within a business environment which can! be capitalized on to accomplish goals quickly. Lastly, measuring Threats involves analyzing any external factors in a business environment which can impede the overall functioning of a team.

Whether or not a manager has had the luxury of assembling a team from scratch, conducting a SWOT analysis before taking on a project is a conducive way to assign responsibilities while drawing out the best possible effort from employees. Here are four steps to identify and take advantage of a team’s abilities:

1.       Develop Your Questions: Write down a series of questions that relate to each component of SWOT. The more questions generated, the more information can be collected. Be careful not to get caught up in gathering data however. Sometimes all it takes is a few responses to figure out the most important issues.

2.       Create Charts and Surveys: With a clear idea of what to investigate, print out charts and surveys that can be distributed to team members in order to document their answers. Charts and surveys are an organized way to categorize desired information according to the specific topics of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.

3.       Analyze Gathered Information: Once all responses to the questions have been documented, analyze and prioritize them according to relevance. For instance, information about strengths should be used to assign responsibility to people who indicate strong aptitude.

4.       Formulate and Apply a Strategy: With a clear idea of the team’s capabilities and limitations, develop an approach to your intended project which is considerate of information discovered from your analysis. Use your findings to pair up people in complementary ways.

A scientific process is the best way for any manager to discover the capabilities of a team. Instead of making blind assumptions, be investigative and detailed about assessing strengths and weaknesses. Even without a formal SWOT analysis, such an approach serves as a strong guide for how best to allocate resources and assign responsibilities. Check out more of RISE Programs’ Blogs for helpful advice on leadership, and remember to spread the word by sharing this post. If you like what you just read from our blog, you’ll love the various informative workshops and events listed on our website and social media. Whether you’re interested in personal development, or overall improvement of your business, give us a call at 1 (888) 823-7757 to find out how RISE Programs can help you break pas! t your daily struggles and start soaring in success.