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How can I determine business direction?

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I sometimes feel so close to the coalface in my business that I find it hard to be objective in assessing how it is performing and what I need to do next to keep it moving forward.

This is always a challenge in small business and akin to not being able to see the wood for the trees. However, the good news is that the minute you recognise the fact, you can step away and take a longer view. One of the things you can do at this time is a SWOT analysis and consider the external and internal forces that drive your business. The strengths and weaknesses are internal and things you can control, and the opportunities and threats are external and usually beyond your control. Draw up a four-box grid and list the key points in each segment

SWOT is really a state of mind where you are always checking in to the realities inside and outside your business and processing the information. Your business’ strengths are elements within the business that will enable you to succeed. Ask yourself what are the conditions or abilities that put you first in the eyes of your customers or make you an innovator in your market?

The inverse of this are the conditions that put you at a disadvantage. These weaknesses could be poor or missing systems, untrained staff or anything that results in dissatisfied customers.

Once you have determined your SWOT and the impact each point has on your business, you can make the necessary decisions on the actions you will take to develop or correct. The whole process is not difficult; it just takes careful thinking and application to move your business forward.

If you’re looking to work on your business rather than being stuck in it, book in for a complimentary business assessment today with Switzer Business Coaching

Important information: This content has been prepared without taking account of the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular individual. It does not constitute formal advice. For this reason, any individual should, before acting, consider the appropriateness of the information, having regard to the individual’s objectives, financial situation and needs and, if necessary, seek appropriate professional advice.

Published: Friday, June 03, 2011

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