A North West Consulting analysis includes a thorough examination of internal and external factors affecting the business. We create an overview of the organization that will lead to a better understanding of the factors that will influence its future.

We'll create a SWOT profile to create goals, strategies and implementation practices. This helps in decision-making across the organizational board and creates an understanding of the organization.

Strengths and weaknesses are internal to the company (think: reputation, patents, location). You can change them over time but not without some work.

Strengths (internal, positive factors):

  • “What do you do well?”
  • “What internal resources do you have?”
  • “What advantages do you have over your competition?”
  • “Do you have strong research and development capabilities? Manufacturing facilities?"
  • What other positive aspects, internal to your business, add value or offer you a competitive advantage?

Weaknesses (internal, negative factors):

  • “What factors that are within your control detract from your ability to obtain or maintain a competitive edge?”
  • “What areas need improvement to accomplish your objectives or compete with your strongest competitor?”
  • “What does your business lack (for example, expertise or access to skills or technology)?”
  • “Does your business have limited resources?"
  • "Is your business in a poor location?"

Opportunities and threats are external (think: suppliers, competitors, prices)—they are out there in the market, happening whether you like it or not. You can’t change them.

Opportunities (external, positive factors):

  • “What opportunities exist in your market or the environment that you can benefit from?”
  • “Is the perception of your business positive?”
  • “Has there been recent market growth or have there been other changes in the market the create an opportunity?”
  • “Is the opportunity ongoing, or is there just a window for it? In other words, how critical is your timing?"

Threats (external, negative factors):

  • “Who are your existing or potential competitors?”
  • “What factors beyond your control could place your business at risk?”
  • “Are there challenges created by an unfavorable trend or development that may lead to deteriorating revenues or profits?”
  • “What situations might threaten your marketing efforts?"
  • “Has there been a significant change in supplier prices or the availability of raw materials?"
  • “What about shifts in consumer behavior, the economy, or government regulations that could reduce your sales?"
  • “Has a new product or technology been introduced that makes your products, equipment, or services obsolete?"
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