The use of SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis in the personal context is a good option for improving one’s abilities and eliminating problems, especially when it comes to career planning and promotion. It also allows creating a strategic plan for achieving a specific goal (Simoneaux & Stroud, 2011). My goal is to become a highly qualified professional able to apply the skills and knowledge to a variety of fields. Since the use of SWOT analysis proved to be beneficial for career growth, it will be helpful for me as well (Wislow, 2017). To successfully implement this instrument, I need to consider my strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats and create a development strategy based on these characteristics to gain a competitive advantage.
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The first characteristic in the SWOT analysis is personal strengths. It helps to assess one’s advantages in comparison with other people in the industry. From this point of view, my strengths primarily relate to the ability to learn fast and change under emerging circumstances (see Appendix). They are complemented by my flexibility and orientation on people while working. The latter contributes to the successful resolution of conflicts in the workplace, which is my principal achievement, and maintaining customer service quality. Hence, I am better than my colleagues in the matter related to communication, and other people support this view. This characteristic also allows me to make connections in a new place.
The second consideration is people’s weaknesses preventing them from career growth and making him or her focus on insignificant tasks. In my situation, the main weaknesses are my inability to say “no” to people asking me for help and the habit of taking on too many responsibilities at once (see Appendix). These points are interconnected since they both lead to the situation, in which I do not avoid any tasks and, therefore, struggle with their performance under time constraints.
Another weakness is my poor tech skills, which should be improved. This necessity is defined by the needs of the present-day business world and the rapid development of technology. Even though I have no other negative work habits and do my best to comply with the requirements, the specified weaknesses can destroy my career (Coman & Ronen, 2009). As for restraining personality traits relating to fears or uncertainty, I have none.
The third consideration is opportunities, and they relate to external circumstances that either help or prevent a person from achieving goals. In my case, an essential opportunity is the support of my family (see Appendix). It allows me to feel confident in situations in which I might fail, as I know they will not leave me without help. Another advantage is my good networking contacts, and it is vital in terms of receiving advice or other kinds of assistance when needed. I also have certain opportunities for the establishment of my own business in the future.
Moreover, there are specific trends in the business world, requiring an individual approach to every customer. They present an opportunity for me as well, since I always succeed in such matters. My colleagues might also have similar skills, but my experience showed that the company’s owner tends to entrust these tasks to me. In this way, I can offer solutions to the company’s communication problems while using the trends to my advantage. I am confident about my skills and experience and can resolve such issues.
The fourth criterion is threats to my personal development, which can outweigh the identified strengths and opportunities. They include high competition levels in the market, especially from people with skills and education similar to mine, and the increased demand for specialists with tech experience (see Appendix). These threats can be an obstacle to becoming a highly qualified professional, and their impact is seen in my everyday work. Thus, for example, I struggle with all the tasks that imply the use of technology. In this way, the position of my co-workers is more beneficial than mine. Hence, one of my weaknesses, poor tech skills, poses a threat to my career promotion. Fortunately, the nature of my job does not change, and it allows me to readjust to the needs of the business.
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Such an instrument as SWOT analysis allowed me to see a clear picture of my future strategy of professional growth. It was no wonder that my friends’ and family members’ feedback coincided with the analysis results, and their opinions increased my determination to work on the problems to achieve my goal. It implies eliminating the identified issues related to my tech skills and the propensity to take on more tasks than I can perform to reduce the threat. Moreover, the strategy will include measures on the proper use of identified strengths and opportunities.
The conducted SWOT analysis proved to be a useful tool for defining the strategy of my personal career development. Its reliability is determined not only by my perspective but also by my friends’ and family’s feedback that confirmed the conclusion. Thus, the practical implementation of the knowledge in the form of a strategic plan will help me achieve my goal and become a valuable specialist. Even the perceived weakness in being responsible can open up a new opportunity in my intention to start a business.
Coman, A., & Ronen, B. (2009). Focused SWOT: Diagnosing critical strengths and weaknesses. International Journal of Production Research, 47(20), 5677-5689.
Simoneaux, S. L., & Stroud, C. L. (2011). SWOT analysis: The annual check-up for a business. Journal of Pension Benefits: Issues in Administration, 18(3), 75-78.
Wislow, E. (2017). Why a personal SWOT analysis will help your career growth. Careermetis. Web.
Great customer service
Adaptable to change
Hard to say “no”
Take on too many responsibilities
Poor tech skills
Good networking contacts
Business opportunities (my own business)
Many people with similar abilities
High demand for technical jobs