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The Sword Of Decision Making : Do you know who invented it?

As part of our #criticalcoreskills series, We will venture into the 10 tools to enhance decision making especially difficult decisions. To our #alvigorod community, decision making tool #1 is something we could be quite familiar with,

Do You Know Who Invented SWOT?

The SWOT framework is credit to Albert Humphrey, who developed the approach at the Stanford Research Institute (SRI) back in the 1960s and early 1970s. The ultimate goal of a SWOT analysis is to reinforce your business strategy by assessing all of your business’s strengths and weaknesses, as well as the potential opportunities and pitfalls within your marketplace.

To use the SWOT tool for decisions, we need to split into 2 categories namely internal and external

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Let’s take a look at some of the strengths and weaknesses businesses typically consider about their own operations:

Financial resources – funding and income sources and potential investment opportunities

Physical resources – business locality, facilities and industry equipment

Human resources – staff base and target demographics

Natural resources – access to intellectual property (e.g. trade marks, patents or copyrights)

Existing infrastructure – software, staff programmes, departmental hierarchies etc.


The final two letters in SWOT, O (Opportunities) and T (Threats), refer to external factors that could influence your business. It’s the task of decision makers within your business to ascertain whether any of the following factors are a direct or indirect opportunity or threat to your company:

External funding – e.g. legislature, gifts, donations and other potential sources

Industry trends – technological developments, new product lines and shifting consumer demands

Economic movements – financial trends on a local, national and global scale

Target demographic – evolution of audience i.e. age, race, gender and culture

Working relationships – dealings with partners and suppliers

Regulations – i.e. political, environmental and economic

Most people struggle with the Opportunities because this requires additional effort to acquire knowledge outside of one's scope


Knowing that a country is cutting taxes on import duty items could present an opportunity to an exporter to increase sales or bring in new items due to low risk.

Introducing new HR Tech as there is a 2 month free trial which could mean insignificant risk to trial if the system is robust enough to manage the employee data.

The SWOT can be done both online and offline to gather the thoughts of the individual departmental leaders and the 2nd in line to get a full understanding of how people are reacting to the changes being deployed.

No harm trying ! 😀


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