Position Yourself For a Better Tomorrow! Do That SWOT Analysis Today

Posted on Thursday, July 4th, 2013 at 11:54 AM

By Modupe Olabenjo

So what’s next?‘ This is one question I always dread to ask myself. It is a question that kills me but it also gets me thinking.If you are fresh out of school like me, I’m sure that you would be able to relate to what I’m saying.

The truth is that at some point in life, we don’t necessarily know “what next” or what exactly we want to do with our life or what we want our future to look like. But what we should know is that we are in a very fast moving world, where people are divided into two categories; those who are progressing and those who are moving backwards.

Fela Durotoye in a speech addressing some students said, ‘the reason why we are able to stand without falling is because the world is spinning at such a fast rate that before we can fall, it has already moved to another point, so nothing is actually at a standstill; change is happening so fast that it looks like a constant’. So in reality, no one is really stagnant. It is either you are moving forward or going backward. Even if you remain at a particular position, and do nothing to improve that position, you are not stagnant because others around are improving their positions in life and are moving forward so you are getting farther behind.

Now that you know, figure out something to improve your present position in life, start where you are, with what you have. There is something called SWOT analysis that I was taught in management class. It is the most renowned tool for audit and analysis of the overall strategic position of the business and its environment. The acronym represents:

S- Strengths
W- Weaknesses
O- Opportunities
T- Threats

Carry out a SWOT analysis on yourself.

What are your strengths?
How can you maximize your strengths and put them into use? Do you have a desire to learn a particular thing, like bead making, sewing, trading, this could be strength? Yes, the desire alone is strength. Then, the next thing you need to do is to put that strength, that desire, that interest into use, do your research, use Google or other search engines, find out how to make use of your strengths. Find the opportunities available for the strengths you have been able to identify and you would be surprised at how much your strength is worth.

What are your weaknesses?
You need to be truth to yourself here, if you are serious about making any substantial progress. There is a popular saying that the first step to solving a problem is to accept that the problem exist. Could your weakness be laziness? Or lack of patient to see your progress? Or Lack of self discipline e.tc. Why not address it!

What are the opportunities available to you?
This is where you need to search for information. There are lots of opportunities available to you, the internet is a big opportunity itself, because you could get a whole lot of information if you know what exactly you are searching for. For example, yesterday I Googled writing competitions in Nigeria and I saw a whole lot of competitions and writing opportunities available to people at different levels. And I’m quite sure most young writers don’t even know about, since the numbers of shares were few. I thought to myself, if only I had seen all those in the category of secondary and tertiary institution while I was still in school. There are a lot of volunteer programs, for example, a whole lot of volunteering opportunities on several blogs. Search around you for opportunities available to you, your holiday or the period while you wait for your NYSC posting could be an opportunity you could use to get some professional certifications, work on your talent, volunteer Just do something in the direction of your goals. Remember, an opportunity once lost might never be gained again!

What are your the threats?
What are the things you feel could be a threat to you? Is it the fear of failure? Or lack of required skills? Or lack of required financial resources? Look into it and find out how you can overcome such threats, there would always be obstacles, there would always be mountains to cross, it is either you give up and turn back or you find a way to turn the mountain into a goldmine or you simply look for a way to level the mountain so you could crossover. There would always be a way if you truly desire it!

If you are able to carry out a SWOT analysis of yourself effectively, somewhere along the line, you would be able to have a clear picture of what you want your future to look like. You will be better equipped to work towards making it a reality. Also, you would have succeeded in improving your position in life instead of moving backwards all because you have not been able to figure out “what is next” question.
Remain fab!

Photo Credit: imported-chocolate.com
_________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Modupe Olabenjo is an Economist with an undying love for words. She is passionate about using her writing skills to influence young people achieve their dreams and become knowledgeable change agent, most especially young women. When she’s not combining words or reading, she’s most likely engaged in one intellectual conversation or the other. She blogs at modupeolabenjo.blogspot.com, follow her on twitter @modupeolabenjo or send her a mail at olabenjomodupe@yahoo.com.

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  • 22 Comments on “Position Yourself For a Better Tomorrow! Do That SWOT Analysis Today”

    Comments
    • LOLA July 4, 2013 at 12:36 PM

      10KS ALOT 4 DIS

    • laide July 4, 2013 at 1:27 PM

      wow…just what I needed to read.. I just graduated from uni..and am thinking what next. I think my major problem with conducting this SWOT analysis is that I do not know my strengths…but can mention all my weaknesses…please can someone give advice about knowing your strengths

      • mermaid July 4, 2013 at 3:29 PM

        ur strength, u can read very fast and comment immediately

        ur weakness, u cant seem to assimilate simple comprehensions

        • Laide July 4, 2013 at 4:15 PM

          Lmao..I knew some one was going to jump on that…what I meant was anyone who could give more insight or stories about how they found their strength

      • Victoria July 4, 2013 at 5:16 PM

        Laide,
        speaking as a mature student with loads of responsibilities I think if you are one of the lucky few with no responsibilities on your back and bills and rents to pay you have an advantage. The advantage is that you have a wide open door for the Opportunities part of the swot. That is opportunities of exploring alternatives available to you all without being tied down. This means now is the time to explore what strengths you have. Think of your talents/ abilities. Good luck to you.

      • B.E July 4, 2013 at 5:32 PM

        Hi Laide, the truth is a lot of people feel like you do and it’s not because you really have no strengths because we all do, it’s mostly because most humans find it difficult to compliment themselves.

        A starting point could be thinking about your weaknesses or what you class as weaknesses. For example someone who likes gist which some might see as a weakness, could see the positive in this as ‘a general awareness’

        Hope this helps as a start, just an idea but hope this helps.

        Kudos to the writer!

        B

      • 'Mide July 4, 2013 at 5:37 PM

        SWOT analysis is a useful decision tool to make sense of a messy world in which you are a willing and unwilling participant. The decision tool works for you when you consider the context in which you are operating in. For example, you can look at the threats from a local and external environmental point of view as challenges you must overcome. On strengths, you have age, opportunities to make mistakes, i.e., willingness to take risks, education (depending on what sort of education and skill set in demand in your local environment) as items to assess your assets. Your looks, communication skills, determination are also assets to watch out for in listing your strengths. Make I stop, make you digest this for now, you must bribe me to continue !! lol

      • Tayo July 4, 2013 at 6:27 PM

        Hi Laide,

        The following suggestions may help:

        1.) Think of past challenges you’ve had to face and what may have helped you get through them. For example, did you have to be patient or persistent to get through those times? Did you keep yourself active or go out of your way to find a solution? If so, this shows that you are patient, persistent, energetic, progressive and/or a problem solver.

        2.) What part of your studies did you enjoy the most and feel you were good at? If you studied business for example, where you more drawn to the marketing side of things or did you prefer business/financial analysing? Develop these likes/interests into hard skills you can use to pursue a career.

        3.) Think of what you enjoy doing in your spare time that you feel could progress. Writing/blogging, designing of any form or even something like healthy living/eating which you could further through qualifications or develop into a business. If you’re passionate and there is a market for it, it will succeed.

        4.) Ask your family, boyfriend and/or trusted friends. Alot of the time other people can easily see the good in us that we can not see in ourselves. Ask them to tell you what they like most about you or what they find most pleasant. If they are for you, they will happily and easily tell you.

        Hope these tips are useful. Some of the tips helped me with my own self analysis when I was rather lost as to what I wanted to do.

        All the best. :)

      • modupe July 4, 2013 at 6:54 PM

        your strength could simply be a desire you have to do something, it does not necessarily have to be a talent, may be the whole talent thing is a little overrated, if you have a desire to do something, you should start, the truth is that you never really know how much you can achieve without trying to start first.

        • Laide July 4, 2013 at 10:53 PM

          Thanks everyone for your useful contributions…they were very helpful in clarifying how to go about it. @ mide…don’t know what to bribe you with o…but wishing you more of God’s blessings. Am sure that’s enough…so you can continue with ur advice now.
          @ modupe..thanks very much for the article, would definitely follow your blog and check out your other articles.

    • Dora the explorer July 4, 2013 at 3:08 PM

      whatever it is that you feel totally confident at/in doing, whatever you feel like you are the best or can be the best at/in if given the right platform et al.. Qualities in you people commend regularly.. erhh stuff like that..

    • bussie July 4, 2013 at 3:36 PM

      Thanks!

    • modupe July 4, 2013 at 6:51 PM

      you are welcome dear :)

    • Chidynma July 4, 2013 at 6:59 PM

      Ds is simply d truth abt lyf, wht a truth. Am touched by ds, a guideline to make corrections where need. U ar d best.

    • Yewi July 4, 2013 at 8:26 PM

      This is very insightful and helpful. I sure have learnt a lot from this and I’m definitely motivated. Thank you very much Modupe.

      PS: I didn’t know you wrote. I’m actually very impressed. You should write articles like this often, this is very motivating and inspiring. Well done. ;)

      • modupe July 4, 2013 at 10:43 PM

        thanks a lot dear :) i’m glad you learnt from it.

    • Soraya July 5, 2013 at 12:14 AM

      “Modupe Olabenjo is an Economist with an undying love for words.”- I think this description just about sums up the writer and the article- words, words, words and no action!

    • 'Mide July 5, 2013 at 10:35 AM

      @ Laide, did you wish me God’s blessings ? Hmmm….you met my bribe demands, and even shot beyond expectations. I could not have wished for anything more. I think you have humility going for you – the fact that you could read an article, and ask yourself questions reflects thoughtful person, while also asking others for help and using them as resources to know your strengths is a major strength. In truth we all learn from one another and in the social world we are all involved in an ongoing conversation that furthers our interests and desires. Please keep asking questions because it is a strength that will take you places.

      @Modupe, thanks for the article and your labour of love and for your love of words. In your words, you have brought to our consciousness a decision tool that could be used in moving our lives forward. I look forward to more of your articles.

    • Adams Ede July 5, 2013 at 1:54 PM

      Mz Modupe thanks very much for this insightful treat. Its really made my weekend already. Altho I’m in the process of doing that but I found your tip of strength not just being what you are good at but what you are interested in very helpful indeed. Thanks very much.

    • na babe! July 5, 2013 at 3:01 PM

      have been looking for a means to learn a skill( fashion designing) but training cost is something else , they tell you 150k, where will an unemployed person get that kind of money from….. so frustrating

    • oddy July 5, 2013 at 10:50 PM

      @ na babe,am willing to help u out. I run a fashion school off allen in ikeja,if i reside in lagos.will gv u 50% discount which u can pay twice jst to encourage u.