Strategic planning is very significant for the success of the organization. Systematic strategic planning is defined as the processes that are involved in achieving the goals of the organization. It includes two components – strategic thinking and tactical planning. Strategic thinking focuses on setting objectives, vision and mission, while tactical planning defines strategies for implementing plan of actions, resources and the people in the organization. Thus, strategic management involves the processes by which organizations formulates its set goals, develops the plans of improvement, makes the vision and the mission; implements the plan and evaluates the performances.
Every organization has its vision. It is defined as the state for the life of the organization. The vision statement, preferably should be short one sentence. The mission is based on the vision, a way to achieve the goals of the organization. Hence, for achievement of the set objectives, the organization must define its vision and mission.
SWOT analysis provides a clear situation that helps in making a proper strategic plan. Once the goals are set, vision and mission statements are defined, long_term as well as short_term objectives are set. Alternative strategies should be developed and finally the best strategy for achieving the goals should be selected.
SWOT stands for the Strengths, the Weaknesses, the Opportunities and the Threats. The SWOT analysis model is basically used as one of the tools to analyze all the internal – Strengths and Weaknesses, and all the external – Opportunities and Threats. SWOT analysis is done before the initialization of the projects in order to analyze different elements and formulate a strong foundation of the project plan. This method helps in making decisions in project management.
The strengths of the organization help in achieving the set objectives of the project. Some of the strengths of the organization are – availability of resources, skill levels and reputation of the business and many more, that help in the success of the project.
The weaknesses of the organization are those factors that hinder in accomplishing the goals of the project. A gap in knowledge and expertise, time scale and deadline, budget and funding, are some of the factors that hinder the growth of a project management.
The opportunities are the external conditions that determine the success of a project management. Some of the opportunities in bringing hope in the stages of project planning are – infrastructure and technological developments, changing behavior of the consumers, new innovation and market demand.
The threats are the external conditions that may hinder the success of the project. Environmental factors, competitor’s activities, political influences and economic effects.
However, in order to facilitate a translation of the set short_term and long_term objectives, into a workable structure involves assigning of tasks to responsible elements within the organization. SWOT analysis is one of the methods used for risk analysis. Risks are associated to the activities and objectives of the organization. Project risk management is a pro-active process and is prior to the beginning of the project. The project manager identifies the potential risks and enables to carry out actions as a solution to the problem. Conducting risk management periodical, with SWOT can help in avoiding the surprises for the organization. Identifying the events that may have a high risk for the organizational activities is very important for the success of the project. ‘Risks’ in the project management are negative components and are threats to the organization. The possibility of the occurrence of these risks may affect the goals adversely. Description of the actual risks, their impact on the projects and the possible actions to be taken as a remedy to reduce the impact on the project, are typical observations from SWOT.
Since, SWOT evaluates every aspect of the risks involved and each risk can be eliminated prior to its occurrence. Hence, the projects are successful when strengths and weaknesses, opportunities and threats can be analyzed closely to give a strong conclusion on what their project will end up.
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