It takes a village to set up a business, doesn’t it? It takes a lot of resources, especially time, effort, and a whole bag of capital to be able to start a venture to be operated for the foreseeable future. But what it all actually comes down to is the people who help achieve it all, which is why in this team SWOT analysis, we will see the people in more detail.
A company can have the best resources ever in comparison to the competition but if the people working for it are not competent, sincere, or dedicated enough for success, the company will not prosper. People build teams up which ultimately build organizations up. Think about it, if there aren’t the right people using the resources, what good can be achieved?
Teams can either make a company’s future or break it. It is an interesting phenomenon and has been studied in detail over the years in the context of organizational success. The SWOT will also help in understanding teams of people in a better light.
The strengths of teams are all the factors that give them their edge for success so the weaknesses consequently will be all factors that take that edge away from them. Similarly, opportunities for teams include all the possibilities which can be used to implement even more success and the threats are the factors that stand to harm the function of a team.
Before we move on ahead with the analysis, it is imperative for you to understand the classification of the factors covered in the SWOT. Strengths and weaknesses are called internal factors of an entity, meaning thereby these are factors that can be influenced or controlled by the people in said entity. On the other hand threats and opportunities are external factors which are out of the influential sphere of the entity and cannot be controlled.
This can be understood with the help of an example; teams work well together in collaboration so this is a strength because it can easily be determined by the people in this team. Some teams are dissolved when circumstances change on the outside, such as competition performing better, this would be a threat and it can’t be controlled.
How Do We Conduct a Team SWOT Analysis?
Yes, you must be thinking that a SWOT is usually conducted for bigger entities like organizations, industries, or even countries, so how can one simply use the same framework for something as trivial as a team? Well, that is the beauty of this tool; SWOT essentially stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats as we already know.
Everything and everyone on planet earth has sets of various characteristics which can be classified using the SWOT framework. Teams consist of people and people all have their peculiarities giving them many benefits but also the opposite.
Just like we apply the framework to a business, we assess all the different factors which shape up teams of people in any workplace at least on a generic level. Obviously, as we go into detail, there are more things that make every type of team vastly different but that is not for us to talk about today. Now that we have all of that out of the way, let’s see teams with some clarity.
What are some strengths of teams?
There would not be so many teams in human circles if they did not contribute to anything. Here are some of the things which make teams into the dream.
- Teams are able to generate a variety of ideas in brainstorming sessions, more than possible out of one person thereby providing variety.
- Teams have people having different areas of expertise allowing them to take care of problems much more universally. Not only does it improve efficiency, it improves the quality of the work being done.
- Teams are able to work much faster than individuals to meet deadlines earlier because many people are ticking points of the to-do list.
- Teams offer emotional support, friendship and a sense of belonging to all the people who are a part of them thereby increasing their motivation and dedication towards organizational success.
What are some weaknesses of teams?
The sun doesn’t shine forever and things don’t shine always, not even when people are taken as a group together. Here are some things which make teams weak.
- They are difficult to form; choosing who to put in a team can be a taxing process.
- It isn’t always smooth sailing; team conflicts are a reality in almost every team and can hinder progress and functioning. Storming is really the worst part to deal with while making a new team from scratch.
- Not every team has the right people; not enough people, not the right fit with each other, not the right group of talents etc. This kind of takes away from all the strengths we talked about earlier.
- People within teams can get competitive which defeats the entire purpose of team building. Their own goals are more important to them than the team’s as a whole.
What are some opportunities for teams?
As long as there is an opportunity, there can be hope. Here are a few pointers on how teams can actually become better.
- Virtual teams, although even in existence now, are the future; international barriers have been broken down thanks to technology so soon almost every business will be working or coordinating with people all over the globe in a virtual set-up.
- In the near future, teams will be formed to serve their purpose and disbanded quickly to increase efficiency of the output. This is an excellent way to teach people to get along with many others, no matter how different, to broaden their perspectives.
- The trend of shifting the focus from individual reward systems towards team rewards is expected to see a rise. It will encourage more and more people to assume the role of a leader.
What are some threats to teams?
Here are some of the most important things which can actually threaten the prosperity of a team. These are the ones to keep an eye out for.
- High turnover rates are a serious threat to be considered in teams because of the immense sea of competition and substitutes available.
- Important resources are lost when people leave teams including all the training hours and the sensitive information sharing.
- The difference of opinions and perspectives though on one hand is good, on the other it can quickly become a recipe for disaster completely putting a full stop to any useful contribution.
Now that we have seen the four separate factors being applied to teams, we can understand their dynamic with ease. In fact, this is precisely why we trod down this road of discussing teams in such detail. The SWOT framework really helps organize topics of discussion into amazing categories.
Importance of a Team SWOT Analysis
Be honest, hasn’t this analysis in this article helped you consider teams more holistically? If you answered yes, then you probably get why doing this SWOT was necessary.
It helps us not only to see the benefits and future potential benefits for team-building; it also shows us the other end of the stick; the end which no one wants. Despite the unpleasantness of having weaknesses and threats, not knowing them is far worse because then you have nothing to work on; you simply cannot improve.
Every organization has at least one team even if they are start-ups. Teams are very important functional units in any firm and their effective management makes all the difference between a mediocre and an excellent organization.
This is why it is absolutely essential to regularly conduct research on how teams can add success and how they can take away success so as to change all the negative factors into positive ones. The SWOT analysis just makes this research more organized and simplified to be used.
SWOT Analysis of a Team: Final Thoughts
If you have managed to complete reading this article right to this very point then congratulations are in order because you learned a lot about teams today! This knowledge will surely help you in either functioning well within your own team or even managing several teams under your able leadership.
In this article, we have applied and discussed the SWOT analysis in the context of teams in a workplace in grave detail. It has given us some very important strengths of teams such as the quality of work, efficiency, and improved results being delivered. It has addressed some slackness like the inevitable group conflicts sprouting every now and then.
The article also shares information on the interesting opportunities for workplace teams in the near future. People will have so much room for growth and improvement. There are threats to teams existing as well and we know them thanks to the analysis.
Despite there being threats, teams have a lot going on for them in their favor than against so we can surely conclude that teams are very important.
Other than the SWOT, we covered a lot of information on why we actually implemented this diverse framework in such a unique context in the first place. The purpose of the article was the application as well as an explanation as to why it was necessary. Hopefully, your concepts are much better now.
We wish you the very best of luck with your team-building activities!
A SWOT analysis is one of the easiest to understand, use and implement frameworks available for improving your organization. It can be applied to industries at large as well to understand them in more depth.
It highlights the strengths and weaknesses which occur on the inside and the threats and opportunities which linger outside. If you know these four components of the SWOT, you very easily can be on the road to improvement and growth. Knowing how to conduct a SWOT analysis is a very useful skill to have for working professionals as well as students to have.
If you wish to work on a SWOT of your own to increase your knowledge, we recommend the use of a good template. Moreover, you can understand how the analysis works by taking a look at a few extra examples.
The easiest way to understand and explain a SWOT analysis visually is to draft it in a tabular form. It is more concise, clean, and comprehendible like this.