SWOT stands for Strengths – Weaknesses – Opportunities – Threats. The SWOT analysis is used in strategic planning and is intended to identify key factors that are important for achieving a specific goal. Strengths and weaknesses are internal characteristics of the system under consideration and can be directly influenced by an actor. Opportunities and threats are external conditions that cannot be directly influenced by an actor (e.g., politics or the economy). The SWOT analysis is a method of subjective examination of data. For this purpose, the data are arranged in a matrix:

SWOT strategy matrixStrengthsWeaknesses
OpportunitiesUsing strengths that take advantage of opportunitiesUsing opportunities to eliminate weaknesses
ThreatsUsing strengths to avoid threatsMinimise weaknesses and avoid threats


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Hunger, J. D., & Wheelen, T. L. (2000). Strategic management (7th ed). Prentice Hall: Upper Saddle River, N.J.