5 Tips for Creating Your Company’s Strategic Profile

A company’s strategic profile lays out the business’s advantages and disadvantages clearly and succinctly.  The strategic profile, along with someone who has a masters in communication, will detail weaknesses in a company that may interfere with its ability to successfully compete with other businesses.  Weaknesses could include internal complications such as staff deficiencies or budget difficulties, or they could involve external environmental factors such as the economy, market fluctuations, or consumer interest.  The strategic profile examines the overall resources available to the business to effectively deal with and overcome weak points that negatively impact its performance.  This profile is essential for knowing where to prioritize business resources such as time, money, and people in order to build profits and increase business investment value.  Following are five general tips for creating a business strategic profile.

  1. SWOT ANALYSIS

A SWOT analysis is a systematized planning system to identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats involved in a business venture.  These business characteristics involve the following:

  • Strengths (internal) – business attributes that give it an advantage over other businesses
  • Weaknesses (internal) – business attributes that give it a disadvantage
  • Opportunities (external) – opportunities that a business could take advantage of
  • Threats (external) – factors which could negatively impacts the business and for which the business has no control over
  1.  2.       External Factors First

Threats identified in a SWOT analysis are factors that put your business at risk. Identifying them before they materialize allows managers to develop a crisis plan to handle them. Threats include bad media or publicity, a bad economy, price increases or a technology that makes your product outdated.

Threats may be viewed as challenges to be overcome or as opportunities, such as a need to make the business more noticeable to the public or altering products because of an economic downturn.  When assessing opportunities and threats, be thorough, and review both realistic and speculative external events that could impact your business.

  1. Use the “PESTLE” Framework

The PESTLE Framework is an analytical tool to help managers identify different macro-environmental factors that may affect business strategies.  The framework includes six types of environmental influences:  political, economic, social, technological, environmental, and legal.  Managers can place threats and opportunities into the appropriate PESTLE factor and by doing so, develop a more-targeted strategic plan that deals with each one.  PESTLE Frameworks help businesses assess how environmental factors are currently impacting business performance and how they might in the future.

  1. Customer Focused when Analyzing Strengths and Weaknesses

Business strengths involve many factors including the reputation, profitability, product or service, and the workforce that give the business specific advantages or disadvantages in meeting the needs of its customer base.  A business core competency is satisfying the needs of their customers and a meaningful analysis will assist the business in meeting the needs of clients.  Internal weaknesses involve limitations that a business may face when building or implementing a strategy.  Weaknesses need to be examined from a consumer’s perspective as customers will identify weaknesses that businesses cannot see.

  1.  Analyze the Competition

A competitive analysis adds more depth to a business strategic profile as it takes stock of the number and nature of competitors which may present a direct or indirect threat to business success.  Competitors can be analyzed by fitting them on a matrix that includes:

  • High Prices to Low Prices
  • High Quality to Low Quality
  • High Customization to Low Customization

This type of analysis allows managers to identify gaps in the market and gain insight into broad trends in the marketplace.  Analyzing competitor’s marketing strategies can help managers understand what appeal a competitor has to consumers.

Every business has external opportunities and threats that affect its survival.  The business’s internal environment also includes numerous factors that affect its ability to succeed and rise above the competition.  The business strategic profile is a crucial tool for business managers to assess past performance and gain a comprehensive understanding of the direction that a business must take for goal-setting objectives and strategy development.