Have you heard of the SWOT analysis? Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats? Many of us are aware of a SWOT analysis. You may not have conducted the analysis, but you have likely come across reports or case studies that reference findings from the tool. But what about the SOAR analysis – have you heard of the SOAR analysis?
The SOAR analysis is conducted along the same lines as the SWOT analysis but leverages a strengths-based approach to positive thinking and positive leadership. In Profit from the Positive (2013), we learn the SOAR framework of strengths, opportunities, aspirations, and results. The SOAR analysis is a tool an individual leader may use to develop their career or life intentions. It’s also a tool a team or organization can use to support their strategy development process. The insights gathered in the SOAR analysis, much like the traditional SWOT analysis, are critical in shaping and informing decisions or strategy development.
The SOAR analysis is often developed within the four-quadrant framework, as the SWOT analysis is generally visually displayed. Stronger People Leaders (2020) provides us with prompts as we consider each of these areas:
- Identify areas of strength.
- What are the areas of strength for the team?
- What does the team do well?
- Identify opportunities to leverage.
- What opportunities are available internally?
- Or even externally in the market?
- Identify aspirations.
- What are the aspirations of the organization, team, and individuals?
- Identify desired results.
- What is the desired outcome or forecasted result?
Leader Reflection Question
Let me ask you, how might you integrate the SOAR analysis into your personal development and your leadership?