SWOT analysis is a powerful tool for evaluating a franchise’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The purpose of a SWOT analysis is to help an organization identify the internal and external factors that affect its performance and strategic planning. This exercise should involve all stakeholders (staff, management, and shareholders). There are no right or wrong answers, and you’re looking for different perspectives from all levels of your franchise. I have found that this exercise can help others with a specific role share their view or broaden the perspective of others within the company.


Strengths refer to the positive attributes of an organization. This includes things like strong brand recognition, experienced staff, resources, or unique technology. Understanding strengths will help your franchise understand what it’s good at. An example of strength is that you have low turnover in your frontline staff.


Weaknesses refer to the negative attributes of an organization. This could include low sales, high employee turnover, insufficient financial resources, or outdated technology. An example of a weakness could be that the pricing for Product A is too high based on customer feedback.


Opportunities refer to external factors an organization can take advantage of to improve its performance. This could include things like new markets, emerging technologies, or changes in consumer behavior. A recent opportunity might be how to be an early adopter of AI in new content generation for the social media person/team.


Threats refer to internal/external factors that could harm an organization’s performance. This could include things like changes in government regulations, increased competition, or economic downturns. An example of a threat could be entry-level staff could be enticed by Amazon’s new distribution warehouse within your city. 

I have found the best way to perform a SWOT is to teams together that include all levels of the business and to let everyone know it’s a safe space to share and there is no right or wrong feedback. From here, the goal is to gather all the data to be able to group like ideas and hopefully narrow the focus in each area of the SWOT down to 3-5 key takeaways.

PEST and  SWOT Flow in Strategic Planning Process
PEST and SWOT Flow in Strategic Planning Process

By taking a holistic view of their performance, franchises can develop more comprehensive and effective strategies. While there are limitations to SWOT analysis, it remains a valuable tool for any organization looking to improve its strategic planning process.

Over the coming posts, we will discuss how the PEST and SWOT analysis will be instrumental in developing the goals/objectives of the organization.