Strengths and Weakness refer to internal factors or internal environment. Opportunities and Threats refer to external factors or external environment. From the available data, consider the strengths factors that the business has, and which competitors do not have. Such core competencies can include exceptional skills or experience, availability of competent staff, availability of superior facilities and resources, strong financials, brand reputation, relationship with suppliers, customer service, and more.
Next, identify weakness or factors where the competitors remain at an advantage. The factors that count as strengths can also count as weaknesses. Businesses need to develop strategies and deploy resources to overcome such weaknesses.
Next, identify opportunities. Opportunities are assumptions of favorable conditions in the external environment of the business. Competitors also have the same conditions, and businesses need to leverage their strengths to seize such opportunities before competitors do. Examples of opportunities include a good market for the product or service, potential tie-ins, regulations and legislation, poor competition, and more.
Finally, identify threats. Threats are assumptions of adverse happenings in the external environment, which can impede business plans. The same factors that count as opportunities can also count as threats, and in addition, changes in technology, perceptions, and other factors count as additional threats. Organizations need to consider such threats when formulating business plans.