Discover opportunities for innovation in your company with SOAR Analysis – WAU
SOAR Analysis is a strategic analysis tool that aims to create positive innovation opportunities for the entire company. The SOAR matrix is a variation of the SWOT Analysis, focusing on the following points: Strengths, Opportunities, Aspirations and Results.
Who has never used good old SWOT Analysis or at least had contact with it once in their professional lives?
It is a great tool for strategic analysis, there is no doubt about it. However, many companies have changed the way of doing this activity, adapting it to a new market scenario that communicates better with innovative ventures!
An incredible methodology that has been gaining followers is the SOAR analysis, which is based on SWOT analysis, but with a more positive bias and capable of bringing more inspiring results for the whole team.
Have you thought about how this strategic analysis could be better? So come with us!
What is SOAR Analysis?
SOAR Analysis is a strategic analysis tool for organizations to plan their next steps. Its name comes from the abbreviation for Strengths, Opportunities, Aspirations, Results. Therefore, in London, when adopting it, the Strengths, Opportunities, Aspirations and Results are investigated.
Done collaboratively at all levels of the company, involving both internal and external audiences, it brings a dynamic view with data on the current position and where it wants to go, without focusing only on managers, but on absorbing all possible wisdom and using it to improve the process.
This approach is a development of appreciative research, initiated in the 1980s by David Cooperrider, a model for engaging stakeholders in order to achieve the changes desired by organizations. It became noticeable then that these changes were more favorable in positive environments
Soon, new approaches were developed to promote this climate and influence employees to look at problems and threats from a new perspective, looking for more “what we do best and what we want”, instead of “what’s wrong, what’s missing and what we don’t want”.
This ended up impacting companies on several fronts and in the strategic context, it merged with the SWOT Analysis. But here, analysis is more focused on positive influence, generating more enthusiasm and creativity for innovative results!
What are the similarities and differences of SOAR Analysis and SWOT Analysis?
It was understood that SOAR Analysis is also a strategic analysis and that it focuses on positive aspects. But then, what’s the difference between it and SWOT Analysis?
Let’s start with the names. SOAR is an adaptation of SWOT and they have terms in common, the ‘S’ and ‘O’ of both acronyms meaning the same thing: Strengths and Opportunities, which translate into Strengths and Opportunities respectively.
But the ‘A’ and ‘R’ of SOAR mean Aspirations and Results, in London, Aspirations and Results respectively, while ‘W’ and ‘T’ mean Weaknesses and Threats, in London, Weaknesses and Threats respectively.
Both are extremely important in strategic business scenarios and to be better used, they should not be seen as opposites, but as different objectives according to the positioning demanded.
By adopting a vision that looks more at the deficiencies and limitations of the organization, SWOT is inserted in a comparative context in relation to the market and with a vision anchored in the competition. JSOAR, looking at strengths and projections, must be adopted with the intention of discovering possibilities to be created and implemented.
Precisely for this reason, SWOT specifically indicates what needs to be improved in management, while SOAR seeks what is best done in a competitive advantage to generate innovation.
Thus, even the subsequent analysis plans differ, with SWOT targeting tactical action plans and SOAR targeting visionary action plans.
In addition, SWOT is mainly exclusive to members of management, staying in a smaller part of the company, whereas SOAR is worked on at all levels of the company, considering the experience of all employees and even other functional areas. , as external customers.
What are the benefits of SOAR Analysis?
SOAR Analysis, because it involves the whole team and has a positive spirit that fosters growth, ends up being an occasion to inspire the entire company to exercise more creativity and ensure innovation.
Engagement and motivation are also great chances and should be used to remember the company’s values and reinforce its organizational culture.
But to achieve this, it is necessary to implement SOAR Analysis beforehand and there are some processes to be followed. Let’s explore them right away!
How to apply SOAR Analysis?
SOAR Analysis must be applied throughout the company, but even so, it must be treated as a process and some people must be responsible for its planning and progress.
Thus, it is essential to select a team to lead the project, which does not necessarily need to be made up only of managers, and other employees can be given the chance to participate in the stages.
With this team formed, they should consult with people in the areas and levels of the business and ask questions and questionnaires to understand the participants’ perceptions.
The questions asked greatly alter the results. Therefore, the selected members must be positive even at this stage, since positivity generates enthusiasm and curiosity, precisely the future that the business wants to achieve with the SOAR analysis.
We will then see how to distribute this in the matrices that make up the SOAR Analysis and how to apply it in stages.
SOAR Analysis Matrices
Strength, translated by Strenghts, will represent the things that are already being done very well and what resources are being used well. They are treated from the skills, knowledge and experiences that are present, to the technologies, materials and staff available.
It is important to emphasize that these forces must have real values and, to understand this, it can be legal to compare with competitors to know what is unique about the company and what is above the market average.
Some questions can be asked, such as:
- What do you think we do better than any other company?
- What advantages do we have over our competitors?
- What is our unique proposal for customers?
- How do our customers and competitors see us and what strengths do they perceive?
After identifying these points, it will be possible to protect these forces and build new opportunities using them. Prioritize about at least 6 forces and take them to the next step of the analysis
Opportunities should be identified with brainstorming to have more creative ideas about what can be done and what future can be achieved, also considering the strengths previously explored.
It is essential to maintain positivity here, without creating barriers and already deleting ideas that you may deem bad, because even though at first they may not look good, there is still room for development. So, stimulate creativity and make participants very comfortable to do so.
Think about trends and changes in the business sector and explore changes in customer behavior to get the best ideas.
At the end, filter from 6 to 10 opportunities and take them to the next step!
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Now that opportunities have been identified, it is time to consider the aspirations of the participants, that is, to imagine how the organization could be and to dream about the future.
It is another time when you should have a comfortable climate, without rejecting the proposed scenarios right away. After all, here we want to go beyond day-to-day expectations in order to exceed them!
Present the opportunities found and ask some questions, such as:
- Which ones are really inspiring and stimulating?
- How could they be further developed in the future?
- Is there anything you would really like to achieve with the business in the years to come?
Once you have the most important aspects, filter again between 6 to 10 to move on to the next step. And remember, all of these scenarios must be directly linked to the core values of the business.
Finally, with the chosen aspirations, we move on to results, which work as the establishment of priorities and also indicators to show what is being achieved.
Think with your participants about what will happen next and how to know if they are reaching the goal. Some questions can help, such as:
- What will look different when we get there?
- What processes will change in the organization and how will they impact?
- What do you want the organization to be a reference in and how do we prove it?
- How are we going to celebrate the new achievements?
With these results from the SOAR Analysis, it is possible to proceed to stages of developing action plans and other strategic duties, such as risk analysis and the definition of goals and metrics, for example.
SOAR Analysis Steps
To make it easier, here we also leave a step by step with the steps that can be adopted in the SOAR analysis:
- Identify who will participate;
- Set the Format and the frequency of interactions with participants;
- Establish the means research and the spaces for it to be done;
- Wrap all in the process going through the matrices with stimulating and positive questions;
- Find the central points positivity and identify patterns between responses;
- Confirm opportunities and aspirations that promote a better and more challenging future vision;
- Plan actions to conquer the opportunities and aspirations of the participants and including them too;
- Select metrics to indicate whether the desired future is actually being created and achieved;
- Implement the actions and confirm your results.
This practice already brings many results and this philosophy is essential for the creation of new businesses.
We can cite Uber, for example, which looked at the pain of its customer, without necessarily considering the competition from taxi drivers, but in the future that it could achieve. We know it was a visionary idea and that is shaping transportation today!
So, don’t be afraid to venture into SOAR Analysis! Certainly, it can provide brilliant results! And, to manage these new possible projects and the current ones as well, how about getting to know the RICE Matrix?