A Coaching Power Tool Created by Nathalie Mollah
(Expat Life Coach, THAILAND)
The S.W.O.T. analysis is a unique tool that sales and marketing managers use to learn more about the market they want to reach, in order to better launch a product, service or their own businesses. To do so, they will look at the internal aspect (Strengths and Weaknesses) as well as the external aspect (Opportunities and Threats).
This is a simple way to quickly assess the things that are “good” and “bad” for an organization. After the S.W.O.T. analysis, firms would focus on how they can build on their strengths and make the most of their opportunities. They would also need to assess the impact of weaknesses to decide whether they need to get rid of them or simply prevent them from growing. Threats are external factors that are impossible to control them or wipe, instead firms would plan how to minimize their impact on the business.
What if we could use this analysis in a more individual way?
Life goes too fast, sometimes we can not even “breathe”… Who, today, takes the time to sit down and reflect on what is really going on? It seems to be useless. People prefer to rush without thinking, following the flow… Rush, rush, rush!
Obviously, having experienced a similar situation would help some people to avoid the same outcome, if that one was negative. Failure makes us stronger, isn’t it?
Others would try to reproduce exactly the same positive outcome, on a similar situation. Nevertheless, what if the external aspects have changed in the meantime? Would the outcome be the same?
The ICA “Responding vs. Reacting” Power Tool explains that we can manage to have a positive outcome – as responding – if we reflect on what is happening. Also, instead of reacting, if we take the time to PAUSE – THINK and RESPOND, our life will be “lighter”.
What if we could help this process of reflection by understanding, in a deeper way, our key to successfully behave and think?
Anna has just relocated from her hometown to Vietnam, few days ago. Paul, her husband accepted a 2 years mission in Ho Chi Minh City, after several months of negotiation. The moving process has been complicated for her, considering that she had to organize something that she has never done before. But most important for her, she had to leave her family, her friends, her well paid job in Human Resources as well as her daily routine.
Since they arrived, Paul spends most of his time at the office. He leaves their nice and well located apartment, early on the morning and comes back for dinner time. In the meantime, Anna is all alone and starts to think about what she could do to make her days more comfortable and less “boring”.
She starts wondering…. “What can I do?”, wondering… “It is really does not feel like home…” , again “Will I be happy here?” and again “ I don’t recognize myself…” without really knowing where to start feeling better, to get the motivation to move forward and to enjoy her “new life”.
Observation from Anna’s experience
When we face a major change in our personal life, like moving abroad, our daily routine is totally messed up. Such a huge confusion between the past, where all our landmarks were synonymous of trust and the confusing present that leads us outside our comfort zone.
Adapting ourselves and fitting in this new environment seems to be impossible to reach. We certainly have our luggages fully packed of strong life experience and skills ; nevertheless, even though it was really powerful “back home”, doubting of their proficiency in this “new home” is expected.
How could the SWOT Analysis help in the coaching process?
In every coaching relationship, our duty as a Coach is to guide our Clients through the stage of Awareness. This will trigger the shift needed to reach their goals successfully.
In a situation of doubt about their “new self”, understanding their “internal” personality and skills as well as exploring their “external” environments , on that particular moment, would help our Clients embrace their “new life”.
Also, as explained earlier, this power tool relates our Strengths vs. Weaknesses, our Opportunities vs. our Threats, as well as our Internal vs. External Life.
Internal understanding : Strengths vs. Weaknesses
- What personal qualities do I possess?
- What do I do well in my social/personal life?
- What is my biggest achievement in my life?
- What do I enjoy doing in my life?
- What am I bad in?
- What can I improve?
- What are my personal flows?
- What tasks do I usually avoid doing?
- What are the roots of my failures?
- What trends do I see in my personal life? (Meeting other expatriates, joining groups, finding a job…)
- How can I meet other person like me?
- How about my surrounding?
- Who can support me in achieving my goal?
- What obstacles do I face?
- Who/what may get in my way?