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Free Resources for Your Business: Adaptive Crisis Checklist and Short Term SWOT

We’re hearing from many leaders right now, “How am I supposed to prepare when I have no idea what is going to happen?”

A lot of companies have not planned for something of this scale.

It’s not too late. It’s time to prepare, not panic. And, we’re here for you.

Today coaches Jennifer Faught, Jason Rush and Ryan Markel hosted a webinar: Steering the Ship: 3 Ways to Plan Ahead in the Unexpected Evolution of COVID.

You can watch that here:

 

The content was all centered around planning for your business during this disruptive time. Our coaches walked participants through the worksheets we’re using with our members to scenario plan during this time of chaos. Adaptive Crisis Checklist and our Short Term SWOT worksheets.

We encourage you to download these and put them to use in your organization now. Here’s how you and your team should work through them:

 

Adaptive Crisis Checklist

This worksheet is based around the exercise of using scenarios or what ifs to create action plans at certain trigger points.

Frequently used in the military, scenario planning is a future-state exercise where you envision different scenarios and how they may play out so you can adapt quickly under pressure and changing circumstances. This makes it more manageable to deal with uncertain futures and create a framework for how you might respond.

Our checklist offers some scenarios that your team might want to consider planning for. Don’t be overwhelmed by this list – you don’t have to plan for all of them. What it does do is help you identify the most important things.

Use this with your executive team. Let’s dive in a little deeper.

  1. Rate each of the prompts on a scale of 0-10. Zero being “not something we should be concerned about at all” and 10 being “if we don’t mitigate this, we may not be in business.”
    • All of these may be important to your team – what we’re aiming to do here is determine which are the highest priorities and go to work right now.
    • Think of your scores in that context – Is this a low priority? Score 0-3; Moderate Priority? Score 4-7; High Priority? Score 8-10.
    • Remember, this isn’t a ranking. Just score them individually.
    • Each person writes down his or her top 5.
  2. See where the most heat is. Did everyone rank #1 higher than an 8? That’s probably at big deal.
  3. Start discussing your risk factors and your response.

 

Let’s move on to the second tool you can use to plan:

 

Short Term SWOT

You may already be familiar with a SWOT analysis.

We use this in strategic planning usually looking forward to 1-3 years out. It’s important to look at these 4 areas again with a narrower focus. That is, on the next 30-90 days. Getting very clear on what we need to do to see around the curves. And, again, reviewing this frequently for the time being.

This exercise defines the current state of your organization based on four elements: Strengths,Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.

Using this worksheet will help you think of both offensive and defensive strategies.

View these through the lens of what’s going on right now. For example: what is a strength we want to protect right now as we face this crisis?

 

Let’s go through this document and how SWOT is used.

There are 2 areas that you have control over because they are internal to your business: Strengths and Weaknesses.

First, you want to PROTECT a Strength.

  • What are the internal capabilities, attributes, skills and/or assets within your control that you need to ensure you are protecting, more than ever, in this short-term period?
  • Because we have control over our internal strengths, we can protect them.
  • If you have ideas for your business on a strength to protect, type it in the chat box to share with others.

Get Clarity:

It’s SO important right now to have clarity in how you write these.

  • Some of you have heard of SMART goals – specific, measurable, attainable, relatable, and time bound – use that as a framework to get more clarity.
  • Provide very specific and detailed answers. For example, instead of saying, “Communication” is a Weakness, a more specific answer might be “Communication between remote teams is lacking and is slowing us down.”

 

You want to ELIMINATE a Weakness.

  • What internal factors within your control (even if you feel like they may not be) are the more immediate weaknesses that we can work to lessen and or eliminate right now?
  • Because we have control over our internal weaknesses, we can eliminate them.
  • If you have already completed the Adaptive Crisis Checklist, you’ve already identified weaknesses.
  • If you have ideas for your business on a weakness to eliminate, type it in the chat box to share with others.

 

There are 2 areas that you do NOT have control over because they are external to your business: Opportunities and Threats. I like doing Threats first, even though it isn’t in the order of the acronym, because getting the threats out in the open and discussed with your team and they don’t get in the way of thinking about opportunities.

 

You want to MITIGATE a Threat.

  • What threats exist externally beyond your control that are hurting or could hurt the ability of the organization to operate and/or be profitable? Threats usually are not fully eliminated, but steps can be taken to mitigate their impact.
  • Because we do NOT have control over our external threats, we cannot eliminate them, but we can work to mitigate them. How do we build a moat around the business?
  • If you have already completed the Adaptive Crisis Checklist, you’ve already identified threats.
  • If you have ideas for your business on a threat to mitigate, type it in the chat box to share with others.

 

You want to PURSUE an Opportunity.

  • What trends and opportunities are showing up that could help the organization grow faster, be more profitable, and/or become more valuable? Where could we shift our solutions? Who could become our customer?
    • I recognize that not all businesses are facing the same challenges. Some of us are hurting a lot right now and some of us have a ton of opportunities because what they provide is in need right now. Don’t want those who are in full on defense mode to not be thinking of offense and opportunities right now too.
  • Because we do NOT have control over our external threats, we cannot eliminate them, but we can work to mitigate them. How do we build a moat around the business?
  • If you have ideas for your business on a opportunity to pursue, type it in the chat box to share with others.

 

This Adaptive Crisis Checklist and Short Term SWOT will help you start framing your strategy. As we move into understanding that strategy, there are 3 areas to focus. You will be able to identify what your main priorities should be and where you need to go plan.

Need help? Message us at any time. If you want more extensive assistance, we have coaches and service lines available to guide you and your team through this virtually. Reach out to me directly.