When it comes to self-analyzing, there are a number of methods that a team can apply. Finding out issues and discussing solutions is a lengthy process that needs to involve multiple people from each aspect of the team. However, gathering all the information is not an easy task by any means, with multiple opinions required which might clash one another and contradict as well.
To make it easier for you to understand the strengths and weaknesses of your team, there are multiple techniques of analysis. One of the better ones that caters to teams of all sizes is the SWOT analysis.
The SWOT analysis is a powerful technique for judging an team's conditions and finding out the issues that it faces, along with the opportunities it has. The SWOT analysis is conducted as a study that is designed to gather four different aspects of the team and the project.
Learning these four aspects is a good gauge on finding the current condition of the team while also figuring out where it is headed. Unlike an audit or a financial check into the team, a SWOT analysis is almost always conducted internally. It’s a technique that a team uses for itself.
A SWOT analysis can ben simple or short exercise. It’s an look into the team and covers most factors that is influencing the condition of the team at that point in time.
Strengths - You will need to look at what sets your team apart, with a look at its advantages.
Weaknesses - The SWOT analysis requires you to look at the areas that your team can improve in and the ones it lacks in.
Opportunities - opportunities the team can explore.
Threats - Threats that it faces from the current market conditions, internal departments, technical challenges, etc...
Carrying out a SWOT analysis of an team can be done via an internal body that interviews the people working there and gathers the information after each session, classifying the information into the appropriate sections. Multiple such interviews with the same group of people will have to be conducted for a strong and thorough analysis.
Online tools such as EasyRetro also offer teams to conduct a professional SWOT analysis that’s not based around the company itself. Running a single Retro on EasyRetro means that you conduct a single SWOT meeting and store the results of the session. The results are then reviewed at the start of the next Retro, being followed by a brainstorming session where the participants compile and write down their thoughts. The cards can then be merged with similar cards across the board, after which voting takes place on the merged card. Each participant gets 3 votes to select their choice picks for all categories. Finally, the cards with the most votes can be put up for review and actions can be discussed.
Ask the members to write down anything they think should start, stop, or continue. Everyone should write down everything that they can think according to the 3 categories, each point should be considered and noted until everyone has run out of things to share.
Once you have a list of everything, read outloud every card and starting merging the ones that are similar. You can also move cards from one category to another if it makes sence and in a way that all similar things are placed together.
As soon as every idea has been put on the wall, you will ask group members to vote and choose which ideas are more significant or need to be addressed. Moving on to the final part of the activity, you will discuss in detail the ideas which have been voted most relevant.
This is the section where you ask the team why they voted for certain ideas – why they think the ideas are crucial to the progress of the team. At the end of the discussion, you should have better ideas of what your team felt about the previous sprints and to improve in the subsequent ones.
At the end of the activity, you will have a stack of creative and unique ideas that put together will contribute to the progress of your project, business, or company in the future. If you want to know more about this technique, you can also read this tutorial by David Ciccarelli
The SWOT analysis method has numerous immediate and long-term benefits, including:
You can create a free SWOT analysis template right now. You will also be able to export it to JPEG, PDF and spreadsheet formats in the end of the exercise.