An Alternative to SWOT Analysis

Running Shadow

The Tool's Purpose

  • SWOT analysis is a much-used (and helpful) tool but it can precipitate a negative mindset.
  • It is an acronym that stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats
  • If people perceive something as a danger or threat (rather than a useful challenge) their blood vessels etc. contract.
  • This physiological change is likely to impede their ability to think in a constructive and affirmative way.
  • We wanted to create a tool that offers a more creative and opportunistic frame of reference
  • If successful, users would find themselves occupying a more serendipitous space of conjecture
  • This does not mean that 'Threats' or 'Weaknesses' do not exist.
  • Our tool is not a panacea for every situation - more for the creative aspects
  • Others have found it practically helpful and enjoyable to use

The Tool's Process

  • An alternative to SWOT is POUT
  • Each letter has an alternative meaning

POUT in 2 phases

POUT in phase 1 square-50cm-spacer.jpg square-50cm-spacer.jpg square-50cm-spacer.jpg
P square-50cm-spacer.jpg O square-50cm-spacer.jpg U square-50cm-spacer.jpg T
map your situationwhat does it reveal?who can see clearest?What makes u feel better?
square-50cm-spacer.jpg square-50cm-spacer.jpg square-50cm-spacer.jpg square-50cm-spacer.jpg
POUT in phase 2 square-50cm-spacer.jpg square-50cm-spacer.jpg square-50cm-spacer.jpg
map your futurewhat is your dream?can u picture / sing it?how many changes?
  • There are also alternative ways to arrange these four letters,
  • Its use is straightforward and needs little expert introduction
  • Context/conditions for use

An Example


  • POUT can be mapped within a quadrant, using 2 (X-Y) axes
  • The values of the X axis can be made to correspond to Left=evaluative and Right=creative
  • The values of the right axis can be made to denote Bottom=ambiguous values and Top=explicit values
  • This equates it with our system of 'working styles, i.e. where:

U=New Knowing

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