Complexity: Medium
Time required: 2-3 hours
Material required: pen, whiteboard, post-its
Other: The activity must be done in a group.

References: Building Multiple Revenue Sources (Strengthening Nonprofits: A Capacity Builder’s Resource Library)

What is it for?

A SWOT analysis is commonly used tool and it is applied here for the scenario of creating a funding strategy through identification of the innovator’s inner capacities and deficiencies as well as external potentials and risks. There are several funding options for each innovator or organization and their choice will depend on the various factors identified through a SWOT analysis. The activity aims at involving team members and participants into the discussion, gaining insights from the various points of view and categorization of the collected inputs in four categories. Identification of these categories is important because it informs about later steps in planning to achieve the financial goal.

How to use it?

The participants identify strengths (S) and weaknesses (W) as the internal factors on the one side and opportunities (O) and threats (T) as the external factors that influence the income strategy of the innovator. They are encouraged to discuss each area in a critical and organized manner. There are two ways to do it; The SWOT analysis starts from internal factors and proceeds to the external factors. However, in order to avoid immediate focus on internal qualities and shortcomings it is also possible to conduct a ‘TOWS’ analysis. Essentially the same thing, it first considers opportunities and threats resulting in more productive and focused examination of the external environment rather than getting bogged down in abstract discussions about what a team’s strengths and weaknesses are.