SOAR Analysis Template
Plan for the future by focusing on strengths and opportunities.
About the SOAR Analysis template
What does SOAR stand for?
SOAR stands for Strengths, Opportunities, Aspirations, and Results. Examine each category with a lens of focusing on the positive and doing more of what’s already working. For example, in the Strengths category, you can ask yourself and your team things like, “What do we excel at?” and “What are our greatest accomplishments?”
Why do a SOAR Analysis?
You can do a SOAR Analysis when you want to bring people together and encourage action. Many people find it’s easier to focus their attention and efforts on their strengths rather than working to improve their weaknesses. You may find a SOAR Analysis beneficial when you’re trying to make a breakthrough or help your team members develop their career or performance plans.
How does SOAR compare to SWOT?
A SOAR Analysis focuses on an organization’s current strengths and vision for the future. By identifying what you’re doing right, a SOAR analysis can help you develop strategic goals to carry your organization into the next phase of growth.
But a SOAR analysis is different from the
To understand how the two approaches differ, it can be useful to look at the various questions one might ask during a SOAR analysis versus a SWOT analysis.
Questions to ask during a SOAR analysis
1. What are our greatest strengths?
2. What are our best opportunities for growth?
3. What are our best opportunities for success?
4. What future are we working towards?
5. What measurable results will show us that we have achieved that vision of the future?
Questions to ask during a SWOT analysis
1. What are our greatest weaknesses?
2. How should we improve?
3. What complaints do we regularly hear from our customers?
4. What cash flow problems do we have?
5. What technology should we update before achieving our goals?
6. Who are our direct competitors?
7. What happens if our suppliers up their price or run out of supplies?
8. Is our target market shrinking?
How do I complete a SOAR analysis?
To complete a SOAR analysis, start by scheduling a team meeting with everyone you want to participate in the strategic planning. Once you’ve assembled your team, introduce the activity, and provide clarity around the goals of a SOAR analysis. To complete the actual analysis, start discussing each of the four components to understand your strengths, opportunities, aspirations, and results.
Who created the SOAR analysis?
The SOAR analysis was invented by Jacqueline Stavros, David Cooperrider, and D. Lynn Kelley. It was first introduced by them in 2003 as a new strategic planning tool for businesses to use.
Technology Product Canvas
Originally created by Prem Sundaram, the Technology Product Canvas allows product and engineering teams to achieve alignment about their shared roadmap. The canvas combines agile methodologies with UX principles to help validate product solutions. Each team states and visualizes both product and technology goals, then discusses each stage of the roadmap explicitly. This exercise ensures the teams are in sync and everyone leaves with clear expectations and direction. By going through the process of creating a Technology Product Canvas, you can start managing alignment between the teams -- in under an hour.
When it comes down to it, a product’s success is determined by the features it offers and the satisfaction it gives to customers. So which features matter most? The Kano model will help you decide. It’s a simple, powerful method for helping you prioritize all your features — by comparing how much satisfaction a feature will deliver to what it will cost to implement. This template lets you easily create a standard Kano model, with two axes (satisfaction and functionality) creating a quadrant with four values: attractive, performance, indifferent, and must-be.
How do your individual or team goals relate to an organization’s overall strategy? A Strategy Map is a stylized picture of your organization’s strategy and objectives. It’s powerful because it provides a clear visual guide to how these various elements work together. Strategy Maps can help align various different team goals with the overall strategy and mission. With the Strategy Map in place, teams can create set actionable, relevant KPIs. Strategy mapping is often considered part of the balanced scorecard (BSC) methodology, which is a strategic planning tool for setting overall team goals.
SAFe Roam Board
A SAFe ROAM Board is a framework for making risks visible. It gives you and your team a shared space to notice and highlight risks, so they don’t get ignored. The ROAM Board helps everyone consider the likelihood and impact of risks, and decide which risks are low priority versus high priority. The underlying principles of SAFe (Scaled Agile Framework) are: drive cost-effective solutions, apply systems thinking, assume that things will change, build incrementally, base milestones on evaluating working systems, and visualize and limit works in progress.
Someone wise once said that nothing in life is certain. But the waters of the business world? It can seem especially uncertain and unclear. An Assumption Grid can help you navigate those waters and make your decisions confidently. It organizes your business ideas according to the certainty and risk of each — then your team can discuss them and make judgment calls, prioritize, mitigate risk, and overcome uncertainties. That’s why an Assumption Grid is a powerful tool for getting past the decision paralysis that every team occasionally faces.
Objectives and Key Results (OKRs)
Clarity, focus, and structure — those are the key ingredients to feeling confident in your company’s directions and decisions, and an OKR framework is designed to give them to you. Working on two main levels — strategic and operational — OKRs (short for objectives and key results) help an organization’s leaders determine the strategic objectives and define quarterly key results, which are then connected to initiatives. That’s how OKRs empower teams to focus on solving the most pressing organizational problems they face.