Do you know your strengths and weaknesses?

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Running a corporate SWOT analysis, which considers the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats to your business, is a common management team exercise.

But have you ever run a SWOT analysis on yourself as a property investor? It might sound simplistic but it can be a worthwhile exercise to consider your own personality, knowledge and expertise within the realm of property investment.

Taking some time to run such an exercise might show that you’ve got skills you didn’t appreciate, as it lets you evaluate where you are and figure out if you’re working to your strengths, if you’re aware of your weaknesses, and if you’re fully leveraging your opportunities, whilst mitigating your threats.


I like to look at my own strengths and work out where I might have an advantage over other people. For instance, with my background in architecture I have a very good understanding of design. I can visualise the potential of a property almost as soon as I walk into the space.

In addition to this, I’ve got almost 30 years of Real Estate experience, meaning I can very quickly see what is working and what isn’t, as a project develops.  

Write down your wins over the last 12-24 months and see where there’s good momentum. Dig deep, some of these strengths might not be immediately apparent to you!

Often, we don’t recognise our strengths because they’re something we inherently have, that we’re familiar with, so we think everybody can do what we do – which isn’t always the case. There will be people out there who are stronger than you in certain areas, of course, but you shouldn’t automatically assume that everyone has the same skillset as you.

Remember that your knowledge, understanding, even your network (potential investors, tradespeople) – these could be strengths that aren’t obvious to you until you’re talking to someone who ­doesn’t have them!


It’s really important to look at these. Over the years I’ve not necessarily realised I had weaknesses and it has always come back to bite me.

Once you’ve worked out what you’re good at, take a look at those areas that you might need to improve. There will always be things in your personality that aren’t natural strengths for you. For me, things like digging into detail or factfinding aren’t something I’m great at, however I’m aware that it’s part of my personality, and that I need to find people to fill in those gaps. But, by knowing that’s a weakness of mine, it gives me an advantage.

What are your weaknesses?

Maybe you have a gambling instinct (you can read more about this here). Whilst playing the Lottery every week is OK, if that trait plays out on a larger scale it might see you taking a punt on something that’s actually quite risky.

You may see something like that willingness to take a risk as a strength, but if it’s something you can’t control, then it’s a weakness.  

Take a deep dive on what’s gone wrong in the past. What failures or disappointments have you suffered over the last 12 months? What caused them? Have you done an assessment or post-mortem on what went wrong and what caused a particular problem? What lessons did you learn? What do you need to do to stop them happening again in the future?


If you’ve taken your newly-listed strengths into account, you may now find that you have some natural opportunities.

For example. If someone has a trade background, they’ve got an advantage when it comes to understanding the construction process. They may also have a network of people who can help them complete a renovation, or do something at cost rather than needing to hire a contractor.

If you can shortcut that circuit, that strength creates opportunities for you. You could go out and find properties in a poor condition that you can easily turn around without it costing you the earth. And that opportunity might not necessarily suit someone who doesn’t have the same strengths as you!

Look for the low-hanging fruit. What’s easy to reach for today? Can you tap into your network to find opportunities? Do you work in an industry that might be useful to you in a way you hadn’t imagined? Opportunities, like strengths, might not be immediately apparent to you, so you need to sit down and get it all down on paper in order to see them clearly.


Threats are the risks that lie ahead. If you do nothing to mitigate these risks, or are oblivious to them, it can ruin everything for you.

Now, a threat doesn’t mean that you should stop what you’re doing, but means that you should examine all the risks and see where you can mitigate them as best you can – you can read more about this here.  

Given the weaknesses that you’ll have already listed, take another look at them and see if these could become threats, if you don’t take action. For instance – gaps in your knowledge. This is a weakness that you can easily remedy either through study, or by hiring in people with the right skills. Things like financial projection – are you good at that? If not, bring in someone who can address that.

You have to be aware of the threats that are out there, because as long as you are aware of a threat, you can address it.

A SWOT analysis doesn’t have to be a heavy exercise: simply take a sheet of paper, divide it into 4 quadrants and label the top two with an S and a W, and the bottom two with an O and a T. Jot down the various things that come into your head, as they relate to you, as a property investor.

After doing this exercise, see what jumps out at you. Are there any surprises? Should you be doubling down on any particular areas? Perhaps you’ve identified a weakness meaning you need some extra help.

It’s a really worthwhile exercise to do on a semi-regular basis. Working on your mindset and discipline and being aware of weaknesses means you won’t be constantly reacting to the things going on around you.

Look at what might be holding you back. Mindset is one of the biggest drivers of success in this business. If you have a good mindset you can overcome a lot of obstacles, but you have to be aware of everything going on in your mind, and make sure you’re taking time to evaluate things properly.

I hope you’ve found this useful. If it’s raised any questions for you why not join me for my weekly Property Investor Roundtable, a livestream I host in YouTube where I cover property news & events impacting the market and answer your questions. Link to my channel below – hope to see you there!