What is SOAR, and what are best practices, tools and templates for teams and organizations?
Definition of SOAR
SOAR stands for strengths, opportunities, aspirations and results and is a strategic planning tool used as an alternative to a SWOT analysis. It uses “appreciative inquiry” principles to identify an organization’s strengths, opportunities, and ambitions and reframes the negative connotations associated with weaknesses and threats included in a SWOT analysis to avoid resistance and mobilize commitment towards the organization’s desired future state.
Description of SOAR
As in a SWOT analysis, engaging a diverse cross-section of stakeholders in a data collection effort, the purpose of which is to identify the organization’s strengths, opportunities, aspirations, and desired results (SOAR), can be an effective method for gaining insights into how to create competitive differentiation, as well as to engage, align and inspire teams around the current state and future strategies and plans for the business. The particular focus of appreciative inquiry that a SOAR analysis brings creates added emphasis on leveraging existing strengths, viewing potential challenges as actual opportunities, and motivating employees to think optimistically about what the organization can achieve, rather than focus on or think in terms of barriers, weaknesses and threats.
Tools & Templates
The SOAR analysis template is typically structured as a 2×2 matrix with each quadrant labelled according to the SOAR model – strengths, opportunities, aspirations, and results.
upBOARD's Online SOAR Tools & Templates
Unlike most traditional SOAR techniques, upBOARD’s online SOAR collaboration tools allow any team or organization to instantly begin working with our web templates and input forms. Our digital platform goes far beyond other software tools by including progress dashboards, data integration from existing documents or other SaaS software, elegant intuitive designs, and full access on any desktop or mobile device.
Learn more about upBOARD’s portfolio of other business strategy best practice tools and templates, including:
2 X 2 Matrix, ADL Matrix, Affinity Diagrams, Baker’s 4 Strategies of Influence, Balanced Scorecard, Benchmarking, Blue Ocean Strategy, Bowman Strategy Clock, Build-Measure-Learn Feedback Loop, Business Model Canvas, CAGE Distance Framework, Competitive Analysis, Competitive Landscape Analysis, Contingency Planning, Core Competence Analysis, Critical Success Factors, Discovery Driven Planning, Economic Value Added, First Mover Advantage, Five Forces Model, Force Field Analysis, Gap Analysis, GE McKinsey 9-Box Matrix, Go To Market Strategy, Hambrick & Frederickson’s Strategy Diamond, Hedgehog Model, Hook Model of Behavioral Design, Hoshin Planning System, Kay’s Distinctive Capabilities Framework, Key Outcome Indicators, Kotler’s Five Product Levels Model, Kotler’s Pricing Strategies, Lafley & Martin’s Five Step Strategy Model, McKinsey 7S Model, McKinsey’s Seven Degrees of Freedom for Growth, Mergers & Acquisitions, Mission Statements, Mullin’s Seven Domains Model, OGSM Framework, Ohmae’s 3-C’s Model, Partner Relationship Management, PEST Analysis, PESTLE Analysis, Porter’s Diamond, Portfolio Management, Purpose Statements, Pyramid of Purpose, Scenario Planning, Simonson & Rosen’s Influence Mix, SMART Performance Metrics, SMARTER Goals, SOAR, Strategic Goals, Strategy Map, Strategy Roadmap, Strategy Uncertainty Map, SWOT Analysis, TOWS Matrix, Triple Bottom Line, USP Analysis, Value Chain Analysis, Value Disciplines Model, Value Net Model, Values Statement, Vision Statements, VRIO Analysis, and Weisbord’s Six-Box Model.