Areas of opportunity are aspects that we can work on to improve. In this article we will know their main characteristics and we will see the areas where we can find aspects to improve and to promote, inside the companies.
What are areas of opportunity?
The areas of opportunity are groups of skills and competencies linked to contexts with goals to achieve, and which can be developed to reach those goals more effectively.
There are basically two types of opportunity areas: personal and business. Let us see in detail what each one of them consists of.
Personal Opportunity Areas
The areas of opportunity in the personal sphere consist of certain aspects of our way of being, personality and behavior that can be improved. Through them, we come out stronger and know facets of our personality that we did not know before ; moreover, they show us that we can achieve much more than we thought, and that we are stronger than we thought.
In other words, they focus on “weaker” aspects of ourselves; if we work on them, we can manage to increase our potential and make progress in different areas (especially on a personal level).
Many times, if we do not know how to detect these areas of opportunity, problems can appear that harm us in some area of our life . However, if we work on them, our quality of life can improve.
So, the first step we will need to apply is to know how to detect these areas of opportunity that will allow us to improve as people. Once identified, we will start working on them, either individually or with the help of a professional (psychologist, coach…). To start working on them, it will be important to design the steps to implement for the achievement of the goals we have set.
Personal areas of opportunity have a lot to do with our weaknesses, but also with limitations we have put on ourselves, with unmet frustrations, fears, insecurities, etc. Identifying these small weaknesses or “bumps” that prevent us from developing our potential to the fullest will allow us to feel more confident and better about ourselves.
Why take advantage of our areas of opportunity? Doing so will allow us to make individual changes and in turn succeed in what we set out to do. These improvements can be translated, for example, into higher levels of individual responsibility, more commitment, consistency, etc .
Steps to develop them
There are some steps that Patricia Behisa, specialist in SEO and digital marketing, proposes to take advantage of the areas of personal opportunity that we propose. She concretes 7 steps, which are interrelated.
1. Knowing Ourselves
The first step is essential to know which areas of opportunity are available to us. Knowing ourselves will make it easier to detect these areas, and allow us to start working on them .
2. Analyzing our past experiences
Our past as individuals defines us; this does not mean that it limits us, simply that what we have done or lived in the past, says in part how we are. Sometimes by analyzing these experiences we can find answers that allow us to strengthen our areas of opportunity .
3. Highlighting the virtues
The third step involves highlighting our virtues, our strengths. Just as we must know our weaknesses, our strengths and potentialities as well. This can give us clues on how to work to increase our personal safety and to enhance our capabilities.
4. Write down our skills
The fourth step proposed by Patricia Behisa is that we write down our skills, what we know how to do . This also encompasses our interests and capabilities, and can guide us in achieving improvements in our areas of opportunity.
5. Order the above skills
We must be able to sort out the above skills; that is, make a list that ranks them according to the degree of dominance we have.
6. Selecting the best skills
After writing the list, we will proceed to select those skills that are best suited to us, or of which we have a more advanced level of knowledge or practice. This will let us know which one(s) we should practice first .
7. Getting carried away
The last step proposed by Behisa is to “let go”, to flow. Now we know what we are best at, what skills we have; it is just a matter of putting them into practice based on our areas of opportunity .
Business opportunity areas
The second type of opportunity areas are the business ones; that is, those that we can detect and work in the labour field . The line of work will be similar to the previous one; first we will have to detect our weak points to start working on them.
Thus, the areas of business opportunity are actually similar to those above but in the field of employment. They consist of “gaps” that we can observe in our business, in opportunities for improvement . In this way, they are not only “mistakes”, but also aspects that we can strengthen. For example, competitiveness, initiative, efficiency, profitability, etc.
Once these areas of opportunity are detected, we can work on them. But… what’s the point? Fundamentally, to improve our company or organization, obtain greater benefits, etc. In addition, many times these areas are sources of losses (for example, economic) for the company; if we identify them correctly, we can achieve the opposite effect (gain more, improve certain conditions or aspects of the company, etc.).
How to develop them
We propose 4 large areas (or areas, facets) where we can find areas of opportunity in our business (although there are many more):
The field of innovation allows us to create new, fresh and creative ideas that add value to our company . These ideas may refer to processes, products, services, etc. Finding areas of opportunity in this area or sector will allow the creation of original and unpublished ideas.
2. Customer Service
This area refers to how clients are served and cared for . Within it we can find many areas of opportunity that improve the consumer experience, that increase the quality of service offered by our company, etc.
3. Human Resources
Human resources are another key element within any company, and it refers to human capital, to people . Being able to identify, attract and hire talent, that is, people who bring value to the company, can improve many aspects of it. Having good workers is always a positive aspect.
On the other hand, the image of the company, its reputation and its references can lead to more or less clients , to more or less satisfaction, etc.
As in the previous areas, in this one you can also find good areas of opportunity, which allow to improve the image of the company both for the outside and for the inside (the workers themselves). This can also enhance customer loyalty.
- Avia, M.D. (1995). Personality: cognitive and social aspects. Madrid: Pirámide.
- Benson, T. and Mugarura, S. (2013). Livestock development planning in Uganda: Identification of areas of opportunity and challenge. Land use policy, 35: 131-139.