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Toolshed Framework Guide

The Framework

Welcome to the Toolshed Framework. We want to help you make the most of our learning resources to help you and your business to reach full potential. To help you succeed, we created this guide to explain what the Toolshed framework is, what it offers, and how you can best utilize it to benefit you and your business.


You’ve probably heard of the scientific method. It’s been used since the 17th century to generate countless innovations that have formed our society and are often taken for granted. In recent decades, the scientific method has also been adopted in the business world, helping businesses operate more effectively.

The Scientific Method by Science Buddies

During the 1980s and 1990s, Toyota introduced scientific thinking to car production. They developed a new way of working that focused on continuous improvement, creating new methods to apply this mindset to the production line. Learning from their work, the Lean methodology was developed and adopted by many manufacturing companies to improve quality and efficiency.

In 2001, a group of software engineers adapted Toyota’s approach and Lean principles when drafting the Agile Manifesto, setting in motion a revolution in software development. The Agile mindset has also been adopted by innovative businesses as a management approach.

In 2011l, Eric Ries published The Lean Startup, which focuses on the application of an agile, scientific learning process when developing new products. The Lean Startup approach has been used successfully by a variety of Silicon Valley technology start-ups. You can learn more about him and his method on his website.

The Toolshed approach is rooted in Lean Startup theory, refined through years of mentoring practice,

Framework Objectives


Our twin goals can be summarised as:

  • Make more startup owners and their businesses successful.

  • Help you decide whether to progress before investing your time, energy, and money.


The Toolshed framework consists of a few key stages. Each of these stages is shown as a door on the Member Home page. Behind each door is a range of resources that will help you learn how to shape, build and grow your business.

  • Crucible: Articulate and test your vision by telling the story of your business idea.

  • Blueprint: Design your business and learn how to create a business plan.

  • Goals: Set important targets and goals before you launch.

  • Acquire Funding: Acquire the funding you need to start and operate your business until it breaks even.

  • Launch Readiness: Build a working business based on your plan.

  • Operate: Run and continue to adapt your business during operation.

Using the framework

You can choose to follow the Toolshed framework from end-to-end, or dip in whenever you feel you need a boost. To explore one of the stages, click on its door to access the detailed description page. Here you’ll find:

  • A description of the stage steps and how each works.

  • Learning resources such as guides, blog posts, tools, templates, and external web links that can help you with each step.

Facilities supporting the framework

Below the doors, on the Member Home page, are links to resources that can help you build and accelerate your business:

  • Learning Resources – Explore resources available on the site, including some not linked to in the framework. For example:

    • Blog

    • Templates and tools

    • Web Link Resource Library

    • Podcasts

  • Community – Access our community of founders and mentors. Share your experiences, ask for help, help others, or just hang out.

  • Latest News – find out what’s been happening at the Toolshed.

  • Expert Advice – If you’re really stuck, or require some face-to-face advice, book a 1-1 mentoring session with our founder and expert mentor, Derek Williams.


We want to make your business journey enjoyable, successful, and as easy as possible. If you find any aspect of the site confusing or somehow lacking, please let us know on our Contact Form and we’ll improve it.

Finally, if you’re feeling lost, head to the Toolshed Community, and get some help from a fellow founder or an expert mentor.

Scientific method
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