About the toolkit

What’s in the toolkit?

Over 70 familiar and not so familiar tools are included. They are flagged according to the size of your business, but do feel free to mix and match. We actively encourage you to adapt any of the tools to suit your situation.

'Business' and 'enterprise' are the terms used throughout to ensure we have covered all the organisational types in the sector. This ranges from the sole trading silversmith to the major museums, from social enterprises to Limited Companies.

What is the toolkit for?

The toolkit has been developed to help you:

  • Manage reductions in income
  • Reduce costs
  • Improve performance
  • Grow income
  • Prepare for the future upturn and the longer-term

It has been designed to encourage you to:

  • ask yourself the brutal questions
  • be honest about your strengths and weaknesses
  • analyse your current business model
  • prioritise effectively
  • consider new ways of working
  • focus on action
  • be prepared for the upturn

When do I use it?

Now - it’s never too early to plan the future of your business.

How do I use it?

The toolkit includes four stages, based on the following questions:

  • Where are you now?
  • Where are you going?
  • What do you need to do to get there?
  • How do you make it happen? </ul>

    To get started, go to Stage 1


The partners would like to thank the following for their permission to reproduce copyright material:

  • Evaluating your business: The framework and checklist reproduced with permission of Arts Council England, Dawn Langley & Caroline Felton
  • Understanding your financial model: Figure 1: Susan Royce & Dawn Langley; Figure 2: PricewaterhouseCoopers
  • Activity model – Understanding your portfolio: Figure 1 The Matrix Map reproduced with permission of John Wiley & Sons Inc.
  • Business Model Generation Canvas – Reviewing and visioning: Alexander Osterwalder
  • Good governance questionnaire: Susan Royce and Caroline Felton
  • Four facets of governance: Figure 1 reproduced with permission of Paul Breckell, Executive Director of finance and corporate resources, RNID
  • Thinking in three horizons: The three horizons model reproduced with permission of Andrew Curry and Tony Hodgson. They would also like to credit Bill Sharpe for his work in developing the Three Horizons model
  • Capacity for change: Capacity for change questionnaire reproduced with permission of Caroline Felton
  • Communication styles preferences: Figure 1 reproduced with permission of Kirk Bridgman
  • Compete, Collaborate, Compliment; Startegic Group Mapping and Strategic Options all reproduced with permission of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations and Cass Business School Centre for Charity Effectiveness.
  • Portfolio analysis – where do you make your money: Figure 2 The Matrix Map reproduced with permission of John Wiley & Sons Inc.
  • Transformational and transactional change: Figure 1 reproduced with permission of Sage Publications
  • An eight-stage change process: Eight-stage model reproduced with permission of Harvard Business School Publishing
  • Joint working success factors: reproduced with permission of the Australian Flexible Learning Framework
  • Strategic Circles: Figure 1 reproduced with permission of Joel. E. Urbany and James. H. Davis
  • Outcomes focussed: the six big questions reproduced with permission of Richard Piper © NCVO

    We have endeavoured to acknowledge all copyright holders as far as possible. In some cases we have been unable to trace the owners of the copyright material, and would appreciate any information that would enable us to do so.

Who has built the toolkit?

The Business Survival Toolkit is a service from Creative & Cultural Skills, the Sector Skills Council for the creative industries, in partnership with the Crafts Council, the Cultural Leadership Programme, the Design Council and the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Creative & Cultural Skills is the sector skills council for the creative and cultural industries. Our remit includes craft, cultural heritage, design, music, performing arts and visual arts across the UK. Founded in 2004, Creative & Cultural Skills was granted a new licence to operate in January 2010. Creative & Cultural Skills is a member of the Alliance of Sector Skills Councils. Together we oversee the strategic development of the workforce in our industries and deliver realistic solutions to skills needs.

Founded in May 2004, Creative & Cultural Skills was granted its licence to operate by the Sector Skills Development Agency on 1st June, 2005.

The Cultural Leadership Programme (CLP) is a Government-funded investment in excellence in leadership across the creative and cultural sectors. It supports an ambitious range of activities, opportunities and resources to nurture and develop emerging to established world class, dynamic and diverse leaders for the 21st Century.

This key support from the Government acknowledges the particular value of the cultural and creative sectors within the UK economy. It is targeted to strengthen the impact of these sectors through investing in its leadership now and for the future.

The Design Council is a unified voice for a broad spectrum of design, architecture and public space demonstrating how design can help build a stronger economy and improve everyday life through practical projects with industry and public services. We invest in the future of UK design by supporting professional development through projects, networks and organisations that invest in future talent and skills in design.

Heritage Lottery Fund: Using money raised through the National Lottery, the Heritage Lottery Fund gives grants to sustain and transform our heritage through innovative investment in projects with a lasting impact on people and places. From museums, parks and historic places to archaeology, natural environment and cultural traditions we support every part of our diverse heritage. We are the largest non-governmental funder of the UK's heritage, with around £250 million to invest in 2011-2012, and around £300 million a year from 2012 onwards.

The Crafts Council’s goal is to make the UK the best place to make, see, collect and learn about contemporary craft.

  • We believe that craft plays a dynamic and vigorous role in the UK’s social, economic and cultural life.
  • We believe that everyone should have the opportunity to make, see, collect and learn about craft.
  • We believe that the strength of craft lies in its use of traditional and contemporary techniques, ideas and materials to make extraordinary new work.
  • We believe that the future of craft lies in nurturing talent; children and young people must be able to learn about craft at school and have access to excellent teaching throughout their education.
  • 12% of the UK population visited a craft exhibition in 2009/10, and 18% participated in craft activity in the same year (DCMS/ACE Taking Part data update August 2010).
  • More than 2.8 million visits were made to the Crafts Council website in 2009.  To find out everything you need to know about where to make, see, collect and learn about contemporary craft visit http://www.craftscouncil.org.uk 
  • The Crafts Council is supported by Arts Council England.   Arts Council England works to get great art to everyone by championing, developing and investing in artistic experiences that enrich people's lives. As the national development agency for the arts, it supports a range of artistic activities from theatre to music, literature to dance, photography to digital art, and carnival to crafts. Between 2008 and 2011, Arts Council England will invest £1.3 billion of public money from government and a further £0.3 billion from the National Lottery to create these experiences for as many people as possible across the country.