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Business Tools – Navigate

Business Tools

Navigate Startup Toolkit

There are literally tonnes of great resources out there to help entrepreneurs succeed including tools to develop your business ideas, models, and plans, as well as to define, refine and grow your products and services. In fact, there are so many it can be hard to know where to start. Below are some of our favourites to help get you started on your journey.

Startup Tools and Templates

Lean Canvas

A one-page business plan template to help you deconstruct your idea into its key assumptions using 9 basic building blocks. Created by Ash Maurya, it is a quick and simple way to develop and validate a business model. Ready, set, start here!

Canvanizer Lean Canvas online demo tool


Business Model Canvas

A one-page tool to help you understand your business in a clear, structured way by breaking it down into 9 basic building blocks. Created by Alexander Osterwalder, it is a quick and simple way to visualize and communicate the fundamental elements of a validated business.

Business Model Canvas Explained:

Value Proposition Canvas

A tool to help ensure a fit between your products/services and what customers actually value and need.


Value Proposition Canvas Explained:

DNA Canvas

A useful tool for defining your mission, vision, strategy, and values and a high-level roadmap to put them into practice.

More Canvases!

For more fillable online canvases including Product-Market-Fit Canvas, SWOT Analysis, HR Innovation Canvas, Pitch Planner Canvas, Decision Making Canvas and many more useful tools visit:


Value Prop Adlib

Having trouble coming up with your value proposition. The Value Prop Adlib tool can help.


Minimum Viable Product

An MVP is a prototype to test the core of your product idea or the biggest assumption in your business model. It is usually inexpensive and easy to apply, having just enough features to be usable by early customers who can provide feedback for future product development.


MVP Explained:

Customer Exploration Map

A map to help you identify the problems and challenges of your customer, user or stakeholder and to explore possible solutions for this problem.


Business Plan Template

BDC offers a free business plan template complete with financial appendix, user guide, glossary, sample business plan, instructions and how-to articles.


Business Plan Writer

Futurpreneur Canada offers a free interactive online Business Plan Writer to help entrepreneurs through the oftentimes-daunting process of developing their business plan.


Marketing Plan Template

BDC offers a free online template to help you define your brand, identify your customers, understand your competitors, identify your company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, define what makes your business different, map your customers’ purchase journey, create your marketing action plan and monitor, measure and improve your marketing tactics to create a compelling buying experience.


Entrepreneur Dictionary for Startups


The Golden Circle

In his best selling book Start with Why, Simon Sinek presents a value proposition theory called “The Golden Circle”. This model recommends putting your purpose or your “why” at the heart of your business messaging because, as Sinek puts it, “people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it”. To learn more, watch the following video of Simon applying the Golden Circle concept to Apple’s product offering.

Fillable Financial Templates

Free Online Toolkits for Entrepreneurs

BDC Entrepreneur’s Toolkit

The BDC Entrepreneur’s Toolkit contains a wealth of free resources and tools including templates for business plans, marketing plans, sales proposals, business assessment tools, financial tools, webinars, and publications, as well as access to free online courses in the Entrepreneur’s Learning Centre.


Futurpreneur Toolkit

Futurpreneur Canada offers an extensive library of free online startup resources by topic as well as an interactive online Business Plan Writer to help entrepreneurs through the oftentimes-daunting process of developing their business plan.


MaRS Startup Toolkit

The MaRS Startup Toolkit includes a wealth of information on topics such as fundraising, company building, operations, sales, people ops, product development, recruiting, marketing and branding, finance, customer experience, design, health, strategy and leadership, COVID-19 resources, international growth, links to government support programs and more.


Techstars Entrepreneur’s Toolkit

Techstars Entrepreneur’s Toolkit is a free online educational tool full of cutting-edge resources including a series of videos and exercises to help entrepreneurs learn the fundamentals needed to start a successful business.


Government of Canada

Steps for Starting a Business in Canada


Information for Starting or Operating a Business in Canada


Checklist for Small Businesses


Innovation Canada – Business Supports Search Tool



Required business permits and licenses information.


Business Benefits Finder

Find the right programs and services, whether you’re starting out or scaling up.

Canada.ca – Business Benefits Finder

Government of Newfoundland and Labrador

Setting up a Business in NL


Business and Economic Development Resources in NL

For information on provincial services, programs and resources including general business, starting and operating a business, economic information, exporting, licences and permits, regulations, investing, tenders, taxes and credits, and more.



Starting a Business Checklist


The Balance – Small Business

Great site for articles, tips and advice for managing your small business.


The Startup Owner’s Manual: The Step-by-Step Guide for Building a Great Company

by Steve Blank and Bob Village


The Lean Startup

By Eric Ries


Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers

By Alexander Osterwalder & Yves Pigneur


Value Proposition Design: How to Create Products and Services Customers Want

By Alexander Osterwalder, Yves Pigneur, Gregory Bernada, Alan Smith, Trish Papadakos


Testing Business Ideas

By David J. Bland, Alexander Osterwalder


The Invincible Company

By Alexander Osterwalder, Yves Pigneur, Fred Etiemble, Alan Smith


High-Impact Tools for Teams

By Stefano Mastrogiacomo, Alexander Osterwalder


Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future

by Peter Thiel


Four Steps to the Epiphany: Successful Strategies for Products That Win

By Steve Blank


Side Hustle

By Chris Guillebeau


Also visit https://sidehustleschool.com/

Start with Why

By Simon Sinek


Also visit https://simonsinek.com/