B3 framework – how to build brilliant businesses

This is a beta release of the B3 framework®. Please send feedback to simon@wakeman.work.

The B3 framework® helps leaders build brilliant businesses. It’s designed for businesses going from start-up to scale-up phase. 

Getting the business foundations right early in the scaling journey significantly reduces the challenges ahead.

It brings together every facet of what it takes to scale a business into a simple yet powerful framework.

It’s based on nine years of research, experimentation and development in my work as a leader of growth businesses.

The framework sets out the elements that must be in place to build a business that’s sustainable and delivers consistently.

It doesn’t dictate how you must create each of those elements, nor the tools, techniques or methods you should use. This helps avoid the prescriptive nature of many approaches to organisational design and business scaling.

It provides flexibility for leaders to develop their own implementation, while ensuring a coherent and high performing business throughout the scaling journey.

The framework is broken down into four cumulative layers.

Building a brilliant business means ensuring that each layer is in place adequately to underpin and inform subsequent layers.

There’s much more detail on each layer and suggested resources in the implementation guide.

1. Creating a foundation – the DNA of any business – why it business exists and how it wants to develop as an organisation.

2. Making a business – taking the foundational aspirations and working out how they translate into a viable business.

3. Building an organisation – putting in place the building blocks of a functioning organisation that brings people together for work.

4. Operating the business – the practical things you need to have and do to run a business day-to-day.


Who is the B3 framework for?

It’s a framework for leaders in start-up and scale-up businesses to help them build coherent and high performing organisations.

How do you use the B3 framework?

It can be used proactively to identify what should be planned for and prioritised as a business grows. It can also be used reactively to help diagnose the root causes of scaling issues and address them properly.

How do I learn more about each element of the framework?

The real leadership skill here is combining the right elements to create a coherent and high performing business. You should experiment with different tools, methods and approaches to find what works well in your business at the current stage of growth.

Check out the implementation guide and resources for inspiration.

Can I share or republish the B3 framework?

Yes please! The B3 framework is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. That means you can copy and redistribute it, remix, transform, and build upon it for any purpose. If you do this you must give credit by linking back to this page and distribute your contributions under the same license as the original framework.