Profile

Cover photo
William Buist
Works at Abelard
Attended University of St Andrews
Lives in Chepstow
3,491 followers|76,321 views
AboutPostsPhotosYouTube+1'sReviews

Stream

William Buist

commented on a video on YouTube.
Shared publicly  - 
 
Still have it here in the UK. For now anyway.
2
Paul Simbeck-Hampson's profile photoAnnabel Kaye's profile photo
2 comments
 
Why?
Add a comment...

William Buist

Shared publicly  - 
2
Add a comment...

William Buist

Shared publicly  - 
 
Love this parking space. 
21
1
mehboob elahi's profile photoJessy Rios's profile photoGeorgina Lester's profile photo
2 comments
 
Amezing 
Add a comment...

William Buist
owner

Business Discussion  - 
 
Unique Selling Proposition? There's no such thing!

When we work with clients to develop and document their business model, it provides them with clarity about the business; the target markets; how they reach them; the products that they sell; the key activities that are needed to create those products and services; and the reaction that they seek to gain from their customers. So far so good.

There’s a challenge here: a business model that focuses just on the products and services and how they are created and delivered highlights how few points of difference between one product and another. Whether we buy our clothes from Marks & Spencer or Hugo Boss, the outcome is broadly similar. We have cloth coverings for our bodies that say something about us, our style and our fashion sense and so on. Their levels of comfort, and the levels of happiness that they bring us, may be marginally different, (pricing will be very different of course). Fundamentally there is little that is really unique between the two. When we buy Heinz baked beans or Tesco’s Finest or Tesco’s Value, the product has some minor differences but none are really unique.

We think this is true for almost all products and services.

Clearly, brand does play a part in separating and differentiating different products and services from each other. Heinz’s 57 Varieties favoured by many over many years has created a brand image of quality and taste that helps them to sell a product at a higher margin and higher price than some of their very similar competitors, but a USP?

When we look in more depth at the services provided by businesses to consumers and other business clients, it’s often easier to see differences in the way that things are approached. Most coaches would tell you that they use a different style from other coaches, and perhaps they do. But we believe that the true difference lies somewhere else. Each of us has lived a different life; travelled a different journey; built our knowledge through different courses and learning; and developed skills through different dedication to practicing and our individual (and different) commitment to outcomes. All that experience creates in each of us a subtly different approach to the same tasks and the same work, and for many service businesses their uniqueness lies not in the product or service proposition but in the way in which individuals choose to deliver that product or service.

It’s a Unique Delivery Proposition.

Abelard’s xTEN Club, for example, serves entrepreneurial business owners who meet once a month for at least a year to work together to improve their businesses, and hone their ability to grow and develop. Of course there are competitors to that product, there are other companies and groups offering similar services, some provide the same style of meeting to the same agenda each month, a proven formula that delivers value to their members. Some provide a focused approach on one aspect of business, marketing for example, or sales, with companies working together to help develop and hone their skills and practice and improve them in that area alone. Our approach, our Unique Delivery Proposition, is to run three consecutive styles of meetings to address different aspects of business, Strategy, Clarity of purpose and collective commitment. Our clients tell us this chosen delivery pattern is both, in their experience, unique and highly value adding.

It developed from our knowledge, skills and experience of the way that businesses develop and grow and the support and help that they need at various times through that journey. The xTEN Club and its "Selling proposition" is by no means unique, but the way that we do it undoubtedly is. It would be incredibly difficult for someone without the knowledge, skills and experience that we have in Abelard to recreate it exactly.

We recommend that every business takes time out to consider its delivery proposition, how it is drawn on the experience that they have of their market, how others in their market approach the same problem to deliver similar products and how they want to position the outcome of that delivery process to their customers. Are they seeking to be the cheapest in the market or the highest quality? Or some other combination of factors that position you in the market with clarity and certainty?

If you would like to know more about the concept of a unique delivery proposition do give me a call.
1
Add a comment...
Have him in circles
3,491 people
Sue Richardson's profile photo
Curt Johnson's profile photo
Jason Hill's profile photo
RATCHETNEWZ BOSS's profile photo
Aaron C. Boggs's profile photo

William Buist
owner

Business Discussion  - 
 
Customers continue to demonstrate how much they value the experience they have at particular companies. For example, customers are four times more likely to buy a product from a competitor if the problem is related to the services they are receiving than if the problem is related to the product itself.

More than a third of customers are also likely to recommend a company that offered a quick response to their problems or questions, even if that response was not particularly helpful initially.

Compare that to only 17 percent of customers who would recommend a company that provided receive a slow response, even if that response was very helpful.

Customers place great importance on feeling valued by the company. You need to focus on building that relationship of trust with customers right from the beginning.

http://societal-web.com/blog/14/04/reactions-matter-what-customers-say-can-matter-more-what-you-do
1
Add a comment...

William Buist

Shared publicly  - 
 
Tintern Abbey from Devils pulpit. 
6
Ann Chepkorir's profile photo
 
fantactic place
Add a comment...

William Buist
owner

Business Discussion  - 
 
Many businesses go bust every year because they do the wrong things thinking them right. 
2
Add a comment...

William Buist

Shared publicly  - 
 
What's happened? There's a strange yellow ball floating on a blue background outside this morning, should I be frightened, or is it a dream?
3
William Buist's profile photoHeather Townsend's profile photo
4 comments
 
Indeed - A lovely walk this morning with the dogs, so much nicer with no wind and rain, #feelslikespring  
Add a comment...

William Buist

Marketing & Sales  - 
 
Unique Selling propositions? No such thing!

When we work with clients to develop and document their business model, it provides them with clarity about the business; the target markets; how they reach them; the products that they sell; the key activities that are needed to create those products and services; and the reaction that they seek to gain from their customers. So far so good.

There’s a challenge here: a business model that focuses just on the products and services and how they are created and delivered highlights how few points of difference between one product and another. Whether we buy our clothes from Marks & Spencer or Hugo Boss, the outcome is broadly similar. We have cloth coverings for our bodies that say something about us, our style and our fashion sense and so on. Their levels of comfort, and the levels of happiness that they bring us, may be marginally different, (pricing will be very different of course). Fundamentally there is little that is really unique between the two. When we buy Heinz baked beans or Tesco’s Finest or Tesco’s Value, the product has some minor differences but none are really unique.

We think this is true for almost all products and services.

Clearly, brand does play a part in separating and differentiating different products and services from each other. Heinz’s 57 Varieties favoured by many over many years has created a brand image of quality and taste that helps them to sell a product at a higher margin and higher price than some of their very similar competitors, but a USP?

When we look in more depth at the services provided by businesses to consumers and other business clients, it’s often easier to see differences in the way that things are approached. Most coaches would tell you that they use a different style from other coaches, and perhaps they do. But we believe that the true difference lies somewhere else. Each of us has lived a different life; travelled a different journey; built our knowledge through different courses and learning; and developed skills through different dedication to practicing and our individual (and different) commitment to outcomes. All that experience creates in each of us a subtly different approach to the same tasks and the same work, and for many service businesses their uniqueness lies not in the product or service proposition but in the way in which individuals choose to deliver that product or service.

It’s a Unique Delivery Proposition.

Mastermind clubs serve entrepreneurial business owners who meet once a month for at least a year to work together to improve their businesses, and hone their ability to grow and develop. Of course there are competitors to that product, there are companies and groups offering similar services, some provide the same style of meeting to the same agenda each month, a proven formula that delivers value to their members. Some provide a focused approach on one aspect of business, marketing for example, or sales, with companies working together to help develop and hone their skills and practice and improve them in that area alone. One approach, an example of a Unique Delivery Proposition, is to run three consecutive styles of meetings to address different aspects of business, Strategy, Clarity of purpose and collective commitment. 

We recommend that every business takes time out to consider its delivery proposition, how it is drawn on the experience that they have of their market, how others in their market approach the same problem to deliver similar products and how they want to position the outcome of that delivery process to their customers. Are you seeking to be the cheapest in the market or the highest quality? Or some other combination of factors that position you in the market with clarity and certainty?

How do you differ from the market in terms of how you deliver results to your clients?
8
1
Annabel Kaye's profile photo
 
That's a relief!
Add a comment...

William Buist
owner

Business Discussion  - 
 
This is the first of a series of reviews of the collaborative software that we are using in Abelard to support working in a digital age. We hope that you find it useful. 

Do you need more clarity in your business? Click http://goo.gl/Fw6C28

I was recently introduced to what was then called Teambox in a conversation with a fellow client of shared supplier when discussing the most effective tools for team communication for a remote team. Increasingly there are a lot of tools in this space, from Google Apps, Office 365, Basecamp and its sister products and more. Many of these have been used, or are still used in the Abelard stable and we'll be reviewing some of them in future articles. The challenge, then, in a crowded space is to identify what tools work well in the context of your needs. 

Task Management

Managing tasks is hard even if it is just yourself, as the overhead of using a task manager may not be worth the benefit, so we end up with lists in different systems, on paper and online and more. There's little planning possible as the co-dependencies simply aren't exposed. Working with a team the complexities become even stronger, as their non connected lists aren't even known about. Gradually these things fall away if the use of a tool becomes part of the way of working for the team. At Abelard we operate task management according to Getting Things Done (GTD) principles.

Redbooth - More than a task manager

Redbooth (http://www.redbooth.com/) is a cloud based system that allows you to create tasks lists, woopee doo you might say, another way to avoid doing the work by writing lists about what needs to be done. Well of course you could use it that way….

We approach each major piece of work as a project and each project as a series of tasks and each task as a set of steps to achieve an objective. Each of those steps has a context, where you can do it, the resources you need and so on. Context is vital when, for example, you find yourself walking between meetings and the majority of what you do needs you at a desk, or in a certain place, then you need to focus on what you can do, and just what you can do, in the context of walking. Perhaps you could make that call you have been putting off, or drop into a shop and buy something you need.

Sometimes things are not tasked based but progress based, you need to check understanding, validate deliverables or motivate others. Any project may require considerations outside the direct task flow too. The Getting Things Done ideal is to be able to get tasks addressed in the right context, with the right tools and at the right time.

Redbooth supports all that. It's why we like it so much.

GTD and contexts

Then there is its support for contexts. This is critical to implementing the GTD methodology, and its simply created here with the use of hashtags. Tag a message #Call and now you can quickly sort your list when you next are making calls and just have the list of tasks that involve a #Call. That limits distractions and sidelines that are the death of productivity.

Your Team

Your team is with you, Each project has a team associated with it, allowing you to allocate tasks quickly as they arise. (and you can make tasks private too, so only certain members of the team can see them). When you do they get an email, and if they have the mobile apps a pushed notification too, so they know they have been given the work. They can reply to the email, or use a browser to update progress, and with Redbooth's new subtask feature build their own checklist of steps and milestones to help them keep on track.

Your Processes

Your processes are with you too. If you have regular work then the lists can be pre populated using templates. That means you can set up regular work in advance and not have to think through all the 'Now what do we do when…..' yet again. That all drives to sustainable, repeatable, resilient and collaborative business that stays on purpose.

Mobile and Browser

There there is even more neat stuff, The mobile apps are good (although a couple of features such as time recording are notably missing) and there's a chrome add in that integrates Redbooth with gmail. All of that that puts my tasks with my mail (and another add-in links in to my CRM system) so this can truly be my workflow hub. Imagine, an email comes in which highlights that you need to invite someone in your network to come to an event, you can't get to it right now so simply attach the email to a task, the CRM has a copy of the email automatically added to the record, triggering a series of actions related to the event and I can delegate the communication of the next steps all within a few clicks and in a few seconds.

More Help
More reading: Getting things done (http://goo.gl/a9fHyL) by David Allen

Need more clarity in your business? Click http://goo.gl/Fw6C28.
2
William Buist's profile photoSarah Williams's profile photo
2 comments
 
Thanks Sarah, Redbooth does do elapsed time tracking, but not start time/stop time. That's sufficient for most purposes.
Add a comment...
People
Have him in circles
3,491 people
Sue Richardson's profile photo
Curt Johnson's profile photo
Jason Hill's profile photo
RATCHETNEWZ BOSS's profile photo
Aaron C. Boggs's profile photo
Work
Occupation
Collaborative Mentor for Entrepreneurially minded businesses
Employment
  • Abelard
    CEO, present
  • Innomation
    Director, 2001 - 2004
  • Lloyds TSB
    Head of Business Risk Management, 1994 - 2001
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
Chepstow
Previously
Wilmslow, - Lewisham - Croydon - Farnham - Ringmer - Southampton - Perth, Scotland - St Andrews
Contact Information
Home
Phone
07880 794127
Email
Address
Chepstow
Work
Phone
01291 622598
Email
Story
Tagline
Collaborator In Chief
Introduction
Values guide everything that I do. I will be Collaborative, Objective and Empowering.

create clarity about the business model, develop key strategies for marketing, sales, and operations, and rapidly implement change for Entrepreneurially minded businesses that want to stretch and enhance their performance.
Education
  • University of St Andrews
    BSc, 1976 - 1980
  • Open University
    Mathematics, 1988 - 1996
  • Kings School, Macclesfield
    1976
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Relationship
Married
Links
William Buist's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
The Origins of Bullying | Guest Blog, Scientific American Blog Network
blogs.scientificamerican.com

Late on a Saturday night in September, a 14-year old boy named Jamey Rodemeyer, who had been the target of bullying from fellow students at

Seth's Blog: What "no" means
sethgodin.typepad.com

I'm too busy I don't trust you This isn't on my list My boss won't let me I'm afraid of moving this forward I'm not the person you think I a

First Friday Working Lunch
xtenclub.com

The First Friday Working Lunch (register here>) is fast becoming a well known institution in London for entrepreneurial business networking.

Britain's boardrooms suffering from 'digital deficit' - Telegraph
www.telegraph.co.uk

Only three of the UK’s top 350 companies have three or more tech-savvy board members

Why You Should Care About Gmail’s New Tabs as a Blogger, Marketer, Freel...
kikolani.com

Blog post at Kikolani : Are you a blogger, Internet marketer, freelance writer, or just someone who likes to get their email? Whether or not

Seth's Blog: The sweet smell of success
sethgodin.typepad.com

No one talks about what color the success is, just how it smells. When Amanda Palmer was busking on the streets of Harvard Square, she made

Gideon Rosenblatt
www.circlecount.com

The CircleRank of Gideon Rosenblatt is 5034! In United States the CircleRank is even 839! Gideon Rosenblatt says 'Business as a force for go

Chris Borrett
www.circlecount.com

The CircleRank of Chris Borrett is 16267! In Australia the CircleRank is even 163! Chris Borrett says 'Business Coaching, Development, Commu

Search Engine Optimization (SEO), using Google Plus
www.martinshervington.com

In the past couple of years Search Engine Optimization may well have gone through a transformation. Since the launch of Google Plus people a

Infusionsoft
plus.google.com

Infusionsoft is the leader in sales and marketing software for small businesses.

The Google+ Long Game Is Brilliant
feedproxy.google.com

I'm finding myself using Google+ more and more. I recently decided that the long game Google is playing is absolutely brilliant. They are be

Testing subscriptions | The Societal Web
remote.abelard-uk.com

I've subscribed to be notified of a blog by Test on my William Buist account - so this should trigger an email - because Test is writing som

Culture Code: Creating A Lovable Company
www.slideshare.net

An presentation on what we believe and how we work at HubSpot. This is part culture manifesto, part employee handbook and part diary of drea

The Death of the Sales Funnel
www.socialmediaexplorer.com

In Digital Marketing, the simplistic sales funnel is no longer applicable. Measurement expert Nichole Kelly demonstrates how the modern sale

If a 200-year-old flour company can nail social media, why can't your br...
www.leadingcompany.com.au

Too often I hear from brands (large and small, but quizzically, it generally comes from larger organisations) that they haven't got much to

Mentoring for Business : Putting Mentoring into P.R.A.C.T.I.C.E
www.abelard-uk.com

Being a successful protégé is more likely if you remember a few key things. You can honour your mentor by remembering to PRACTICE

Mentoring for Business: The Three R’s of Business
www.abelard-uk.com

Building business success needs solid foundations, like the educational three R’s – In a business context these are Robust, Resilient and Re

7 Ways Cloud Storage Aids Business Collaboration - Conrad Flynn | new me...
conradflynn.com

Guest blog by Nicki Escudero Content and social media strategist for CX Today, more than ever, remote collaboration is infiltrating its way

Right to be forgotten on the web unworkable, argue data watchdogs
www.v3.co.uk

ICO and European Data Protection officials argue business and consumers would lose out under harsh privacy laws

How to sell your business and then move on - Houston Business Journal
www.bizjournals.com

The most important aspect of selling a business comes not only in the preparation...

Great afternoon tea.
Food: ExcellentDecor: ExcellentService: Excellent
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
1 review
Map
Map
Map