Mr Knowles is a Certified Learning Provider (CLP) at Appleton Greene and an acknowledged expert in the fields of business strategy, customer value, stakeholder value and the management of change. He has extensive consulting experience with a particular specialization in value proposition development for B2B companies in the manufacturing, engineering, construction, building products, financial services, healthcare devices and airline sectors. The hallmark of his work is a focus on both customer outcomes (leading to topline growth and pricing power) and business model design (leading to increased operating margins), both of which result in higher business valuations.
Mr Knowles has authored five articles in the Harvard Business Review and twelve in the MIT Sloan Management Review (six of which form “The Strategy of Change” series) as well as contributing to multiple textbooks.
British by nationality, Mr Knowles earned his MBA from INSEAD (the leading business school in Europe) and worked in multiple European countries (including the UK, France, Germany, Switzerland, Finland, and Portugal) and before moving to the US in 1999. Since then, he has lived in New York, Colorado, Arizona, Massachusetts, and Florida.
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Appleton Greene corporate training programs are all process-driven. They are used as vehicles to implement tangible business processes within clients’ organizations, together with training, support and facilitation during the use of these processes. Corporate training programs are therefore implemented over a sustainable period of time, that is to say, between 1 year (incorporating 12 monthly workshops), and 4 years (incorporating 48 monthly workshops). Your program information guide will specify how long each program takes to complete. Each monthly workshop takes 6 hours to implement and can be undertaken either on the client’s premises, an Appleton Greene serviced office, or online via the internet. This enables clients to implement each part of their business process, before moving onto the next stage of the program and enables employees to plan their study time around their current work commitments. The result is far greater program benefit, over a more sustainable period of time and a significantly improved return on investment.
Appleton Greene uses standard and bespoke corporate training programs as vessels to transfer business process improvement knowledge into the heart of our clients’ organizations. Each individual program focuses upon the implementation of a specific business process, which enables clients to easily quantify their return on investment. There are hundreds of established Appleton Greene corporate training products now available to clients within customer services, e-business, finance, globalization, human resources, information technology, legal, management, marketing and production. It does not matter whether a client’s employees are located within one office, or an unlimited number of international offices, we can still bring them together to learn and implement specific business processes collectively. Our approach to global localization enables us to provide clients with a truly international service with that all important personal touch. Appleton Greene corporate training programs can be provided virtually or locally and they are all unique in that they individually focus upon a specific business function. All (CLP) programs are implemented over a sustainable period of time, usually between 1-4 years, incorporating 12-48 monthly workshops and professional support is consistently provided during this time by qualified learning providers and where appropriate, by Accredited Consultants.
There are only two forms of business strategy – cost leadership and differentiation. Cost leaders succeed by offering the lowest prices; differentiated companies succeed by offering unique value to a particular set of customers. Value Proposition is the process used by differentiated companies to develop, communicate and deliver their differentiation.
The financial impact of a well-defined Value Proposition cannot be over-stated. A business achieves higher sales and profits when it is the #1 choice for certain segments of the market than when it has a more generic offering that is the #2 or #3 choice across all segments. By offering a differentiated Value Proposition that its competitors are unable or unwilling to imitate, a business establishes an unassailable foothold in the market from which to selectively expand to serve other customer segments.
The goal of a Value Proposition is to articulate why specific customers are better off doing business with you rather than with your competitors. The answer is always “great value” – an attractive ratio between the benefits being offered and the price being charged. Cost leaders focus on reducing the price to the customer as their way to increase this ratio. Differentiated companies focus on increasing the benefits that can be offered to specific customer segments so as to increase their willingness to pay, while also focusing on how these benefits can be delivered cost effectively so that both the value perceived by customers and the margin achieved by the company are increased – a sustainable “win-win”.
The Value Proposition program explores the many ways in which value can be created for customers (in particular, we will draw on the Hax Delta Model and the Bain Pyramid of Value) and the how the unique history, capabilities and culture of a company can be leveraged to create a Value Proposition that cannot be imitated by competitors.
Value Proposition is the discipline that transforms your sales and marketing efforts from being “a hammer looking for nails” exercise into a disciplined process for identifying and attracting those customers with whom a long-lasting and mutually beneficial commercial relationship can be created. Adopting the mindset that “not all sales dollars are created equal” means that you avoid the indiscriminate onboarding of unsuitable customers whose diversity of needs makes it impossible for your business to satisfy, leading to customer attrition and unfavorable reviews for your business.
The core objective of this program is to provide a common framework and process for companies to implement so that each of their product and service lines can identify the markets and customer segments where they are best placed to deliver distinctive value, allowing them to grow profitably, to gain market share and to sustain premium pricing.
Preview of some of the key frameworks to be covered in the program:
The objective of Value Proposition:
Contrasting the consumer and producer concept of value
The Hax Delta Model of differentiation opportunities
The Bain pyramid of customer value
Creating strong brands that enable, entice and enrich