Annette Ferguson

Annette Ferguson

How to know when you should stop offering a program or service.  

There are three steps that I like to look at, both in my own business and with clients to evaluate whether or not you should actually stop one of your revenue streams in your business.

Step One

The first thing to consider is, are you enjoying delivering that programme or service?

This might seem a little bit of an odd place to start, but if you’re not enjoying it, then it’s going to be draining your energy, it’s going be draining your resources and  creativity and it’s going to be draining your time.

Ask yourself, and be really really honest, do you enjoy delivering this programme?  

Do you enjoy delivering this service?  

You want to look at do you enjoy the content you are having to produce for it? 

Does it still excite you? 

Do you enjoy the type of people that you’re working with? 

Step Two

Next, evaluate whether delivering the programme or service is in line with your vision.

I don’t just mean the business vision, I mean the vision you have for your life as a whole.

Let’s say, for example, that delivering this programme is very intensive on your own personal time, yet the vision you have for your life and for your business is to be working five hour work weeks…

What you need to do is work out whether the programme that you’re thinking about, the service that you’re thinking about, does it actually stack up within the longterm vision you have for your business?

These are the things that actually shape your business and fundamentally shape your life!

Unless these two things are actually working for you, you’re gonna drain energy, you’re going to be resentful of your business, you’re gonna be resentful of the time it takes up, and all those types of things. No matter how well people are paying you to deliver this programme or service. If you don’t enjoy it and it’s not in line with your vision fundamentally, it’s not gonna lead you to the place you want to get to. It’s not gonna get you to where you want to be in business.

So that is why these two things are crucial!

I really encourage you on a pretty regular basis to actually review your programmes and services, particularly with these two things in mind as well as the third thing that I’m about to share with you now.

Step Three

Finally, and this is probably more expected from an accountant, the question is, is your programme or service truly profitable?

So you need to sit down and say, “Okay, how much are people paying me for this? And what is it costing me to deliver?”

And we want to make sure that you are putting in every cost there.

So for example, if it takes up three hours a week of your VA’s time within your private paid Facebook group to deliver this programme, you need to be factoring that in as well to the calculations.  If you have a specific piece of software that you have purchased in order to help you run this programme, you need to be factoring that in as well.

If you’re people are paying on Stripe, PayPal, you need to be factoring in your charges from those platforms, or from those merchant processors in order to make sure that the programme or service is profitable as well. 

If you’re outsourcing any part of the delivery, you need to make sure you are including that. 

And last but not least, what about your time? 

Once you work out kinda what the profit is, is that worth the time you’re spending on it?

Is the profit per participant, the profit per client, the profit per customer (whatever you call them in your business) is that worth the time you are actually putting in at the end of the day to each individual, to each person? 

Particularly if you have a one-to-one element, is that working for you? 

Do the numbers stack up? 

Is it profitable, and is it profitable enough to keep you engaged? 

To keep you wanting to turn up. 

And is it profitable enough so that as you grow and scale the programme (if that’s what you want to do) the numbers stack up and the numbers work?

Because if you start to do that, you may need to bring extra team onboard to just help service customer service inquiries, customer service etc. 

You have to make sure, is it profitable now, and with the vision you have for the programme or service, is it leading to profitability in the future as well. 

You need to map that out and you need to work through that. 

If you cannot do that yourself, then I highly highly suggest speaking to your accountant (who should be helping you with this stuff anyway).  And you can work together to say, “Okay what does that look like? Is this working for me?”

Those are the three things that I believe are incredibly important when looking at your programmes and your services in your business, looking at where you are now and saying, “Do I enjoy delivering these? Are they in line with my vision, and are they profitable both now and as I grow and scale, will they continue to be profitable?”

If these three things are not in place, then you are leaving money on the table in your business.  Your energy could be directed somewhere better that will have a massively positive impact, rather than focusing on this thing that either you don’t enjoy, is not in line with your vision or is not highly profitable for you. 

It doesn’t matter how much this revenue stream is worth for your business, if you don’t have these three things in place then it’s time to think about pivoting. 

It’s time to think about changing your offerings so that you can tick all three of those boxes with the programme and services that you are offering to your clients.