Sunsets and Frozen: 3 coaching lessons from product design

I was today years old when I learned the concept of “Sunsetting a product“. For those like me, in a nutshell, it means ending the life of your product, service or feature. Like the immortal words of Elsa “Let it Go”


In coaching, this idea of sunsetting is vital! Feeling overwhelmed? Pulled in too many directions? A nagging voice saying “this is not working anymore”? Then it is time to consider what is not serving you anymore and to make your sunsetting plan.

Inspired by this tech focused blogpost are three Coaching Prompts to start sunsetting and letting go

1. How is the product (relationship/behaviour/underlying belief) performing right now?

It might have worked great in the past but the world is different, you are different. Be precise and honest here. We can learn a bit from Marie Kondo at Work here “Do I need to execute it? Does

2. Calculate the value of the resources you could unlock by re-deploying these resources onto more profitable products.

What is it costing you to hold on to this? What is it stopping you from doing? What could you do instead?

I remember feeling overwhelmed by the amount of communities I was involved with as a leader back in 2018. I did a constellation with my coach Sarah Furuya and realised that I needed to step away from my beloved Lean In Circle moderation. Creating the extra space in my diary allowed me to focus on fewer things and do them better.

3. Develop an end-of-life product roadmap.

In some cases you can just stop doing the “thing”, but it isn’t always that simple. When will you stop? How – phased or in one fell swoop? Who do you need to inform of the change? Will you do “After sales service” for a limited period?

Here’s a small example – domestic and relatable to parents I think!

I’m standing on the landing doing the laundry. Cursing under my breath about why my kids clothes are ALL ALWAYS inside out. As I put them right side out (is that a word?!), I have an epiphany “Hang on! Does the customer expect this level of service? Do they even notice it? I think I will stop doing it” Over dinner I announced “I will no longer be putting your clothes right way out. From today, they will be washed in the way that you put them into the laundry. ”

I communicated with stakeholders in a clear and precise way and all is good! No customer complaints and I saved myself 100% of the time on that “feature” of “Mum’s Laundry Service”.

What do you think? Let me know about your experience with sunsetting a belief, behaviour or relationships in the comments or contact me here.

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