You are currently viewing <strong>How “We’ve Always Done It That Way” Kills Team Progress </strong>
Other Perspectives

How “We’ve Always Done It That Way” Kills Team Progress 

  • Post category:Blog
  • Post comments:0 Comments

By Dr B Chireka 

Joining the clinical commissioning group meant taking on a role that challenged my approach to GP engagement. When I visited one practice, their reply of ‘we’ve always done things this way’ felt like an unsettling wall was blocking me from progressing forward and making impactful changes. In response, I proposed for us all to brainstorm options untapped by them before, which led to much needed growth in attitude – proactivity had arrived!

The phrase “we’ve always done it that way” has been used in teams for years, but it can be a major hindrance to progress and innovation. It is often used as an excuse to avoid trying something new or making a change that could have a positive impact on the team. In this blog post, we will discuss why the phrase “we’ve always done it that way” should not be used in teams, and how it can stifle progress. 

Reasons why the phrase “we’ve always done it that way” kills team progress include: 

1. It creates an atmosphere of complacency – When someone uses this phrase, they are essentially saying that they don’t want to try something new or different. This creates an atmosphere of complacency which can lead to stagnation in a team’s productivity. 

2. It limits creativity – By relying solely on what has been done before instead of exploring alternative options, teams are missing out on potential creative solutions. This can lead to missed opportunities and a lack of growth for the team overall. 

3. It reinforces bad habits – When teams continue to do things the same way without any changes or improvement, they tend to fall into bad habits and become less efficient over time. This can lead to decreased productivity and quality of work, as well as increased frustration among team members due to their inability to make progress. 

4. It prevents innovation – Teams need innovation in order to stay competitive and successful in today’s business world. Without new ideas and fresh perspectives, teams run the risk of becoming outdated and irrelevant over time. 

5. It discourages collaboration – Most teams rely on collaboration in order to be successful, but when someone uses the phrase “we’ve always done it that way” they are essentially shutting down any possibility for collaboration or brainstorming with other members of the team. This can lead to decreased morale among team members who feel their input is not valued or appreciated by their colleagues.  


The phrase “we’ve always done it that way” may seem like an innocuous statement at first glance, but its effects on teams can be devastating if left unchecked. Not only does it create an atmosphere of complacency which can lead to stagnation in productivity levels, but it also limits creativity, reinforces bad habits, prevents innovation, and discourages collaboration between team members—all of which contribute directly to decreased morale and overall efficiency within a team environment. To ensure your team remains productive and motivated for success, use alternatives such as “let’s explore our options together,” “what other solutions have we considered?” or “is there another approach we haven’t explored yet?” These phrases will open up dialogue amongst your teammates while fostering creativity and encouraging collaboration – ultimately leading your team towards greater success!


Leave a Reply