What Did We Learn from Bill and Ted? Applying Their Excellent Approach to Life in the AEC Industry

Digital, Team Building By Sep 07, 2023 No Comments

Hello, excellent readers! Today, I’m taking you on a most triumphant journey inspired by none other than Bill and Ted, the iconic duo from the movies that captured my imagination as a 10-year-old on a road trip with family. “Excellent, dude!” became our rallying cry, and the adventures of Bill and Ted became a most excellent memory.

But why Bill and Ted, you might ask? On the surface, they might seem like a pair of lovable losers, written off by everyone around them. But there’s more to them than meets the eye. Against all odds, they do amazing things. They don’t wait for opportunity; they create it. They take bad situations and turn them around, all with a spirit of fun and adventure.

In the most recent third movie, they face challenges that resonate with many of us today: the drudgery of an uninspiring work life, where everyone is going through the grind, and a lack of innovation. But once again, Bill and Ted rise above, finding ways to break free from the rut and achieve greatness.

So, what can we in the AEC industry learn from Bill and Ted’s excellent approach to life? Grab your air guitar, and let’s dive into some psychological theories and practical lessons that can inspire us to be more excellent in our work and lives!

The Psychology Behind Bill and Ted’s Approach to Life

Mindset Theory – Carol Dweck

Remember when Bill and Ted embarked on their “Excellent Adventure,” time-travelling to assemble historical figures for their history presentation? They embodied a growth mindset, believing that abilities and intelligence can be developed through effort, learning, and persistence. Just like them, we in the AEC industry can turn our challenges into learning experiences, remaining optimistic and resourceful.

Locus of Control

Bill and Ted’s belief that they could shape their destiny through their actions and decisions, even when facing evil robot versions of themselves, demonstrates an internal locus of control. This attitude fosters empowerment and responsibility, something we can all strive for in our professional lives to take the initiative and proactively address challenges.

Dunning-Kruger Effect

Despite their occasional naïveté, Bill and Ted avoided overconfidence by recognizing their limitations and seeking guidance from others. They cleverly chose games they were familiar with to outsmart Death and return to the world of the living. This awareness can inspire us to remain open to learning and growth, acknowledging our limitations, and seeking expertise when needed.


In “Bill & Ted Face the Music,” the duo’s unwavering belief in their ability to succeed, even in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds, exemplifies self-efficacy. Their determination led them to create the world-saving song. Much like Bill and Ted, we can persist and overcome obstacles in our industry, maintaining belief in our abilities.

Applying Bill and Ted’s Lessons to the AEC Industry Office Culture

Embracing a Growth Mindset

Just as Bill and Ted turned their misadventures into learning experiences, the AEC industry can foster a growth mindset. Encourage employees to learn, take risks, and continuously improve. This approach can lead to innovation, increased productivity, and resilience. For instance, learning new tools like visual programming can enhance skill sets and contribute to better digital delivery in projects.

Promoting an Internal Locus of Control

Bill and Ted’s belief in shaping their destiny can be a lesson for the AEC industry. Encourage employees to take ownership of their work and believe in their ability to influence outcomes. This attitude can lead to increased engagement, job satisfaction, and a collaborative, solutions-oriented culture. Whether it’s responding to an EIR for the first time or seeking help when needed, this proactive approach can make a difference.

Recognizing and Overcoming the Dunning-Kruger Effect

Bill and Ted’s awareness of their limitations teaches us the importance of humility and self-awareness. Promote a culture where employees recognize their limitations and seek guidance when needed. This mindset can lead to effective teamwork and better decision-making. In the context of BIM and digital delivery, understanding complex coordination and file interoperability tasks can lead to improved project quality.

Fostering Self-Efficacy

Inspired by Bill and Ted’s unwavering belief in their ability to succeed, support employees in developing self-efficacy. Provide opportunities for skill development, set achievable goals, and celebrate successes. In the AEC industry, this could include learning how to deliver asset data effectively, offering resources and support, and recognizing achievements to boost confidence.


While Bill and Ted might be fictional characters, their approach to life offers valuable insights that can be applied to the AEC industry office culture. By embracing psychological concepts such as mindset theory, locus of control, Dunning-Kruger effect, and self-efficacy, organizations can create a more supportive, engaged, and productive work environment. So, let’s all take a page out of Bill and Ted’s book and strive to be excellent to each other!

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