The WAI Frame is a self-reflection tool to assess personal traits and goals and help to match (and find) business partners and people to work with. It can – and should – be used in combination with The Businesspeople Archetypes and the 16 Personalities (Myers–Briggs).
Before starting working with other people, I noticed young entrepreneurs have usually no clue about the kind of professionals they need, who would be a good match and, occasionally, they even know themselves enough to know that. When working in groups at the University, this quickly became a problem, especially when aiming to help students to cross academic borders and start their own businesses in the “real world”.
To address this issue, I first started asking them to pitch themselves in the classroom and so asking the others to find their perfect matches after this “showroom session”. Of course, the self-pitch was completely random and sometimes useless. So I started working on some key questions to guide this process. That’s how the first version – still very sketchy – of The WAI Frame was born. WAI, therefore, stands for Who Am I? – my original question to my students – and later became a visual tool.
The Tool – The WAI Frame
The WAI Frame v 1.1
The WAI Frame is a self-reflection tool for assessing personal traits and goals, and helping to find and match business partners and people to work with. It can – and should – be used in combination with The Businesspeople Archetypes and the 16 Personalities (Myers-Briggs).
The WAI Frame is based on the notion that understanding our own strengths, weaknesses, and personal goals is crucial for establishing successful business relationships. By reflecting on our characteristics and desires, we can identify which type of business partnerships are most suitable for us.
This framework perfectly complements The Businesspeople Archetypes, which provide a detailed description of different types of business leaders, including visionaries, strategists, and executors. By combining the WAI Frame with the Archetypes, we can assess how our personal traits align with different business profiles, enabling us to find partners with complementary skills.
Additionally, The WAI Frame builds upon the model of the 16 Personalities by Myers-Briggs, which categorizes individuals into 16 distinct types based on their preferences and behaviors.
In summary, the WAI Frame is a valuable tool for evaluating our personal traits and goals and finding business partners and people to work with synergistically.
What do I do very well?
What am I really good at? What are my skills that stand out the most? When working together, what's my added value?
When thinking about what makes you special, consider your unique skills, both technical and personal. Reflect on your expertise, such as programming, design, or problem-solving. Think about your strengths as a communicator, leader, or organizer. Highlight your achievements and experiences, like completing projects or surpassing goals. Emphasize your willingness to learn and adapt to new ideas. Showcase your creativity and ability to think outside the box.
Think about the reason why one would like to have you on his/her team. What are you bringing to the table?
What would I like to do?
What are my dreams in life? What do I really like and would like to be doing right now?
Something I still want to accomplish in my life.
In life, it’s essential for an individual to have aspirations and dreams that drive them forward. These aspirations provide them with motivation, purpose, and a sense of direction. Consider what you truly enjoy and what you would like to be doing right now. Is there something you’ve always wanted to pursue but haven’t had the chance to? It could be a hobby, a career path, or a personal goal.
Beyond professional endeavors, one may have personal dreams or achievements they still want to accomplish. They might dream of visiting a particular place, embarking on an adventure, or starting a personal project that has been on their mind.
It’s important to remember that life is full of possibilities. They can take time for reflection and set goals to take steps towards their aspirations. It’s also important to keep in mind that the journey itself is as important as the destination.
What are my personal goals?
“Making money” is not a goal – or should not be.
“Making money” is a way to achieve other goals. I.e. sail by boat, travel the world, win somebody over, etc.
Personal goals and aspirations are the driving forces that shape our lives and give us a sense of purpose and fulfillment. While making money can be important, it is crucial to go beyond financial success and delve into what truly matters to us on a personal level.
Each individual has their own unique set of aspirations that reflect their values, interests, and dreams. Some people aspire to make a positive impact in their community or on a global scale, while others aim to explore their creative potential or strive for personal growth and self-improvement. Personal goals can also include cultivating meaningful relationships, finding inner peace and happiness, or pursuing a specific passion or talent.
Setting personal goals and working towards their realization can bring about a sense of direction and motivation in our lives. It allows us to envision a future that aligns with our deepest desires and values. By focusing on personal goals, we can shape our actions and decisions in a way that brings us closer to the life we truly want to live.
Consider what truly brings you joy and fulfillment. It’s not just about the destination, but the journey towards living a life that is true to who you are and what you desire.
The next two blocks are about relationships: how one relates with others and how others can interact with that person.
How to deal with me?
Do I like working alone? In a crowded place, but with headphones?
Am I motivated by tight deadlines or would I rather have time to plan?
Do I work with challenges or do I prefer to do well what I already know?
First and foremost, the working environment greatly influences someone’s performance. Depending on personality and work style, a person can either thrive in a secluded space where one can focus without distractions, or may prefer a collaborative setting that fosters teamwork and creativity.
Concerning time management, for some, tight deadlines act as a motivator, pushing them to work efficiently and effectively. On the other hand, one may prefer having ample time to plan and strategize before diving into a task, allowing for a more methodical and organized approach. Understanding an individual’s own time management preferences helps ensure deadlines can be met and helps to deliver quality work.
In conclusion, by being aware of one’s work preferences and understanding how they impact productivity and satisfaction, it’s possible to create an environment that helps people to thrive. Whether it’s finding the ideal workspace, managing my time effectively, or seeking opportunities for growth, aligning these factors enables a team to perform and find fulfillment at work.
What kind of people work well with me?
What kind of people work well with me? Who is the best work partner for me?
What skills and behaviors complement mine?
What are my expectations regarding the work environment?
When it comes to working together, it’s important to think about who complements your style. What attributes and characteristics do you value in a work partner? Consider the skills and behaviors that align with your own. Leveraging these complementary attributes can significantly enhance the team’s productivity.
Additionally, being clear about expectations for the work environment is an important first step. What factors, like communication style or structural preferences, are crucial for optimal performance and satisfaction?
Taking these considerations into account will help to create a collaborative dynamic that fosters creativity, efficiency, and mutual success. This thoughtful approach to partnership ensures that both you and your collaborators can thrive and achieve your shared goals.
Last two questions
After all, for the last two questions, we will need to use the other tools in combination with The WAI Frame. To answer “What business archetype am I?”, I recommend using The Businesspeople Archetypes. And “What is my personality archetype?” could come from the 16 Personalitiy types (Myers-Briggs).
There is a discussion concerning the 16 personality types and whether they have or do not have a scientific background. Although these types were based on Carl Jung’s work, there is clearly no scientific method behind this model. Also, Porter’s Five Forces doesn’t have. That said, these tools still show themselves useful within certain contexts and for specific purposes. In our case, it’s a simple and straightforward way to evaluate and reflect on working styles and preferences. The same applies to the businesspeople archetypes. There are certainly more than the 8 proposed types, but these 8 work well when it comes to understanding and preparing team dynamics.
To download The WAI Frame
You can download The WAI Frame 1.1 for free here (colorful and English version).
You can download The WAI Frame 2.0 for free here (colorful and English version).
Just mind the Creative Commons license granted.