Acquaintance Type

Six culture types for the acquaintance variant

*For details, please refer to the book


Associates do not approach interactions with ulterior motives (i.e., I will do this in order to get that).

Chance acquaintances do nothing more than nod and smile;

Script followers simply follow predetermined scripts based on socially defined roles (teacher and student, supervisor and super- visee, two government officials, etc.) and nothing more.

Reciprocators behave as how others behave towards them.

Egocentrists do whatever they please without thinking about impacts on others and typically apply simple relationship dynamics from their childhoods (i.e., with family members, classmates) to people they meet in their adult lives.


Connectors are those who link others in a social network. In this case, both parties in a relationship can adopt the connector type, or one party may adopt the connector type while the other may adopt the associate type.

Professional connectors are those who can make the right introductions for professional reasons (i.e., business deals, employment opportunities).

Personal connectors are those who can make the right introductions for personal reasons (e.g., to find a potential spouse, doctor, lawyer, handyman).


The filler type is quite common; sadly, people often interpret this type as being more than it is. Fillers make certain activities possible.

Playmates are partners for physical activities such as sports (e.g., running, tennis), dinner or Karaoke.

Interlocutors are partners for verbal activities including gossiping.

Reminiscers evoke nostalgia by recalling old memories and feelings of innocence (e.g., childhood friends, former classmates).


Traders are people who seek to trade favors with others, to improve aspects of life that are important to them and maximize their overall utility. Traders seek mutual exchange, unlike connectors, who do not seek anything in return for favors. 

Pareto optimizers seek to engage in trading activities that benefit both parties (or at least not make one party worse off).

Scorekeepers operate on a debit-credit criterion. They seek favors, but keep track of what they owe and always look for opportunities to repay their debts in the future. Similarly, those offering favors track them as credits and seek payment in the future.


Allies have the explicit objective of strengthening themselves as much as possible by forming powerful, ideally unbreakable alliances with other parties. In order to achieve this objective, instead of simply being partners of convenience, they are committed to defending the other party’s interests as if they were their own.To achieve this objective, this type includes a formal structure that is more explicitly defined with much richer dimensions than those of the other types, and tends to be exclusive.

Sworn siblings pledge allegiance to each other as “brothers” or “sisters” even though they are not related by blood or marriage.

Two or more families share common objectives and pledge to help each other.

PES (political, economic, societal) alliances among individuals or groups pursuing the same specific goal. All of these relationships are defined by rules, and violations lead to serious consequences. The objective is to increase power through formal relationships by committing to sacrifice self-interest for the interests of others.

Alter egos

The alter ego type is adopted by people who establish relationships for non- materialistic purposes and who tend to be able to agree and appreciate each other on a mental level—that is, they are partners of mind.

Likeminded individuals share a common interest (e.g., a particular part of H) and enjoy each other’s thoughts and works related to that topic.

Confidantes share their innermost thoughts with each other and share the ups and downs of life.

Mentors provide thoughtful and valuable advice. The third subtype is asymmetric, and may also include confidantes.