Anton Raimondo is founder of niche London property development company, Southern Capital Ltd. After losing his leg in a motorcycle accident, he became one of the best all-round Sitting Volleyball players in Great Britain and competed in the London 2012 Paralympics. He thrives on adventure and recently drove from London to Cape Town through 21 African countries.
My Definition Of Success | Success has meant different things to me at different times of my life. Often my view of success has related to being entrepreneurial and various experiences and I have pursued this in a number of ways. I have also felt successful when I have been able to inspire, to nurture, to learn or build something, to lead or to hold myself to a value I consider important and this comes in all areas of my life. I tend to choose and focus on a goal, experience or attribute and pursue it. My level of success is not only determined by whether I reach that goal or not, but by how I achieve them and this often gives me greater reward.
I Am Driven By | I have this burning desire to improve and to experience. I fear stagnation.
My Highlights |
- Personally: To have survived and thrived after I lost my leg in a motor-cycle accident in the Andes, Argentina and to have built and maintained some incredible long-term friendships and connections with people.
- Professionally: I am proud to have co-founded two businesses that each reached a level of success and personal reward far beyond what I could have imagined when I first started them. The first business was started when I was 18 in Cape Town, the other when I was 25 in London. At age 32, I reached a goal I had set myself in my teens. My passive income comfortably exceeded my expenses, allowing me to effective retire, if I wished, giving me time and financial freedom.
- Sports wise: Captain of the UK national champions in 2012 for Sitting Volleyball. Representing Great Britain and playing in front of packed stadiums at the London 2012 Paralympics. Founding Sitting Volleyball in South Africa.
The Difference Between Good And Great |
- The ability to deal with failure. If you are going to be great at something, you are going to fail a lot before you achieve any form of greatness. Great people are excellent at confronting, dealing with and learning from failure.
- People who are great continually set themselves new and higher goals. They reach a goal and move to the next. Often when you get good at something, you receive recognition and reward in various forms and so it is easy to sit back and enjoy the success. Why improve further when others think you are good already? A great person sets their own agenda.
- A healthy belief in yourself, perseverance and a lot of practice are all necessary ingredients to become great.
A Key Talent | Negotiation – One strength that I value highly is the ability to negotiate. It is almost certain that in order to accomplish your goal, you need to work with people and come to agreements. This may be in all sorts of contexts: business partners, family members, friends, employees, competitors, team members, etc. The ability to negotiate so that all people involved are satisfied or happy and also allow you to achieve the goals you wish is incredibly important. It is directly correlated to your success.
I think there are three key principles to being a successful negotiator:
- Fully understanding your own wishes and goals. This may sound easy, but it is very important to know exactly what you want. There may be various overlapping goals or secondary/tertiary goals that are getting confused with what you really want. Analyse and rank your goals in terms of importance. Decide what is crucial and what you are willing to compromise on.
- Fully understand what the other party wants: Very few people do this. They assume they know what the other party wants. Really find out and determine what is most important for this person/group. Try and get an understanding of where they are flexible too.
- Offer a valid proposition. In order to achieve your goal you often need to come up with a solution that allows the other party to be better off than they are. This requires creativity and problem-solving and very good communication with the other party. These are all skills that can be developed. A sign of a good deal is one where all parties are better off.
I have often found when I am disappointed and haven’t negotiated a deal in the way I would like, it is usually because I didn’t followed the above principles. It takes practice, but luckily we have the opportunity to do this anywhere and in any area of our lives. It is happening all the time.
Performing At My Peak | I struggle with this and often feel like I am not performing at my peak as much as I would like. I think it is very difficult to maintain peak performance all the time and especially in multiple areas of my life simultaneously.
Healthy eating, lots of exercise, ferocious reading and setting myself very clear goals with timelines, help me to perform at my peak. A little pressure helps peak performance too.
- Travel – In 2012/13, my partner and I drove across Europe and Africa, from London to Cape Town. I would love to travel by land across at least two more continents.
- Business – Radically expand my existing property development company. Found at least one more successful company. Fund and help build new startups.
- Sport – Develop the sport of Sitting Volleyball in South Africa such that the sport is sustainable and South Africa can compete at an international level.
The Best Advice I’ve Received | Insanity is defined as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Try not to be insane!
Advice On Building Wealth |
- Find a mentor – someone who has actually walked the path you want to take and learn from them. Ignore big talkers.
- Educate yourself. Education is key. Become financially literate and become insatiable with your financial knowledge.
- Buy or create appreciating assets (ideally cash-flow producing). Limit money spent on depreciating assets.
On Inspiring Others | Ideally, find people who are inherently inspired and motivated by the work involved in your cause. Understand exactly what drives them and empower them to fulfill their passions through their work. Then it becomes a lot easier to motivate as both your goals and wishes are aligned. Less time needs to be spent on motivation. I also think it is very important to challenge people to grow and develop beyond their boundaries. All great people are going to want to do this and if you don’t provide this, they will often seek growth elsewhere.
I Am Inspired By | My role models are all around me. I believe everyone is better than me at something and when I want to improve in a particular area, I search for someone who has those traits and abilities. It is difficult to name all the people who have inspired me in my life. At the moment, I admire Elon Musk for his big thinking and ability to execute.
The Legacy I Would Like To Leave | I tend to focus a lot on what I am doing and trying to achieve right now, so I don’t think much about legacy. However, I would be very happy if I knew that I had inspired people to improve themselves, either through my actions, beliefs or what I have created.