Olivier de La Guéronnière
Can you introduce yourself in a few words? Your age, your family situation and the country you live in?
My name is Olivier de La Guéronnière, I’m 34 years old, and I’m the General Secretary of Argos Wityu. I originally am a Frenchman, and have been enjoying the cosmopolitan nature of my adopted country, Luxembourg, for more than 10 years. On a personal side, I am a happy husband and father.
Tell us about your career and how you joined Argos.
I started my career in the corporate advisory world, working for an independent Luxembourg-based tax advisory firm. After nearly a decade of serving a highly diverse range of sophisticated clients, I decided to move out of the advisory world and get more hands-on experience in private equity. This is when I came across the open position at Argos Wityu.
Is this the path you thought you would take when you started your studies?
Absolutely not! I was planning to be a litigation lawyer or a judge in France.
The world of private equity has changed a lot in recent years. What is your definition of PE? How do you see it?
Bringing technical, financial and mentoring support to company owners in order to help their business grow, in return for a shared capital gain at exit. It’s not only a matter of writing cheques – a lot of people can do that – it’s a people business first!
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
Always learning – but on the ground, not from books. Being confronted with new situations. Talking to new people from any background. I see this as the best way to avoid getting stuck in a rut – to continue to learn and move forward.
What encounter - or moment - stands out in your time at Argos?
Visiting the other Argos Wityu offices. This is when I truly got to know people’s mentalities, their methods, the general atmosphere and the firm’s overarching vision. All this can be difficult to pick up through e-mail or during Teams meetings.
Some say we are the average of the people we meet. What do you think?
I wouldn’t say that we are the average of the people we meet, as this would mean a very passive learning state by mere mimic. I rather think it’s important to listen to everyone, but then make up your own mind – and always be ready to adapt or change views as you keep meeting new people with new convictions. As to who they are, I would say anyone I’ve spoken to!
Is there a person you admire, who inspires you on a daily basis (e.g. a writer, artist, politician, etc.)?
I am impressed by people who believe in themselves and their objectives to the point of going against all odds – yet who succeed.
How do you find balance in your life as a whole?
This is a constant work in progress! I think I still have room for improvement here, but as a multitask person, I appreciate being able to have blurry borders between work and life – leaving earlier on some working days and working some weekends for instance. This way I am always quite focused on what I’m doing!
Outside of your job, what are your passions or commitments?
Finding and investing in early-stage ESG-driven startups (true story!), motorbiking (freedom!), and sharing drinks with friends and loved ones (good times!).
“It’s not only a matter of writing cheques – a lot of people can do that – it’s a people business first!”
How do you see yourself in 10 years?
Retired! More seriously, it’s quite hard to project over such a long period of time. We’ll see how life goes!
Do you have a special place that reflects who you are, that inspires you and contributes to your balance?
Our family house with my wife and brothers.
In another life, you would be... ?
Not enough lifetimes for everything I’d like to be or do! The best is probably to fit in a bit of everything we want to be in the only life we are blessed with.
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