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Study abroad : Career Prospects

Where my degree at LSE took me: Eduardo Lazzaroto

Brazilian student Eduardo tells us how studying abroad helped he land his dream job as Head of Sales in a London software development company

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Eduardo Lazzarotto studied for six months at the University of Beijing during his undergraduate degree in Brazil. He then did a Masters at LSE in the UK and is now Head of Sales at a major software development company in London, managing a team of salespeople based all over the world. He credits his time studying abroad for equipping him with the skills he uses in his day-to-day job. We spoke to Eduardo to find out more about his study experience and how he landed his dream job travelling the world!


Where did your study abroad journey begin?
I had a scholarship to study at Beijing University during my undergraduate studies for six months. It was a sustainability course which was part of my degree in International Business in Brazil. The best part was actually being outside of my comfort zone. It was such a big shock and no one spoke English. It was an intense but interesting experience. It taught me a lot about my own limits and abilities and it was a great learning curve.


Eduardo worked part-time while studying at LSE


While I was doing my undergrad I worked for five years doing various things and then joined a graduate programme. It was a great experience but I started thinking I should do something else like a Masters. I had two options, either America or the UK because of the prestigious universities there. As I had a European passport I thought the UK would be the best option because I would be able to work while studying.


I got an offer from both LSE and Warwick. I chose LSE in the end because it’s in London which is multicultural and that was a very appealing factor for me. I had a scholarship from my company back in Brazil. They paid my fees but I had to pay my living costs. I didn’t ask my parents for any support and covered it all myself. It was very challenging particularly at the beginning. For the first few months I worked as a tutor in Portuguese, Chemistry, Physics and Biology, which was very interesting. I also got a job as a part-time consultant to a railway company that wanted to export to Brazil. 


Studying in China opened Eduardo's eyes to new ways of doing business

How does your study abroad experience help you in your job?
In my day-to-day job I head up the sales team. I have one guy in Brazil, one in Hong Kong, one in mainland China, one in Japan, one in Spain and then four or five here in the UK. All of them apart from one British person are from other parts of the world. I start my day speaking to someone in Hong Kong, finish my speaking to someone in Brazil or in America. It wouldn’t be possible if I didn’t have my experience studying abroad where I formalised my communication skills. Those experiences were fundamental to help me be able to do my job now. Being exposed to all these different cultures and ways of doing things help you become a better person and member of a team.


Would you recommend studying abroad?
I would absolutely recommend this kind of experience. The more different the country is to your original culture, the more it opens your mind to opportunities and things you can achieve and how you can see the world. Studying abroad opened my mind a lot. For getting business, which is what I do now, it makes me open to new ways of doing deals. It’s quite useful in your career for anyone that wants to work in importing and exporting. I think it should be mandatory to go and live in a different culture and see how people behave.


Tell me about your job
I’m head of sales of a software development company. What we do is we have one bespoke software production modelling simulation, so it’s basically the software that the London Underground and other transport networks around the globe have like New York Metro or Hong Kong Metro. They use it to simulate how people move inside of the station. So for instance here in London when you see a sign saying 'keep left', actually that sign was well thought out and there is a software behind why people will react to that and all other parts of that infrastructure.



Eduardo gets to travel all over the world in his current job. Here he is in Australia!

What do you enjoy most about your job?
I love travelling that’s the thing I like most in my life. If I’m not travelling for work I’m travelling for fun. On the weekend I go all over Europe. I just got back from a trip to the Middle East and I’m flying to Malaysia and Australia this week. I also get to visit Latin America a lot. I spend probably about three to four months in the UK and the rest of it travelling around.


What’s your long-term career plan?
I always wanted to go back to Brazil and build a company. It’s a developing country so there are many things that need to be done to help people in various areas and I see that as my obligation to go back and help. That’s a medium to long-term plan. In many companies that I’ve worked at in the UK, working with Brazil, even indirectly, was one of the conditions. It’s a way of still being connected.


My plan is to start a company that makes the bridge between the UK and Brazil and helps Brazilian companies to set up here and vice versa. I think there’s still a big barrier between many countries. There’s massive opportunities for integration between Brazil and the UK, so closing that gap is a good both for business but also to help both countries to develop their potential.


What’s your advice to international students who want to follow in your footsteps?
The best advice that I wish someone had told me when I was first starting out was just don’t be afraid, take all the risks. If you’re young, there’s no risk at all. Even if it doesn’t work you can just go back and start again. I’m a hundred per cent sure that many people don’t do it because they are afraid and that’s the only reason why they don’t do it. Just go for it, just do it while you’re still young!


Eduardo’s top tips for career success

  • Work during your studies if possible (anything counts, paid or unpaid volunteer work)
  • ‘Live and breathe’ the city where you are studying, it is a major part of the experience
  • Focus your studies on the parts/subjects you really enjoy and don't worry too much with grades
  • Don't be afraid of trying new things and be open for new cultures and experiences
  • Be confident!

Follow Eduardo and all his exciting travels on Instagram!

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