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How I Found a Job as a Project Manager in Portugal from Nigeria

For years, I dreamed of living and working abroad. Portugal, with its beautiful landscapes, rich culture, and warm climate, always seemed like the perfect destination. But as a project manager living in Nigeria, it felt like a distant dream. Little did I know that with determination, the right strategies, and a bit of luck, I would soon be packing my bags for Lisbon. Here’s my journey of how I found a project manager job in Portugal from Nigeria.

Chapter 1: The Dream Begins

Table of Contents

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My fascination with Portugal began during a vacation there two years ago. The vibrant cities, friendly people, and delicious cuisine left a lasting impression on me. I returned to Nigeria with a renewed sense of purpose and a goal: to find a job in Portugal.

Back in Nigeria, I was working as a project manager in a medium-sized tech company. The job was stable, and I was good at it, but the idea of moving to Portugal kept growing stronger. I decided to start researching how I could make this dream a reality.

Chapter 2: Research and Planning

The first step was understanding the job market in Portugal. I began by searching for project management jobs on various international job boards like LinkedIn, Indeed, and Glassdoor. I also explored Portuguese job sites such as Expresso Emprego and Net-Empregos. This gave me a sense of the demand for project managers and the types of companies hiring.

I discovered that Portugal was home to many tech startups and multinational companies, especially in Lisbon and Porto. The demand for skilled project managers was relatively high, particularly those with experience in IT and technology. This was encouraging news.

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Chapter 3: Building a Strong Application

I realized that to stand out in the competitive job market, I needed a strong application. I updated my resume to highlight my project management experience, particularly my skills in leading teams, managing budgets, and delivering projects on time. I also emphasized my experience with international projects and my ability to work in diverse environments.

Next, I worked on my cover letter. I tailored each cover letter to the specific job I was applying for, making sure to mention why I was interested in the position and how my skills and experiences made me a perfect fit for the role. I also highlighted my passion for Portugal and my desire to contribute to the company’s success.

Chapter 4: Networking

One of the most effective strategies in my job search was networking. I joined various LinkedIn groups related to project management and the Portuguese job market. I connected with professionals working in Portugal and engaged in conversations, asking for advice and tips on finding a job there.

I also reached out to my existing network to see if anyone had contacts in Portugal. Surprisingly, a former colleague introduced me to a friend working in a tech company in Lisbon. This connection proved invaluable as they provided insights into the job market and even referred me to a few job openings.

Chapter 5: Applying for Jobs

With a polished resume, tailored cover letters, and valuable connections, I started applying for jobs. Each day, I dedicated a few hours to searching for job postings, customizing my applications, and submitting them. I applied to a wide range of companies, from small startups to large multinational corporations.

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The application process was challenging. I faced numerous rejections and often heard nothing back. But I remained persistent and kept improving my application materials based on the feedback I received. I also continued networking, attending virtual job fairs, and connecting with more professionals in Portugal.

Chapter 6: The Interview Process

After several weeks of applying, I finally received an interview invitation from a tech startup in Lisbon. They were looking for a project manager to lead a new software development project. I was thrilled and nervous at the same time.

The interview process consisted of multiple rounds. The first round was a video call with the HR manager, where we discussed my background, experience, and why I wanted to move to Portugal. I emphasized my passion for the country, my relevant skills, and my willingness to relocate.

The second round was a technical interview with the project team. They asked detailed questions about my project management experience, including how I handled specific challenges, managed team conflicts, and ensured project success. I shared examples from my previous job and demonstrated my problem-solving abilities.

The interview process consisted of multiple rounds. The first round was a video call with the HR manager, where we discussed my background, experience, and why I wanted to move to Portugal. I emphasized my passion for the country, my relevant skills, and my willingness to relocate.

The second round was a technical interview with the project team. They asked detailed questions about my project management experience, including how I handled specific challenges, managed team conflicts, and ensured project success. I shared examples from my previous job and demonstrated my problem-solving abilities.

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Chapter 7: Receiving the Job Offer

A few days after the final interview, I received an email from the HR manager with the subject line “Congratulations!” I was thrilled to open the email and find out that I had been offered the position of Project Manager. They were impressed with my experience and certifications, and they appreciated my proactive approach and enthusiasm for the role.

The offer included a competitive salary, relocation assistance, and support with the visa process. I couldn’t believe that my dream of working in Portugal was finally coming true.

Chapter 8: Preparing for the Move

With the job offer in hand, I began preparing for the move to Portugal. Here’s what I did:

  1. Visa Application: The company’s HR team guided me through the visa application process. I gathered all necessary documents, including my job offer letter, proof of qualifications, and financial statements.
  2. Finding Accommodation: I started looking for a place to live in Lisbon. I researched neighborhoods, rental prices, and contacted real estate agents to help me find a suitable apartment.
  3. Travel Arrangements: I booked my flight to Lisbon and made arrangements for temporary accommodation until I could move into my new apartment.
  4. Saying Goodbye: I spent time with family and friends, sharing the exciting news and saying my goodbyes. It was bittersweet, but everyone was supportive of my new adventure.

Chapter 9: Settling in Lisbon

Arriving in Lisbon was a dream come true. The city’s charm, friendly people, and vibrant atmosphere made me feel welcome from the start. The company’s relocation assistance helped me settle in quickly. They provided resources for finding accommodation, opening a bank account, and navigating the city.

Chapter 10: Starting the Job

My first day at work was both exciting and nerve-wracking. The team was incredibly welcoming, and I quickly adapted to the company’s work culture. The projects were challenging but rewarding, and I enjoyed collaborating with my new colleagues.

I continued to learn and grow in my role, leveraging my experience and certifications to drive successful project outcomes.

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