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How An EMBA In Lisbon Helped Advance My International Career At Google To The Next Level

For eight years, Vishesh Goyal had been growing his career at Google. Here are the career moves he made along the way—including embarking on an Executive MBA


Fri Jun 2 2023

Having started his career at Google in his home country of India eight years ago, Vishesh Goyal has been on an upward journey ever since. Across this period, he expanded his expertise and experience in international markets across the world.  

With a background in engineering, Vishesh was well placed for a career in tech, launching his career as an associate strategist with one of the biggest tech companies globally.

After a couple of years, Vishesh then moved to Portugal to start a new role in the Google Ads team. However, moving to another country wasn’t the only career change Vishesh has made. 

In his new home of Portugal, he decided to join the Lisbon MBA Executive program and has since progressed even further in his career at Google. 

Embarking on an EMBA degree as my next career move 

A career at Google is the dream for many business school grads.

“I really wanted to boost my career into a more managerial and senior role at Google, which is why I joined the Lisbon MBA,” says Vishesh. 

Depending on their experience and preference, business students can choose to study for a 12-month International MBA or 22-month Executive MBA (EMBA) program with Católica-Lisbon and Nova School of Business and Economics (Nova SBE). Both programs are formed in partnership with MIT Sloan School of Management. 

With over five years of work experience under his belt, Vishesh studied the Executive MBA program part-time alongside his role at Google. By applying the skills he was learning to his career, he was able to progress even further while studying for an MBA.

He now leads digital maturity for Google Portugal, which involves working with third party partners and large clients to grow their digital expertise and business strategy. 

“What the Executive MBA has given me is a holistic view on how to look at a client’s business from a strategic perspective and how to understand the different areas of development that a business needs to focus on across finance and marketing,” he says.  

As part of The Lisbon MBA Executive action learning component, students take part in a business project where they strategize with a real company on how to successfully expand internationally or launch new products and services. 

“In order to be a great consultant, you need to understand your client’s business objectives, what their needs are, what their strategy is at a holistic level—all these skills I obtained from The Lisbon MBA Executive degree,” says Vishesh. 

In his former role at Google, Vishesh says he had to work harder to understand his clients’ needs. Now, he has a more intuitive understanding of business so he can focus on forming stronger relationships and working more effectively. 

Learning the skills to work across global markets in a career at Google

As Vishesh has advanced his career, his role has also become more internationally focused. As part of the Google Ads team, Vishesh works with his clients to help them sell their products and grow their business in new markets across the world. 

It’s important that he’s in tune with global market trends and the competitive landscape in his clients’ target countries so he can best help them make effective business decisions. 

The Lisbon MBA Executive program includes a course in Markets and Competition which, for Vishesh, directly translated into his role. 

“I have a client who markets in over 50 countries, and our job is to understand the different nuances of all these markets, so a lot of my learnings came directly from this course,” he says. 

Students on both The Lisbon MBA Executive and International MBA programs travel to MIT Sloan—a leading business school in the US—for an immersive learning experience. 

Executive MBA students take part in a one-week immersion whereas International MBA students spend a month attending classes at MIT. 

Students get the chance to learn from top professors in cutting-edge courses focused on innovation and entrepreneurship, including Managing Technological Innovation, Alphanomics: The Informational Underpinning of Markets Efficiency, and Digital Business Models. 

In keeping with MIT Sloan's "mens et manus"—mind and hand—motto, students also take part in company visits and hands-on learning to solve complex business problems and make an impact. 

“The MIT immersion experience was phenomenal. Getting international exposure from one of the best business schools in the world is second to none,” says Vishesh. 

The Lisbon MBA graduates can also tap into the MIT Sloan alumni network.

To expand their international horizons even further, students on The Lisbon MBA Executive program can also participate in exchange programs with other top MBAs around the world. These include the University of St. Gallen, Esade, and the University of San Diego, among others. 

Experiences such as these mean that The Lisbon MBA Católica|Nova ranks number one in Portugal and two in the world for international experience, according to the Financial Times Global MBA ranking 2023.

The secret to success in an international career at Google

An international career is hugely exciting and rewarding but can also be very challenging. 

Alongside a strong business skill set, you’ll also have to focus on your personal development and leadership skills. 

“To be successful in an international career, I think the most important thing is empathy and having the openness and mindset to understand both the people you’re working with and the nuances of the markets you’re in,” says Vishesh. 

During the Lisbon MBA Executive program, Vishesh focused on building relationships with his cohort and developing his own values as a business leader. 

“I wanted to join The Lisbon MBA to get out of my tech bubble. Coming into the program, I met amazing individuals across healthcare, real estate, and finance, as well as working alongside this diverse range of professional backgrounds has taught me how to look at a problem from different angles,” he says. 

Throughout The Lisbon MBA, students also focus closely on their leadership development. In the Executive MBA, the focused Leadership Stream explores how to lead in an ever-changing business environment. 

This is one of the main components of the Executive MBA program that has helped Vishesh get to where he is today. It encouraged him to embrace agile ways of working and rethink his role as a leader in today's complex business world and society, he says. 

“I think people confuse managing with leading. In today’s day and age, leading means giving direction, creating vision, and uplifting the person you are leading,” he says.