André Miniussi is smiling into the camera in an office setting.
André Miniussi. Image: Aon

Why this compliance associate moved from São Paulo to Dublin

29 Jul 2020

Aon’s André Miniussi discusses why he decided to move to Ireland from Brazil, and how he has adapted to working in Dublin.

Four years ago, André Miniussi decided to make the move to Ireland from his home of São Paulo, Brazil. Now he is his living in Dublin and has spent the last two years working as a senior risk and compliance associate in Aon.

Here, he talks about making the decision to move and his experiences of starting a new life in another country.

‘My life in Ireland helps me to pursue opportunities to continue to grow my chosen career’

Where are you from and what’s it like there?

I’m from São Paulo, Brazil. The city is a very fast and busy environment as one of the largest cities in the world, where many global large companies are located.

It’s a perfect city to enjoy gastronomy, culture and have fun. However, a place like this comes with a lot of challenges, such as environmental and social issues.

What prompted your decision to move here?

Back in 2015, I had a feeling that I was missing something in my life and this ‘something’ was an international experience.

By that year I made an executive decision about my life and decided it was time for a big change. After a lot of research and planning, Dublin was my final decision.

How would you describe your working environment?

Our work environment is very inclusive where everyone is welcomed, respected and given a chance to speak. This is a culture driven from the top down, where our leadership is open to receive you and cares about everyone in the organisation.

I highlight this point as it is not everywhere you will find a work environment like this.

What do you like most about your job?

I’ve been on this career path since 2008, when I started working as an intern in compliance. Rather than one, I would like to call out three aspects that fuel my passion for this career.

First is the fast learning curve. You’re exposed to senior leadership from the beginning and you need to learn about all the different departments of the company to best perform your job. This is an attribute that only a few careers will provide.

Secondly, the senior-level exposure mentioned previously develops a combination of unique skills which will leverage your value in the market.

And the third aspect of the job that I like most is what I believe to be the opportunity to influence the organisation and people for a more sustainable and ethical business and society.

Was it difficult to adjust to living and working in Ireland?

Thanks to the internet, a lot of the difficulties we face when moving abroad is mitigated due to the amount of information and videos that you can find online about Ireland.

Though, it’s still challenging when you land in a new country. You don’t have family or old friends around. You don’t have the cultural background to understand some slang or jokes.

The legal, health and political systems are different. The language is not your mother tongue and the accents are diverse from what you were used to. You need a visa to stay and work.

What surprised you about moving to Ireland, if anything?

I arrived in Ireland as a student and I was surprised how the purchasing power was different from my home town. With the minimum wage, you have easy access to all the essentials (excluding rent, of course), which is a very distant reality from other countries, including Brazil, where with the minimum salary you can barely buy food and some other essentials.

How does your working life help to make you feel at home here?

When I was initially here as a student, I had some experiences such as sharing the bedroom with another student, meeting a lot of people that only come here for a short period to study English and strictly controlling my budget.

At the end of student life and upon fully entering the workforce in Ireland, things began to return to a life I was more used to in Brazil. My life now here in Ireland helps me to meet more permanent residents and locals alike, to afford a better standard of living and also to pursue opportunities to continue to grow my chosen career.

What do you like most about your adopted home?

Safety, multicultural connections and good quality of living are the most important things for me.

Lisa Ardill
By Lisa Ardill

Lisa Ardill joined Silicon Republic as senior careers reporter in July 2019. She has a BA in neuroscience and a master’s degree in science communication. She is also a semi-published poet and a big fan of doggos. Lisa briefly served as Careers Editor at Silicon Republic before leaving the company in June 2021.

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