My recent post about why Mark Cuban is wrong to advise students NOT to pursue careers in sports business has garnered some great feedback (and retweets – thanks!).

Presented below is the logical follow up advice, answering the question “how does a student find job opportunities in sports?”.

Based on my observations of students trying to enter the sports business landscape, there are four specific behaviors that can help students find jobs in sports:

Tip One – Know Somebody.  Of course, this idea holds limited appeal for most students.  After all, if they knew somebody, they would not be asking me – a professor – how to get a job in sports.

But in fact, many do have a connection.  A parent or friend who knows someone working for a team, for example.  With a little effort almost every student I talk to comes up with one connection to someone working in sports.  And likely they know more.

Tell EVERYONE you know that you are looking to work in sports.  Contact your high school coaches.  Anyone you know who is tangentially related to sports should know you are looking to work in the industry.  And even people you don’t know are connected to sports may know someone who can help you find an opening!

Tip Two – Volunteer or Be an Intern.  Spreading the word that you want to work in sports is good. But even better is WORKING in sports while looking for job opportunities in sports.

This approach has two big advantages. First, one way to be different from all the other applicants is have experience.  An Internship or Volunteer position (preferably multiple) signals that you are behaviorally committed to pursuing a sports career – not just talking/dreaming about it.

Second, once you have volunteered or interned you will start to know other people who work in sports.  Now reread Tip One!

Tip Three – Create an Online Brand Presence The starting point for most students is to get a LinkedIn profile.  The site allows people (and students are people!) to quickly create an online profile.  For students who have used Facebook for years, this process is easy and intuitive.  Increasingly HR professionals are using LinkedIn as part of their hiring process, so being visible in this space is important.

Once your profile is complete, start joining LinkedIn Groups. Search the word “sports” and you’ll be pleasantly surprised how many career oriented sports Groups there are.  Join a few and start to follow the conversations about the industry and you will become more knowledgeable about the sports job landscape.

Tip Four – Visit teamworkonline.com This site is the primary resource for investigating the jobs available with sports teams and leagues.  Spend time familiarizing yourself with the types of jobs available, experience required and locations of potential jobs.  There is an easy way to sign up for email updates on the site, to keep you current on emerging opportunities.

In the headline and introduction to this post, I used the word “find” three times. The intention of the tips presented here is to help you find job opportunities.

Follow up posts about how to land your sports job, as well as more advice on how to further leverage the Tips presented here will be coming soon!

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