How Do You Become A Sports Agent
If you are sitting at home watching "Jerry Maguire" and thinking that lifestyle would be perfect, you may wonder "how do you become a sports agent?" The answers—picking a sport, getting a degree, gaining your certification and finding clients, is much easier said than done. Watching sports agents on television and in movies helps, but won't get your foot in the door to the profession.
- Before you embark on the highly exciting career, make sure it's right for you. Becoming a sports agent means time away from home and long hours with possibly very little pay to start. Less than five percent of registered agents make more than $100,000 a year and more than half of the agents registered with the National Football League don't have any clients at all. Carefully analyze this risk before committing to becoming a sports agent.
- If you're up to the challenge, pick a sport that's right for you. Select a sport you know, be it football, basketball, baseball, hockey or others.
- You'll need a formal education, with a four-year degree generally required for becoming a sports agent. Many colleges offer sports management programs, but other degrees, such as those in business, marketing, law and communications, will also work just fine. If you already have a degree, but looking for supplemental education, you can take specialized classes offered at many sports management firms.
- Get certified in the league in which you wish to work as a sports agent. The studying does not stop there, as getting certified requires knowing all the details about their respective policies. You must know the league rules, collective bargaining agreement and how you fit into those areas, among other things, as you will be tested on them as part of the sports agent certification.
- Find a job as a sports agent. Once you pass the certification test, which is pricey (over $1,600 for the NFL), join a management firm or start a firm of your own and begin signing clients. As you gain experience, you can expand your clientele as well, signing more and more top athletes.
Keep in mind that the lifestyle is not as rosy as it looks on television, with many agents going for a year or more before signing their first client. But with a good education, a lot of perseverance and good networking skills, you too can become the next top sports agent.