If you want a career in sports, landing a job is not easy. The competition of athletics is matched by the competitive market for sports jobs and internships. 2021 searches have their own considerations.
There is a spectrum of job opportunities available in the sports industry. Non-athletes can get jobs in sports management, sports marketing, sports media, sports writing, and other subfields of the industry. Specific example jobs include marketing managers, statisticians, general managers, public relations specialists, event planners, exercise physiologists, agents, scouts, commentators, and journalists.
Below, we explain how to develop sports careers in the new year. We provide advice from prominent sports pros and focus on interviewing tips. Finally, if you want to land sports internships, 2021 opportunities require a conscientious approach.
How To Score Sports Media & Sports Management Jobs In 2021
The nuts and bolts are to get a degree in a relevant field and apply for internships (see below). To turbo-charge your efforts, though, utilize the advice from power-players. Gear up for your 2021 sports job by:
- practicing patience,
- gathering information,
- considering connections,
- readying yourself to accept risk, and
- avoiding overthought
In this way, you can set yourself up to land sports media and sports management jobs.
While you need to push to get where you want to be, think long-term, advises prominent sports reporter Michael Smith. You can drive yourself toward unnecessary anxiety if you focus on short-term gains. Sports careers often do not unfold as rapidly as go-getters would prefer. Release the stress. Get away from always striving for the next stage. It is all right to live in the moment. Part of progress is just staying on the path and trusting the process.
Be informed and inquisitive.
You want the person sitting across from you in a job interview to feel excited. To engage them, consider how to differentiate yourself professionally, says MLB.com VP of Statistics Cory Schwartz. You will also enhance a recruiter’s impression by knowing both about them and the organization (see the interviewing section below). Plus, think of strong questions to ask about the organization and market.
It is not just about you but about who you know, says Houston Astros’ sideline reporter and AT&T SportsNet Southwest anchor Julia Morales. You cannot know people unless you meet them. It is 100 percent free and can be pivotal to finding new opportunities. For that reason, be brave and approach star players and on-air talent. Introduce yourself to executives who could change your life.
Morales’ comments deserve special attention in 2021. COVID-19 has driven business online. Beef up your social media and look for networking opportunities through the Web. (See the internships section below for more ideas.)
It is not wise to be risk-averse, stresses College Football Playoff COO, Michael Kelly. Boldness can reveal the value of opportunities that first may seem unreasonable. Should you take a job that is listed as “temporary”? Is it wise to accept a position that comes with a pay cut? Can you justify packing up your bags and moving across the country for sports careers? Yes, yes, and yes – as long as the risk is outweighed by the potential value of the experience.
Similarly, it is easy to overthink sports careers, according to NFL reporter Jim Trotter. It is better to just be yourself and trust your gut.
How To Nail Interviews For Sports Jobs
Interview preparation is mandatory for those who want to succeed in sports careers. Three critical steps in this preparation are the following:
- Understand the team’s evolution. Read up on the organization’s history and current situation. Be intimately familiar with where they have been and where they are today. Who have been their most successful athletes, managers, and coaches? What awards and championships have they collected? Also, know about any recent news and developments at the team. Study the local market. Pore over information about the league as well.
- Run with the numbers. Math is integral to sports. Win-loss percentage, goal differential, and pass completion percentage are other examples that are highly relevant to sports careers.
- Showcasing your familiarity with a team’s history and statistics is compelling. However, you can stand out with more extensive knowledge. Make it clear that you have a broad comprehension of the sports industry that goes beyond baseball, basketball, football, and hockey. Learning about other areas of sports – such as golf, soccer, tennis, and the full gamut of Olympics sports – will also expand your possibilities.
Sports Management Internships: Spring 2021 Gameplan
For those interested in sports internships, spring 2021 is a challenging time. However, you can get started now obtaining sports internships: 2021 is about online presence. Again, given the pandemic, the following tactics are particularly important when preparing for internships:
- Build a web portfolio.
- Generally, improve your social media.
- Clean up and add keywords to your LinkedIn profile. Actively use your account.
- Meet people through Eventbrite and Meetup gatherings.
Beyond that 2021 emphasis on your Internet presence, standard sports internship preparation recommendations hold true:
Whether in-person or virtual, networking opportunities can be the difference between landing a job and being overlooked. Conferences are a great way to connect. If you attend online, collect whatever names or contact information you can. To follow up, you could simply call professionals you want to know. Alternatively, email and ask to schedule a short phone call.
- Administrative Assistant, Women's Basketball
Sports Services - West Region
- Administrative Assistant of Athletics
Sports Services - Southeast Region
- Senior Associate AD, Compliance and Administration, Department of Athletics
Sports Services - Southeast Region
- Temporary Part-Time Health Administrator
Administration/Management - International
Find and apply for internships.
Networking is not the only way to find an internship, though. You can also search for internships. Research the position or area of sports if you are unfamiliar with either. Carefully craft your application to address specific responsibilities and tasks.
Follow an existing playbook.
What can other people’s stories tell you about how to develop your own? Look at the biographies of people who are successful in the part of the sports industry that most interests you. Consider how to advance your career in a similar way.
Be an early bird.
Often internships last for one season of the year. It is wise to apply well in advance. For sports media and sports management internships, summer 2021 efforts are already underway.
Meeting The Right People
Whether you are interested in sports jobs or sports internships, 2021 could be your year. It is all about getting in front of people, though, so you can demonstrate your knowledge and passion. At JobsInSports.com, we offer those connections through our network of top sports industry professionals. Join our network today to discover – and land – your dream sports job!