For many individuals, particularly under the age of 25, earning a career as a professional poker player seems incredibly appealing. For players with the ideal set of skills, a successful professional poker career typically doesn’t come with the boredom of a 9-to-5 existence — a lifestyle that many of us can only dream of. And let’s not forget the opportunity for international travel.
However, the world of professional poker is not for the faint of heart, and even the most experienced players may take a break from the game at one point or another to explore other career options.
Whether you’re finding that your poker skills require some perfecting or that you want to pursue something different, there are several alternative career options you may want to consider that could benefit your career within the poker industry. Let’s take a look at a few:
Dream Jobs for Poker Fans
Freelance Poker Writer
If you consider yourself to be talented with words and have interesting poker stories or strategies to share, think about applying to become a writer in the poker industry. There are a variety of sites today that are dedicated to covering the latest poker tournaments and they are always looking for contributors. In many cases, they are willing to pay for articles, press releases, photography, and more.
And, best of all, you don’t necessarily need a journalism or creative writing degree to get started.
Being able to introduce yourself as a professional writer can open many new doors, and since the explosion of online poker in the early 2000s, there is a growing demand for competent writers who can cover the industry. If you enjoy journalism and media, writing about the poker industry may be the ideal option for you to showcase your creative talent and reach a wide audience as a professional author. There are many online sites to choose from. Or you could apply at one of the online poker sites themselves, as the major players in the industry have their own blogs and traveling staff who cover live tournaments.
PokerStars is the perfect example; as an industry leader, the company has always strived to keep up with the latest trends to provide its players with the best experience possible, and have recently expanded their game options. As a highly-engaged workplace that proactively listens to its employees and act on their feedback, it’s no surprise that PokerStars has been declared as one of the best places to work by The Great Place to Work Institute for the third year in a row.
While the pen may be mightier than the sword, if you’re the kind of person who enjoys being where the action is, you may find it difficult to stay away from the tables. If this sounds like you, consider becoming a poker dealer. As someone who is already familiar with the industry, lingo, and etiquette that is required around the tables, being a poker dealer can be the ideal way to get your foot in the door to land better gigs. In fact, many professional players in the industry start their career as poker dealers and use their earnings to help jumpstart their bankrolls.
While being a poker dealer may not be considered the most glamorous job in a casino, it’s a great way to gain experience and hone your own skills as a player. However, if you’re more of an introvert and would prefer to avoid a casino environment, there may be positions available where you can apply to be a video poker dealer. In this format, you would deal cards to players who connected through web cams to the online poker room. These job opportunities can easily be found by searching online on sites like Craigslist, SnagAJob, and nearly any other job search engine.
Of course, being a poker dealer requires a much more intimate knowledge of casino games and involves more than dealing cards to players and counting chips. Regardless of the environment you’re working in, customer service and communication services are crucial to have in order to guarantee that each game runs smoothly.
Playing poker can be a very lucrative profession; but it can also be a fickle one where you lose all of your money fast. If you find a way to be involved in the game you love without being a player, it may be your best road to a successful career doing what you enjoy.