Jobs for Poker Enthusiasts
Jobs for Poker Enthusiasts
Jobs for Poker Enthusiasts

Jobs for Poker Enthusiasts

Should you go pro? It’s a question that many poker fans ask themselves when they find themselves playing poker a lot. When you start to develop your skills and can win a lot of games against many other types of players, you may start winning enough money at high-stakes games to pay for rent and other necessities. For a lucky few players, their celebrity status and huge wins at famous poker events such as the World Poker Tour to earn them plenty of fame and money. Before you quit your day job, though, you should know that the percentage of poker players who get to this stage is minuscule. Plus, many poker players play for many, many years before even having a chance to win the sort of money that lets them retire early.

If you love poker, though, there are many types of jobs that you can take that will help you develop your knowledge and skill while giving you the satisfaction of doing something you love. Consider jobs such as:

•Dealer at a Casino. A poker dealer at a casino gets to observe and deal at thousands of poker games. Many casino dealers also enjoy spending time with other poker players and taking part in casino poker play - all while getting paid for it. To become a dealer at a casino, you generally need excellent card dealing skills, a professional demeanor, and great people skills. Dealers at casinos need to deal with all sorts of players on a regular basis and represent the casino while doing so, which makes casinos very selective about who they hire to preside over their poker rooms and tables. Although casinos have special security staff, casino dealers are often the first defense against problems, so they are expected to be sharp-eyed and people-savvy enough to clam down customers as needed. If you want to be a dealer at a casino, it often helps if you have extensive experience with cards and can play more than one game so that you can deal at more than one type of card table. Most casinos will also run some type of background check to make sure that a dealer can be trusted with chips and with the responsibilities of the job.

To get a job at a casino, you can apply directly with casinos in your area. Many casinos have their own web sites with contact and employment information. It is best if you live in an area where there are many casinos to choose from, but with new casinos opening up all across the country, casino jobs are becoming easier to get even if you do not live in Las Vegas.

•Shill player. A shill player at a casino is paid by the casino to play poker with house money. These players are hired by casinos to fill out places at card tables and to ensure that the house (or casino wins some of its money back. To be a shill player, you need excellent poker skills. After all, the casino does not want players to lose their money. To get a job as a shill player, you can apply at your local casino.

•Prop player. A prop player is one that is paid by a casino to play there but plays with their own money. In some cases, prop players are celebrities or professional players who add prestige or glamor to a casino. In other cases, they are ordinary (but usually very good) card players who fill out the card tables and give other players a challenge. To be a prop player, you need great poker skills and knowledge of as many casino and card games as possible. To get a job as a prop player, you can apply at your local casino.

•Instructor. An instructor has the fun of teaching enthusiastic newcomers to the game all about poker. In doing so, poker teachers or instructors spend hours going over the rules of various games and even playing games with students. To become an instructor, you often need good poker qualifications and great game skills. Most schools and individual students want to hire professional poker players or people who have written a lot about poker and know the subject very well. Since students will likely want to learn a number of games, it is best if you can play many variations of poker well. People skills and teaching skills are also key to dealing with all sorts of students and helping players of all kinds succeed in the game. It is not enough that you understand the game - you need to be able to show others how to play it as well.

To get a job as a poker teacher or instructor, you can contact local community colleges and community centers offering classes in your area. Many have students interested in taking poker classes and are happy to add such a class to their schedule. You can also choose to teach individual students yourself by advertising your availability as an instructor.

•Jobs at Poker Publications. Poker magazines, newsletters, and poker books need talented writers, poker fans, photographers, editors, production assistants, and other professionals. More books and magazines are being published about poker today than every before and if you have a flair for writing, production, or art, one of these publications can be a great way to learn about poker while getting paid.

To work at a poker publication, you often need the same qualifications as any other professional at any other publication. Some experience in a newspaper, magazine or book publisher-plus excellent writing, communication, editing, and other skills can usually get you an entry-level job which can be the start of your road to success.

Most poker publications today have web pages. You can easily find employment information for major poker magazines online. For smaller publications, you can send in your resume and cover letter directly to the editor or HR department.

•Jobs at Professional Poker Associations and Tours. Companies such as WPT Enterprises hire all sorts of workers, from office staff to television professionals to bring poker to viewers and fans worldwide. There are literally thousands of jobs to choose from at professional poker organizations and the qualifications for each job differ. Chances are good that most determined workers who love poker can get some job with a professional organization sooner or later. Simply contact the major poker organizations for information about employment to get their latest ob openings.

•Poker retailers. Companies that sell poker chips and accessories are often eager to have experienced poker players sell their wares. When customers come into gaming stores, they often want an experienced poker player to explain why one line of products is considered better than another. Working at poker retailers, you often have the chance to speak to other poker fans and you will get to see all the latest poker gadgets and products that emerge on the market. To qualify to work at a poker retailer, you often need great people skills and a basic knowledge of poker. Applying is often as simple as sending a retailer your resume and cover letter.

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Date Added: 2005-10-15

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