Sports management is a field that focuses on the business attributes of sports, and many in this industry have obtained a sports management degree. Individuals working in this industry are concerned with the planning, organizing, managing, and budgeting aspects of a department or organization whose main purpose is related to sports or physical activities.


Sports management professionals handle the behind the scenes features, such as finance, marketing, leadership, facility management, and event management. Sports management is applied in nearly all types of levels of sports, including municipal recreation, private organizations, social organizations, government athletic activities, amateur sport, college-level athletics, and professional sports.

Many young athletes today see themselves become a professional athlete. However, the reality is that only a small percentage of the population will actually reach that goal. This does not mean that a career in sports is not achievable. In fact, most young athletes have a greater change at a career in the sports industry than they do becoming a professional. The growing popularity of sports management in academic programs and the field of sports as a career goal have resulted in greater competition for jobs in the workforce. This guide is intended to be a roadmap for those contemplating a career in sports management.

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You don’t need to be a former athlete to get into the sports business. Companies are looking for employees with knowledge and experience to go along with their passion for sports. While there’s no magic formula for breaking into the industry, there are definitely certain steps you should take on your path to a sports management career.

Step 1. Knowledge of the industry. Typical courses will likely include sports marketing, law, finance, and business. Give yourself an edge with an advanced degree, which will also give you more time to gain valuable internship experience. In fact, general business knowledge can assist your desire to be employed in the sports industry. 


Step 2. Experience. It’s important to develop your sports business skills outside the classroom. Apply for jobs and internships in the field. Getting your foot in the door is key. To help build your career, have an open mind when it comes to employment. While your dream sports management job may be working for a professional sports team, seek out those teams that may need your help now, including minor league and college teams. Don’t overlook opportunities with high school athletic departments or community recreation programs. Every job will help you gain valuable experience and build your resume.


Step 3. Networking. Join student and professional organizations, attend industry conferences, and build relationships along the way. The more connections you have, the better. If you have a passion for sports but you’re not sure exactly where you fit in, talk to people in the field about what they do and how they got there. Someone else’s experiences may give you insight into what you want (or don’t want) to do. 

We can help you get started. Our Leadership First Academy is founded on the premise that regardless of your chosen professional, leadership comes first. Our Leadership First Academy will guide you through developing a plan that is tailored to your strengths while addressing your weakness. 

To learn more about the Leadership First Academy, email us at or click on LEADERSHIP FIRST.