Career in Sports Management
Most of you have been passionate about some or the other sport at some stage of your life. It’s also very likely, that during your childhood, you were fascinated by some player and wanted to become like him. But due to one reason or the other, you could not become a successful sportsperson.
However, you need not lose heart because there are many other avenues in modern sports, which can help you, live your passion for the sports as well as earn money. Apart from becoming a player, you can become a physical education instructor, a coach, an umpire or a referee. Further, you can practice sports medicine or if you write well, you can become a sports journalist. A new career, quite popular in modern times, is Sports Management, which is a blend of sports and marketing or business.
Management is the act or manner of managing, handling, directing or controlling the affairs and ensuring the smooth functioning of a team, organization, business, office, etc., Sports Management is the discipline in which the principles of management, business leadership and teamwork are applied to sports. As a profession and as an academic discipline, Sports Management includes within its ambit, a wide range of activities – professional sports, recreational sports, college and university athletics, health clubs, gymnasiums, fitness’ centers, sports facility management, sports governing bodies, sports marketing firms etc.
Sports Management is an inter – disciplinary field and comprises in itself, the elements of economics, accounting, marketing, psychology, law and communications. The profession of Sports Management involves three elements – events, sportspersons ( celebrities as also newcomers ) and infrastructure.
A Sports Manager creates and markets events and sportspersons and manages all those activities that transform a sportsperson into a brand. For example, a Sports Manager associated with tennis star Sania Mirza works towards packaging and marketing her as a brand.
This is done by the proper media interaction of Sania Mirza, which enhances her reputation as a top – notch tennis player, thereby maximizing her commercial benefits. Another example is that of the marketing strategy adopted by ESPN for the promotion of hockey, by the introduction of the Premier Hockey League. This has increased the market of hockey several fold. In today’s world, sports is a serious business with the adoption of sophisticated and complex operations of sports programmes.
The traditional perception of sports has considerably changed over the years, Sports are not considered “just a game” in the modern times neither are sports meant just for entertainment.
In fact, sports is one area where a lot of money is being pumped in and sports is considered to be a big business activity that generates a lot of revenue. Cricket is the most popular sport in India and is worth around 1,000 crore. Tennis and golf follow cricket in as far as money is concerned.
Professionally successful teams from different sports activities, and similarly successful. Individual players rake in a lot of money by the way of match fees, tournament prize money, advertisements, contracts, etc. A sportsperson or a team needs skillful marketing in order to reap the maximum profits.
Coupled with the busy schedule of training and matches, it has become necessary for sportspersons to employ agents or managers for themselves. Budding sportspersons, who want to take calculated steps in their career in order to ensure success in the highly competitive arena of sports, also employ managers and agents for themselves. Sports Manager has to create opportunities for both celebrity sportspersons as well as budding youngsters.
Areas of Specialization in Sports Management :
- Sports Medicine
- Sports Psychology
- Sports Commentary
- Sports Journalism
As a Sport, Agent, one has to take care of the various aspects of the career of a sportsperson. One will have to arrange the schedule of matches and keep a keen watch on the fact that the professional career of the sportsperson; one is attached to, progresses on the right track.
One has to look into the media and public relationships of the sportsperson and manage the business related to advertisements, endorsements and contracts signed by the sportsperson.
In this aspect, a Sports Agent has to be careful, since in dealing with the media, a positive image of the sportsperson has to be projected. As far as business deals are concerned, it is the duty of the Sports Agents to carry on aggressive marketing so as to bag the best endorsement deals for their clients. Moreover, a Sports Agent also has to look into administrative matters like budgeting, finance and other logistics. The range of activites for a Sports Agent or Sports Manager is a bit different in the case of leisure club or sports club management.
Here, one is expected to handle a lot of administrative work including the management of accounts, charting out plans and preparing schedules and timetables for preparing schedules and timetables for matches. A Sports Agent also has the responsibility of arranging coaches and fitness trainers as per the requirement. As a Sports Manager, if one goes into managing events, one has to raise funds, organize sponsors, media partners and ensure the overall success of the event.
Eligibility for Sports Management Career :
The minimum educational qualification required to pursue a Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management is the successful completion of the Graduation level of examination, in any discipline, from a recognized University.
One will be at an advantage if one has completed Graduation in Physical Education. One will also be at an advantage if one has done a course in any sport of one’s own choice.
Passion for sports is the first and foremost personality trait required in one desirous of pursuing a career in Sports Management. One should have excellent knowledge about the technical details of at least one sport. One should have excellent communication skills and sound managerial qualities. If one is a retired sportsperson, the experience gained during one’s active days will come in handy in case one opts for a career in Sports Management. One should be committed towards one’s profession and should possess very good business acumen.
One should be energetic and enthusiastic to work in tandem with dedicated sportspersons. Patience, perseverance and sportsmanship spirit are other qualities required to become a good professional in this field.
Sports Management Courses :
Professional courses in Sports Management are available at various institutes across the country. Two recognized Universities offering Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management ( PGDSM ) in the country are the Alagappa University in Tamil Nadu and the Indira Gandhi Institute of Physical Education and Sports in New Delhi.
Both these Universities impart a one – year course in Sports Management to the eligible candidates. The Indira Gandhi Institute of Physical Education and Sports Science offers some seats to candidates who have notable achievement in sports. A PGDSM course is also available at the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management in Kolkata ( West Bengal ). However, one can avail of many courses in Sports Management if one goes abroad. Many overseas institutes offer courses in Sports Management both at the Undergraduate and the Postgraduate levels. Diploma courses in Sports Management are offered by many overseas institutes.
One may even bag a scholarship to study Sports Management in the US if one has played at the State or National level, in any sport. Many institutes that select and train prodigious sports talents also conduct courses to groom professionals well versed in Sports Management. One can also get a general MBA, Degree from any of the management institutes in the country and then make a foray into Sports Management. A course in Sports Management teaches one to plan sports events and gain knowledge in the areas of sports publicity, coaching and administration.
The job prospects for one who is professionally trained in Sports Management are many, ranging from government jobs to private jobs with successful sportspersons. Careers as agents, managers, publicists and other positions within the sports industry, are open for one with a professional degree in Sports Management under one’s belt. Experts in managing sports affairs are all the more in demand as many people have developed renewed interest in leisure, recreation, health promotion and sports.
One who is professionally qualified in the business of the management of sports will find employment as a Sports Development Officer in regional or national sporting organizations, At the government level, there are 37 federations looking into sports affairs.
The Sports Authority of India employs professionally trained personnel in its regional centres. Event Management, which involves organizing events or programmes for national or local organizations, is one field where one can try one’s hand with a degree in Sports Management under one’s belt. One can also work in the position of a Volunteer Manager in national sports associations or recreational organizations.
With the growth of competition in the packaging and presentation of sports events, it has now become the practice to rope in professional corporate bodies to stage and manage major sporting events – national as well as international. A few corporate bodies who are into the management of sports events are the College Sports Management, 21st Century, Game plan, World Sport Group, Glob sport, IMG, Percept D’ Mark Sports Management and Nimbus Sport.
Career opportunities are expanding for professionally trained Sports Managers as more and money is being pumped into sports. With a large number of sports gaining popularity in the national and international scene, a career in Sports Management looks very lucrative in the future. Sports Management is a prospective field with a wide range of action – packed possibilities, which arises out of the knowledge acquired about business and sports by doing this course.
The remuneration in this industry are usually attractive and one’s salary as a private Sports Manager depends upon the credibility and reputation one has acquired in one’s career. Generally, a Sports Manager earns in between 30,000 to 60,000 per month.
In the government sector, one will get a decent and fixed salary per month which may be accompanied by certain perks and privileges. Well known sports personalities and teams pay good salaries to private Sports Managers.
One may start with a low salary in this career, however one will be able to command a higher salary, when one becomes experienced enough. The thrill and excitement of working with eminent sportspersons and popular sports teams is immense.
Moreover, one will not only earn a lot of money but also earn considerable recognition when one works with a national sports team like the Indian cricket team or a famous sportsperson like Sachin Tendulkar or Sania Mirza.