Professional sports agents are those men and women who broker deals for professional athletes. They handle the business end, while the athletes get out on the field of play.
Once upon a time, players may have been more actively involved in the negotiation process. But in today’s professional sports environment, agents have become key players in a multibillion-dollar industry. It’s the sort of work that invariably attracts people who love sports (and would probably rather be out there on the court, or the ice, or the gridiron), but also have the business acumen it takes to succeed in a complex milieu, and an ability to swim with the sharks.
It isn’t easy to break into the sports agent business. The most common route is starting out in a large agency, learning the ropes, and eventually establishing an agency of ones’ own. It’s a male-dominated industry: only about ten percent of active sports agents are women, according to some industry insiders. And it’s a profession that is all consuming. Veteran agents say that they’ve had to devote themselves one hundred percent to the job. There’s a lot of travel involved, which can make it hard to balance a professional life and private life. A lot of agents work for international agencies that have offices in major cities all over the world.
Cameron Chung is an honors graduate of Florida State University who hopes to become a professional sports agent. He triple majored in Finance, Marketing and Professional Sales. “I always strive to challenge myself intellectually,” he says, “which is why I completed three degrees in four years.” He is currently working as an account executive at a tech startup in New York.