Responsible for the daily activities of a sports team or organization, the general manager handles all of the team’s contracts, players and coaches. He or she sometimes serve as the team’s spokesperson for media briefings. General managers are also occasionally in charge of the team’s finances and marketing.
A general manager in sports supervises the day-to-day operations of a team or organization, ensuring that everything runs smoothly. He or she works on the players’ schedules and contracts. The general manager might be responsible for the team’s marketing and media, along with any finances that may include contract negotiations, vendors or equipment. Additionally, general managers collaborate with players and coaches to recruit new players, and they might reassign or dismiss players or hire the head coach. Sometimes, they might have to act as the team spokesperson, elaborating on the team’s choices to the media and fans.
The general manager must also understand any legal information regarding the team and its players and coaches. A lot of general managers have previous experience in sports or were formerly athletes themselves, as well as educational backgrounds in business and management.
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General Manager Salary
Sports general managers are grouped under the top executives category by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The median annual salary for general managers as of 2016 was $99,310. Employment is expected to grow 9 percent, or about as fast as the national average for all jobs, through 2026. This is due to the number of new organizations and expansions occurring, which therefore requires additional managers.
To become a general manager in sports, one should excel at communication, management, problem-solving, decision making, leadership and time management. A bachelor’s degree is the minimum educational requirement for the position. However, a graduate degree helps increase the number of career opportunities. It is common to pursue an internship with a sports team during coursework or post-graduation.
A online master’s in sports management from Campbellsville University teaches students the business side of the sports industry. Students become knowledgeable in administration, finance, legal issues, ethics, facility development and more. Additionally, the program’s faculty members have experience in sport management and business. The fully online degree gives students the opportunity to study on their schedule.