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Old 06-08-2005, 03:06 AM
Dan Mezick Dan Mezick is offline
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Default Pro Poker Players as Job Applicants

As a hiring manager familiar with poker, I have to say I would be very impressed by a college-grad applicant that explained a 2-year gap in employment like this:

"At college I learned to master aspects of the game of poker, and I successfully played poker for a living and continue to do so up to the present time. For various reasons I have decided to apply for this full-time, 'real' job."

I'd be intrigued now, because this candidate employee would have some mastery in aspects of personal discipline, personal psychology, statistics (EV, standard deviation, variance etc), mathematics, money management, risk management, game theory, statistics, finance, general psychology, etc. You get the idea...

A successful player will usually be more attuned to how others think and feel. I like this kind of aptitude in employees who must align personal efforts with the efforts of numerous others in the organization.

Therefore, successful poker players, especially young, trainable, moldable ones, absolutely make the best employees.

All other things being equal, if I have any understanding of poker whatsoever I want young, successful poker players on my team, in business terms.

I might be willing to fund the prospective startup business of a young, winning poker player who can prove the annual poker profits with documentation to back it up.

Accordingly I do not see a 2-year gap on a resume (covered by poker) to be a big negative.

Indeed a college-educated player who does support himself from poker, but is now choosing full-time work.... this type of candidate is probably going to be way more successful than average.

Want to argue against these points? Come and get me.
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Old 06-08-2005, 04:17 AM
FMThe2nd FMThe2nd is offline
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Default Re: Pro Poker Players as Job Applicants

[ QUOTE ]
Want to argue against these points? Come and get me.

[/ QUOTE ]

I play a lot of poker myself, and I'm not sure that I would want to hire a poker player that had played poker professionally for two years. I just don't think that type of person would be a good long-term hire.

I would think that someone who had played poker for 2 years professionally would have gotten mighty used to being his own boss and would not be receptive to taking orders or being a team player. I would also think that they would always be looking for the next opportunity to venture out on their own. In short, I wouldn't think formerly professional poker players would make good employees.
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Old 06-08-2005, 04:27 AM
Dudd Dudd is offline
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Default Re: Pro Poker Players as Job Applicants

You are not the average person. Until this is a perception held by the general public, not just the poker playing public, it's a risk you take when leaving the marketplace to play full time. The odds of getting someone such as yourself to look at your resume is small, and if you don't, well, good luck explaining the gap to a non-serious player.
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  #4  
Old 06-08-2005, 06:19 AM
TStoneMBD TStoneMBD is offline
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Default Re: Pro Poker Players as Job Applicants

[ QUOTE ]
I might be willing to fund the prospective startup business of a young, winning poker player who can prove the annual poker profits with documentation to back it up.

[/ QUOTE ]

Your post is a shred of good light for us players. You may see me message you in a few years to see if you are willing to fulfill your offer.
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  #5  
Old 06-08-2005, 06:30 AM
Warren Whitmore Warren Whitmore is offline
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Default Re: Pro Poker Players as Job Applicants

Substitute pool, chess, backgammon, risk, etc for poker. Add in that you don't know if this person was any good at these activities or not. Still want to hire him?
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  #6  
Old 06-08-2005, 08:50 AM
Jeffage Jeffage is offline
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Default Re: Pro Poker Players as Job Applicants

If everyone were like you, I'd give it a try for a year and come back to working if cards didn't go so well. Unfortunately, many employers would politely tell you to get lost with that big hole in your resume (as well as worries about your gambling, particularly if the job involves financial transactions).

Jeff
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  #7  
Old 06-08-2005, 10:09 AM
BarronVangorToth BarronVangorToth is offline
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Default Re: Pro Poker Players as Job Applicants

Dan, I agree with you 100%, however, as someone quite rightly said above, you are not John Q. Sixpack when it comes to the game and therefore your personal bias (whatever it is) comes into play. I think you'd agree that many hiring managers would not hold your viewpoint OR place such a premium on poker.

Barron Vangor Toth
www.BarronVangorToth.com
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  #8  
Old 06-08-2005, 02:32 PM
jb9 jb9 is offline
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Default Re: Pro Poker Players as Job Applicants

[ QUOTE ]
As a hiring manager familiar with poker, I have to say I would be very impressed by a college-grad applicant that explained a 2-year gap in employment like this:

"At college I learned to master aspects of the game of poker, and I successfully played poker for a living and continue to do so up to the present time. For various reasons I have decided to apply for this full-time, 'real' job."

[/ QUOTE ]

I'm willing to consider explanations for gaps in people's work history, but I would not be too excited to hear this.

As FMThe2nd says, I would have concerns about the person's willingness/ability to work as an entry level team player taking orders from others after 2 years of being a self-employed decision maker who made a living being aggressive and outsmarting/deceiving everyone they interacted with and who didn't even have clients or customers to keep happy.

It can be difficult enough for people to make the transition from college to corporate, and I don't think tossing in 2 years as a gambler helps.

I wouldn't refuse to consider an applicant because they spent 2 years playing poker, but it wouldn't be something I would see as a positive. They would have to tell me a good story about why they wanted the position I was hiring for (and they would be wise not to use the phrase "real job" anywhere in their story).

Also, I would have to question the person's second level thinking skills for not expecting me to think the way I think and adjusting their story accordingly [img]/images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img].
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  #9  
Old 06-08-2005, 02:46 PM
noggindoc noggindoc is offline
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Default Re: Pro Poker Players as Job Applicants

[ QUOTE ]

Want to argue against these points?

[/ QUOTE ]

No. Good job encouraging college poker "pros" to not worry about that gap in employment. I'm sure they can get letters of reference from the fish they take money from. [img]/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]
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  #10  
Old 06-08-2005, 04:26 PM
MicroBob MicroBob is offline
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Default Re: Pro Poker Players as Job Applicants

Your points are decent...but I think you are not properly differentiating between someone who is a 'good, responsible, talented poker-player' from someone who just SAYS they are a 'good player and have played for a living'.


In other words....MANY people who say they are (or have been) a professional poker player are exactly the type of person I would NOT want to hire.

A good poker-player has the discipline to do it.
A kinda lousy poker-player who THINKS he is good is probably more lacking in discipline than most people and likely has some sort of gambling-addiction.


Not that Dr. Phil is worthwhile...but someone mentioned that there was an episode with some guy maxing-out all of his wofe's credit-cards, etc etc because he KNOWS that online-poker is a beatable game.
This guy probably considers himself to be a 'professional' since it is how he is attempting to make his income.
The fact that he is a sucky player and keeps losing has nothing to do with his own declaration of his professional-poker-hood.


I've met some elder folk who claimed to be 'pro poker-players' back in the day.
Their personality nor their play at the tables particularly impressed me.


For someone who is hiring...I hold no grudge against them thinking that someone who has been 'playing poker professionally' is not much more than an unemployed gambling-addict until proven otherwise.

It's not unlike how when someone (friend or relative) tells me that they are 'pretty good at poker' I have serious doubts that what they are saying is true.
Because usually it evolves too, "No...I haven't heard of those poker books you mention. I just play by instinct and it seems to have worked pretty well for me so far."
and then later...
"Oh yeah....I have also figured out how to beat roulette. I'll have to tell you about that sometime because I'm SURE you would be interested. We could go down and play 'team-roulette' sometime and just tear them apart. I guarantee it works!!"



So if I was going to consider someone who did the poker thing I would be more impressed with the way you said it ("at college I learned to master aspects of the game of poker...blah blah blah") and if they couldn't speak in such terms or show me that they really have been winning all this time and not just losing money on their parents' computer in their basement THEN I would start to look at them more seriously.


I think much of the problem is not just the perception that others have of someone like you and me....but also the thousands of BAD poker-players out there with REAL gambling problems who create those perceptions in the first place.

Bad poker-players are the majority. If you are a poker-player then the chances are higher that you are part of this majority.
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