Some agents rely on the skills they learned in business school to help them succeed in the sports industry.
Jay Z never attend college, much less business school. So the 43-year-old rapper-turned-agent says he'll have to draw on a different sort of experience to assist him as he competes in the ultra-competitive world of representing professional athletes.
In an interview published this month in Vanity Fair, Jay Z claims his experience as a drug dealer will assist him in his new role as a sports agent.
"I know about budgets. I was a drug dealer,” he says. “To be in a drug deal, you need to know what you can spend, what you need to re-up. Or if you want to start some sort of barbershop or car wash—those were the businesses back then. Things you can get in easily to get out of [that] life. At some point, you have to have an exit strategy, because your window is very small; you’re going to get locked up or you’re going to die."
An interesting claim, to be sure. It's hard for those of us who are neither drug dealers nor sports agents to compare the two professions, but Jay Z does make some good points. Plus, he's been arguably the most successful rapper in history, so clearly he knows a thing or two about business.
Jay Z's Roc Nation has already signed some of the top athletes in their respective leagues (Kevin Durant, Victor Cruz and Robinson Cano), so they're clearly doing something right. And as long as Jay-Z can continue to avoid discipline from the leagues, he should be able to make some noise in the sports world.