Is my husband unemployable?
September 8, 2009 9:22 AM Subscribe
Is my husband unemployable?
posted by Jacqueline to Work & Money (39 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
My husband is almost 29 and has been playing poker for a living for the past 7 years, with no other job, business, or source of income. It's been fun to joke about him living off $6 for 7 years, but now he's burnt out and wants to do something else for a living.
Immediate problem: I'm trying to make him his first resume, due tomorrow for a career event at school. I'm great at making resumes but I just don't know what to put on his. We don't want to lie, but initial Googling suggests that putting "professional poker player" on a resume is the kiss of death.
Long-term problem: He knows he doesn't want to play poker for a living anymore, but he's not sure what he wants to do instead, either now for a short-term job or in the future for a long-term career. Probably something quantitative and business-related.
Education: He just returned to college, as a junior, majoring in Accounting. He has an associates degree from before he dropped out of college to play poker. He plans to complete a BSBA of Accounting in 2 years and then either a MS Accounting or MBA Finance. However, it will be obvious that he's much older than the other fresh graduates, so he'll still need to explain what he did in his 20s.
Experience: His pre-poker work experience was with a railroad from age 18 to 21 (started as trainee, advanced to engineer) and in his dad's tire shop from age 14 to 18 (sort of a combination mechanic / cashier / assistant business manager -- he did the bookkeeping, taxes, etc.). So he does have some "normal" work experience but it's quite old.
Preferences, aptitudes, and skills:
- He likes using his brain and would be unhappy if he didn't get to use it at work.
- He's very very very smart, but his intelligence is more mathematical than verbal.
- He's good with people and in stressful situations.
- He's learning Word, Excel, and PowerPoint in one of his classes, but has no experience yet using them in a work context.
- He's great at taking exams. (I mention this because I know that there are some careers you can effectively test into, which is what he did at the railroad, but I don't know what all the possibilities are.)
- He doesn't want to just trade poker for another high-variance job like sales or stock trading -- he wants a career that will provide a stable upper-middle-class income and benefits.
- We live in Las Vegas, which currently has a 13+% unemployment rate. Adding discouraged workers and the underemployed would probably push it over 20%.
So, I guess I have a few questions:
1. What should I put on his resume right now? Any ideas for how to honestly spin his poker experience in a positive way that will prevent his resume from being insta-rejected?
2. Are there any business-related jobs with steady incomes that he'd be able to qualify for now or very soon, before he graduates?
3. What are his long-term career options? Will he ever be able to get a professional job, or will having spent his 20s playing poker be an insurmountable black mark against him even after he finishes school?
4. Are we screwed? Please be blunt with me, especially if you've ever done hiring or screened applicants.
I'd really appreciate the hive-mind's thoughts on those questions or the general situation. Thanks!