Employees are the heart of the gaming industry, and one of the best ways to understand the true scope and impact of our business is to talk to them directly about their careers and how their lives have been impacted by the commercial casino industry. Their words give depth that pure numbers and statistics cannot. The diverse group of employees included below graciously agreed to talk with the AGA about their experiences working for the commercial casino industry, and the results of these interviews are below.
Chef Eddie Anderson
Specialty Room Chef
I have been a chef in the gaming industry for 36 years. I am from Las Vegas, but I went on a twelve year tour of the United States. I worked in Atlantic City for Donald Trump, Bally’s in Atlantic City, and stepped out of gaming for three years and went to work at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennessee to get a look at what it’s like to work in gaming compared to non-gaming venues.
The gaming industry has been very, very good to me. It is very diversified. We’re always doing something different, always meeting new people, and it is very challenging. Every day, we never do the same thing, so we always have a lot of fun.
Director of International Marketing
International Game Technology
The best thing about the gaming industry is the people. We have a fantastic group of individuals that are really energetic. They’re passionate about what they do, and they really care about the industry. Plus, in my job, I interact with so many different people from different cultures, whether it’s my colleagues, operators or vendors.
As a gaming company, I really think that IGT is always evolving and emerging into new markets and new technology, and it’s really interesting how we can take a concept from a completely creative “back of a cocktail napkin” kind of sketch to a reality that’s ubiquitous across all casino floors. I think that kind of innovation and energy can be found in other industries as well, but we’re in the entertainment industry so that increases the fun factor.
I think gaming is one of the most unique industries in the world. As part of the entertainment industry, we work very hard, but it’s to make sure that people have a lot of fun and a great, rewarding experience. For me, this industry gives you an opportunity to take a skill set and find a whole new career path. I’ve had several different roles within IGT and have realized that if you want to learn something new, there are so many things to go after.
It’s a great time to be in the industry and I’m proud to be a part of it.
Director of Online Marketing
My job is to find the best method of technology to utilize in new and existing marketing campaigns. I have been in the gaming industry for eight years now.
Working with an award-winning team is my favorite part of the job. Every working day is based on a simple idea. It is about what the guests want. How can we provide that, and how can we make it fun. This mentality makes my job extremely fun.
I love the industry and it has been a thrilling eight-year experience. I am looking forward to many more years in this industry.
Tower Engineer/Guest Recovery Specialist
I have been in this business for seven years, but 6 ½ years have been at the Venetian. I am excited to come to work every day.
The best part about my job is dealing with the guests and the non-monotony. I like to be challenged, and it is exciting to know that you have the opportunity to work for a company of this magnitude. It looks really good on the resume, gives you great opportunities for the future, and provides for my family. That’s what I wake up for every day.
The great thing about this industry is that it’s not going to stop. The opportunity I have here is a great opportunity and a stepping stone for lots more to come.
Social Media Manager
MGM Resorts International
I manage our corporate social media pages and use social media to promote any initiatives for our company.
Social media is great because it allows us to engage with our customers on a different level, and because it is more personal, people ask for advice on things that they would not normally ask somebody in person or on the phone. We gain a lot of brand advocates who talk about our brands in a very positive way and engage with us on a different level.
There’s more to the gaming industry than just gaming. I think that’s something that people may not realize seeing from the outside. It’s just different every day. You always have different duties, especially for social media. It’s always changing.
HR Training and Organizational Development Project Manager
I primarily work with senior human resources training managers on the various aspects of training at Ameristar Casinos. I have the privilege of working with the most amazing, intelligent, hardworking, fun and energetic people. At Ameristar, in the corporate office and on the properties, and in the gaming industry as a whole, the positive energy, dedication and loyalty are absolutely addicting.
I feel very lucky to be a part of an amazing group of people in an amazing industry that is incredibly diverse. There are so many positions available and so many ways you can grow.
Vice President of Human Resources
What I really enjoy about the gaming industry is that there’s so much energy and excitement in the whole business. If you’re having a rough day or you’re a little stressed with work, you can go out on the casino floor, and it totally reenergizes you.
At Ameristar Casinos, we have every [type of job] available in the industry under one roof. There’s human resources and finance, but you also have gaming, food and beverage, cleaning and maintenance. Gaming really is an industry that provides jobs and great growth opportunities for a lot of people.
About 20 years ago, I got in the business working security. I saw how much fun the dealers we’re having, so I decided that was what I wanted to do. My favorite part of my job is definitely getting to deal to people from all over the world. There’s never a dull moment. What other career do you get to play games for a living?
It’s amazing how global the gaming business has become. On top of that, Las Vegas isn’t just about casinos anymore. Now we’re about shopping and fine dining and night clubs. It’s amazing how it has evolved in the last ten years.
Working at the Venetian is phenomenal. It’s a family. I can’t think of a better way to put it. You come to work, and you don’t feel like you’re working with co-workers. You feel like you’re working with family
Assistant Crew Leader-Casino Shop
My responsibility at the Venetian is to respond to dispatch calls and take care of the entire property. Anything that might go wrong on the property, my team responds to. The Venetian has been a wonderful property to work. I’ve been here for 13 years and started here during the construction phase.
The work environment here is phenomenal. It’s been an outstanding place to work because the tempo is fast; the people are friendly and positive; and the company ideals carry on to my personal life. It’s amazing to be here.
MGM Resorts International
I have worked in the gaming industry for eight years. My job is very complex in the notion that I get to do a lot of things. We work with creative entities and media resources to execute campaigns. It’s a great experience because we get to start with a small idea and see it flourish ultimately into something that’s alive and vivid.
This industry allows you to not just go into gaming, but it also gives you a pathway into other facets of the industry such as entertainment, spas and restaurants. There’s so much more that comes into this town, and it allows you to be part of it all.
My favorite aspect of my job would definitely be getting to work with the creative group to execute the smallest idea and watch it grow to be one of the largest campaigns.
I think, in general, the industry provides you with the building blocks that allow you to grow into the career that you ultimately want to be in. For me, I was able to take the two things that I love, which are business and creativity, and mix them together and I found what made me happy.
Vice President of Corporate Diversity and Community Affairs
MGM Resorts International
I am responsible for working with the corporate social responsibility committee of the MGM Resorts Board of Directors. I also work with our senior executives to ensure that policies set by the board are implemented to ensure that diversity and inclusionary practices are embraced in all of our business disciplines.
I work with a dedicated and wonderful group of individuals; professionals who are committed to setting goals in diversity and inclusion and are committed to the success of our enterprise. On a daily basis, we are tracking our engagements with our local community, with our communities throughout the U.S. and with our business partners to ensure that we’re doing all that we can to be as competitive as possible in this arena.
We are very proud of the recognition we have received, but we’re more proud of our workforce and the commitment of our employees to embrace diversity and ensure that our company is doing all that it can to remain competitive in this space. In doing so, we are creating a work environment that is fun, that people enjoy, and that they come to work ready to support each other and the customers that visit us from all over the world.
I love working in this industry because it is fun, but I also see it as an opportunity to make a difference in the company and in the communities that we serve. Being able to make an imprint, to make a difference, to contribute to the success of our company and our industry means everything to me.
Table Games Supervisor
I work for a company where if you want to do well and help people make their vacations special, they give you the total support that you need.
I love the industry, and I love dealing with people. I’ve worked in six states, as well as cruise ships, and I’ve been in this industry since I was 18. It’s been 25 years now, and I’ve never been with a company that gives you more support. We have almost 10,000 people working here, and the executives never make me feel like I’m just a number. They always make me feel like I’m an integral part of this operation. I like coming to work every day and being appreciated.
In this industry it’s not all about the money, it’s more about helping the guest feel comfortable and have a memorable experience so they want to return. When the guest comes and they have a great trip, we want them to come back. I feel like I’m an integral part of that.
Director of Human Resources
I have been in the gaming industry for 20 years and have worked at several properties in Las Vegas. I’ve been lucky because I have worked with different folks that have been able to help me grow me from one position to another and tell me about other opportunities. I have always been interested in learning new and interesting things about the industry, and these different positions have given me that opportunity.
The gaming industry is rewarding in so many different ways. It’s rewarding to be able to work with so many different people, it’s rewarding to see people grow, and it’s rewarding to see yourself grow. I started out as a front desk agent at one of the properties in town, and to have moved into a director-level position now is rewarding for me personally.
I think the industry is unique because you get an opportunity to meet so many different people. There are not a lot of industries where you get to meet folks three or four times a year that come to visit the city, come to visit the property and come to visit you.
Manager of Corporate Philanthropy
MGM Resorts International
I serve as the manager of corporate philanthropy. This job is the perfect opportunity for me to marry my education and work backgrounds while giving back on behalf of the company. I’m definitely a charitable person at heart, so I love being able to work in the corporate philanthropy division where we administer grants from our employee foundation and coordinate our volunteer program and corporate giving. We constantly are making sure employees are given opportunities to volunteer, and I take pride in what the company has allowed us to do in regards to giving back to the community.
The company also allows me an opportunity for growth. I have a management team that supports me and understands what avenues I want to be able to follow next. They are constantly providing internal training and opportunities. Whether or not I stay with the company for a long time, the skills that I have received from this job will definitely prepare me for anywhere else I go from this point.
Employees appreciate the opportunity to be able to give back. We have outstanding volunteers and individuals that are willing to get involved, and it’s something that I’m glad our company supports so strongly.
Regional Director, Employment and Training
My job at Caesars is to ensure that we have the right talent that is the right fit for our organization, and to introduce new employees to the culture of our company through the training and new hire orientation process.
Working for the gaming industry is truly about engagement and customer service. The culture is based around creating an environment where the employee wants to be present. I love being a part of this group; I love being a part of this team; and I want everyone associated with it to be a part of it as well. Customer service is big in our culture, and that means making sure every interaction with our guests will make them want to come back again. That’s the culture we build.
I think what is most powerful for me in this industry is the opportunity for upward and diverse mobility. You can move and grow as much as you want to because there is every profession in our industry. For a person coming out of grad school, that was intriguing for me, and I have been fortunate enough to have a mentor in every facet of every area of the business.
Table Games Dealer
When I turned 21, I came to Vegas and was fascinated with the lights and the games. I took a dealing course to see how to win at blackjack and realized that it’s all based on numbers, odds and a fascinating system.
My favorite aspect of the job is having people at my table from all over the world enjoying themselves and getting the chance to make them laugh. I think the reward is when someone leaves my table and says “Wow, I had a good time.” I want people to have fun when they’re with me.
Working in this industry, you learn to understand different cultures, get to meet new people and experience things from every aspect.
Director of Sustainability
MGM Resorts International
I work each day to reduce the environmental impacts of our company, in the areas of recycling and waste management; energy reduction; water reduction; sustainable production; green building, design and construction; and outreach and education.
My favorite part of my job is interacting with the customers on a daily basis. I really enjoy walking through the casino and feeding off their high energy and positive excitement. That gives me the energy I need to go back to my office and do my job.
Most of the resorts and casinos, especially in Las Vegas, spend significant resources to make sure they’re as environmentally-friendly and Earth-conscious as possible, and that’s something that our guests, customers and the public don’t really know much about. It gives me great job satisfaction to discuss that with them and let them know that we are working every day to reduce environmental impacts to benefit both the community and the environment.
Working for MGM Resorts International has been a really good fit for my professional and personal goals because I was looking for a company that was pursuing both sustainability and international expansion, and was focused on green building design and construction. MGM Resorts International and many other companies in Las Vegas meet those requirements. I am one of the happiest employees in the industry.
International Game Technology
I am the integrated marketing manager at IGT, so my role is very dynamic and fun. We work with all of the product line marketing leads, on integrated strategy for IGT, and marketing campaign rollouts across the globe.
I think my favorite part of my job is launching our games. All of the licensed games that we have, in terms of pop culture, are very exciting because we’re really tapping into new spaces. By working with our operators to launch these fantastic games with media outreach, co-promotions efforts and advertising, we’re really trying to tap into our players and reach them in a new way.
The gaming industry is complicated and ever-changing, and that’s what makes it interesting. All the things we’re doing in terms of growing the business are fascinating, so every day is a new challenge and a great deal of fun.