Chargers GM Visits SMBA Program to Discuss Career Insights & NFL

November 18, 2020
Tom Telesco speaking with the SMBA class via Zoom.

Tom Telesco speaking with the SMBA class via Zoom.

On Tuesday, November 10, 2020, the SDSU Sports MBA Class of 2021 enjoyed a Zoom visit from Tom Telesco, Los Angeles Chargers’ General Manager. Telesco provided students with insights from a career in the NFL, discussing each of his positions starting with his internship with the Buffalo Bills, his role with the expansion franchise Carolina Panthers, his time in Indianapolis with the Colts, and finally, his current role as Chargers GM.

While the students asked a number of questions about his position as a General Manager, the group also asked how he managed to stand out and ascend to higher positions in each front office throughout his career. “If you work hard, people will take notice,” was Telesco’s advice for the students looking to break into the competitive landscape of professional football. Of his current position, Telesco noted that “a GM’s most important job is to lead,” adding that he endeavors to hire “the smartest people I can find who have great work ethics.”

Tom Telesco

Tom Telesco, GM of the Los Angeles Chargers 

Predictably, the MBA students asked several questions about analytics, upon which all NFL teams now rely to make decisions. “We used to call it ‘the numbers,’ but these days it’s called ‘analytics.’ We’ve always used analytics in scouting, personnel, and even game-planning…we’ve always used data to make decisions,” said Telesco, who then cited a specific goal-line play from a recent Chargers game.

Telesco’s parting advice for the group included an encouraging reminder to work hard because the demand for sports jobs will always exceed the supply. He told the group to be persistent, take on internships whenever possible, and make sure they love whatever they end up doing because a passion for the work is critical for success in the industry.

The SDSU Sports MBA program wishes to thank Tom Telesco for connecting with the students and generously giving his time during the NFL season to meet the students and offer his advice.

About the SDSU Sports MBA Program:

The SDSU Sports MBA program is an intensive, accelerated MBA degree focused on the dynamic business of international sports. The program provides its graduates a thorough understanding of the skills crucial for professionals to succeed, while building a broad network of relationships in the sports-rich landscape of Southern California. Visit to learn more, request information or apply to the Sports MBA program.

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