Most people probably think that mall Santas have a pretty easy gig. All they have to do is listen to what children want and keep up the facade that Santa Claus is real. As it turns, out, however, being a professional Santa Claus takes more work than it might seem.
In a new study by LinkedIn, the social network looked at the skills of nearly 1,000 professional Santas on its network. First, they found that professional Santas are only Santa for one part of the year. For the other 10 months, they are involved in any number of roles, from performers and stunt doubles to public speakers and CEOs.
Big deal, you say. You still think you have what it takes to be Santa. Well, according to those who play Santa every year, you’re going to need experience in a number of skills. Obvious skills like drama show up, but did you know that professional Santas also need skills in TV & video production or social media marketing? It’s starting to look like those professional Santas that you look down upon at malls are actually far more skilled and productive than you ever imagined.
On a final note, LinkedIn took a look at where professional Santas live. As you might expect, the highest number of professional Santas reside in the United States, but there are Santa actors all over the world, including China and Africa.
Here’s the full infographic:
So, next time you see a mall Santa, don’t be disparaging. Instead, you might want to ask him for some tips on how to improve your own professional life. Besides, when else will you be able to get advice from somebody who can put “bearded” as a talent on LinkedIn?
Image via LinkedIn