Picture the scene: A large casino floor. People dressed in tuxedos and evening dresses wandering about, doling out large wads of green on poker and blackjack, throwing dice, or spinning a wheel; a place where hundreds of thousands of dollars exchange hands and the occasional international spy casually casing out the super villain across the table.
Pan up and what do you see? A smartly dressed person keeping an eye out for trouble, paying out wins and consoling those having a bad night, and ever vigilant in a cutthroat environment where money is king and royalty comes on the face of a card. This person, who has a great deal of control and power on the casino floor, is the croupier.
Becoming a croupier is not particularly difficult. A candidate does not need any special degrees or education and could certainly find himself or herself in the position after only a few years in any casino.
So, what exactly does a person need to become a croupier, and more to the point, what does a croupier do?
Well, to answer the first question, a potential croupier needs to have very strong mathematical skills. Dealing with all that money, odds and payments, most of which needs to calculated on the cuff, and under stressful situations requires a person that will not make any mistakes. Most interviews would require a mental arithmetic test to see if the potential candidate would manage. The croupier also needs to have strong interpersonal skills to deal with all those gamblers on either winning or losing streaks as well as the ability to look and behave in a professional manner, as they would represent the casino directly. The circumstances require acceptance of some rather uncomfortable working environments, which could include late nights in smoky surroundings while dealing with potential drunken or aggressive customers. Add to this long hours standing or walking and this is a very unusual and at times demanding job.
To answer the second question, the basic definition of a croupier is: n An attendant at a gaming table who collects and pays bets. The croupier shuffles and deals card, spins roulette wheels, explains and interprets the rules of games, and announces wins and losses. A croupier will become proficient in at least one discipline, usually roulette; however, those with many games ?under their belt? are able to stretch themselves over a greater casino area.
Despite some of the disadvantages of a career as a croupier, the positives outweigh the negatives considerably, such as working in a non-office environment and being involved in one of the largest and wealthiest industries in the world. A croupier could work anywhere, from the back streets of London, to the neon-lit world of sin city, Las Vegas. There are many educational courses to explore and most casinos would be happy to take somebody with a clean criminal record and a willingness to learn on in a trainee position.
By Stephen Holder
Casino & Gambling articles courtesy of GamblingOnlineMagazine.com.