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Alternate Career Titles:

Club Manager

Career Overview: Oversees all employees and handles day-to-day operations.

Career Salary Range: $27,000 to $150,000+

Nightclub Manager

Become a Nightclub Manager

Career Description

The Nightclub Manager oversees the day-to-day functions of a nightclub, and in many instances, they’re also the Club Owner. He or she is responsible for hiring the entertainment, and deciding what type of entertainment the club will employ (cater to country music fans, etc.). The Nightclub Manager needs to also figure out if the club will use live music in the form of Club DJs. This is one of the great jobs in the music industry for non-musicians.

In addition, the Nightclub Manager must choose what types of advertising to use – radio, TV, or print. An ad budget must be constructed, and a plan must be formulated. To build relationships with Editors and Radio DJs the Nightclub Manager calls and socializes with them regularly. Additionally, when the Nightclub Manager hires entertainment, he or she needs to negotiate and sign contracts.

Other things that need to be done when running a nightclub include hiring and training personnel, including Bartenders, Servers, Hosts, Cooks, Security, Lighting Technicians, and more. He or she will also be responsible for placing orders for food and liquor, and is also responsible for making sure that all state and local alcohol laws are observed and followed. In terms of financial responsibilities, the Nightclub Manager must make sure that all accounts are paid, and needs to tally nightly totals and receipts.

In total, the Nightclub Manager works long hours – usually starting in the afternoon and working deep into the early morning.

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Nightclub Managers earn different amounts based on the club, its location, its popularity and the experience and duties of each individual. Salaries run from $27,000 to $150,000 or more per year. In instances where the Club Manager is also the Club Owner, he or she will receive a share of profits along with a base salary.


Employment prospects for Nightclub Managers are fair, but he or she might have to work in a small club or in an establishment that may specialize in a different type of entertainment or music that he or she wanted. There are nightclubs all over the country, so the Nightclub Manager might have to move to find the job they want.


After obtaining some experience in small nightclubs, Managers can advance by moving into a job as Nightclub Manager in a more prestigious club. Of course, the Nightclub Manager might also open up his or her own nightclub – they can then run the club on their own, or hire their own Manager.

Education and Training

A Nightclub Manager does not need a formal education, but some training and experience in business are helpful. In terms of unrelated fields, training in food service or the hospitality field might also be useful.

Experience, Skills, and Personality

As mentioned, experience in running a business is a plus. It is common for the Nightclub Manager to have worked as either an Assistant Manager or another type of Supervisor. He or she must be knowledgeable about the music business and should be adept at booking talent and negotiating. He or she needs to know how to deal with people, while under pressure.

Unions and Associations

Depending on the type of club they manage, Nightclub Managers can work with a number of local unions. They may also represent their clubs in the National Federation of Music Clubs.

Suggestions for Getting Started

  • Try to get your start as a Bartender.
  • Check the help wanted sections of newspapers.
  • Make sure to include all relevant management experience in your résumé and send it to nightclubs – ask them to keep your résumé on file.
  • Try to get a job as a Nightclub Manager in a hotel/motel club to gain experience.