What Does a Poker Tournament Director Do?

Poker tournaments have become one of the best-known and most popular ways to play the game of poker. Thanks to the TV exposure and big prize pools, especially during big tournament series such as WSOP, tournaments are usually how new players are introduced to the game.

However, what we see on TV or even when playing in a casino is just a small part of what actually goes into preparing and running a tournament. There is lot of logistics involved with preparing and successfully completing a poker tournament. Tournament directors are the people in charge of these things. So, what does a poker tournament director do?

Poker Tournament Director Duties

A poker tournament director is in charge of coming up with a tournament structure (starting stack, blind levels) and the prize distribution. This is the part of the job before the tournament even starts. They need to come up with a tournament structure that meets the players’ expectations but also fits the casino or poker room schedule.

These days, there are several software solutions that actually help tournament directors with this part of the job. Thanks to these programs, creating tournament structures and coming up with sensible prize distributions has become much easier. Still, a tournament director is ultimately responsible for whatever happens, so they need to keep the eye on the ball.

Running the Tournament

Once cards are in the air, a poker tournament director needs to make sure everything goes smoothly. In larger events, they have floor people helping them keep an eye on all the tables, but they are ultimately the ones calling all important shots.

So, if there are any unclear situations at a table or a player doesn’t agree with the dealer’s decision for whatever reason, the tournament director is called over. They need to know rules of the game to the letter and also be able to make decisions that are in the spirit of the game where rules are unclear.

So, if you’ve been wondering what does a poker tournament director do, it’s actually quite a lot. Although their work is often neglected, they are usually the ones making sure tournaments go down as intended, without any major incidents.