Five alternative career ideas for Barack Obama now he's left the White House

10 min read

25 January 2017

Donald Trump has officially become US president, so with beloved Barack Obama out of the White House, and a job, what does his future career hold?

Barack Obama White House

Are we going to see the return of “Barry O’Bomber”?

On Friday 20 January 2017, Barack Obama left the White House and officially became a free agent. After being in the same role for eight years, he may want to find something new to do with his free time.

Having vacated the 132-room White House for successor Donald Trump, Obama and his family will have to make do with calling their new £5m residence in Washington’s wealthy Kalorama neighbourhood home.

But first and foremost, the former president revealed that a holiday is the first thing on his agenda.

We at Yell Business feel that with all the experience gained from being the 44th president of the United States, he should follow one of his many passions and start up a new business that could combine the two.

With that in mind, below are some new occupations Obama could consider now that he’s out of the White House – complete with business cards and business names.

(1) Coach a basketball team

Barack Obama White House

It’s no secret that Obama is a huge basketball fan. He played competitively from an early age and was even nicknamed “Barry O’Bomber” in high school for his hoop skills.

As the only baller to ever grace the White House, Obama made some updates to the property’s basketball court in 2009, with fresh court lines and removable baskets added so that he could play full-court basketball.

In addition to his obvious breadth of basketball knowledge, Obama’s resume features world-class leadership skills and the ability to make snap decisions on the spot that could easily react to a crisis on the court. For that reason, Obama could become a freelance basketball coach in no time.

NBA is growing in the UK, with the recent “Global Game” series in London seeing the likes of Paul McCartney in attendance. Meaning we could see more of Obama on these shores if he takes this up.

This next job will allow him to unleash his inner superhero – find out what it is on the next page.

(2) Open an online comic book store

Barack Obama White House

You may find it hard to picture Obama with his head in a comic book but reports say he is an avid collector of Spider-Man and Conan the Barbarian comic books.

Obama himself has featured in more than just a few comic books, from his presidential appearance in The Amazing Spider-Man to Barack the Barbarian which saw him featured as a rather muscly President of “Kickassistan”.

Obama is sure to be downsizing now he’s left the White House, so maybe now’s the time to launch an online comic book store.

To do so, he’ll need to call upon his ability to multi-task and take care of a variety of things all at once – from managing his inventory to keeping abreast of what’s going on in the world of comics (rather than politics).

With the persisting popularity of The Walking Dead graphic novels, and summer superhero blockbusters, this passion is definitely a thriving opportunity.

It’s January, which means the time is ripe for a detox, and the job on the next page will let Obama make the most of that.

(3) Create a range of health juices


Despite having roots in Kenya where some of the world’s best coffee is grown, Obama has never been a fan of the stuff. In fact, he leads an extremely healthy lifestyle with regular workouts that are combined with a clean and lean diet.

His favourite snacks are reportedly apples and peanut protein bars, and we hear he’d choose a black forest berry iced tea over a beer any day.

Obama has managed to stay trim after eight years in one of the most stressful jobs on the planet, so now should be the time to share his secrets with the world and bring out a range of health juices so we can have a bit of what he’s having.

With people becoming more conscious about their health, and what they’re eating and drinking – there’s never been a better time to start up a health brand. Putting his name to it would cover much of his marketing strategy too!

The next entrepreneurial suggestion for Obama will allow him to continue his outreach to children.

(4) Children’s author

Barack Obama White House

If it’s one thing we’ve learnt from Obama’s presidency, it’s that he always knows the right thing to say. However, his meticulously crafted political speeches are just one of the many strings to his bow. As he is also a published author and the first sitting US president to publish a book for children with his book Of Thee I Sing.

Obama is reported to have read the entire Harry Potter collection with his eldest daughter Malia and is said to love the children’s book Where the Wild Things Are.

With all of that in mind and the fact he has spent eight years striving for a better life for future generations, we feel a children’s author is the ideal occupation for a post-White House Obama.

The final career opportunity for Obama can be found on the next page, and it will require use of a distinct characteristic of his…

(5) Voiceover artist

Barack Obama White House

During a fundraiser at the historic Apollo Theatre in 2012, Obama wowed an audience by singing an impromptu line from Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together”.

A clip of the rendition was recorded and soon went viral before being released as a ringtone on the Obama campaign site.

In addition to this, Obama has had a number of musical moments, another being when he sang “Sweet Home Chicago” with B.B. King at the White House Blues Festival in 2012.

On top of all of that, Obama also won a Grammy for Best Spoken Word Album, and while that’s not technically for singing, it means we all love his voice.

Now releasing a solo album might be a bit of a leap for an ex-president, however, many people in the public eye do some voiceovers on the side, and Obama’s voice is perfect for this – he could even sing a jingle if required.

Owen Wilson reportedly earnt $2.5m for his voiceover on Cars 2, so it’s a lucrative area for Obama to move into.

No matter what Obama decides to do following his exit from the White House and presidential duties, if starting up on his own is what he goes for, it shouldn’t be a decision that breaks the bank.

We found in our recent survey of 1,500 UK businesses that 57 per cent of small businesses in the UK are founded on a budget of less than £1,000, with 14 per cent starting on nothing at all.

In addition to this, we also found that 82 per cent of small business owners cited “being their own boss” as the best thing about going it alone. Perfect for a man used to being a leader in every sense of the word.

Obama might just be happy to be leaving the White House after all.

Mark Clisby is marketing director at Yell Business

Image: Shutterstock