The Roles of a Bodyguard

Bodyguards are familiar figures in television and movies, characterized by their sunglasses, cropped haircuts and dark suits. They have a no-nonsense attitude that makes it clear that they are not the type of people you want to mess with. But bodyguards are much more than imposing presences. They are highly skilled security professionals who are trained in the personal protection of individuals or groups of people.

Bodyguards are often responsible for the protection of VIPs such as celebrities, politicians, executives and other noteworthy individuals. These kinds of VIPs face unique security challenges and risks that require high-level skills in personal security protection. Like other security professionals, bodyguards act as a visible deterrence to crime. But their roles go far beyond that.

What is a Bodyguard?

Unlike commercial or residential security personnel, bodyguards have much more direct interaction with their clients. They are often a member of a security detail that may be with the client 24/7. Bodyguards know the ins-and-outs of their clients’ schedules and are frequently privy to confidential business and personal information.

Bodyguards typically have extensive and specialized experience. Many are ex-military or special forces with unique skill sets that allow them to provide exceptional security services to their clients. 

Clients who hire bodyguards do so for a reason. Individuals in the public eye face a variety of unique security risks. Stalkers, thieves, overzealous fans and others who want to take advantage of a VIP’s wealth or position are constant threats. Bodyguards must be ready for these unique challenges so their clients can have peace of mind and go about their personal and professional lives safely.

While most people who hire bodyguards fall under the category of the rich and famous, bodyguards may be required for average citizens under certain circumstances. In fact, their services can benefit nearly anyone who feels that their personal security is threatened.

The Primary Duties of a Bodyguard

Bodyguards are skilled in assessing threats and implementing strategies to prevent threats from occurring. While they do need the skills to react in the face of danger, the bodyguard’s work really takes place before a threat even occurs. Whether you are interested in becoming a bodyguard or considering hiring one for your security needs, you might be curious to learn the roles and responsibilities of a bodyguard. 

In general, a bodyguard will assess potential security issues, develop appropriate security strategies and competently react to threats as they occur. 

Specifically, the duties of a bodyguard include:

  • Securing public locations before a client attends public events such as award shows, conferences or other public appearances
  • Performing background checks for new employees, staff or vendors
  • Escorting the clients in public settings
  • Managing large crowds
  • Identifying suspicious behavior or unauthorized people
  • Driving the client and safely fleeing the scene of a security threat
  • Checking for vulnerabilities at the client’s home and public venues

Special Skills for Top-Level Bodyguards 

With all of these high-level responsibilities, personal bodyguards are some of the most highly trained security professionals available today. Often, prior military, special forces or law enforcement professionals will seek bodyguard positions. These professionals have a unique set of higher-level skills that will allow them to succeed in the role.

Many bodyguards have formal personal protection training including firearms training, drive training and medical training. In addition to these skills, other qualities make a bodyguard successful, some of which can’t always be taught. The job of a bodyguard requires someone who has the intellectual and analytical abilities to assess situations and quickly formulate solutions. 

Other skills that the most successful bodyguards have in common include:

  • Excellent judgment
  • Common sense
  • The ability to work alone and with a team
  • Physical health
  • Sound decision making
  • Physical combat and defense skills
  • Firearms training
  • Evasive driving training
  • High levels of discretion and confidentiality
  • The ability to maintain a professional relationship with the client
  • Excellent communication skills
  • The ability to mentally and physically handle long hours and dangerous situations

Like all security personnel, bodyguards take on a huge responsibility. When a client hires a bodyguard, they rely on the guard’s professionalism and unique skills. A client wants the peace of mind in knowing that they are safe. The best bodyguards have well-rounded experience in personal protection as well as intelligence, intuition and quick-thinking. 

Do you think you have what it takes to become a professional bodyguard? Learn more about personal security services at Off Duty Officers.

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