If you believe the television and movie image of what a body guard is, you'll likely picture a bulky, bald man with muscles on top of muscles in a tight t-shirt. But there's actually a lot more to being someone's "personal protection." A personal body guard isn't simply muscle waiting to fight off an overzealous fan. In fact, most body guards will never encounter a major physical threat to their client. That's why many function more as a personal assistant to their client. Here's a look at what really goes into a career as a body guard.
Fact #1: You're More Than Muscle
Despite the popular image, a body guard's work is more than muscle. You'll be doing a number of things, including lining up transportation and planning the best route, escorting your client (and their family and friends) to and from events, washing and maintaining automobiles, watching after expensive purchases while your client shops, picking up the dry cleaning or lunch, and more. In short, you're there to be whatever the client needs you to be. While providing physical protection to your client is a key element of a job like this, you're worth more than your muscle.
Fact #2: You're Not Just Working for the Client, but Their Family Too
If you're serving as personal protection to someone, you're likely expected to extend your coverage to their family. No big deal, right? You'll just provide a little brawn to escort grandma to the grocery store. Unfortunately, you'll often be subject to demands of the clients family, which you're obligated to meet. You may be running errands for a bratty teenage child, or taking care of the family pet. If you're in this field for the "glamorous" side of things, just know that you won't always be around the stars.
Fact #3: You're Expected to Be Available Around the Clock
In this line of work, you're always on the clock. If your client parties a little too hard, you'll likely be their ride at 5 a.m. Or, if they decide to go grocery shopping at 2 a.m. and don't have cash (because their "people" always take care of that), you'll be taking their wallet to them. You're expected to always be available.
If you're expecting a bodyguard career to be like it seems in the movies, you're in for disappointment. But, if you know what to expect going in, you may just find it's a job you love. Know what's going to be asked of you, and prepare for it.