There is some divergence on the correct definition of a Butler in part because of the debate on what is thought to be a proper Butler. For some, a traditional formal Butler is the only type of Butler. For others, there is room for a modern approach to professional butling. No matter what your stance, a Butler must meet some basic criteria such as understanding the points of (in)formal service, the art of social etiquette, and luxury services and products within the formal home setting.
A professional Butler is an individual who is formally trained in all facets of personal service. These highly skilled personnel often oversee additional staff members to ensure the principals receive only the highest level of service. Professional Butlers are responsible for greeting guests, serving of meals and beverages, and setting formal tables. In addition, Butlers are often expected to manage the interior of the home, overseeing the home’s housekeeping staff and overseeing general maintenance. Butlers are often required to be knowledgeable in wines, mixology as well as gourmet cuisine. They are often expected to prepare meals in place of the Chef.
Additional responsibilities may include:
- Maintain/polishing silver and brass, china, crystal, etc.
- Answer house phone
- Staff oversight
- Vendor, contractor, and various servicemen oversight.
- Handyman/ work
- Coordination/execution of social functions and parties
Some Butler positions require Valet duties for the gentleman of the house. A skilled professional Butler has extensive Valet experience.
Some of the responsibilities may include:
- In charge of wardrobe including sending items to the cleaners, making recommendations for replacements and/or additions
- Procure fine clothing and accessories
- Maintaining constant high standard of closet organization and keep fully stocked with items such as hangers, drawer organizers, shoe trees, etc. as needed.
- Responsible for toiletries including purchasing, maintaining back up inventory as well as always having a travel bag stocked.
- Packing and unpacking for all travels
- Maintaining back up items such as hair dryers, electrical toothbrushes, cell phones, i-pads, etc.
A career as a Butler /Valet can be gratifying and rewarding. It is the perfect position for the individual who truly wants to be of service to others and ensure their home life runs seamlessly.
If your family is looking to find and hire a qualified Butler or Valet, consider working with a Butler agency like Pavillion Agency Inc. Get started by filling out our application.