Top 10 side jobs – #6: Event Security

Welcome to a new ten part series at the Outlier Model on the Top 10 Side Jobs available to the average person.  Please check out our intro post and tune in every Wednesday as we count down to #1!

This week’s job goes back to the event style side jobs. You could try a special event customer service role, or if being nice and cheerful isn’t your thing, then you can be solitary and intimidating as part of the event security staff! I’ve done this in the past for big sporting events that have come to town. A few years back, the U-20 FIFA World Cup was hosted in Canada, and some of the matches were played locally. All it took was an interest in the job and a phone call, and I was hired for a few weeks. I was able to fit it in after work and I got to soak up the atmosphere of a high level soccer tournament.

Photo Credit: Via Flickr

Photo Credit: Via Flickr

Event Security

It might sound big, scary and glamorous, but the truth is that most security staff are just there for show. You know the guys sitting on the edge of the field, watching the crowd? That’s the jist of the job. Because I didn’t have my security guard license, I was basically tasked with being the first line of defense. A deterrent against random fans thinking it would be a good idea to run on to the field. There really isn’t more to it than that, but you do need a few key skills.

Skills required for doing event security

While you might not be doing a whole lot during your shift, you need to be observant and able to spot trouble before it happens. Negating a potential incident by spotting a suspicious action in the crowd is better than chasing someone down the field! To go along with observational skills, communication is extremely important. Because stadiums are large venues, it’s important to keep communication open between areas of the stadium so that reinforcements can be sent where they are needed – perhaps to squash the rebellion you’ve just spotted!

Some physical strength is desirable, although not required. If you want to become a licensed security guard, then you can take a course. If you do that, then you can get paid more money, but will likely be the people actually intervening in an altercation.

Pros of event security

I specifically target sports events, because that’s the major pro for me. If I can get down at field level to watch..er, work a major sporting event, I’m in. It’s good practice for your peripheral vision to watch both the crowd and the game at the same time…That said, for the most part the work is not physically demanding and you spend most of the shift in a chair. Not bad!

Cons of event security

It can be tedious and boring at times, and despite wanting to watch the entire game, it’s just not possible to do! It’s somewhat annoying to me to be so close to the action yet so far removed.


Event security can be a great part time gig while the work is there. For most major sports teams, they have regular staff that perform these roles, so it can be hard to get in the door. But, for one off events, new staff are always needed, so take advantage. The pay is pretty decent and usually between $15-$20 per hour.


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