Can you let other people get your way? Can you go unnoticed as the best-dressed commoner in the room? Then you are tailor-made for the Delphic role of royal courtier. Just don’t ask where you can apply.

Churchill said that the Soviet Union was a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma. If we were to turn the lens on the British establishment, the enigma would be the monarchy; the mystery would be the family members; and the riddle — well, that would be the courtier. The courtier’s job every day is to be hidden in plain sight, always by the monarch’s side but never noticeable. They must be impeccable in a way that an average civil servant need not be. Many use the same tailor as their charges, and the very best require adequate lapel support for the array of gongs, honours and metaphorical respect bestowed upon them (Christopher Geidt was knighted three times).

Courtiers needn’t worry about a social life. Royal service demands round-the-clock attendance to the principal.

What does our man do? The constitution of the United Kingdom (unwritten, as it is) says that in the exercise of the royal prerogative, the sovereign has a right to be consulted, to encourage, and to warn. Exactly the same can be said of his or her private secretaries and advisers. Their job is to know the best next steps and to exercise the definition of diplomacy: the art of letting other people have your way.

Being a courtier demands the highest of sartorial standards. Most of us will escape the need for anything more than a tuxedo, but royal life is different. State dinners are white-tie; funerals and weddings require morning dress; the daily uniform is suits (lots and lots of navy blue); and the shooting weekends to which you’ll be invited as a royal major-domo require tweed and evening dress. So you have a tax-deductible obligation to visit your tailor. Even more pressing: decent and appropriate footwear. Whether in black-tie pumps or Le Chameau wellington boots, you will be on your feet, and good-fitting footwear will give you the benefit of comfort as well as the health benefits of being able to look down at nice shoes. Ideally they will have taken some scissors to the soles of the shoes, because slipping and sliding is bad form when you’re on show.

In the past, all this would be a fait accompli, as the courtiers tended to be former Guards officers as well as, perhaps, an aidede-camp to someone senior: in other words, they would have been familiar with the bearing required for the task. These days, however, the brightest from the Foreign Office and legal profession tend to be plucked from their post to the highest office in the land. They must be used to being back of shot. Camera crews will aim at the royals, but there, in the background, among security, is the private secretary, keeping an eye on proceedings and ready to jump in.

The reason none of them resembles a recently ousted prime minister is because, if you are to represent an institution that is above politics, it all starts with your presentation. When The Crown debuted on Netflix, it must have been particularly satisfactory for palace mandarins, each of whom came across as unfathomably well put together.

A courtier needn’t worry about hobbies or a social life. Royal service demands round-the-clock attendance to your principal, and any time you have off will be spent being courted yourself as a shadowy figure of the establishment, passing through the curtains of Oswald’s unnoticed by most of the denizens with their eye out for someone important. Those who do know who you are will know that you hold the key to any kind of royal patronage — or indeed the opposite.

Do you want to see them at the coronation? You shall be hard pressed. When the Queen died, there was no space for mourning; preparation for the new sovereign began in earnest right away. Everything you see on May 6 will be the result of extraordinarily hard work and slick execution by a team that will watch from the transepts of Westminster Abbey as their boss is crowned. The glory be his, but we know who is in charge, don’t we?