A pilot is any person who is officially licensed to fly an aircraft of any type. Pilots are responsible for flying a large range of different aircraft, including helicopters, light planes or airline craft, depending on the type of aircraft they are approved to fly. There are a number of different categories of pilot including private pilots who may be hired by wealthy individuals or corporations who keep private jets.
There also military pilots who are hired on a contract basis in defence of a nation. Military pilots may specialise in specific areas like fighter pilots, transport pilots or trainers. Then there are airline pilots who are responsible for flying commercial passenger flights and for transferring cargo. In this situation it is common to have at least 2 pilots in charge of the aircraft to ensure the safety of passengers and ease of flight. In these cases the pilot-in-command will take overall responsibility for the safety of passengers and crew.
Pilots are ultimately responsible for the lives of their crew and passengers. Part of their role is to ensure that the aircraft is in good working order and to monitor it throughout the flight. They also need to monitor weather conditions and study flight plans. It is important that they work closely with air traffic control and respond quickly to any given directives. They often need to brief cabin staff and sometimes passengers and they are also responsible for recording their flights in a log book, including any technical problems they experience during the flight.