Auctioneering – More Than A Chant

Auctioneering is a rewarding career for Jenny Gehl of Bravo Benefit Auctions in North Prairie. Jenny grew up in an auctioneering family, often working alongside her parents when she wasn’t in school. While she thought she was going to get away from the family business in college, she couldn’t help but come back home to help run the lunch wagon or work the ring.

When she realized she couldn’t shake her love for the sale, she went to auctioneering school to master the trade.

“There’s so much more than just the chant and practicing the chant,” she says. “You have to have product knowledge. There are so many asset classes that you can get into as an auctioneer… you have to know about the assets that you’re going to sell.”

The list ranges from livestock and automobiles to real estate and fundraising.

Gehl adds that public speaking, stage presence, and interaction with the crowd are also skills to gain in auctioneering schools.

When auctioneers are developing their distinct chants, there are several aspects to practice, such as number scales and rhythm. Gehl says tongue twisters help.

Thomas-a-Tattamus-Took-Two-Tees:

Tommy-a-Tattamus took two tees to tie ’em to the top of two tall trees.

Betty Botter:

Betty Botter bought some butter but she said “This butter’s bitter. If I put it in my batter, it will make my batter bitter.” So she bought a bit o’ better butter, put it in her bitter batter, and made her bitter batter better. So ’twas better Betty Botter Bought a bit o’ better butter.