To be an auctioneer you have to be able to talk fast. Very fast. Mike Jones founded America’s Auction Academy near Dallas 27 years ago, and says although most graduates do find jobs, there are many students who just do it for the fun. The 8 day, 83-hour course, taught three times a year, provides a thorough background in the basics of being an auctioneer, from how to run your own business, what you need to know about real estate or cattle or heavy equipment or antiques or the myriad of possessions often sold at auction, and how to enunciate effectively when spewing out rhythmic tongue-twister chants that are the hallmark of a goof auctioneer. Jones, inducted into the Auctioneer Hall of Fame, says there is a particular personality type that flourishes in the practice. “I do a lot of companies, and businesses, and real estate and things of that nature; there’s more interaction with the client. So if you’re into sales, if you’re a natural at sales the auctioneering side of the business is just perfect,” he tells NewsRadio 740 KTRH. He says some find it fulfilling and profitable. “I know a lot of auctioneers that do cars and if they do multiple sales in a week I know a lot of those guys make over half a million dollars a year,” Jones says.
In the classes, an hour is spent on learning breath control, and 18 hours on bid calling. Ethics and salesmanship are covered before the all-important chanting instruction begins. At the end of all the training, graduates participate in an auction for charity. The next round of classes is in September.