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Spot lit microphone and stand on an empty stageQuite frankly, I had never even thought of this question.

In fact, in over 30 years in the auction business spanning across the United States, not one person has ever asked me:

    “Why enter an auctioneer contest?” or if you prefer “Why not enter an auctioneer contest?”

Nevertheless, let’s explore the subject.

We’ve previously written about auctioneer contests extensively:

So why should an auctioneer compete? Why should an auctioneer participate in a contest? There are a number of reasons. I think Kevin McGlothlen (1998 World Automobile Auctioneers Champion) characterized it best:

There are competitions for everything, weightlifting, car racing, body building, singing, dancing, cake decorating, house remodeling, etc. — the list is inexhaustible but the bottom line is competition pushes buttons, excites, introduces, exposes, motivates, educates, humbles, frustrates, ignites a spark, creates dreams, opens doors, educates, teaches, expands thinking, takes you outside of the box …

Plus, I’ve had the honor of judging dozens of auctioneer competitions. I concur with Kevin as I’ve witnessed these emotions first hand.

It seems to me the benefits of entering are two-fold for auctioneers: Contests make auctioneers better auctioneers, and there is a market (and related rewards) for better auctioneers.

And for anyone who thinks bid calling ability isn’t valued, this may be worth reading: https://mikebrandlyauctioneer.wordpress.com/2013/06/14/bid-calling-matters/

Contests not only award a winner, but help every person competing to improve their own skills. Further, for the winners — particularly at the national level — their lives change forever.

I remember distinctly telling one auctioneer in Indiana several years ago that if he wanted to secure more lucrative contract auctioneer work, he needed to improve his skills and showcase them at every opportunity.

What’s one of the best opportunities an auctioneer has to exhibit his skills? How about an audience full of other auctioneers? The vast majority of contract auctioneer work involves one auctioneer hiring another.

Many of the auctioneers hiring other contract auctioneers are competitors themselves. Competitors tend to hire fellow competitors. No different than Notre Dame graduates tending to hire other Notre Dame graduates.

Lastly, competing in auctioneer contests demonstrates a fever — a strong desire for self improvement. I can say with certainty that in almost all industries, people tend to hire and reward people with this mindset.

Are you an auctioneer who’s never competed? Then start. Are you an auctioneer who’s already competed? Keep at it. That is, if you want to be a better auctioneer.

Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, CAI, AARE has been an auctioneer and certified appraiser for over 30 years. His company’s auctions are located at: Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, Keller Williams Auctions and Goodwill Columbus Car Auction. He serves as Adjunct Faculty at Hondros College of Business, Executive Director of The Ohio Auction School and Faculty at the Certified Auctioneers Institute held at Indiana University.