Defining an Auctioneer
How do you define, or even picture, an auctioneer? Many will imagine a man in a Stetson cowboy hat, belt buckle and a microphone in hand standing on a hay rack cracking jokes and talking at lightning speed. The stereotype of an auctioneer has been around for decades and hasn’t been an easy mold to break seeing that the industry has been typically dominated by men.
The Merriam Webster dictionary defines an auctioneer as “an agent who sells goods at an auction”. Now, I would not disagree. BUT… if I was to define auctioneer, I would say, "A person that creates and manages advertising campaigns, with professional skill, to sell the assets of another person or entity using incremental bidding".
I’ll admit, when I first started into the auction industry I was somewhat guilty of having a similar stereotype in my mind about auctioneers. However, as I immersed myself in the business I quickly began to see that talking fast, or being a man, was not the most crucial aspect in order to succeed. The key aspects of auctioneering were actually 95% of the things that came prior to the chanting portion! So maybe it’s not so important what you see in either definition, but more what you do not see in the definition - talking fast or gender!
Breaking the Stereotype
Today, our company sells more than 90% of auctions using our online platform BidCapture without any form of auction“chanting”. In fact, as we worked to develop our online auctions, my wife Nicole would spend countless hours entering data and information into the computer. Once auction day came, we would then sit and let the process unfold. I would usually field phone calls while she would sit and monitor the bidding. When the auction concluded, Nicole would handle the invoicing and settlement to the sellers and I would take care of the banking portion.
It was at some point in 2013 I said to her, “You are more the auctioneer than I am and I am the one with the official title". Up to this point we had held more live auctions where I was the official auctioneer and she recorded the sale. During this time, the separation of our duties of auctioneer and clerk were more defined and easy to see. Fast forward to today and she has taken more bids for farmland auctions online than any other person I know of!
Women in the Agriculture Auction Industry
Nicole’s auction credentials are impressive: She graduated from the Professional Ringman Institute in 2015 after learning communication skills necessary for auctioneers and ringmen, and then went on to graduate from auctioneering school afterward! These skills, in combination with her advanced technological background (creating and developing the first online bidding platform for land auctions), the distinction of being the first person to apply online bidding to farmland auctions, and the fact that she has taken more online farmland bids than any other auctioneer? She is as qualified as any to carry the title Auctioneer!
Better yet, at DreamDirt, Nicole is not alone! When we launched our new online bidding platform for land auctions, we made the decision to hire a new assistant to manage the system. Rachel Hoy was our person of choice seeing that she emulated the qualities necessary to undertake such an important task. Rachel is a licensed real estate agent who sells farm properties by auction. She has flawlessly managed millions upon millions of dollars in farmland auctions using our online bidding portal in both live and online auction settings. Rachel handles every aspect of our online auctions, from meeting with clients and executing paperwork, through the real estate closing process! The only thing she does not do yet? Chant fast!
All in all, women are definitely making headway in the farm auction world. Sure, they have historically played an important role, but the women at DreamDirt are helping pave the way for other women interested in this fast-paced and exciting industry. Not only that, but we consider them some of our most crucial pieces in the company’s success.
If you’re thinking of starting the land selling process, these two women would love to help! Visit their pages to learn more!