Benefit Auction Summit to focus on presentation skills, voice care and event planning

Benefit auction professionals who are looking to better engage their audiences might not want to miss the 2012 Benefit Auction Summit in Denver.

Trainers plan to help attendees improve their presentation skills and planning abilities.

For “Advanced Public Speaking & Stage Presence,” the NAA is bringing in Marv Rockford and Steve Gray, Principals of Denver-based Rockford Gray LLC. One of the company’s specialties is presentation skills training.

Rockford says his firm will focus on stage performance, visual aids and effective story telling.

He says presenters often overlook the importance of following a good theme with a solid beginning, middle and end.

The interactive training session will reveal 12 steps to better presentations. Rockford says he and Gray will ask volunteers to go through exercises that demonstrate effective presentation techniques.

For example, they will recommend ways to make audience members feel confident about asking questions of auction professionals during benefit auctions. Rockford says presenters should do the following:

1) Lean forward or take a step closer to people asking questions
2) Let questioners completely state their concerns
3) Pause for a moment of thought before answering questions
4) Maintain good eye contact with the entire audience when delivering answers

Also, Rockford says he and his partner will teach Benefit Auction Summit attendees how to demonstrate command and control through the use of strategic pauses while they’re on stage. He says the techniques they recommend help speakers eliminate the use of filler phrases such as “um,” “ah,” “you know,” “like” and “basically.”

But before they can even get started with effective presentations or bid calling, most Auctioneers will probably want to focus on arguably the most important aspect of their jobs — voice control and care.

That’s where Speech Pathologist Kathe Perez, of Exceptional Voice Inc., comes into play with her training session, “Your Voice is Your Personal Goldmine.”

Perez, who has conducted presentations for the World Wide College of Auctioneering for several years, has worked with hundreds of Auctioneers and says she has trained award-winning bid callers. She focuses on voice health and tone.

“You’re going to miss your voice when it’s gone,” she says. “You can auctioneer with a broken ankle but you can’t auctioneer with a broken voice.”

Her training session focuses on nine elements of an exceptional voice. Perez says she will take attendees through exercises that will help them improve their breathing, pitch and microphone use.

Another featured presentation for 2012 comes from NAA member Kathy Kingston, CAI, BAS, of Kingston Auction Co., Hampton, N.H.

She plans to deliver “Stories Not Stats: Turn Two Minutes Into a Goldmine,” which will focus on the science behind effective story telling at benefit auctions. Research proves that stories significantly increase charitable giving while the sharing of statistics hinders fundraising efforts, according to Kingston.

Kingston plans to reveal the stories that work the best as well as other tips for effective benefit auctions.

Register for the Summit here.

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Filed under Auction Industry, Auction marketing, Auctioneer magazine, Education, NAA Members

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