My performance – or mannerisms on stage during a live auction have been called “larger than life” by those who hired me to be their benefit auctioneer, as well as those guests in attendance. I’m honored with each and every comment I receive, although the truth be told – I cannot take all of the credit. Some of it must go to Mick Jagger.
Yes, you read that right. Mick Jagger. Let me explain.
In 1978 I attended my first Rolling Stones concert. Since then I’ve attended at least 10 other Rolling Stones concerts – both in big and smaller venues. And, here’s what I noticed.
While performing in a larger venue, Mick’s gestures – his mannerisms – were larger, more exaggerated. While performing in a smaller venue, his mannerisms were more subdued – but still right on cue.
It didn’t take me long to realize why this was occurring. Mick wanted to make sure that even the audience members – sitting in the seats furthest away from him – got to experience his performance just as much as those sitting up front near the stage. The further those attendees sat – the larger his gestures.
Now, here’s something else I noticed. Mick always wore pants with an elastic waistband. The reason? He often slipped his hand-held mic in the waistband, although unnoticed by the crowd, so his hands were free to gesture to the audience – and get them more fired up.
Luckily for me, I don’t have to wear pants with an elastic waistband. I work totally from a headset microphone so my hands are always free.
I do however gesture – using both arms – with a specific focus in mind. These purposeful gestures help me better communicate where the bidder is seated – the amount I’m asking for – and sometimes simply to animate a point I’m trying to make. These mannerisms help keep the attendees engaged – brings emphasis to what is being auctioned off – and adds a fun and exciting element to the benefit.
So, at your next fundraising event be sure your emcee, host or auctioneer keeps your guests entertained and alert by being animated on the stage or in the audience as he or she moves around.
Remember, a Rolling Stone gathers no moss. That’s because acting like a Rolling Stone will keep the event moving and the attendees more attentive.