Gayle Hallgren-Rezac

Gayle On Learning The Skills Of Extroverts

A number of years ago I was standing in front of an audience of university students encouraging them to go out and build their networks. But, I got the feeling that they were thinking, “easy for you to say, you’re an extrovert, you can get up and speak in front of large groups of people, but me, well, that’s another story.”

So, I figured I had better ‘fess up’. I told them that I started out very shy and introverted. (This picture says it all…)  But by my twenties I figured out that most aspects of life would be easier if I was able to engage others, so I developed ‘extrovert’ skills and techniques. Today I don’t have any problem starting a conversation with a stranger or talking to a room full of people.  Interestingly, I recently did an online quiz: “Are you an introvert or extrovert?” How did I do? I scored as an Introvert.  Not surprising as I think of myself as an introvert, with very well-developed extrovert skills.

When I shared this with my audience I could see a little ‘ah hah’ moment happen—maybe “I’m shy”, or “I’m an introvert” is not my future path.This is one of the most satisfying aspects of what we do—sharing the message that everyone has it in them to break the bonds that keep them from meeting new people, speaking to someone higher up the food chain, becoming a great conversationalist or building a supportive network of friends and colleagues. Being able to teach those skills to others is what inspires me everyday.

Don’t live your life without these skills.  —Gayle

Dynamic Duo – Gayle & Judy

Gayle Hallgren-Rezac and Judy Thomson, co-authors of Work the Pond!, have been teaching the skills of networking, team building through communication and social intelligence for over a decade and their clients include corporations, business associations, financial institutions, professional services firms, and university students.  (See our client list.) Whether they are presenting their popular Power of Positive Networking®, their signature conference opener Leap Start™, or their team building Positive Communication & Collaboration™ program, they have a special way of connecting with their audiences. Not only that, but they get their audiences connecting with one and other!

  • “I love the interaction between the two of you.”
  • “You finish each other’s sentences, it’s seamless.”
  • “Having two people makes it so much more interesting, time flies.”


  • The event went spectacularly well! Judy and Gayle were out of this world! Our attendees definitely used their tips and we saw it first hand throughout the conference. They were fantastic. Thanks so much for recommending them, I would use them again when the right opportunity arises. — Joanna Lean | Scotiabank
  • This was by far one of the best classes we have held at Enbridge. The trainers do a great job at keeping the attendees engaged throughout the entire class. Taking this class will benefit your career in volumes far after the class has ended. — Katy Flood | Training and Development Coordinator, Enbridge Energy
  • The networking courses Gayle and Judy offer through the Mitacs Elevate program helped me to see networking as a tool to develop relationships by offering to understand people’s problems and build dynamic solutions; not by peddling my ready-made solutions to people facing unrelated issues. This approach will allow you to build a reputation as someone who is flexible, competent, and attentive. It has also allowed me to feel like I can approach anyone at a conference or trade show without feeling like a used car salesman. — Michael Schetzer, Ph.D.


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