Handshakes are often overlooked in relation to their importance in greetings and interview situations. Many people take for granted this simple, common act of communication that happens almost on a daily basis. As a Senior Consultant for a leading online resume builder company, I have shaken thousands of hands.
There is much to be said about the importance of a good handshake and the consequences of a bad one. Hopefully after reading this short breakdown you will be better prepared for introduction and interview situations that require some sort of handshaking.
Grip Strength: Like Goldilocks
Everyone knows the story of “Goldilocks and the Three Bears”, and how she tried three different beds before she found one that was just right. You should apply this parable to your handshakes. Don’t try to be a tough guy by leavening a bone-crushing handshake. You may think you are signifying determination, strength of character or dominance, but what you are really saying with this strongman-grip is “I lack confidence and I’m trying to overcompensate by squeezing your hand very tightly”. Unless you are shaking the hand for a weight-lifter job opening or professional wrestler job, you won’t do yourself any favors by squeezing too hard.
Clammy Palms: Nervous Nelly
This handshake condition is very common and harder to control than an overly strong grip. When the stakes are high, people get nervous, that is simply the nature of our biological response to stress. However, just because your brain tells your hand to produce sweat doesn’t mean you have to soak the hand of the person you are greeting. Instead, should you feel your palms are becoming very wet from sweat, it is advisable that to keep our hands open. If your hands are sweating and you keep them in your pockets or curled up in fists, you will only preserve that moisture. Instead keep your hands open, out of your pants, and wipe them on your pants before making that all-important handshake.
Loose Wrist: Uninterested
This is the opposite of the strong-grip. This handshake is when the handshake does not really signify any interest the cultprit will tend tojust place their hand in the hand of another person and let it be shaken. This loose wristed approach can only leave a negative impression, as it seems you are not focusedor taking the handshake seriously. A limp-wristed handshake should be corrected by keeping your wrist straight and gripping the hand of the person you are greeting by a moderate amount of pressure. By maintaining a proper form you will project confidence and enthusiasm for the subject at hand.
In summary, it may be advisable that you take a few minutes to reflect on your handshake form and how you may be able to improve it. If you can follow the styles presented in the above three paragraphs you should have no worries about performing the “perfect” handshake.