Handshakes convey a lot of information about you as a person- whether you are confident, trustworthy, competent, sound minded, etc. A handshake can form a winning first impression within six seconds, or ruin it. It is after all, the most primitive and powerful way of establishing initial connection with someone you don’t know or know very little of.
Experts say perfect handshake shouldn’t be too strong or too weak. It has become an art form. Studies show that a limp or awkward handshake can be a conversation stopper, and can negatively affect the behaviour of the person in front of you. Overly strong handshakes portray an inappropriate display of power and control.
Your posture and body language add majorly to your appearance. Timing must be right too. A good shake takes about a second and a half or two. Letting go too early can make it seem like you aren’t interested in the other person. A handshake should also be coupled with a head nod and eye contact; the combination of all of this exudes confidence.
Handshake spoiler alert
- Too many large rings on your right hand
- Sweaty palms
- Perfume/ fragrance on your hands
By using your other hand; double clasp or touch the arm or shoulder of the other person with your left hand, to increase the level of bonding. This will show you are focusing on the person. Moreover, keep in mind that everyone wants to be remembered. Say your name slowly while you shake hands, pause and listen to the name of the person you are meeting and repeat their name saying “Pleasure to meet you Mr. /Ms…”
A firm handshake with eye contact, smile and just the required amount of pumps provide the opportunity for a favourable first impression. It enables you to instantly establish a connection. You are confident, assertive, and thoroughly professional.
The Dead Fish
The loose floppy handshake. Apart from making you seem weak, it says that you are not fully committed. You are a passive personality.
The Arm Wrestler
This one can literally rip the arm out of the socket. It often conveys the idea that you are pushy and too eager to enhance a new relationship. It fails to inspire friendship.
Extending just the finger tips conveys to another person that you wish to maintain a certain distance. It’s a way of saying that I’m superior to you and I don’ want to touch you. You are arrogant and may be a little insecure.
The Bone Crusher
Squeezing the hand until the person cringes and his fingers are almost about to break. It’s an attempt to prove that you are stronger than the person. You are intimidating over confident and aggressive.
The Lobster Claw
Like the claw of a lobster, your thumb and the fingers touch the palm of the hand and there is no palm to palm contact. This usually indicates insecurity and that you are trying to hide something. You are timid and fear connecting with someone at a deep level.
Next time don’t take this simple gesture too lightly. You are being judged. First impression may not be the last one, but best one for sure.
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