Sunday, January 13, 2008

What Happened To The Handshake?

By: Randi S. Lewis, Founder, Resume Boutique LLC
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Can your handshake really make a difference? The answer is a resounding YES! Whether you are a high school student going on a college interview or a seasoned professional meeting with potential new business colleagues, the manner in which you greet others matters. A strong handshake coupled with eye contact and a proper greeting will create an initial positive impression. A weak handshake, on the other hand, is perceived as a sign of weakness.
Here are a few simple handshake tips:
  • At the beginning of your meeting, stand tall, extend your hand, smile, look the person in the eye, shake his or her hand fully and firmly, and say, "Hello Mr. Smith, Randi Lewis. Nice to meet you."
  • If you are a novice interviewer, practice this with someone else until you get it right.
  • The handshake should last for about three pumps.
  • You should maintain eye contact the entire time.
  • If you have a strong handshake, your interviewer is likely to form the immediate impression that you are confident and invested in the interview. This sets the tone for the interview and the rest will be up to you.
  • At the end of the interview, stand up, approach your interviewer, extend your hand, shake firmly with the three pumps and the eye contact and say something like, "Thank you, Mr. Smith, for meeting with me. I enjoyed our conversation."

For more information about the importance of handshakes, contact Randi Lewis, Founder, Resume Boutique LLC, at 410.602.2500 or

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