It’s said that you should never judge a book by its cover. Considering that first impressions are made within 7 seconds of meeting someone, we’ll have to assume that judgment is being dished out rather often. Parents typically seek me out because of things that are going on around the table with their children, however I begin each series of Charm events with the seven essential ingredients to make a great first impression. One of those ingredients: a proper handshake. I’ve felt quite a few handshake maladies from adults, as of late. So, I thought I’d share a few of the symptoms to look out for, as well as the common cure.
Diagnosis: Floppy Fish
Symptoms: Most often dished out by ladies, the limp posturing of the hand causes this form of handshake to feel more like grasping a dead fish than a person possessing confidence.
Diagnosis: Bone Crusher
Symptoms: A crunched knuckle handshake most often given by men, this action might elicit a look of discomfort on the face of its recipient, but always leaves an impression of aggression.
Diagnosis: The Glove (A.K.A. The Politician’s Handshake)
Symptoms: A sign of closeness, the recipient’s right hand or shoulder is cupped by the left hand of the opposite person during the handshake; a gesture reserved for a personal setting – never for business.
Treatment: A Proper Handshake
Dosage: Extending your right hand (thumb pointing up), connect the web between your index finger and thumb firmly with that of the other person’s hand. Shake, with an up and down motion, three to four times (elbow close to your body) and release. Repeat as necessary.
Do you have a healthy handshake? The best way to find out is by practicing with someone who will give an honest opinion. In this case, practice really does makes perfect, and will lead to great first impressions when interacting with people – beyond those seven seconds.