In a study by Greg Stewart of the University of Iowa in which students were rated by professional hand shakers, raters, and business representatives, students who scored high with their handshakes also scored higher with the business representatives as better “hires.” This illustrates how the right handshake gives an applicant a better chance to ace the interview.
A person’s handshake, though not what is remembered most about a person, establishes how an interviewer forms his or her impression. If you want to make to a better first impression, here are some tips on how to give a better handshake.
Keep it dry – When you offer your hand to the interviewer, you don’t want that person to feel weird because of your sweaty palms. Keep your palms dry, and have a handkerchief with you to wipe your hands. You can also wash your hands a few minutes before the interview to help with sweaty palms.
Firm grip – One of the things that can ruin a handshake is a poor grip. When you shake hands, you should use a grip that is firm (though not overly firm).
Smile – A smile can help you remain calm and puts the other person at ease. Smiling at the interviewer shows that you are approachable.
Eye contact – Just like when you’re talking, shaking hands without eye contact shows disinterest. In both words and actions, you want the interviewer to know that you are interested in joining the company.
Keep it short – A good handshake only lasts 2 to 3 seconds. A long handshake will make the other person feel uncomfortable.
In an interview, you want everything to be just right. It is important to set the tone right at the start of the interview. Don’t ruin your impression—and your chances of getting the job—with a bad handshake.