Skip Nav
DIY
35 Work-Appropriate Halloween Costumes That Keep It Classy
Teaching
The Surprising Ways Teaching Is Changing in the 21st Century
Career
Why Resilience in the Workplace Matters — and How to Cultivate It

A Good Handshake Gives You a Better Chance of Getting Hired

Your Handshake Is the Real Window to Your Soul

Are you a woman with a firm grip? A new study shows that you may be more hireable. Ninety-eight students were put through two tests that included mock job interviews and having their handshakes rated by professional handshake raters (who knew that was a job?!). The two judging parties compared scores and discovered that the students with strong handshakes were also the most hireable.

The leader of the study, Greg Stewart, believes that your handshake tells a lot about a person and is a crucial part of a professional first impression. He thinks that a strong shake gives important nonverbal clues about someone's personality, and interestingly, women who participated in the study and exhibited a strong handshake seemed to have an advantage over men. So what does it take to get an A on your shake? According to Stewart, "Good handshakes involve a firm, complete grip, eye contact and vigorous up-and-down movement."

Source

MuppetsForDinner MuppetsForDinner 9 years
Here's what's even WORSE than the limp handshake: THE HALF HANDSHAKE! You know that woman (or man) who only half puts their hand into yours for a handshake? This is when you only get their fingers and you are left thinking, "Am I supposed to kiss your hand or something??" It drives me insane. It's so snobbish and annoying. I want to just throw their hand down, look at them and ask what they expect me to do with that kind of greeting. lol.
freegracefrom freegracefrom 9 years
I much prefer having too firm handshakes over too limp. Even when a guy gives me the death-grip handshake, I like it because it makes me think that he believes I can take it. It seems like more often than not, people have weak, limp handshakes. I have to admit that that I do begin to form an opinion on a person based on their handshake.
chancleta chancleta 9 years
my dad always said this to my brother when we were growing up the lesson always stayed with me as a woman i strive for a firm (but not too firm) handshake too limp is wimpy too firm is for dudes i strive for a good middle ground
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 9 years
I've heard before that a firm handshake is a must it's just so weird.
Schaianne Schaianne 9 years
I can't STAND a limp, weak handshake. You don't have to break the bones in my hand but BE there, damnit! It's an insult - whether it's a female or male shaking my hand.
Smart-Living Smart-Living 9 years
Just a little personal note — when I met my fiance we shook hands. In a bar. It felt kind of out of place at the time, but it's something I distinctly remember. Maybe the leader of the study was on to something about the shake giving important nonverbal clues about someone's personality!
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 9 years
I've been complimented on my handshake. My grip is just right, firm and comfortable. I agree -- it's important to get palm to palm, and then shake. Don't squeeze fingers. That's uncomfortable, and can hurt. Personally, I like shaking hands. It's a good way to start and end a meeting. It's nice way to communicate, I think. Sometimes, if I particularly appreciate that person, or we had a good meeting, I would shake their hand with both my hands -- I would put my other hand over their hand. It's just a gesture of appreciation and good will.
duck-duck-goose duck-duck-goose 9 years
I've been told I give great hand. :p (I give a better shake than most men I know.)
nancita nancita 9 years
People with really limp handshakes just weird me out. I definitely get a better impression of someone if they have a firm handshake. Of course, I'm no "professional handshake rater" or anything. Ha!
shanimalcracker shanimalcracker 9 years
I definitely have a firm handshake now; I get so annoyed when people have a weak one. I will sometimes compliment people (friend-type people, not business people) on having good handshakes. :)
seems-suga seems-suga 9 years
Where I come from you shake a person's lightly and you don't always have to look people in the eyes because that is considered rude. It's a show of respect and it doesn't mean you are weak. But when I'm outside of that environment I give solid handshakes and look people in the eyes. It all depends on where you are at so we can't say somebody is weak or strong based on a handshake all the time.
bluebellknoll bluebellknoll 9 years
I used to interview people for job openings at my work so I ran the gauntlet of wimpy and deathgrip handshakes. I don't think we hired any of them. Ladies, make sure you are shaking hands palm-to-palm. Don't grab and squeeze fingers! That is annoying.
MindayH MindayH 9 years
Firm shake - no reason not too.
looseseal looseseal 9 years
It's also bad to go too far the other way from limp... I remember an interviewer visibly wincing from my kung-fu death grip. Not good to start an interview with pain. Haha. But I don't want to overcompensate and end up with a limp handshake, either. I need to practice with someone who's not afraid of pain. Any takers?
SkinnyMarie SkinnyMarie 9 years
I actually get weird hand shakes from guys. Most guy assume the size of a womans hands being smaller then theirs, so they just grab my fingers before I can get palm to palm. Then they squeeze my fingers. Its so annoying. They should make guys learn how to give handshakes to women.
bellaressa bellaressa 9 years
I hate when I go to shake someone's hand (especially a man) and it's limp. I am a firm handshaker, I just look at them like come on.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
Some women shake hands SO lightly! And it drives me nuts!
knowmercy knowmercy 9 years
I heard this a while back too. It's been good advice, I think I've got a pretty firm shake. But I met a woman who bent one of my rings because of her hefty grip.
RosaDilia RosaDilia 9 years
I read about this years ago. It's always good to know this especially for someone who's job searching.
j2e1n9 j2e1n9 9 years
I have an impeccable handshake! Not even just for a woman, I have a better handshake than most men. Hate limpy little sucky handshakes. I have a feeling that shitty handshakers wont be inclined to read this article and improve themselves, however. Its kinda like preaching to the choir. :shrug:
bigestivediscuit bigestivediscuit 9 years
Hehe not too powerful though - I meant firm and strong, but not like, crazy grip! Sometimes people can really over-grip which is a bit weird. :)
bigestivediscuit bigestivediscuit 9 years
I've always had a powerful handshake - I think it's very important! Hate limp handshakes. Ugh.
ilanac13 ilanac13 9 years
when i was in college they took us through an exercise where we had to shake hands and they would tell us about ourselves and how we should change it since it's a 'first impression'
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
I heard this years ago. I've never been one to give a "girly" handshake.
Nina_79 Nina_79 9 years
I have met people with weak handshakes and it makes me not like them. I actually feel a bit physically repulsed by weak handshakes, even if the person seems ok otherwise. So yes, I probably wouldn't hire someone with a weak handshake. I mean why shake at all if you are just going to put your limp hand in someone elses?
Jobs For People Who Like to Read
Founder of Uppercase Box Lisa Parkin Interview
Google Recruiter Michael Junge Gives Interviewing Advice
CEO of Poppin Shares His Senior Level Interview Question
From Our Partners
Latest Career & Finance
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds