THAT’S RIGHT, I’M TALKING ABOUT A HANDSHAKE!
As a father, one of the things that I teach my boys is to look someone in the eyes and give them a firm handshake. I know some people probably think that a handshake does not really matter; however I would like to disagree. Just think of the last time that you shook someone’s hand and either got a sweaty, limp, firm or bone-crushing shake; and the subconscious impressions that you made about that person. There are some handshakes that you definitely don’t forget!
When I worked in corrections the inmates and I had an understanding that I would not shake their hands but rather give them dap (meeting our fists together). I didn’t choose to not shake their hand to be rude; however we had a mutual understanding that they had a lot of idle alone-time (grin) and there was not a lot of hand washing in prison. While working in politics I would go with the bone-crushing shake; people would never forget who I was. BTW-I really like for women to have a firm shake, even a bone-crushing shake; however my wife has not totally bought in to this concept. Since I have been in ministry I have downgraded to a moderately firm shake, because early on I figured out that it wasn’t cool that the pastor was crushing hands. At the end of the day, I prefer a simple firm handshake; no matter the gender and if you’re a guy and we have not seen one another in awhile, we can do what I call the one-handed-grip-hug. If you want your handshake to display self-confidence in the United States, the proper shake should include:
- Make eye contact and stand if you are seated
- Give a firm handshake for about 3 seconds
- Shake a couple of times and release
Is a handshake really that important? What type of handshake do you give/prefer and does gender matter? Whose hand would you like to shake? Share your thoughts and handshaking stories!
Scott Williams is a speaker, strategist, consultant and developer of leaders. He is an avid blogger at BigIsTheNewSmall.com and leverages Social Media to make a Kingdom impact. Scott is passionate about leadership development, organizational growth, and diversity. He is the author of “Church Diversity – Sunday The Most Segregated Day of the Week.” Scott is married, a father of two, and lives in Oklahoma City, OK.