What Your Handshake Can Tell About You During The Interview


What your handshake can tell about you

During the job interview, everything you say and do is being evaluated (that’s what the interviews are conducted for, aren’t they?). Not only your answers to tricky interview questions matter; if you don’t know how to react to the unexpected questions, see here for more information: https://resumeperk.com/blog/top-unexpected-questions-during-job-interview. Your body language is significant as well.

The body language alongside with your visual appearance is even more important as they let the interlocutor know what kind of person you are. The good news is, just like your answers, body language should be can be shaped and prepared to ensure you make a superb impression during an interview. Our resume services NYC want to share a few tips on making your body language flawless.

The power of a handshake

A handshake is a standard greeting in our culture. However, you won’t believe how much can a routine handshake reveal about you. Some even insist that a handshake determines the tone of the interview and makes most of the first impression. So, don’t leave everything to chance.

Some kinds of handshake send the wrong signals from the very beginning. Check if you are making one of the following mistakes – and correct them immediately.

Also in this section:

Types of handshakes you should avoid:

  • A handshake with sweaty palms
    It’s easy to understand – you’re nervous and that makes your hands sweat. But, keep in mind that it’s the signal you’re sending to a potential employer. If the candidate gets over stressed about a simple interview, how will he handle dealing, for example, with irritated, rude customers? So, wash your hands and use talcum powder before the interview to avoid such awkward situations.
  • A weak ‘finger tips’ handshake
    During a handshake greeting, you should grasp the interviewer’s hand, not only touch it with your fingers or place your palm in theirs. If you do so, it will come across as a sign of your fatigue, uncertainty and lack of confidence. These aren’t the qualities the prospective employer, are they?
  • A long grasp
    The duration of your handshake is also important. For example, if you hold the interviewer’s hand for too long without letting it go, it’s likely to make them feel uncomfortable. As for the personality trait it conveys, they may label you as a ‘lingerer’. Control the length of your handshake – it should be a short greeting, not a long grasp.
  • Taking your hand away too quickly
    Don’t go to extremes and don’t take away your hand after just a quick handshake. Thus, you show that you’re either in a hurry or lack respect to your interlocutor.
  • An overly strong handshake
    Some believe that if your handshake looks like you’re trying to crash the interviewer’s hand, it shows your power and leadership skills. However, it’s not like that. A strong grasp tends to demonstrate you’re aggressive, have an aggressive nature or are hard to work with.

As well as your interview outwear (see a set of tips on what to wear for interview in this post: https://resumeperk.com/blog/what-to-wear-for-a-winning-job-interview), a handshake tells a lot about your personality. And, if you want to change the impression you make, work at your handshake. Here’s how a perfect handshake should look like:

The rules of a perfect handshake

  • Shake the hand up and down for no more than three times
    As we’ve figured out before, the duration of a handshake matters. Three ups and downs are the optimal tip for a handshake – it’s long enough to greet a person, but not too long to make them feel uncomfortable.
  • Make your handshake firm enough
    A moderately firm handshake implies that you’re a confident personality that goes along with others well. If you’re not sure about the duration or strengths of your handshake, practice it with a friend or family member until you find the optimal exertion.
  • Approach your hand from the side, not from the above
    Laying your hand above the interlocutor’s looks dominating, which isn’t the right tone during an interview. When your hand comes from the side, it demonstrates equality and your readiness to collaborate.
  • Keep your nails tidy
    If you’re a woman, stay on a neutral, pastel tone of a nail polish. If you’re a man, make sure your nails don’t need a manicure. The conditions of your nails and skin contribute to the impression you make as well.
  • Maintain an eye contact
    Failure to keep an eye contact is one of the biggest ‘no-no’s during an interview. It immediately sends nonverbal signals and sets the wrong tone for the entire conversation. If you don’t know how to make eye contact appropriately, here’s the hint: try to figure out which color are the interviewer’s eyes.

A confident handshake can send the right nonverbal signal and set the positive tone from the beginning of the interview. So, when preparing for it, remember that there are no unimportant things during the interview – every little thing matters. Make sure that your body language sends the right signals to an interviewer – it will help you a lot. And don’t neglect to practice top interview questions once again if you really want to be top of mind for a hiring manager interviewing you.


Are you one of those who keep applying for jobs but hardly get to an interview stage? If so, maybe your resume needs serious improvements. You can hire a professional who will make your resume flawless or request a free resume critique to understand the mistakes you’ve made and correct them on your own.

Have you already learned how to shake hands properly and did it help you during an interview?

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