BEST TYPES OF HANDSHAKES
A handshake is perhaps the first sign of communication when a person meets one on one. The way you shake your hands says a lot about who you are and in what frame of mind you are about to attend the meeting. Different Types of Handshakes are used commonly in informal settings when a meeting is about to begin or end, or as part of an introductory round.
Types of Handshakes
Handshakes date back to the cavemen who used to put up their hands when greeting each other to show hands-free of weapons, intending friendliness. Over time, the greeting signal changed to taking each other’s hand showing a warm welcome. A body language enthusiast can spot several different types in what most of us conceive as a simple greeting gesture.
- Firm Handshake
When both parties extend their hands and shake on an equal level with no one hand above the other, it is a firm and neutral handshake.
- Dominant Handshake
When one person extends his hand by offering his palm down, either he is of a dominant personality by nature or is consciously trying to signal his intention of decision making in the forthcoming discussion or negotiation. These types of conscious dominant handshakes are most commonly seen in power struggles by politicians in front of the camera. The way to counter a dominant handshake is to hold the dominating person’s arm while shaking his hand.
- Submissive Handshake
Responding to a palms-down dominating hand would be a submissive hand, indicating an easy-going or submissive personality. It indicates to the counterparty your willingness to give in to demands across the table. Also, the handshake should be firm. If you offer your hand too softly, it indicates submissiveness.
- Wet Fish Handshake
Merely offering fingers rather than the full hand or a limp hand results in an awkward handshake. This might be done by an unwilling female forced into a handshake by a male. Or when the intention to shake hands is not expressed very decisively.
- Handshake with Females
Most of the time when greeting a person of the opposite sex, it is difficult to judge whether a handshake is acceptable to the female. It is best for the female to offer the hand. A female willing to shake hands shows an openness to try new things. Too soft a handshake by a female is not considered positively by males. If a female is offering you a handshake, match the firmness of her handshake. Like men, they too don’t like clumsy handshakes.
Certainly! Here’s an additional subheading for the article “Best Types of Handshakes”:
Handshake Mistakes to Avoid: Common Errors and Their Impact
Handshakes, while important for establishing connections and leaving positive impressions, can also be susceptible to mistakes that may have a negative impact. This subheading focuses on identifying common handshake mistakes and discussing their potential consequences in various social and professional settings.
- The Weak Handshake
Exploring the negative impression caused by a weak handshake, where the grip lacks firmness and confidence. Discussing how a weak handshake can convey a lack of assertiveness, professionalism, and undermine the establishment of trust.
- The Overly Aggressive Handshake
Addressing the issue of an overly aggressive handshake, where the grip is excessively tight or accompanied by excessive force. Analyzing how this type of handshake can be perceived as domineering, intimidating, or disrespectful, potentially damaging rapport and creating discomfort.
- The Inappropriate Duration
Discussing the importance of maintaining an appropriate duration for a handshake, avoiding both excessively brief and excessively prolonged handshakes. Highlighting how a handshake that is too brief may come across as dismissive, while one that lingers for too long can be interpreted as intrusive or awkward.
- The Lack of Eye Contact
Emphasizing the significance of maintaining eye contact during a handshake. Exploring how avoiding eye contact can be perceived as disinterest, lack of confidence, or a failure to establish a genuine connection.
- Ignoring Cultural Norms
Discussing the importance of being mindful of cultural differences and customs related to handshakes. Exploring how ignorance or disregard for cultural norms surrounding handshakes can lead to misunderstandings, discomfort, or offense.
- Failure to Adapt to the Situation
Addressing the mistake of using an inappropriate handshake style for the given context. Discussing how using a formal handshake in a casual setting or vice versa can create a mismatch and hinder effective communication or rapport-building.
By highlighting these common handshake mistakes, individuals can become more aware of their actions and strive to avoid them, thereby improving their handshake etiquette and making a positive impression in social and professional interactions.
- Handshake Fumble
When a hand offered is withdrawn too quickly, the other person offering his hand to shake would be left with his hand dangling in air. You would again offer your hand by which time he would have withdrawn, hence leading to the handshake fumble. The best way to avoid this is to hold out you hand only in situations where you are sure the other party is not hostile. In case the person has agreed to meet you rather unwillingly, it is best to nod in greeting and wait for the person to offer a handshake. On neutral grounds, remember to hold out your hand long enough to allow the other person to react.
Can you guess what is the handshake in the following picture all about? If yes, don’t forget to put your answer in the comment section below.
A handshake by itself is not sufficient to show a warm greeting. So, these were the different types of handshakes. One has to match it with a genuine smile and look the other person in the eye while greeting. These gestures together show a positive attitude going into the meeting and make the henceforth conversation easier.
Perhaps the best study of handshakes would be politicians greeting each other in front of cameras, each struggling to stand on the left side or to gain the dominant upper hand. Read our case study on this play of power using handshakes.