How You Can Have the Perfect Handshake

HIGH POINT, N.C., June 27, 2017 – Mastering the art of the handshake can be critical when making a good first impression. The handshake is one of the world’s most common greetings and with National Handshake Day on June 29, Larry Quinn, director of sales and chair and assistant professor of marketing at High Point University, is available to discuss what it takes to execute the perfect handshake. Quinn shares the following tips:

First Impression

It’s not just a handshake, but an impression. A lasting impression. In the first few seconds that you meet someone they are making judgments, make sure they are positive judgments.

The Art of the Handshake

When you first approach someone, reach out your hand in greeting immediately with a smile on your face. Look them in the eye and with your peripheral vision look at the socket of their hand. Reach out your hand, hit their socket and push in so that your socket is locked with theirs. Then, wrap your hand around theirs and shake once or twice while saying “hello” followed by your first and last name.

Be Prepared

  • Make sure you are smiling and have a pleasant look on your face.
  • Look them in the eye.
  • Be the first one to offer your hand.
  • Make sure your handshake is firm.
  • If you have the opportunity, wash your hands in warm water before and dry them with a towel.

The “Don’ts” of a Handshake

  • Don’t give them a grip that is too firm or crushes their hand.
  • Don’t pull them in and touch their shoulder.
  • Don’t shake their hand with both hands.
  • Don’t stick your hand out with your palm on the top or the bottom.
  • Don’t have food or grease on your hands.


About Quinn: Larry Quinn, chair of the Department of Marketing and Sales, director of the Professional Selling Program, and assistant professor of marketing, joined the Earl N. Phillips School of Business after working in the business world as a top executive in sales and marketing. He began his career at EDS and Xerox, earning most of his experience along the way in technology services, publishing and computer equipment businesses. He was consistently cited for exceeding sales quotas and closure rates, as well as turning around challenging situations. During his business career, he maintained a consistent record of instilling loyalty and exceptional performance in teams through his creativity, hard work and vision. Those same skills that served him well in the corporate world serve High Point University students well in the classroom.


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