Filed under: advice, Business, communication, Excellence, handshake, image, reputation
A few days ago I wrote about the different types of “bad” handshakes.
After attending an etiquette dinner sponsored by our school, I learned a few tips about the most effective handshake.
1. Stand up – It’s important and effective to respect the person by standing up.
2. Extend your hand first – This shows confidence on your part, and your interest in meeting the person
4. 2-3 Shakes – This is enough contact to get the point across. As our educator mentioned, “you don’t want to hold the person hostage”
5. Eye contact – Shows respect and that your full attention is on the other person
6. Smile – Nothing warms the relationship up more than a smile at the end.
Another quick fact that our educator mentioned.
In the first 60 seconds of meeting someone, people make up to 11 judgments.
That’s in 60 SECONDS!
An effective handshake will sway the judgment for the better.
Saw a great article about the importance of a solid handshake.
More often than not, I feel faced with people whose handshakes are ludicrous, and do not reflect on their confidence at all. Here are the worst ones:
“The “macho cowboy”… is the almost bone-crunching clasp many businessmen use to shake hands. What are they trying to prove, anyway? There’s no need to demonstrate your physical strength when shaking another person’s hand.
The wimp… is usually delivered by men who are afraid to “hurt the little lady” when shaking women’s hands. Modern female professionals expect their male counterparts to convey the same respect they’d show their male colleagues.
The “dead fish”… conveys no power. While there’s no need to revert to the macho cowboy death grip, a firm clasp is more powerful than one that barely grabs the hand.
The “four finger”… is when the person’s hand never meets your palm, and instead clasps all four fingers, crushing them together.
The cold and clammy… feels like you’re shaking hands with a snake. Warm up your hand first before grabbing someone else’s.
The sweaty palm… is pretty self-explanatory, and pretty gross. Talcum powder to the rescue.
The “I’ve got you covered” grip… happens when the other person covers your hand with his or her left hand as if your shake is secretive.
The “I won’t let go”… seems to go on for eternity because the other person won’t drop his or her hand. After two or three pumps, it’s time to let go. “It’s a lot like a kiss — you know when it’s over,” Brody says.
The “southpaw”… happens when the person uses the left hand to shake because the right hand has food or a drink. Always carry your drink and plate with your left hand to keep your right one free for meet and greets.
The “ringed torture”… occurs when the person’s rings hurt your hand. Try to limit the number of rings you wear on the right hand to only one or two and be mindful of any that have large stones.”
Just like bad breath, a bad haircut, a bad suit and a bad tie will compromise your reputation, a weak handshake will do no better.
Which one are you? Which one do you dislike the most?
So are you the waffler, underperformer, big game talker?
Always be sure that your performance is at a level that you are deemed responsible, reliable and a great asset to the team. Just recently we discussed the concept of reputation and credibility. I think that this advertisement reflects that very well. It’s simple, if you don’t follow through on your actions, you will not gain respect from your boss.
And would you REALLY want your boss to do everything at Kinko’s?
Your reputation is an asset. Your reputation is what makes you stand out from others. Call it “brand recognition”. You are a brand, and your reputation is the buzz which goes around about you. Whether negative or positive, it’s always there.
That’s why it’s important to keep this reputation under control. And by that, I mean your behavior. If you promise something and don’t follow through on it, that will reflect in what other people think about you (your reputation). If you take something to the next level, that will also reflect in what other people think about you (your reputation?).
Your reputation is like the press release on an investment. If the press release is positive, you can be sure that people will approach you in a positive manner, whether it be companies, prospective schools or anything else. If it’s negative, people will avoid it like a bad investment. Nobody wants to invest their time, money and patience into something that has no return.
When somebody invests their time and money into you, it is your duty to maximize their ROI. Trust me, there are only positives that come out of a strong ROI. To do this, you need to create a strong set of habits. If you invest in yourself, others will follow.
So when you’re at your job, internship or even at school, remember that everytime you do a piece of work, you are returning on somebody’s investment. Make it a strong one!
Many people don’t understand the power of their words. Words can be used to put down other people, or to make them feel great. Words are sometimes the only contract you hold with other people, ensuring them that you will follow through on what you say. This brings me to the concepts of Accountability and Reputation.
In many cases, people who do not keep their word don’t feel as if they have done anything wrong. Sometimes they will apologize, and sometimes they will blow it off and pretend nothing is wrong. This is the worst response. You have to remember that every single time you tell somebody you will do something with them or for them, whether it be meet for coffee, have dinner or go out for a drink, you have to be accountable for what happens. If you know in advance that you will not be able to make it (or be late), let the other person know that you care and respect them enough to think about them.
Accountability feeds right into the idea of reputation. Reputation, according to the dictionary, is “the estimation in which a person or thing is held, esp. by the community or the public generally.” As much as you may think that free will and doing whatever you want is important, when preparing for the business world you have to understand that reputation will make you or break you. If you miss a meeting or two, or keep coming in to work late, you will be held accountable for those mistakes and your reputation will be compromised. Once this is compromised, it will be harder to get what you want at the firm you’re working at, and harder to climb up that ladder.
If people can’t rely on you, then why would they support you?
You have to be accountable for every single action that you take, whether it is good or bad. By taking this responsibility, you can be sure that your reputation will not be compromised in the future.
Always be on time, always let people know you will be late, and always follow through on what you tell other people. Anything else is disrespectful.
You don’t want to be “that late, lazy and unreliable employee” in the eyes of the company, right?
(that is, if you can keep your job long enough to develop that reputation)
Remember, people talk negatively about products that don’t make the mark. Why wouldn’t they do the same with a person who doesn’t pull his or her weight?