Social Question

Coloma's avatar

How do you shake hands, firmly or feebly?

Asked by Coloma (47105points) March 29th, 2016

I had a strange handshake experience yesterday during a business meeting with an Attorney. As a women I offer a firm handshake and am usually the first one to extend my hand. This guy just barely grasped the tips of my fingers and I found it rather bizarre. Maybe I caught him off guard but you would think, as a professional, that a handshake would be pretty standard business etiquette.

Are you a firm shaker or a creepy finger squeezer? haha

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27 Answers

elbanditoroso's avatar

Firmly but not crushingly.

It always strikes me as odd when I get a wimpy handshake in return.

Coloma's avatar

@elbanditoroso Exactly! The guy just barely grabbed the tips of like 3 of my fingers and lightly squeezed them. I just found it really unusual.

Pachy's avatar

As a very young boy, I was taught by my favorite uncle, a salesman, to shake a man’s hand firmly and look him straight in his eyes; I’ve always done exactly that.

When shaking a woman’s hand, I always strive to match her firmnes, or lack thereof.

Seek's avatar

Depends on the situation.

In normal everyday mundane life, firm handshake.

At SCA events, Renaissance faires, etc., offer hand and curtsey.

gondwanalon's avatar

It depends on how the other person shapes hands. I match the grip of the other person.

Coloma's avatar

Maybe the guy was a germ-a-phobe, haha. Yes, I too always offer a firm shake or one that matches the other persons grip and look the person in the eye as @Pachy said.

ucme's avatar

I prefer the hokey cokey method, can be a real ice breaker in the right company.
Differs when it comes to our housestaff though, they are trained to bow & gently kiss the back of my hand, breeds discipline you see :D

ragingloli's avatar

I apply no pressure whatsoever.

Coloma's avatar

@ucme Now THAT is funny! lol

Strauss's avatar

I’m in the “firm handshake, look ‘em in the eye” camp.

CWOTUS's avatar


Tropical_Willie's avatar

I’m with @Pachy and @Yetanotheruser Firm and look them in the eye.

EzraDixon's avatar

Also in the “firm handshake, look ‘em in the eye” camp.

In fact, I may or may not judge people on how they shake hands.

ibstubro's avatar

Grasp and release. My hand is rigid, but I don’t apply a lot of pressure.

I’ve had the ‘grasp the ends of your fingers’ shake, and it’s unnerving.
I also dislike the “southern belle” method, where the ‘lady’ just puts her limp fingers forward so you may clasp them.

EzraDixon's avatar

@ibstubro I hate when the “southern belle method” happens and you’re going in with a firm shake, because you ultimately (unintentionally) end up crushing their hand. Oops :x

Coloma's avatar

@EzraDixon Welcome to the pod! :-)

@ibstubro Yeesh..yes, I was creeped out by a 50 something year old man doing the end of fingers shake. haha

EzraDixon's avatar

@Coloma Happy to be here :)

dxs's avatar

I couldn’t tell you. Handshakes don’t mean much to me, so I’m usually not even paying attention when it happens.

Coloma's avatar

@dxs Well, you’d notice if you got a wimpy finger shake. haha

syz's avatar

I was recently at a career fair as a potential employer and most of the millennials that I met had flaccid, clammy handshakes. Shudder

ragingloli's avatar

I think people who judge (or “judg” for you colonials) people based on their handshake should be destroyed.

Coloma's avatar

@ragingloli Well….a handshake does convey a lot, not any different than any type of body language.

ibstubro's avatar

Awww…give a shake a chance, @ragingloli.

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

Firmly. I have had men from different cultures say they don’t shake hands with women. Not often, but it has happened.

dxs's avatar

@Earthbound_Misfit And I’ve met women who don’t shake hands with men. They’re only “allowed” to touch their husband.

Pandora's avatar

Between firm and light but not feeble or hard, while looking in their face. But I approach carefully in case I encounter sweaty palms. Then it feeble. I don’t squeeze though. That just seems too needy.

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