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How to Shake Hands – A Gentleman’s Guide

How to shake hands
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Let’s Shake Hands.

People shake hands, it’s an ubiquitous staple of unspoken communication common across political treaties, business deals and tennis nets.

Man has now been extending his good hand forward for over two thousand years.

Depictions of soldiers, citizens and emperors shaking hands have been discovered in sculpted artwork all the way from ancient Greece.

If it’s that common, you might as well do it well. Here are tips on how to shake hands like a man!

Stand for yourself.

Unless you happen to be physically unable, rising up and putting yourself on the same level to shake hands is an absolute must -especially in business.

Standing indicates that you’re on equal footing with the recipient, and shows that you respect his or her relationship with you.

Get a Grip


Ever had someone shake your hand and received the dreaded ‘dead fish’ limp-gripped exchange?

Yeah, no one else likes that. Make sure the webbing of your hands meets and grip confidently without causing your partner discomfort or forbid, pain.

Eyes on Point

To shake hands, especially in business and sportsmanship, is meant to convey sincerity and trust.

Make sure you maintain eye contact when initiating a handshake. Look away or at something in the distance, and you give the impression that you’re either in a hurry or are anxious.

Get Shaking

Every handshake needs hands and well, shakes.

Your preferred method of shaking another’s hand speaks volumes about your character. Aim to move from your elbow, enthusiastically yet not too overstatedly.

Also, just a couple times should be enough to impress your recipient.

Make it Your Own

Like mentioned above, the way you shake hands is an extension and reflection of your character.

The business world runs on first impressions, and often the very first ‘hello’ you will give and receive will be through the bond of a handshake.

If you wish to lighten the mood, have a happy expression and an equally enthusiastic handshake.

Want to show people who’s the boss? Lay it across firm, sincere and with a slight motion – they’ll know you mean business!


Remember, your handshake is just one of the weapons in your ‘first-impressions’ arsenal. Make sure it reflects you and makes you as memorable as you should be.

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