Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Terminating an Interminable Handshake; How to Free Your Hand From Someone Who Won’t Let Go (Without Seeming Rude)

Today, while discussing the “Three-Pump Handshake” during my seminar on “Some Simple Verbal and Nonverbal Skills for Creating a Highly Favorable First Impression” at a division of Subsea 7, one of the participants asked the following question: What is one to do if the other person just clings onto you, i.e. will not let go of your right hand even after you’ve ended the “three pumps”? In other words, how do you extricate your hand from the other person’s grasp without coming across as rude?

After some discussion, here was the consensus: Go ahead and free your right hand from the other person’s hold (after the three pumps) but as you are doing so, gently place your left hand on the other person’s right shoulder or arm as a compensating gesture. Needless to say, you should be exhibiting the “all-32 teeth-showing smile” as you are executing all these maneuvers. In fact, a couple of the audience members--one of them a woman--confirmed having tried this before and that it worked out beautifully.

© Copyright 2012 V. J. Singal

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