A vital component of a first impression can be your warm smile and a good hand shake.  The hand shake seems a simple, common sense physical gesture when you meet someone, but important in your job search, in business and in life.

It tells many things about a person and their professional image.  A firm shake, the person is trustworthy, open to engage, warm spirited and confident.  A bad hand shake for the nervous person:  a limpy shake or with sweaty hands, failure to make a connection; or if the shake is too firm cutting of circulation (bone crusher!) – the person maybe suspicious, anti-social and so on…

Have that winning smile!  How often have we heard the phrase, ‘ smile and the world smiles too’, ‘warms hearts and opens doors’.  A nice smile is an important asset in your professional life.  Once again, first impressions with a warm and confident smile will put you and the person you are greeting at ease, makes you appear much more approachable.  A smile is an effective ice breaker. Be careful not to go overboard with this though in case people take this too far, you may be seen as insecure, false or lacking integrity.

It’s one of the first and last impressions you’ll leave with an interviewer  – read about how to give a good handshake.

Practise your handshakes and ask for feedback.

It will be useful for your attendance at upcoming careers events on campus:  http://www.victoria.ac.nz/st_services/careers/students/graduate_recruitment/events.aspx