INFOGRAPHIC: Handshake etiquette: How to greet foreign nationals for the first time

Handshake etiquette: How to greet foreign nationals for the first time

You never know when you might meet another nationality in meetings – be it a guest speaker or another attendee. Although traditional handshakes are the safest gesture, the smallest details can make the biggest difference. Here are some of the common handshake gestures from around the globe:
• Long firm handshake
• Strong eye contact
• For men to women: a kiss on the cheek
• Same gesture when parting
• DO NOT shake hands
• Place palms together at chest level, then bow
• Wait for them to instigate the first gesture
• Look them in the eye
• Don’t bow
• A strong grip means dominance
China, Japan, Korea, Singapore & Other South-East Asian Countries
• Greet the oldest person first
• Avoid direct eye contact
• Bow slightly
• Grip lightly
• If you are a woman, offer your hand first
• Shake firm and fast
• Women don’t shake hands with other women
United States
• Introduce yourself by name
• Shake short and firm
• Leave a lasting smile
• Never shake hands with the opposite sex, unless it is in a business setting
• Men should kiss a woman’s hand; not shake it
Mexico and Other Latin Countries
• Long-lasting handshakes
• Men usually follow this up with a hug
France, Spain, Italy & Portugal
• Shake firm and fast
• A kiss on both cheeks is highly appreciated
India, UAE & Other Middle Eastern Countries
• Always shake using the right hand
• Use the right hand for everything; left hand is believed to be dirty
• Shake hands with EVERYBODY
• Greet them with their first and last name
• If you don’t, they will likely not talk to you
By familiarising yourself with these traits and customs, you will be well on your way to making better connections with foreign nationals! Leave an even better impression by holding your meetings in one of our meeting rooms in London… and your foreign guests will remember their visit to the UK for sure!
Posted by Julie Tucker

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