At a recent networking workshop D. Darling suggested
one thing a person could do if their hands were moist
before a handshake introduction would be to hold
a cold (presumable with condensation on it) drink
and apologize for the moisture.
More to the point, how can we professionally deal
with moist hands in these possibly awkward situations?
First, understand the fundamentals. There are two
types of sweat glands
- apocrine which respond to stress and can emit lipids
and proteins that interact with bacteria
- eccrine which respond to heat and exercise and
emit mostly salts in perspiration
So, the common stimuli are stress, heat and vigorous
exercise. We all realize weight gain can be associated
with more profuse sweating, as well.
1. Be conscious of ambient conditions and move to cooler
parts of rooms or space or where there is good circulation
2. Know the little things that allow evaporation from your
hands that will cool them.
If your hands are in your lap, lay them be palms up.
Visit the restroom before entering a room or being
introduced and run cool water on your hands and dry them
3. In preparation for a higher profile, pressure event,
do what you enjoy that reduces stress. I commonly like
to do a long run.
4. During an interview, don’t hesitate to take water.
It will cool you and it also keeps your throat moist. As
with many people a dry throat is a ‘pressure signal’ that
is connected to stimuli for perspiring.
5. Avoid warmer drinks and caffeinated beverages, as
caffeine seems to increase heart rate.
6. Consider carrying a dry cloth in your pocket that you
can use to eliminate moisture on your hands by reaching
in moments before.
7. Although I have not heard of anyone using it, foot
powder can desiccate your hands quickly.