My dad taught me at a young age that first impressions are lasting impressions.

He was a salesman. First impressions helped put food on the table.

“When you meet someone, you give a firm handshake and look them in the eyes,” he said. Then he practiced with me. Over and over.

Have you ever encountered that person who gives you a weak handshake and turns the other way when you say hello? That’s a bad first impression.

When you engage someone, be attentive. The handshake should be firm and meaningful. It should not, however, be intimidating.

I’m passing this information along to my sons and I “grade” them when I have the opportunity.

The handshake is a small gesture but it’s important.