I had three interviews, this week and last week, at the same company.

Last week, both guys didn't seem to have the handshake culture, especially at the end of the job interview. Nonetheless, I passed to the next round.

The next round was with this convivial HR lady. She had a smile during the whole interview.

At times, I feel like I tell extra details that could spoil my chances of getting the job.

At the end, when I was leaving, I was making sure not to forget the handshake, but, right after the door was open, she had her right hand busy and was kind of smiling and non-verbally saying see you later, and rushing to her desk. She didn't wait for me till I completely leave the venue.

When someone make sure they won't handshake, doesn't that mean I didn't get the job?

  • 1
    There are dozens of reasons for not shaking hands, and only one of them is "you don't get the job". Don't you think?...
    – OldPadawan
    Jun 14, 2018 at 15:12
  • 5
    What country is this company located in? Knowing more about the local culture would be helpful. Jun 14, 2018 at 15:16
  • Is this your first time seeking a job? If so, have you been to other interviews before this one? Jun 14, 2018 at 15:26
  • Someone may not want to shake hands for religious reasons or because someone is sick.
    – David K
    Jun 14, 2018 at 15:33
  • Have you sent the lady a thank you note? Jun 14, 2018 at 19:31

2 Answers 2


It's hard to answer your literal question, since none of us know why the HR lady didn't shake your hand. Some people just don't like to shake hands. Or maybe she had a cold and didn't want to pass on germs. Who knows.

Non-verbal cues can easily be misinterpreted when you aren't personally familiar with someone - you have no frame of reference against which to measure your interaction with them.

Instead, it's best to focus on actual lessons you can learn from in this interview, regardless of whether or not you get a job offer. You mentioned that you felt like you gave away too many details - make sure you understand the questions that were asked, why the employer cares, and what they're looking for. This way, you can be better prepared for the next interview.


Not necessarily. She might have been sick and wanted to avoid potentially getting you sick. Another possible explanation is that some people just have extreme aversions to physical contact with others (e.g. mysophobia, haphephobia).

In any case, it's not something you should worry about too much. That being said, I'm American and the etiquette surrounding shaking hands in your area may be different.

Dwizum's answer also brings up a good point: focus on things that are in your control. An important part of the interview is to appear calm and confident. Things like going deep into details, not making eye contact with your interviewer, and so forth can sometimes leave the interviewer with the impression that you're not confident in your ability to perform the tasks the job requires. Remember that you want to appear interested and enthusiastic about the opportunity, not desperate.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .