Get a grip or you don't get the job

Never mind polishing the resume. Work on the handshake. That's the conclusion of this research conducted by the University of Iowa's Department of the Blindingly Obvious.

"We've always heard that interviewers make up their mind about a person in the first two or three minutes of an interview, no matter how long the interview lasts," said study leader Greg Stewart, associate professor of management and organizations. "We found that the first impression begins with a handshake that sets the tone for the rest of the interview."

Other tips for job seekers gleaned from the study include:

Stash the breath mint before the interview begins; do not offer one to your host.

Wear socks that match, of course, but avoid putting your feet up on the interviewer's desk.

Blackberry and cell phone stay in your pocket -- yes, really.

And, at the conclusion of the interview, any damage done from a limp-wristed welcome handshake can be overcome with a light kiss on both cheeks.

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