Qian Jin Mai Gu (Buy a Carcass with a Thousand Taels of Silver)
King Zhao of the State of Yan became ruler after clearing up a messy situation. To take revenge on the State of Qi, he humbly offered a generous reward to any capable and honest man who was willing to serve him…
He went to call on Guo Wei and asked him, "Whom should I visit, I mean, which talented man?"
"Well, let me tell you what I have heard. In the old days there was a ruler who offered a thousand taels of silver for any fine steed that could cover a thousand li a day. For three years he failed to get one. Then, a eunuch ventured to suggest, 'Let me try.' So, the ruler gave him that mission, and in three months the eunuch found one real steed, but a dead one. He paid five hundred taels for its carcass and returned with it to report to the ruler. The ruler flew into a rage and shouted, 'What I want is a living horse. What's the use of a dead one? And you paid five hundred taels for it!'"
"'Since a dead horse costs five hundred taels, how much more will a living one cost?' answered the eunuch. 'From this transaction people of the whole land will certainly see that you are a serious buyer. Just wait, good steeds will come very soon.' Truly as the man had said, in less than a year three thousand league horses were brought to the ruler."
"If Your Highness is serious about getting talented people to help you, please start with me. Then people will think that with a man like me in an important position, those who are much more talented t than I am will surely be given still higher posts. Capable men will come from even a thousand li away. Don't you worry." Thereupon, King Zhao built a palace for Guo Wei and honoured him as his teacher. Soon Le Yi, a famous general, came to Yan from Wei; Zhou Yi, an eloquent debater, from Qi; Jue Xin, a gifted counselor, from Chao; and many more scholars hailed from other states and gathered in the State of Yan.