sān gù máo lú
Translation: Paying three visits to the thatched cottage.
Meaning: Invite someone to take up a task, position or responsibility multiple times.
During China’s Three Kingdoms period (220–265 CE), Liu Bei, the king of the State of Shu, heard of the intelligence and knowledge of Zhuge Liang and decided to invite Zhuge Liang to assist him. He visited him three times with gifts. Zhuge Liang, impressed by Liu Bei’s sincerity, agreed to help him deal with military affairs and politics as the prime minister of the state of Shu. He was very capable and helped the king to triumph in many famous battles.
Today, this idiom is used to indicate the sincerity of someone’s invitation.
|顾||gù||to visit (V)|
|茅庐||máo lú||thatched cottage (N)|
Talented people are an enterprise’s most valued resource. To recruit the best person, you will have to be willing to invite him several times.