Working hands of a manOnce upon a time, a beautiful princess lived in a place not too far from here. Her father, the King wanted his only precious daughter to marry. You know how it is with royalty and their lineage 🙂
But she was willful, as many of us are, and none of the royal suitors and princes who came from far and wide pleased her.

The ultimatum was made – she MUST marry next year. Capricious as ever, she said she would choose by looking at the hands of the suitors and anyone was welcome to present their hands for inspection. The plans for the great tournament were shelved.

Anyone skilled at manicure did well that year, and many a crop was left in the field unharvested as men chose instead to apply lotions, skin softeners and many ‘magical’ potions sold in the markets.

The great day arrived with a long queue of suitors; their servants bringing warm towels and other last-minute scents and creams so their hands would win the hand of the fair princess. Watching from the sidelines, somewhat bemused by the spectacle, was a young farmer and his wise grandmother. They had brought their crop to the market and it fetched a good price this year with so many crops left to rot in the fields, the farmers lining up with the princes.

Yes, you guessed it; the grandmother convinced her grandson to join the queue. After all, what did he have to lose?

And again, you guessed it. He was chosen by the princess as the only suitor whose rough farmer’s hands showed that he had stayed true to himself. They lived happily ever after and were much loved by the people.

It is, after all, a fairy story. At least, that’s what my dad, a farmer, told me when he related the tale.

My best wishes, Paul


By Paul Matthews – Speaker/Author/Expert on Informal Learning and Workforce Capability
Author of new book “Learning Transfer at Work: How to Ensure Training >> Performance
and bestsellers “Capability at Work: How to Solve the Performance Puzzle
and “Informal Learning at Work: How to Boost Performance in Tough Times
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