Be the Buffalo, says Canvas

The publisher of Canvas magazine, Mark Potter, has been doing a great job lately of channeling everything Conformer stands for in the industry.  And lucky for us, he is a superb and vividly articulate writer.   Conformer fans,  I am sharing his latest newsletter with you in its entirety because it is just so darn good.

Based on an old Native American parable, it is said that the cow runs away from a storm while the buffalo charges directly towards it.  As a result, the buffalo gets through it quicker and does not prolong the storm any longer than it should.

We are in the midst of a change that is a real transformation.  This change is not just an economic dip.  It is a change in structure.  According to Daniel Pink in his book “A Whole New Mind”, the Information Age is over.  Welcome to the dawning of the “Conceptual Age”.

I have discussed this change many times before.  However, I think it bears repeating.  If you are a “knowledge worker” and your job can easily be outsourced to China, India or, even worse, a computer, then you are in trouble.  If you are a seller that is just communicating value rather than creating value, then you are equally in trouble.

The storm is changing the landscape into one that demands visionary and creative people.  There is no longer a need for people to tell us what they know.  We can know what they know in 30 seconds.  The information is at our fingertips.  Subsequently, the successful people will be the ones who can deliver concepts and ideas.  They will have true empathy for their clients and deliver a symphony of solutions.

As Sid Ceasar said “the man who invented the wheel was an idiot.  The guy who invented the other 3 was a genius.”  Your ability to “see” things in context will determine your level of success going forward.  It is time for us to embrace the new age and determine if we are going to take the lead because those that do will thrive, while others lag behind for years to come.  Go ahead “Be the buffalo”.

Warmest regards,

Mark Potter


-Sari McConnell at

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