Sovrn Values

Sovrn Publisher Advocate // January 6, 2020

sovrn values

Values offer important insights into how a person or an organization makes decisions. Ours provide the foundation for hiring, promoting, recognizing, rewarding, and even parting ways with people.

While we can (and should) generally agree on the shared Sovrn values, it’s better that each of us has personal examples to describe what each value means to us. By making our values personal, they become conversational and more easily shared. By sharing and therefore reinforcing our values, we will make better decisions, and I believe a better culture.
—Walter Knapp

Second Order Thinking

Second Order Thinking is intentional and deliberate. Second Order Thinking takes time and reflection. Second Order Thinking considers the downstream and/or adjacent effects of a decision. Second Order Thinking considers the consequences of a decision and requires one to ask: “and then what?”


Scrappy means embracing constraints and obstacles as a path to finding the simplest and most direct answer. Scrappy means solving a problem when there isn’t enough time, money, or expertise. Scrappy means focusing on the desired outcome and working backwards to find the best way to achieve that outcome. Scrappy gets shit done.


Candid means speaking and asking questions with honesty and humility. Candid looks for the truth. Candid tries to be precise, while also empathizing with others’ perspectives. Candid means communicating objectively even if it’s uncomfortable even in the face of opposition.

Customer Empathy

Customer Empathy means we listen and learn from our customers as individuals and as organizations—we try to ‘walk a mile in their shoes’. Customer Empathy means we understand our customers’ challenges, problems, and wants. Customer Empathy means answering with what our customer needs.


Learning is the single most important trait of successful people teams and organizations. Learning is how we improve. Learning requires us to explore beyond the boundaries of our competence. Learning happens when we succeed, and when we reflect on why we didn’t. Learning leaves open the possibility that we might be wrong. Learning never stops. Learning is uncomfortable. Learning compounds.

Want to learn more?

Share this article