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Best Public Speakers: Studying Kendra Scott

Updated: Apr 27, 2022

We included Kendra Scott on our “Best Public Speakers” list because of her dynamic leadership communication style. Kendra is an American fashion designer and businesswoman. She has an incredible personal and professional success story that is an inspiration others. She is the Executive Chairwoman, Lead Designer and Former CEO of Kendra Scott, LLC. In 2017 she was named Ernst & Young's National Entrepreneur of the Year.

leadership and communication skills

The Leadership and Communication Skills event we reviewed was Kendra Scott’s Rocky Road to Gemstone Success | The One | Forbes. This is the story of how Kendra Scott became one of America’s richest self-made women, and credits Kerry Hall, the Executive Managing Director at Texas Capital Bank, as the one person who kept her dream from turning into a nightmare.

Kendra's greatest leadership and communication skills:

  1. Compelling Message: At 6:20 Kendra talks about how she sees asking as a strength not a weakness.

  2. Storytelling: She is a confident, polished and dramatic storyteller. Her success story is full of desperation, and determination she openly shares memories from this time in her life. She is honest about her struggles, failures, and triumphs. Kendra also uses humor to laugh at moments to ease the intensity of her story. This makes her relatable and compelling to her audience.

  3. Vocal Presence: She has a clear and energetic voice. She uses pitch, and vocal variety to highlight her message.

  4. Polished Look: Kendra is wearing a structured blazer and her own jewelry designs for her virtual interview.

  5. Hand Gestures: Her hand gestures can be seen in the frame and appropriately support her message.

What Kendra could do to improve her leadership and communication skills:

  1. Kendra and her interviewer are both looking away from the camera during this recording. Even though this is a unique format, she would increase her connection with the audience if she occasionally looked directly into the camera.

  2. We would encourage Kendra to drop the use of filler words, "Right?, You know?". Use of these fillers can be seen as hedging your audience into agreement with your message.

  3. Kendra could adjust her word choice for a more polished delivery. For example, she uses the phrase, "my kind of person." An alternative could be, "a person I can closely relate to"

  4. This is an interview to credit the one person who supported Kendra and helped her achieve her dreams. However, at 6:35 Kendra is at a loss for words and says, "If I didn't go to Kerry Hall she would think I was... whatever, you know?" We recommend pausing to allow time to select words carefully. She could then properly acknowledge the person that helped make her successful and more appropriately convey her feelings.


Have you ever thought about what it would be like to be at the top in terms of effective leadership communication skills at your organization? Speak by Design could be one of your biggest advocates to help you reach that goal. We create tailored leader communication development programs for personal transformations.

Contact Speak by Design to learn more about how a public speaking coach or communication consultant could help you become an exceptional speaker and powerful communicator.

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