We had the good fortune of connecting with Laurel Kinney and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Laurel, what is the most important factor behind your success?
I have a background in social work, so my approach to my business and with clients is much different than straightforward fashion styling. I like to focus on my clients first, before we even get into the work of discussing clothes, so that I can uncover the things about them that can be expressed through style. For me, this approach is not only more personally fulfilling because I get the chance to meet & know so many amazing people, but it sets my client up for success by shedding light on the authentic elements of personal style that can last far beyond our work together.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Laurel Kinney Personal Styling was born out of a desire to connect my 2 passions–creativity and service. I found that by digging deeper with my clients about who they are, I can help guide them towards dynamic wardrobes that reflect real personality. When our wardrobe is aligned with who we really are, we feel more confident and self-expressed, and those side effects tend to trickle into all other areas of life. Of course, those are the results of my work, but the business side is a whole other animal, and learning to be an entrepreneur after a career in social work was definitely a challenge. My biggest lesson was in learning to trust that money always comes when I need it to, and that I had to learn to live with a certain base level of anxiety if I wanted to work for myself. I also learned very quickly that being able to ask for help and to delegate is a huge asset, and that I don’t always have to do everything myself.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Austin has been my home for the past 12 years and it’s changed a whole lot, so I always like to show off classic Austin spots to visitors: Barton Springs, Zilker Park, and a drive out to the hill country are always on my list. Then it’s about food and ambiance! You can’t visit Austin without a trip to Justine’s for a French 75, tacos from Veracruz, or a burger at Pool Burger. It’s also fun to check out the shops on South Congress where lots of local brands can be discovered.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I always think of Jen Spencer, https://www.creative-executive.com/team-contact/jen-spencer/ when I think of the key players who have consistently supported my business. I have been coached by Jen several times over the course of my career and I always call on her when I need help seeing the big picture, strategizing, and setting goals for myself.
Other: www.styleshiftworkshop.com (my virtual course)
Paula Wolf, Chelsea Francis