Looking for 

Something Different?

In 20 years of producing events for blue chip brands, I have never seen such an engaging speaker as Jim Knight.  

- Jim Crystal, The Revelry Agency

Are you on a quest for a keynote speaker that’s just a little bit different than your average fare? After running global training for Hard Rock International for two decades, Jim Knight now offers a variety of sessions which resonate with attendees for any size company or industry looking to attain their own “rock star” status.


With thought-provoking content and a refreshing delivery style, Jim’s keynote talks regularly receive the highest positive feedback.


Check out what all the buzz is about.



As a meeting and events industry veteran, who knows so many speakers personally, Jim Knight is a rare gem among the rest.  

- Rebecca Jacques, President, Inspired Hospitality Recruiting



All topics can be delivered Virtually (via webinar) or facilitated In-Person as a 75-90 minute keynote speech or half-day workshop. 

Leadership That Rocks

Top Leadership Initiatives that will Immediately Deliver Sustainable Results

This impactful session is effectively designed to provide leaders of any level, practical and tactical initiatives to implement to create an iconic business - internally and externally. Topics covered will include: Enhancing Employee Engagement, Producing a Virtuous Environment, Amping Up Communication, Creating an Army of Giants, Mentorship & Accountability as Pillars, Becoming Heart-Centered, Developing Emotional Bank Accounts and Philanthropy as Instrumental. This session will deliver rapid-fire best practices that any leader can immediately put into practice, starting them down the path to rock star success.

Culture That Rocks

How to Amp Up or Revolutionize a

Company's Culture

This high-energy session focuses on those individuals, departments or companies who are charged with creating, maintaining or revolutionizing an organizational culture. The session delves into every area of a company environment and then reveals realistic solutions for systemic change. Topics covered will include: Definition of Culture, Heritage vs. Culture, 3C Employees, Effective OnBoarding Processes, Enhancing Communication, Developing Rock Stars, Employee Engagement and Philanthropy. Attendees will also learn how comic books, Star Trek and the spirit of Rock ‘n Roll can completely alter a company’s culture. Regardless of the company’s cultural history or status, this session will inspire those in attendance to take up the challenge of enhancing their organizational environment.

Hiring & Retaining Rock Stars

How to Build an Iconic Team

This session is effectively designed to highlight best practices to create and maintain a strong internal employee culture. Knowing that today's Millennials & the future "digital natives" of Gen-Z make up the talent pool for most industries, there are some key strategies that can be used to tap into and develop that workforce. Jim will discuss ways to create, maintain or revive a desired employee environment, regardless of the current state of the state. Topics covered will include: The Employee Life Cycle, Identifying 3C Employees, Where to Find Top Talent, Designing Collateral (Print, Job Aides, Video, Technology, Social Media), The Power of Storytelling, Creating an Army of Giants, Innovative Ways to Get Team Members to Stay, Mentorship & Development, and Philanthropy as Instrumental.




Keeping the Brand at Eleven

in the New Reality 

How to Create a Differentiated Experience to Deliver World-Class Results

This high-energy session pertains to any company involved in providing a product or service. Since every company has competitors, the focus of this interactive and visual session is how to differentiate your organization from the rest to become the business & employer-of-choice. Out of everything else, only team member behaviors will determine whether your customers will fall madly in love with you or not. Topics covered will include: Effectively Reading the Customer, Creating a Personalized Experience, Avoiding Acceptable Mediocrity, Becoming Guest/Customer Obsessed, Creating Raving Fans, Eliminating 4-Letter Words, Building Mental Shelf Space, Writing Yourself into the Client's Story, Increasing Value Proposition and how ice cream, rock concerts and West Side Story can blow peoples’ minds.

Service That Rocks

Performance That Rocks

Managing Your Brand Ambassadors

This session is focused on employee and manager “performance management”. During this holistic class, Jim will share philosophical approaches to managing & measuring performance, but also provide specific tools that have delivered proven & effective results. The time allotted gives attendees unprecedented exposure to industry-recognized Training & Development concepts created by and discovered from Jim’s time working in Hospitality. Proven ideas will be shared in almost every training area, including: New Hire Orientations, Print Materials, Video Production, eLearning Initiatives, Social Media, Management Training Programs, Performance Appraisals, Development Plans, Mentorship Initiatives, Succession Planning, Instructor-led Training, Communication and Leadership.​

You're nuts if you don't do whatever it takes to book this guy at your next event. Jim Knight is epic!  

- Amanda Hite, Co-Founder/CEO, Be the Change Revolution



The Essential Characteristics of a Successful Team.

Jim shares his “3C Employees” philosophy and outlines the critical qualities to look for in employees, regardless of industry.

The Difference Between Culture and Heritage.

Jim highlights how individuals contribute to an organization's evolving identity and the importance of focusing on culture and fostering a behavioral-driven workplace, rather than focusing on an organization’s past.

Treat the Crew Like Rock Royalty.

Jim talks about the challenge of employee turnover, the problem with Lip-Synchers, and the value of finding Rock Star employees who “bring the thunder” every day.

Mediocrity is Never Acceptable.

Jim discusses the prevalence of mediocrity in business and stresses the importance of differentiating one’s product, service or experience to be successful in today’s business environment.

Creating Value Through Mind-Searing Moments.

Jim discusses the importance of understanding that excellent service will always be the prime differentiator in any marketplace, regardless of product, price and convenience.

Brand Ambassadors are the Differentiators.

Captured during one of his virtual keynote sessions, Jim uses the analogy of an electric guitar amplifier to illustrate THE inflection point of a company's differentiator.



There's no way to leave one of Jim's sessions without feeling energized, inspired & ready to start a revolution in your organization.  

- Alan Schaefer, Founder, Banding People Together



A Training & Development veteran for 30+ years, Jim Knight facilitates on a variety of interactive topics, including sessions around organizational culture, world-class service, building rock star teams, employee branding & engagement, performance management and T&D best practices.


Although Jim's first job was at Gatorland Zoo, he cut his teeth in the training field through the Hospitality industry, starting out as a restaurant staff-­level employee for Olive Garden and then Hard Rock Cafe. He eventually became the head of the School of Hard Rocks, running  point on all learning & development functions for Hard Rock International.


Although part of a small training group that supported all cafe, hotel and casino properties, Jim Knight’s role at Hard Rock involved many facets of organizational training, including creating/managing all staff and management training materials & programs, facilitating its corporate university, overseeing management training locations, producing training DVD’s, directing company e-­Learning initiatives, facilitating leadership transitions and traveling to property locations to deliver on-­site classes & measure standards.

Jim has put his experience and creativity to work, which has consistently developed cutting-­edge training concepts. During his 21 years with the Hard Rock brand, his team won coveted Telly Awards in 2000 for their guest service video, took top honors in 2007 for their menu rollout video, garnered Training Directors Forum’s 1998 prize for “Reengineering Training” and won Brandon Hall’s Gold Best in Class Award for their “Service Recovery” e-­Learning course.  Jim Knight was recognized by Training Magazine as representing one of the Top 125 training companies in the world out of all industries & businesses and he has been featured in Forbes Magazine, Inc. Magazine, Fast Company, Entrepreneur Magazine and Fox Small Business News.


Jim has a music degree in Vocal Performance & Education and taught in the Florida public school system for 6 years, before catching the “hospitality bug.” He is a long-­time member of CHART (The Council of Hotel & Restaurant Trainers) and People Report, previously sat on the Certification Governing Board of the National Restaurant Association and started a regional training forum & networking group with over 100 active members in Central Florida, to share best practices and discuss common issues with other industry professionals. Networking is a big part of his success.


Currently, Jim is the owner of Knight Speaker, which positions him to facilitate virtual webinars or keynote speeches for any association or company event. In 2016, Jim was listed in the Top 10 of all booked and rated speakers in the U.S. by The Speaker Experts. 

Jim is also the Best-Selling Author of Culture That Rocks: How to Revolutionize Your Company’s Culture, a how-to business book designed to amp up a brand in any industry. Entrepreneur Magazine listed the book as one of the "Top 5 Books That Will Transform Your Business".


Along with his business partner, Brant Menswar, Jim co-hosts a free, weekly leadership podcast called, 

Thoughts That Rock, which includes an influential & compelling guest and presents life-changing pieces of advice in 30 minutes. Additionally, Jim and Brant offer a music-oriented, culture & leadership training program called, 

Certified Rock Star, as an edu-taining experience for leaders looking to amp up their business in a variety of areas.

A portion of Jim's book, podcast, speaking and training program proceeds goes to No Kid Hungry to eliminate childhood hunger in the U.S. and Cannonball Kids' cancer, which funds innovative, accessible research for children fighting cancer with better treatments, quality of life and options for those told they have run out of options. 



Have you ever been given a piece of advice so incredible that it rocked your world? Brant Menswar and Jim Knight, two of the country's most sought after speakers, discuss bite-sized, specific and compelling thoughts (shared with a rockstar guest) that have changed the course of people’s lives.


Whether you’re searching for inspiration, long for change or just enjoy powerful conversation, this weekly, edu-taining podcast will be music to your ears. 




  • Half-Day & Full Day Workshops: Business Leaders (all levels)
  • Multi-Day Masterminds: Entrepreneurs, Business Owners, C-Suite Executives
Certified Rock Star is a highly-engaging, interactive workshop focused on helping you become the rock star leader you are meant to be. Presented by Jim Knight and Brant Menswar and using the spirit of Rock 'n Roll as backdrop  this leadership & cultural training delivers specific insights and actionable takeaways to help move the needle within your organization. 
With a healthy mix of life-changing inspiration and practical learnings, this hands-on session identifies the unique challenges of the Business Professional and provides specific strategies to becoming a more effective and impactful leader. It's edu-tainment at its best! Available in half-day, full-day and multi-day experiences, the workshop is jam-packed with powerful visuals, out of the box thinking, compelling videos, personal stories, validating statistics, enlightening case studies, creative handouts, swag bags and a few personalized music moments along the way.


  • Finding and Retaining Top Talent
  • Maximizing the Employee Life Cycle
  • Building an Iconic Team of Promotable Giants
  • Finding Your Voice
  • Discovering Core Values
  • Choosing Your Purpose
  • Aligning Organizational and Employee Values
  • Sustaining Powerful Motivation
  • Understanding the Challenge of Change
  • Amping Up Customer Service
  • Understanding the Decision Supply Chain
  • Making Your Brand Tattoo-Worthy


TARGET AUDIENCE:  Executive Teams 
Powered by Kathleen Wood Partners, Jim Knight and business partner, Kathleen Wood, deliver a fast-paced day-long workshop with business leaders to identify critical "Organizational Pillars". The process Jim & Kathleen provide addresses the internal brand of the business. The outcomes of this process produce timeless and valuable applications for growth, concept development and employee lifecycle enhancement.


Because of their hospitality & retail backgrounds and blazing-speed approach, they cut right through the clutter of what is traditionally tedious and lengthy, and help the organization's leadership develop (in a single day) the company's:  
  • Purpose
  • Vision 
  • Mission 
  • Core Values
  • Resiliency & Dealing with Change - 2-3 hours (includes group work) 
  • Building a Rock Star Team - 2-3 hours  (includes group work)
  • Harassment & Discrimination Training - 3-4 hours (includes group work)
  • Interviewing Potential Employees - 4 hours (includes roleplay)
  • Handling Customer/Guest Complaints - 4 hours (includes roleplay)
  • Coaching & Counseling Employees - 4 hours (includes roleplay)
  • Public Speaking & Facilitation Skills - 1-2 days
    • Day 1 - Content & Knowledge only (includes exercises) 
    • Day 2 - Practice (includes personalized feedback & coaching)
  • Training & Development Best Practices - 3 hours
  • New Leader Transition - 4-5 hours (with new boss & existing team)
  • New Team Transition - 4-5 hours (early assembly of new team) 
Instructor--led, Onsite Training offered:​
  • Print - employee handbook, training manuals, leader's guides
  • Video - script writing, voice over, onscreen talent, 3rd-party production  
  • eLearning - script writing, voice over, 3rd-party production 
  • Performance Tools - job descriptions, performance appraisals, development plans 
  • Training Programs - manager-in-training, corporate universities,  train-the-trainer, guest/customer service programs
  • Cultural Architect - customized process to amp up the brand's internal environment
    • Level 1 - onsite evaluation of organization's current state and custom report of top/immediate actions to be taken
    • Level 2 - ongoing management of process to amp up/overhaul identified initiatives, via 3rd-party resources
As a former Training & Development executive and now culture catalyst, Jim offers specific employee, manager and organizational services, many of which can be developed virtually:




LDYS Icon Slim.png



Featured in Entrepreneur Magazine in 2015 as one of the "Top 5 Books That Will Transform Your Business", this how-to business book addresses many major categories of an organization’s culture, including hiring the right talent, creating a differentiated service approach, understanding today’s workforce, enhancing internal collateral, utilizing technology, increasing enterprise wide communication, engaging in authentic philanthropic initiatives and highlighting the importance of leadership.

Using a blended approach of business acumen and music orientation, Culture That Rocks: How to Revolutionize Your Company's Culture strategically walks the line between a formalized professional blueprint to overhaul a company’s culture and a more relaxed narrative for the casual reader seeking common sense approaches to keep their company relevant.

Readers will experience a personalized, 1st-person delivery, dozens of rock star brand examples and case studies, detailed call-to-action chapter wrap ups and unique out-of-the-box analogies throughout—including icebergs, chocolate ice cream, Star Trek, comic books, Peter Pan, flying fish, cartoon classics and legendary Rock ‘n Roll icons. Buy the book now and check out what all the buzz is about.


Culture That Rocks is available in print, as an eBook (Kindle) and an Audio USB (narrated by the author).  

Limited Edition

USB Audio Book


Change happens. Either intentionally or unintentionally, we find ourselves entangled with change on a daily basis. Depending on the day and out mood, our ability to successfully "rock" change or "roll" with the punches can come and go faster than a one-hit wonder. True rock stars understand that change is a journey. They then find the will to grind it out in the face of adversity to achieve the kind of lasting change they seek. 

Rock 'N' Roll With It: Overcoming the Challenge of Change offers a unique approach to creating and accepting powerful and lasting change in your life. Presented through the lens of our beloved Rock 'N' Roll, this book will help you create and perform a personal "set list" designed to keep you engaged while developing characteristics needed to become a true Rock Star of Change. Thought-provoking interviews with legendary change makers will inspire you to put on your leather pants and shake what your Mama gave you. 

Brant Menswar and Jim Trick, both real-life rock stars and passionate change agents, skillfully guide your journey through change, soundly explaining how change works and equipping you with specific strategies to accomplishing the kind of transformational  change that leads to the type of life you really want...one that bears fruit and enriches those around you.


A black sheep’s wool cannot be dyed.​ 
A black sheep is 100 percent, authentically original. It cannot be influenced, changed or molded into something it isn’t by outside forces. In this powerful new book, author Brant Menswar shows you how to unleash your own black sheep―the five core values that make you who you are―to empower your life.
Black Sheep: Unleash the Extraordinary, Awe-Inspiring, Undiscovered You is a high-octane, entertaining how-to guide from Brant , which delivers one-of-a-kind wisdom for living the amazing life you were always meant to. You will find out how to identify the non-negotiables that are at your core, live with deliberate intention and practically manifest what matters to you most. You will discover what makes you an extraordinary original and how being uniquely yourself is a power you can set free for success, every day.
Order it today and Find Your Flock of Five.


Combining music and food {the ingredients of my success} this custom antique nickel "fork necklace" brings out the rock star in anyone. 

*Swagger not included.


Rock On!