Peyton Holland: Next Generation Workforce

“Peyton was great to work with.  He worked with us prior to the conference, arrived early to take in other sessions, conversed with members to get a better understanding of our challenges.  His session was spot on.  Members commented on his content and presentation; lots of good information, insightful and thought provoking.  As a conference organizer, I appreciated how easy he was to work with and how interested he was in our association and the challenges facing our members.  All the feedback was very positive.  I highly recommend Peyton and we plan on bringing him back.”
Ray Desjardins, CGCIO
President, FLGISA


Peyton Holland is a sought-after speaker on the topics of the Next Generation Workforce, the Skills Gap, Mentorship and Leadership Development. Peyton is a millennial speaker who resonates with corporate and student audiences alike. Peyton has dedicated his career to helping bridge education, industry, and communities together so that our schools and colleges are preparing the next generation of leadership in the workforce. For nearly a decade, Peyton has served as the Executive Director of SkillsUSA North Carolina, a non-profit that is leading efforts to empower students to explore the world with their hands through technical education and connect them with industry members seeking a skilled and talented workforce. Peyton’s mission has been to change the conversation on education and help people begin to see that technical education and academic education must be respected as equals. A master craftsman deserves the same respect as someone with a master’s degree.

In addition to his work in education and workforce development, Peyton has also worked extensively in student leadership development for over 15 years. He has worked with thousands of students and organizations across the country helping to develop a vision for their futures and empowering them to find the tools they need to build those futures.

When working with corporate groups, Peyton helps them begin creating a sustainable workforce by developing a culture of mentorship, training, and student outreach. He helps organizations understand how to prepare current and future employees for the technical & employability skills needed in the workplace. Peyton paints a picture for how a group can begin to transform the educational and the economic fabric of our country just by changing how we talk about skill.

When working with students, Peyton empowers them to explore their passions with their hands and helps them develop clarity for their futures. Building confidence and clarity is a critical step for any young person. Peyton ensures that the experience students have with him not only gives them confidence and clarity but inspires them to take action towards developing the skills and finding the tools they need to take the next step in the journey towards a career that they love.

Peyton is available for keynote presentations and workshops, as well as emcee and panel moderation.


Skills That Pay the Bills

The path to success is a 4-year degree … or is it? By 2020, 10 million jobs will go unfilled because there are not enough people with the skills needed to fill them. For decades, we’ve told a story that places more value on a degree hanging on the wall than the skills needed to build that wall. As a result, we’ve created a “skills gap” that will impact all of us, from the cars we drive to the places we live and work. Peyton helps audience members understand how we fell into the gap and how we can move forward. From guiding companies to refresh their strategies for engaging the next generation of their workforce, to challenging individual members of society to change the conversations we have about education, Peyton helps the audience see how skill is not only a critical economic driver, but it is something that impacts each of our daily lives. Audience members will walk away with a new perspective on education and what skill truly means.

This keynote is ideal for any audience, but is particular helpful for corporate, educational, and community groups seeking to help their audience understand ALL avenues of education, the value of skilled labor, and practical steps we can take to ensure we have the skilled workforce we all depend on.

Next Generation Workforce & Closing the Skills Gap

Finding skilled workers with the technical training and certification needed across a variety of industries is becoming a real challenge for organizations. How do we nurture career growth in our current employees? How do we close the skills gap in our organizations? How do we invest in talent and training that will have an ROI we can measure? Peyton addresses these challenges and presents a framework for finding, creating and nurturing skilled workers for any industry.

This keynote is ideal for companies looking to close the skills gap in their own organizations and maximize their Millennial and Generation Z market of potential employees.


Mentorship can change lives and Peyton has countless examples to back that up. Serving as an impactful mentor doesn’t take formal training, but it does demand awareness about leadership, listening, and relationship management. Peyton speaks to the importance of mentorship in the workplace and shares his own powerful story of a life-changing mentor in his life. Peyton often combines this keynote with his 4 C’s of Life and Leadership (below) to help illustrate the power of these 4 principles to elevate a mentor relationship.

This keynote is ideal for corporate, non-profit, community, and educator organizing groups.

The 4 C’s of Life and Leadership 

Clarity. Courage. Commitment. Character. In a time when students and professionals alike are struggling to find their place in work and life or may be losing the “spark” they once had, implementing these four C’s can have a profound impact on an individual’s ability to own who they are and lead with integrity. Participants will experience the power of developing clarity in their dreams and passions, develop strategies to find the courage to pursue those passions, and learn the strength of commitment while acting with the utmost character. Peyton anchors this keynote with an incredibly powerful and moving story of a kid that was too fat for football and, what seemed, almost everything else in his life. The audience will experience an emotional and impactful journey through this kid and a life-changing experience that enabled him to find passion and purpose in his life through these very principles.

This keynote is ideal for any group. It can be tailored to students, corporate audiences, individuals seeking to overcome challenges in their lives, and more.

3B’s to Achieve 

*This keynote is ideal for student audiences
Every organization and individual, ideally, has a set of goals they hope to accomplish. Often, people are told how to set goals, but they are not guided on how to prepare themselves for tackling the goals at hand.

This keynote walks participants through an engaging journey that will prepare them for challenges they will face in the process of achieving their goals and how to manage themselves effectively, while staying motivated. Believe, Behave and Be Bold.

Peyton’s Personal Story: Too Fat For Football 

* This powerful presentation is perfect for any audience and can be incorporated into the keynotes above
Peyton’s personal story is powerful and inspirational because we’ve all been at a point of vulnerability. Peyton shares his story of being a young man limited by others perceptions of his weight and size to becoming a strong leader who had the courage to change. Inspired by one important person in his life, Peyton was able to shed his limitations and move into the strength of becoming a person truer to himself. Through his journey, Peyton also illustrates the power and impact of positive mentorship and personal awareness. Peyton’s story is ideal for topics of mentorship, bullying response and prevention, development of personal awareness and self-discovery, achieving dreams against all odds, self-motivation and weight management. His story can also be applied to personnel management and coaching strategies in corporate environments.


How to Say Hello

* ideal for HR groups, students, and young employees
This workshop helps participants discover the power of positive introductions.  From their handshakes to their facial expressions, participants will learn what it takes to make a memorable and meaningful introduction that will allow them to engage any person.  Not only will students walk away equipped with the ability to introduce themselves to anyone, this workshop focuses specifically on helping them understand the importance of having genuine conversations while building meaningful relationships.  It will provide models and tools necessary for participants to engage one another at a much higher level.

4 Pillars

*ideal for corporate and student audiences
Gallop surveyed 10,000 people across America to help answer the question of what people looked for in a leader.  Four words rose to the top: Trust, Compassion, Stability, and Hope. Peyton helps ground participants in the importance of these four pillars of leadership and allows them to understand what they look like as they are implemented in the classroom or workplace.  With a major transition occurring in the workforce, from boomers to millennials, much of the tension that arises in the workplace stems from concerns around ethics, responsibility, and accountability.  At the end of the day, the root of those conversations lies in people’s ability to establish the four pillars amongst their team.  This presentation will walk your team through that uncovering process and leave them with a stronger sense of teamwork, improved tools for communication, and a greater sense of unity.

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Having grown up in rural North Carolina, Peyton learned the value of hard work and skill early in life. His father taught him what it meant to be a student of life, along with the importance of technical and academic education. From the lessons he learned on the farm and at the family sawmill, to the experiences he gained traveling internationally acquiring a master’s in business administration and a master’s in global innovation management, Peyton brings a truly unique perspective to conversations on education, workforce development, and economic growth.

Peyton attended North Carolina State University where he graduated as Valedictorian and went on to complete a Master’s Degree in Global Innovation Management and a Master’s in Business Administration at Aix-Marseille Graduate School of Management in Aix-en-Provence, France.

Peyton has been speaking professionally since he was 18 years old. From fortune 500 companies to small-town rural schools, Peyton has helped thousands of people craft a vision for their future and develop the tools they need to make that vision a reality. The energy, enthusiasm, and passion that Peyton brings to the stage is contagious and keeps audience engaged and entertained throughout.