Authentic leaders and their new perception of ‘success’

Posted on January 7, 2017
Comments are off for this post

A new perception of ‘success’

 Leaders and their definition of ‘success’ are synonymous. We choose and/or follow leaders who we hope and/or believe will contribute to our personal and collective success. The challenge is to make sure that our leaders know what ‘success’ really means.

book-cover-new-success-dnaNow, against the background of constant waves of change and transformation – even the definition of ‘success’ is changing. Changes are taking place right down to a DNA level – even a new ‘success’ DNA is emerging.

We need to become aware of these shifts and the New Success DNA[1] currently developing. At the same time a new quality of leader is coming to the fore and the emerging of New Leadership DNA[2] is inevitable.

The questions we can ask are:

What will success look like in the future? What kind of leaders will emerge in order to meet our needs and assist us in becoming truly successful and happy in the future? What does this have to do with DNA?

Definitions of ‘success’

Most dictionaries define success as the ‘obtaining of worth-while goals’. Success is therefore a relative concept. Success means whatever you want it to mean. The concept of ‘success’ is therefore all about meaning  for – a terrorist blowing up buildings and killing innocent people – is just as ‘successful’ as those finding a cure for HIV-AIDS.

What is authentic success?

cover-cthe-new-leadership-1-2For both groups, their goals have worth-while meaning and purpose. The confusion and delusion surrounding the whole concept of ‘success’ – poses a real dilemma to those of us who are serious about authentic leadership and quality living – now and in the future.

The search for the true meaning of authentic leadership, success and quality living is on.

Success and failure

Success can be understood by taking the opposite namely “failure” into account. The definition of failure is ‘the inability to function authentically’. This gives us much more clarity surrounding the concept of ‘success’ – the major driving force behind leadership. The foundations and principles of leadership are rapidly changing. The choice is: Are you becoming an ‘authentic leader’ or are you remaining a ‘place-keeper’?

The true definition of success is: ‘A conscious ability to function authentically’. [3]. As it turns out, authenticity is encoded into our DNA. [3]

Success is meaning. To develop new levels of success – we need to uncover and become mindful of new values and deeper meaning. A New success DNA[4] is emerging and we are about to awaken to a new purpose and quality living with deeper meaning. This is what authentic leadership is all about

 Delusional perceptions of success

Many individuals, companies, organizations, and even countries and their leaders, chase after and acquire physical things – power, money, possessions, positions and a social image of success. The ‘bling’ of life. However, the ‘bling’ also has a ‘sting’. It doesn’t last very long because it loses its meaning. You then constantly need to repeat the whole process over and over again, in order to stay on top – or – just continue doing more of the same.

Ask yourself: Who would you be if you gave away, or lost, all your possessions, your work, financial security, health, relationships, or social position?

Natural processes

Many people have gone through this process. Natural disasters, recessions, epidemics and illness have claimed many lives and possessions. Most people see this as devastating loss… but, could this be a form of success too? We all accept that we will have a sense of loss, anger, and frustration in situations that seemingly are not going our way. Many times … something good comes out of the chaos.

The first thing we have to do is to get clarity on the following and ask:

 Is success defined by: (1) what we have and are acquiring – our physical possessions and positions – or – (2) is success defines by who and what we are becoming in the process?

Finding your answer

If your answer is (1): ‘what we have and are acquiring – our physical possessions and positions’, you will need to focus on putting all your efforts into acquiring more possessions, positions and social acceptance. This is ego-success and is never fulfilling, never satisfying, and it never lasts – it is an illusion. People who look for this kind of success are living with false pretenses and erroneous perceptions of success. They will consciously or unconsciously seek leaders who will assist them in obtaining these goals.

This means that these leaders also need to share their values. These leaders are also under delusional pretenses and function from erroneous values and driving forces.

book-covers-compiled-book-launchIf, however, your answer is (2) as: ‘success defines us by who and what we are becoming in the process’, you will need to learn who you really are, what you are designed to do, be and become – and then do it! This comes from your heart and soul[5]. It is value-driven soul-success that is fulfilling, lasting and ‘true’ success. These people will seek leaders who share these values and will assist them in reaching these goals.

Hidden agendas

Everyone has hidden agendas. These agendas are formed out of our desires, and the needs and wants that determine our choices. However, most of these driving forces are subconscious. Unfortunately, we are not always conscious and aware of who we really are and what we want and need. It is at this point that our default programs of fear and destruction then kick in – without us even being aware of this. The path of authentic leadership is the path of growing awareness and emerging of a new consciousness.

So, in order to determine where you stand where leadership is concerned, ask the questions:

Where am I coming from? Am I doing this for ego gratification or – Am I feeding my value system – my soul?

Honesty and discernment

Once we can discern and honestly distinguish between the two answers and points of view, we are well on our way to true success and we can identify the pathfinders and mapmakers – the leaders of the future who can assist us in getting there.

logo-nld-jan-2017These are people, individuals, groups, mentors, coaches or friends who can – ‘walk the walk and talk the talk’. They are leaders with New Success DNA who know how to help, assist, support and guide us on this path of true success as a journey of personal self-discovery and self-mastery. The success symbols obtained along the way are markers of the success process and could be diverse and varied. The important point is to stay on the path.

The questions are:

What does this path look like? What kind of leaders do we need on this path?

The path of authentic success

We all are leaders because everyone can influence others in a special way. Leadership is about having influence and using it constructively. The only thing that differs is the amount and the kind of influence that we have. This determines or power position.

pi-book-fin-4Leadership positions are moving from ego driven power-over-people to soul value-driven development of power-within-people. Power has moved from power-in-numbers to the number-of-powers. New leadership DNA emerges when we transform old outworn mindsets, methods, skills and tools into new mindsets and power-tools, when deeper values and the soul emerges and takes prominence over the ego.

In the process a whole new intelligence is also emerging as Power Intelligence (PI). [6]

Power Intelligence (PI) is the conscious ability of utilizing personal and collective power and potential – right down to a DNA level – while creating new levels of success, progress and prosperity that benefits all.    

Each person has the choice to choose where they want to go and what they want to learn. The challenge is to consciously move from one level to another and gain new insight and become more of who you are with more powerful tools and skills to create a quality life. Look out for the upcoming  webinar : New Leadership DNA – why you are the new leader we’ve been waiting for.

Leaders understand this process and help and assist others in becoming who we are, overcoming fears and stumbling blocks and acquiring new insight, understanding and skills. This means that authentic leaders have also walked the path and are a few steps ahead.

These are our pathfinders and way-showers into the future. You and I are part of this new group of authentic leaders.[7]

Keep in touch

Brenda Hattingh        

Brenda Hattingh

An international leadership coach, inspirational speaker and author with a passion for progress, success and quality living while addressing the challenges of the future.

What you can do:

  • Sign up to make sure you get all the latest posts first
  • Sign up and get your Daily Power Tool for Power Leaders
  • Look out for upcoming webinar: Authentic Leadership – 10 Steps to becoming the new leader we’ve been waiting for
  • An inspirational speaker: Make a booking for your next event, conference or training & coaching sessions
  • Recommended reading See Author Page for books including: New Leadership DNA – Developing enlightened leadersbook-covers-compiled-book-launch
  • Give us your feedback:



[1] Hattingh, Brenda. 2012 (a). New Success DNA. What you should know and how to activate it. Currency Communications Int.: Johannesburg.

[2]  Hattingh, Brenda. 2012 (c). New Leadership DNA. Developing enlightened leaders. Currency Communications Int.: Johannesburg.

[3]  See: Hattingh, Brenda. 2012 (a). New Success DNA. What you should know and how to activate it. Currency Communications Int.:Johannesburg

[4]  See: Hattingh, B. New Success DNA. 2012 (a)

[5]  Csiksentmihalyi,  Mihaly. 1993. The Evolving Self.  Harper Collins Publishers: New York.

[6] Hattingh, Brenda. 2012 (b). Power Intelligence. Mastering the Miracle Mind. Currency Communications Int. :Johannesburg.

[7] See: Hattingh, Brenda. 2017. New Leadership DNA. Ten steps to becoming the new leader we’ve been waiting for. Currency  Communications Int.: Johannesburg. (E-book available on website from Feb 2017)

%d bloggers like this: