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Authentic Leadership 1. Why current leadership perspectives and training are old-school.

Updated: Oct 15, 2021

Not only did the COVID-19 pandemic turn the world upside down, but it also started a sifting process where real, competent leaders and leadership are concerned. Some of our current leaders couldn’t cope with the demands and even downplayed the severity of the pandemic. Other leaders not only rose to the challenges of the time but also brought new cooperation and guidance to a world in chaos.

A new season of competent, real, authentic leaders and leadership has arrived.

New questions

The questions are, who are our new leaders? What is authentic leadership? Why are current leadership theories, perspectives, and training, even the international leadership training profession, old-school? Are you one of the new leaders the world is waiting for? How will you know? What has DNA got to do with leadership?

But first, some background of where I got all this mind-blowing information from.

Some background

Although a broad academic career that includes a B.Sc. degree in Medical Science, Physics, Genetics and Neurobiology, an Honours and Master’s degree in Adult Education, and Ph.D. in Psychology secured a lecturing post in Organisational Psychology specialising in leadership and leadership development at a leading university, it was my personal journey back from being paralyzed after fracturing three neck-vertebrae in a car accident, that made me stop, take stock and begin to think outside the box.

Healing, learning and writing

During the 11months of healing and learning to walk again, I had the time to not only study all the latest leadership perspectives and theories but also studied the results of the Human Genome Project[1] (HGP). My journey also included studying various spiritual books and ancient practices where human functioning, leadership, and leadership development were concerned. Various books followed.

Nelson Mandela

During this time, I was also gifted the illustrated autobiography of Nelson Mandela[2]. Studying the life, leadership, and legacy of Madiba, brought all the pieces of the puzzle together. Here we found someone who never attended a leadership conference, leadership training courses, and/ or executive coaching sessions as we have today.

Today, Nelson Mandela is not only known as an iconic leader, but he also left an indelible imprint on the fabric of life. The question is, why? Why have current leadership perspectives, theories, and training not succeeded in developing authentic leaders like Nelson Mandela and others? What route did they take? What must we learn from this?

Various books[3] followed the research and search for answers to these questions.

Upside down

What I found was astounding! Not only did it turn my life around, but I knew it would also turn many people's lives, especially in the academic world, upside down. This included the multibillion-dollar leadership development industry and its spectrum of leadership perspectives, theories, and training initiatives.

Quitting the academic world

After publishing the books, New Success DNA, New Leadership DNA, and Power Intelligence - the intelligence of the future, I quit my post at the university. I realised that the academic world couldn’t comprehend the future of a genetic shift and the emerging of a New Leadership DNA.

At that time, they were also blind to self-coaching and training people in how to recover their DNA leadership blueprint. Not only was this body of work met with resistance and ridicule in the academic world, but I was also ostracized for thinking outside the box.

Unwritten rules

I realised that there was an unwritten rule to maintain the status quo within tertiary institutes and to not ‘rock the boat’. The reason was that a vast amount of money and ego-contributions depended on the prescribed leadership courses and books. Academics, consultants, and institutes also had substantial contracts with companies and government organisations. Billions of dollars are involved. This made many people not only very famous in the leadership development industry, but also very rich.

Keeping new information out of the system

In many cases, the new information and the quantum leap needed to be kept out of the system as long as possible in order to protect research projects, including research of current Masters and Ph.D. students and old-school thinking, from the zero effect of the quantum leap.

The zero effect

A quantum leap is a quick radical shift that brings fundamental change while laying a whole new foundation for thinking and doing. At the same time, the shift causes a zero effect. A zero effect is the effect the new paradigm has on old-school thinking and doing. This could vary from minimizing, or diminishing the old mindset to even nullifying old-school thinking altogether.

Example of the zero effect

Many examples of the zero effect of a quantum leap can be found in everyday life. For example, one moment we depend on landline telephones until cellular phones take over he market. Landline telephones are minimized by the shift and placed within a new context. Old technology is either upgraded or discarded altogether. This is a necessary process to keep up with the times.

Changing the way we think about leadership

The way we think about human functioning, success, and leadership training, is changing. The quantum leap is already here. We cannot delay any longer. We are now aware of our DNA blueprint that holds the keys and codes to a future of health, wealth, happiness and success that benefits all. We need look no further. It is time ti mine this goldmine of power and potential while recovering our DNA leadership blueprint in the process.

Upgrade or perish

Some will be able to change their mindest and upgrade their approach or will run the risk of being minimized or even nullified. The reason is, client satisfaction. Why would companies and organisations from now on, invest time and large sums of money in the training of their leaders in something that is old-school? The aim of leadership training is all about being at the spearhead as pathfinders, mapmakers, and way-showers.

Making the leap

Many individuals, companies, and organisations have the ability to make this shift. However, many egos could feel threatened by this new information while many just don't have that ability to make the leap.

Working around the system

After being blocked in presenting the DNA shift I decided to work around the system by camouflaging authenticity and developing our DNA leadership-blueprint in academic papers, keynote addresses, and presentations that included,

These presentations were received with standing ovations. I was called back for a second time. People were starting to listen.

Paradigm blindness

Today, I understand all the negativity and resistance. Not only were many of these academics and leaders, paradigm blind, but at that time, the people were not ready for this next-level mindset. It was all a blessing in disguise.

So, I decided to wait before bringing this mind-blowing information on the genetic shift, authentic living and leading, and the emerging of our DNA success blueprint that includes recovering your DNA leadership blueprint, to the marketplace. The reason is, nothing is as powerful as an idea for which the time has arrived.

However, that was not the first time this has happened.

History repeats itself

During the early nineties, I focussed my research on holistic integrated thinking that included education, development, and leadership training. At that time, holistic thinking was a no-no. My research was blocked because it didn't fit in within the scope of practice and the research areas universities were then busy with. However, I found a forward thinking professor who assisted me in completing my Ph.D. on a holistic integrated model of successful, authentic living and leadership. This still forms the foundation of many of our training and development courses.

During this time South Africa was also going through a major transformation.

  • Under the leadership of Nelson Mandela

Under the leadership of Nelson Mandela, I was appointed as one of the consultants to facilitate the integration, change, and transformation processes between the ANC and the National Party. At the same time, I also consulted various companies in holistic integrated leadership and management.

  • Holistic integrated thinking

We not only trained new leaders, CEO’s and their executive committees in new holistic thinking, leadership, and management, but it also flowed over to all employees. The result was that the moment the paradigm shifted and the new political dispensation emerged, all these companies were in place and ready to go. Unprepared individuals, companies, and organisations battled to overcome the zero effect of the quantum leap. Once gain it is important not to take resilience, longevity ,and sustainability, for granted. The challenge is to keep up with the times or become extinct. .

It was my privileged to receive the Professional Businesswoman of the Year Award, for this body of work and the success of the transformation process.

  • Thirty years later

Now, nearly thirty years later, history is repeating itself. It is time for a quantum leap, once again. Not only our mindset is changing and a new DNA blueprint is emerging, but a whole new level of education is also emerging. This is going to have a major impact on training and development in general, and leadership training and development in particular.


Current leadership development theories, perspectives, and training do not have the quantum leap, quantum thinking, the genetic shift, authentic leadership, new success DNA[4], and the recovery of your DNA leadership blueprint as core, and can be considered as old-school. At the same time, a new intelligence is emerging - Power Intelligence (PI). Power Intelligence is the intelligence of the future. The way to solve this issue is to catch up and keep up or stay behind.

Moving to quaternary education

Currently, teaching, training, and learning are moving from primary to secondary, to tertiary, and now to quaternary education. This means we are moving past tertiary institutes and their tertiary thinking to a whole new mindset. From now on, much of the work of tertiary institutes will be seen as old-school because the wheels of change move slower within these systems.

The time to facilitate the quantum leap by implementing quaternary education is here. This is where we find the foundation of authentic leadership training and development. Some will be able to make this leap while others stay behind. Those who do not survive the battle of their egos will unfortunately be those who stay behind.

Working behind the scenes

For the last few years, I have been working behind the scenes with leaders, consultants, CEOs, and many others in preparation for the quantum leap.

Not only did the COVID pandemic fast forward the process, but everyone who went through the self-coaching and DNA training beforehand, could not only think on their feet but could also coach themselves to success during the darkest times of lockdown. As said, history repeats itself.

Now the time has arrived to open the doors and bring this new mindset with new skills and tools to those who are ready to listen. And no, you will not find this information and training in any academic institution, consulting company, or anywhere else. This is a global first.

The question is, are you ready?

Authentic leadership

In this series of articles on Authentic Leadership, we will take it step-for-step to not only understand the role our DNA blueprint plays in our health, wealth, happiness, success, and prosperity, we will also focus on how to recover our DNA leadership blueprint while bringing solutions and guidance to a world waiting for authentic leaders to stand up and take in their place.

you will find this information in the books

· New Success DNA

· New Leadership DNA

· Power Intelligence. The intelligence of the future

· Authentic Leadership. Recovering your DNA Leadership blueprint

· See the series on authentic living and leading.

All these books are available here

Also look out for the release of the Academy for Authentic Living and Leading, coming soon

The question is, where do you start?

Start here

  • The first important thing you can do is to get informed. See our website for more info

  • Start by making sure you are on our mailing list and receive our monthly newsletter with the latest releases of articles, books, courses, webinars, and training programs.

  • Book your in-house authentic leadership training for your team, company, and leaders by sending an email to

  • See interview with Amy Sanders on the emerging of New Success DNA.

  • Book personal coaching sessions on our website or send an email to

  • See the introduction video of authentic living, leading, and self-coaching.

  • Book an inspiring thought leader as a speaker for your next event and conference by sending an email to

  • Read all the books now available on recovering your DNA success blueprint, here

  • Catch up on the series on Self-coaching

Self-coaching 1. Self-coaching. 5 Reasons why people are addicted to negativity and how to solve it.

Self-coaching 2. 4 Reasons we sabotage ourselves and how to turn it around.

Self-coaching 3. Self-coaching. What is it and why is it so important now?

Self-coaching 4. How to use the Genetic Shift to boost your life, relationships, finances, and future.

Self-coaching 5. Understanding the genetic shift and how it influences you

Self-coaching 6. How to use the Power Shift to your advantage.

Self-coaching 7. How to climb the new ladder of success

Self-coaching 8: Nine must-have Power Tools to secure next-level success

Self-coaching 9. How to sharpen your must-have POWER TOOLS to maintain an advantage.

Self-coaching 10. What is ULTIMATE SUCCESS and how to maintain it in life and leadership

  • Catch up on the series of the influence of Epigenetics in life and leadership

Epigenetics 1. What is Epigenetics and how to harness this power in life and leadership.

Epigenetics 2. How to manage people who cannot make the genetic shift.

Epigenetics 3. Who will make the Genetic shift and how to join them.

Epigenetics 4. Why the GENETIC SHIFT is causing such a stir and how to manage it.

Epigenetics 5. Do you have the genetic code for ultimate success?

Epigenetics 6. What does religion have to say about the genetic shift?

Coming up

In our next articles we will focus on how finding answers to the questions, what is authentic leadership? Are you the new leader the world is waiting for? How do we recover our DNA leadership blueprint while becoming authentic leaders who are new pathfinders, mapmakers, bridgebuilders, and way-showers?

Until then, stay connected and stay safe.

Brenda Hattingh

  • For more info, see our website

  • Email

-------------------- References [1] The Human Genome Project: [2] Mandela, Nelson, R. (1994). The long walk to freedom. The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela. Illustrated. London: Little, Brown & Company. [3] See books on Nelson Mandela · Seven steps to securing the Madiba Magic in Life and Leadership · Life Lessons from Nelson Mandela during lockdown [4] Hattingh, Brenda. (2012 a) New Success DNA. What is it and how to develop it. Currency Communications Pty. Ltd.: Johannesburg. Hattingh, Brenda. (2012 a) New Leadership DNA. Developing enlightened leaders. Currency Communications Pty. Ltd.: Johannesburg.

Copyright. all rights reserved. 2021 (c) Dr. Brenda Hattingh



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