Wednesday, 13 January 2016

HN Feature: Lee Kasumba

Leslie “ Lee” Nabunya Amelia Theresa Kasumba is Cuban Born of Ugandan Origin, raised in South Africa and based in Johannesburg South Africa for the most part and over traveled!
Lee Kasumba - Africa's Media Executive

Leslie who can be considered as a resilient and flexible individual with a curious and inquisitive nature, is one of the corner stones of modern day African media and her life story keeps getting interesting!

As our woman to connect with this week, Leslie shares with #HerNetwork the best piece of advice she has received in her career, who she is inspired by, what she is driven by and so on… please read and digest, then connect.


Describe yourself in 3 words
This was so hard to answer - I actually got stuck on this question, I suppose for many reasons, in part I am many things to many people I suppose and also I think because of the work I have done and do - everyone has an idea of who I am - perhaps because it’s what I share with them and I am actually like not so much that.  So I guess I would say;

·         Passionate - I am someone who throws their heart into everything, it’s never just work for me and it’s never just a person - when I do something I do it with all that I am. But also when things come to an end, I then turn and there is no changing me. I am passionate driven by my heart combined with my Spirit - I am the sort of person who prays everything through. Like a lot! I can’t do things outside of God at all and then sometimes my head too… I suppose.
·         Adaptable - I adapt fast and grow in those situations too -  I think my life journey made me this sort of person, but I also think God does this so that i am always growing…I am generally open to new things, challenges and places.
·         Introverted - This is the strangest thing and I am sure that people are like - no way. But the truth is for every say 5 hours I spend with people I spend 10 on my own. I am the sort of person that lives in my head to a degree - and I like to take time out and figure out how I feel what I want, like I can over think to a degree. I am also relatively shy - despite all that I have done in my career - it takes a lot for me to step up and step out into things, i have to become an exaggerated version of myself but then I retract straight after my “big moment”.

 
What do you do?
 So this is also very interesting – technically, I work in Media and have since my first year out of high school. But, it’s really more of a case of following where God wants me in what season doing what He wants.  Currently I stepped into the biggest challenge of my life but something that was birthed from God and He literally threw me in - I run my own Business Princess Behaviour. Which in a nutshell is a media company and I will be doing specific projects under this company. This year should be good - by God’s Grace.
But the ultimate of it, is that I really want to celebrate young girls, I feel that a young boy for example is never given the “either have a career or have a family”. But for a young girl there is always an either / or. Or with women in the work force or entertainment or whatever it is always the idea that she had to do something to get to where she is, a woman is never credited for doing a good job without a question of what did she do to get to where she is. I want to leave a legacy with the company where I encourage girls to dream and live the life of their dreams.  I want to be able to do workshops and raise money to take young girls to Ivy League schools as part of my company CSI. Princess Behaviour also speaks to an identity and knowing who you are, a child of God, His princess so you shouldn’t have to metamorphose into anything but what God created you to be. That is what #PrincessBehaviour is all about and the company too.

What are three must-have tools, apps, or products that are essential to your job?
I think in media which is pretty much my area of speciality and more so music. You need to have a strong identity and sense of self, so you don’t get lost in what everyone wants you to be. This you find in God. Lol and in my case a mac - it’s the best for creative industries! 
Then internet & your phone go hand in hand lol - data is OIL! (Especially in Africa)

Who/What inspires you?
Hmm - right now the person whose life I have been reading up on and following up the most is JK Rowlings - the Author of the Harry Potter Books. I love her story - I love that she hit rock bottom and started the books with a long handed type writer and her daughter on her lap. I love that she followed through on the one thing that she knew and became the first self-made billionaire author in the world. I am inspired by her because she has real life experiences and followed through on the idea that came to her while she was riding a bus. Even when everyone else said it wouldn’t work - she just went ahead. Even when 12 publishers said no, she still went on until the 13th said yes.
 
I think that her story is one that is realistic in a world where people say - if you aren’t making money by this age, try something new. She also backed up her dream with studying towards what she wanted to do. Her courage to follow through and to do what was placed in her heart - to have the courage. That’s inspiring.  The crazy thing is that I haven’t even ever read a Harry Potter book - but I respect what she has achieved and done. 


What was the best piece of advice you’ve been given in your career?
When people praise you and when people criticize you keep on moving either way. Otherwise you will get stuck in the moment - and getting stuck in the past whether it’s good or bad is always a sign of stagnation.  Don't get stuck with the phenomena of who you were or what you did, it was great it's passed move onto the next thing.
We should always be growing and be brave enough to set a goal achieve it and just keep moving onto the next thing. Personally I believe God has an assignment for everyone and the assignment doesn’t stop or reach climax, God is always growing us to more. So this has been what’s driven me to keep on evolving and take the not so obvious moves or popular steps.  But when you think of your life in the bigger picture of your purpose you will remember all things work together for the good of those who love God. 

What brings you the greatest satisfaction personally and professionally? 
Honestly - this will have to be when I know that my gift or in my post or something I have done has impacted someone’s life in a positive way. I think naturally I like to invest in people and that’s how I build my relationships personally and professionally. I always want to leave people with things of value and that brings me joy beyond words. 

What quote do you live by?
Wow this is hard too. Maybe a philosophy… “Never let someone or life make you who you aren’t.”  it’s hard because life can be challenging and it’s hard to remain true to your values, that’s a philosophy I try live by… I don’t always get it right but I am praying that people will say that of me. 

What advice would you give your younger self? 
I would tell my younger self - It’s going to be okay, nothing is ever the end of the world. You will wake up and you will be better for it, whatever you lose or think you have lost God will give you something so much better.


Connect with Leslie via Instagram and follow hashtag #PrincessBehaviour

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