Nail It Like Anne Kansiime: Career Lessons We Can Learn From The African Queen Of Comedy

She began as a youtube celebity and has racked up a series of awards to her name ranging from Outstanding Female Comedian 2016 to African Entertainment Awards USA to Best comedian (2015)

You have probably watched the show “Don’t mess with Kansiime” and Youtube videos. She has got a reputation for her brash and outspoken characters. Here is a look at some of the career lessons we can learn from her journey to international fame.

Be authentic

Kansiime’s  video clips are topical and touch on everyday issues that Africans face in their daily lives. Instead of fighting our “Africanness”, Kansiime does not hide what we are. From her accent, the boda bodas, maids, sexual harassment, dealing with difficult customers, street beggars, etc. They are what makes the typical African identify with her and keep coming back for more. People laugh because she paints their world and feelings on so many familiar situations in life.

“I am a clear example of the fact that if you become yourself, the world will accept you for what you are…Being who you are works.” Embrace who you are. The world values authenticity and will reward you for it.  Do not be scared of how society will perceive you. Whether you do something or not, you will be judged. Do something that brings out your true self.

I am a clear example of the fact that if you become yourself, the world will accept you for what you are Click To Tweet

Patience

When she started out as a comedian, Anne Kansiime was making $10 per month. It was barely enough. “The world got to know me in 2012 yet I have been struggling with comedy for the last six years. It takes so long to be an established comedian no matter how talented you are.” It has been quite a long journey for Kansiime. She started out with Uganda Theatre Factory, now Fun Factory, a group that performed drama skits at the Uganda National Theatre. She was also on several TV shows-Barbed wire, U-Turn, Mini Buzz.

The Road to success is a long and winding one. Building a successful career does not happen over night. There is nothing like an overnight success. Be patient, put in the work and love the process.

Embrace Technology and social media

Kansiime started off by uploading short video skits on Youtube that were part of the TV show mini buzz that discusses current affairs with the population. Affirmative feedback from her video skits spurred her to post even more content. Soon, she received a breakthrough when Kenya’s Citizen TV offered her a slot to produce, start and present a comedy show once a week. She came up with “Don’t mess with Kansiime” comedy show which you have probably seen or at least heard about.

“No matter how good a dancer you are, if no one ever gets a chance to see you dance, then you can never say that you are one”  For Kansiime, You tube has been her best bill board.

You will remain where you are if you do not promote yourself. There are so many fantastic comedians out there and Kansiime might not have been the best. But because she was willing to put her work out there, it gave her access to opportunities she otherwise wouldn’t have locked in. Embrace the use of technology to advance your career. Create professional social media accounts on linkedin and twitter and join the conversation. Like Kansiime, when your presence and the content you share is seen consistently by others, you will be able to leverage your connections and experience for career moves.

Give back

One of Kansiime’s passions apart from performing is interacting with children. She takes this passion even further through her youth centered charity foundation, Kansiime Foundation whose aim is to empower vulnerable children of Uganda through education, talent development, career guidance and provision of basic needs. There is also a clinic in Zambia named after her. “The face of a Child Kansiime Anne Relief Clinic” She continually makes donations to the clinic.

What is it that you are passionate about? There are always ways to give back that don’t necessary require having a lot of money. Volunteer your time, skills and anything else that you can.

 

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