I treasure teamwork and collaboration – Kibuuka

Kibuuka says she sets boundaries in relationships with peers at work so as to manage expectations. Photo | Courtesy

What you need to know:

  • Diana Ninsiima Kibuuka: A leadership coach, mentor, award-winning community leader and national director at Business Network International-Uganda, Kibuuka believes that a positive attitude is a great philosophy in nurturing business minds.

Take us through your career journey.
I am currently serving as the national director of  Business Network International-Uganda (BNI). I completed my Law degree from Makerere University, Diploma in Legal Practice from the Law Development Centre, a Master’s degree in Law from the University of Cambridge (Wolfson College) and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Taxation from the East African School of Taxation. I am also the country lead, Girls for Girls Uganda Limited where more than 4,000 women and girls from different social and economic spheres have been mentored under the programme. I also mentor under the Oak Seed Governance (leadership) course.
What are some of the best career decisions you have made?
I have always been in search of opportunities to grow and learn. Before I got a scholarship for my LLM in Cambridge, I had failed at four attempts in four universities. I treasure teamwork and collaboration in ensuring success on the job. I put in the work to deliver excellence in my duties and I am reliable and consistent, able to build trust among the people I work with.
What virtues make you good at what you do?
I am able to listen and take in the views of other people. I set boundaries in my relationships with peers and colleagues so that I am able to manage expectations and relate with them. I support the success of others., ensuring our team is winning together as we achieve our common goal. 
What is your day like as a business lead at Business Network International-Uganda? 
By 6:30am I will be at a BNI meeting. This will end at about 8:30am but I will remain in the room meeting members and visitors for about 30 minutes. Then I proceed to the law firm where I engage my team. Most afternoons are spent on calls with leaders within Uganda or across the world. 
Tell us about the BNI philosophy of positive attitude. How can this contribute to growth and how is it nurtured overtime?
A positive attitude is one of the core BNI values which speaks to the fact that we must do everything with a positive attitude. It stems from the fact that no one wants to work with negative people and in fact people will go a long way to avoid negative people. Having a positive attitude accelerates growth because your attitude attracts great people with whom you can collaborate to achieve your goals. 
To nurture a positive attitude you must maintain an attitude of gratitude. You must remain thankful in all circumstances. You must always find something to be appreciative of whatever the circumstances. 
What are some of the challenges you have encountered and how have you overcome them?
Access to finances. As I grew BNI in Uganda, I had to meet many financial obligations such as rent and salaries. It was not always easy finding the finances to keep the business afloat when BNI’s membership was small. Growing the membership has helped me manage the obligations. 
 Also I had to find the right people to help me build BNI Uganda team. I asked for referrals from among my friends and now I am very excited about the team I have. 
 What role can a business mind play for an individual to tap into a sustainable business venture?
 You must have a clear vision of what you want to achieve. There will be many people who do not appreciate or understand what you are trying to achieve. You will find naysayers and people who seek to discourage you. You must believe in your vision and in your capacity to succeed.  
Listen to feedback, take advice but stay true to your vision. 
What is your advice to young entrepreneurs?
Be consistent and practice discipline.