Aged 19, he spoke only English.
He learnt his first foreign language, French, after a series of tumultuous life events landed him in Paris.
Without a job or place to stay, he made the decision to learn French quickly. Through experimenting with different techniques, and a lot of hard work, he was conversationally fluent in French within 6 months.
After discovering that learning a second language was actually far easier than he was taught in school, he had caught the language bug!
When he returned to London, he found it to be the perfect place to learn languages, surrounded by people from all over the world. He continued to experiment with new language learning strategies and methodologies, learning Italian, Spanish and Portuguese, and trying to discover the most effective way to learn languages without the need to live abroad.
Later, he decided he wanted to discover Asia and the Middle East, so he moved to Japan with the British Council. He lived in Japan, Qatar and Egypt, learning the local languages in each case. Over six years, Olly specialised language teaching and linguistics, earning a master's degree and presenting papers at international teaching conferences.
He began I Will Teach You A Language during this period, as a way to reach a wider audience. When he discovered his message resonated with people, and inspired them to improve their own language learning journey, he began to grow it into the entity it is today.
Olly passionately believes that the learning of foreign languages is a powerful force for good in the world, and that we can create a brighter vision for humanity when we have a better understanding of one another.
His work is dedicated to fulfilling that vision, and to helping others improve themselves, and the world we live in.