If you want to improve your English, there are an almost infinite number of options in front of you, and you can choose as many or as few as you like.
Leonardo English is only one of them, and there is a good chance that it might not be the right choice for you.
If you’re not familiar with what Leonardo English does, here’s a reminder.
We make podcasts for intermediate and advanced English learners. Every episode takes a weird and wonderful subject, and is spoken at a speed you can understand.
Every episode comes with subtitles, a transcript, and key vocabulary, so you can improve your vocabulary and understand every word, while also learning something new and interesting about how the world works.
That’s pretty much it.
Many English learning companies try to be everything to everyone.
“Want to improve your Business English? Sure, we can do that.”
“We have courses for everything from beginner to advanced”
“We have in-person classes and an amazing app - they’re both fantastic.”
“Our course has vocabulary translated into 78 different languages.”
The reality is that, if a company does everything, it probably doesn’t do exactly what you need very well, and you shouldn't choose something that does everything.
There is no focus, and trying to be everything to everyone often ends up with a lot of mediocre results.
This is a trap that lots of companies make, especially larger ones.
As a small, self-funded company, Leonardo English doesn’t have the luxury of trying to appeal to everyone who is learning English.
So, we are highly focussed both in what we build, and who we are building for.
You’ve already read what we do, now here’s who we are for:
Leonardo English is for independent, self-paced learners who want to improve their English while learning interesting things about the world around them. Our episodes are for intermediate and advanced learners, and they come with subtitles, a transcript, and key vocabulary.
If you are looking for 1:1 tuition, for a fast-track business English course, or for a video series on American culture for beginners, we don’t do that, and there’s a strong probability that we never will.
Doing so would mean that we would end up losing focus, and disappointing the people who we are actually here for, even if it might mean that the appeal was broader.
Given the choice between having 100,000 members of Leonardo English who all thought it was average and 1,000 members who all thought it was fantastic, we would take the latter, any day of the week.
And that is what we’re trying to build.
It’s not for everyone, and never will be.
Some people prefer to watch movies.
Some people prefer to sit in a classroom.
Some people believe that they’ll get fluent with Duolingo.
Others might want to save some money and watch videos on YouTube.
That’s all ok, and if this is you, Leonardo English might not be the right choice.
However, if you are a curious mind, if you want to improve your English at the same time as learning something interesting, and if you have realised the power of listening, then Leonardo English could well be what you are looking for.
This is not to say that Leonardo English is perfect, or anywhere near it.
It’s not the prettiest website in the world.
There aren’t thousands of hours of audio or video.
There isn’t an iOS or Android app.
There could be more variety of accents or topics.
It doesn’t have every bell and whistle on it.
I know this, and that is why we are making it better every single week
But, I hope that we are doing one thing well, and that is creating the most interesting way for independent, self-paced English learners to improve their English in a more interesting way.
Curious minds from 33 different countries have now taken the leap and become members of our little community.
If you want to be part of that journey, then I’d love to welcome you as a member.
And if you have got this far and decided that Leonardo English isn’t the right choice for you, that’s ok, it’s not for everyone.
Alastair - Founder of Leonardo English