In this episode Stephen interviews Ryan McMunn.
Founder & CEO | BRIC Language Systems
Ryan McMunn is Founder and CEO of BRIC Language Systems, an innovative web-based language acquisition program. As the former President of Asian Operations at a leading U.S. manufacturing firm, McMunn has long understood the importance of learning the native language of his Chinese colleagues.
Over the course of several years, he attempted numerous times to learn Mandarin. His attempts included private tutoring sessions, group classes, and virtually every other language training method available. He eventually found success with a program, taught by Kassey Wong, in Shanghai that utilized a unique teaching method specific to Mandarin.
Recognizing that the use of language-specific learning techniques is essential to grasping any new language, McMunn along with Kassey Wong, founded BRIC Language Systems to teach Mandarin in 2011 and have since developed Brazilian Portuguese and Spanish courses taught by teachers in Brazil and Mexico.
“It’s quite simple actually,” Ryan stated. “The mechanics of learning Mandarin Chinese are completely different from the way you should learn Brazilian Portuguese, for example. If you apply the same teaching methods to both, you are almost certain to fail.”
The BRIC Language Method is based on three key components: cultural immersion with native speaking teachers in location, exclusively developed interactive learning content, and customization to each students interests. McMunn and Wong ascertained that not every teaching approach should be built upon the European language model (as most other programs are), and with that, they designed a technology-based program that facilitates an interactive method proven to effectively harness both teacher and student.
The BRIC Language method encompasses cross-cultural training, personal and business applications and real-life social exercises, along with live online teachers accessible from anywhere in the world.
“Without the proper language skills, performing quality control and partaking in social and environmental aspects of my job were difficult at best. I never would have been promoted beyond my entry-level position in China had I not learned the native language,” stated McMunn, who was only 29 when he became GM of China Operations at his company.
With plans to add new languages to the blackboard including Russian, Japanese, and Arabic, McMunn has already more than cut the learning curve in half for those looking to advance their language skills and cultural knowledge of China and Brazil, two of the world’s fastest growing economies.
In this episode Stephen Dela Cruz interviews Ryan McMunn, funder of Briclanguage. Ryan started out stocking shelves from 2002-2004, when suddenly his company was expanding to china. He was the young experienced professional they want to manage the two new offices. Being twenty-five and unattached he gladly jumped on the chance to move to china. For three years he tried to learn Mandarin, but nothing worked for him. Soon his girlfriend at the time introduced him to Casey Wong, who successfully taught him Mandarin. After finally learning the language within a year he was making multimillion-dollar deals fully in Mandarin. Aside from his professional life skyrocketing his personal relationships in china also started to improve. When it came time for Ryan to move back to New York, Casey approached him wanting to use her methods to build an online language school. Even though Ryan already had many responsibilities, he agreed. McMunn wanted the school to be more then one language, and wanted to do the company right from the begging.
It wasn’t all easy sailing for Briclanguage though; Ryan really didn’t have to much online marketing skills in the begging, despite bragging about his marketing skills in china. Around six month they still only had a single student, depressed and embarrassed, Ryan didn’t give up. Some advice for new business owners is to always do background checks or at the very least Google the people you employ, a lesson McMunn learned the hard way. Today Briclanguage is working with the Chinese government to bring English teachers to overseas, and starting the processes of adding Russian, Japanese, and Arabic to hos curriculum. The number one piece of advice Ryan McMunn gives is keep up with networking. Although it’s no ones favorite, Ryan says he has made more deals through networking then any other method. Remember to always take the others business card don’t just give yours, and remember you will either impress someone, or never see them again.
- always network
- don’t give up
- don’t fall into self medication
- use personal experiences to build your company