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Cover for Teaching by Heart

Teaching by Heart

One Professor's Journey to Inspire

Thomas J. DeLong


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Other Editions of This Title:
Digital Audiobook (5/11/2020)
MP3 CD (5/12/2020)
Compact Disc (5/12/2020)


The best teachers are leaders, and the best leaders are teachers.

Teaching by Heart summarizes the author's key insights gained from more than forty years of teaching and managing. It illustrates how teachers can both lift people up and let them down. It proposes that the best teachers are also leaders, and the best leaders are also teachers.

In examining how to lead and teach, renowned Harvard Business School professor Thomas J. DeLong takes the reader inside his own head and heart. He notes that, as teachers, we often focus more on our inadequacies and missteps than on our strengths and unique talents. He explains why this is so by dissecting and analyzing his own experiences--using himself as a case study.

The book's goal is to help readers learn about the intricacies of teaching and managing, and to impart lessons about how teachers can create a unique teaching atmosphere. To do this, the author analyzes the process of creating a curriculum, preparing for an eighty-minute class, managing the fifteen minutes before class begins, and evaluating the nature of the teaching experience after the session concludes.

Along the way, he connects specific classroom behaviors with leadership issues--in organizations, in teams, and in personal relationships. He also asks--and answers--some provocative questions, such as:

  • What happens on multiple levels when I teach or lead--with me, students, or professionals?
  • What am I thinking and feeling as I process what students are thinking and feeling?
  • How are my internal conversations affecting how I teach and lead?
  • How do I manage my biases, including having favorite students?
  • To what extent can I use teaching methods in the arena of management?

Throughout Teaching by Heart, DeLong discusses why empathy and authenticity matter. When teachers embrace this mindset, students have the opportunity to have a unique learning experience. Teachers and managers will learn how to create moments of transformation for students.

Whether you're a university professor, a student, a business leader, or just someone fascinated by teaching, this book will instruct, entertain, and--hopefully--inspire.

Harvard Business Review Press, 9781633698529, 240pp.

Publication Date: January 14, 2020

About the Author

Thomas J. DeLong is the Baker Foundation Professor of Management Practice in the Organizational Behavior unit at Harvard Business School. Since 1997 DeLong has taught over twenty thousand MBAs and executives, both on campus and around the globe, and is internationally recognized for his teaching, writing, and course development. The author of Flying Without a Net, DeLong teaches courses focused on leadership, organizational behavior, managing human capital, and career management. He received his PhD from Purdue University and was a visiting scholar at MIT.To learn more about the author, visit: