top of page

About the author...

About the author...

Melanie van de Velde, PhD, MBA, MSc

The insights in LEAD LIKE A GENIUS are based on the author's 20 years of experience as well as her research, awarded the Adam Smith Prize for PhD Excellence, nominated by the Social Innovation Research Centre at Cambridge University.

Prior to her research Melanie managed Asia Pacific markets at a multi-billion dollar tech company. She worked in senior management at IT start-ups. And she ran an impact business in a Nairobi slum. 


With Big Tree Global she supports business leaders and MBA students from around the world with key insights and tools as to how to create powerful impact on our key global issues.

B Journeys, her other start-up, aims to create economic opportunities in some of the poorest and at the same time most beautiful parts of our world.


To be kept informed of the book launch of LEAD LIKE A GENIUS subscribe below:

I've read a ton of books on this topic and this is by far my favourite!

Matt Deasy, Business Sustainability Consultant,


Finally, a tool to help identify effective impact initiatives. The imperative to make a positive impact and deliver profits may seem paradoxical, but it is possible.  Melanie has solved this with her simple, easy-to-adopt methodology to help businesses create powerful social and environmental impact strategies.

Mark Fallows,
Founder Fabrica Collective &
The Impossible Network,
Amazing insights, this is the need of the hour.
Inir Pinhiero, Founder Grassroutes,
What makes an ‘impact first’ leader successful? Melanie van de Velde has inspired me with her evidence based work how to balance people, planet and profit. I love the key insight not to forget the GOOD profit drivers!”
Robert van der Laan, PwC Corporate Responsibility Leader EMEA,
The Netherlands

What I like the most is the IMPACT Wheel. Because with the IMPACT Wheel it all comes together. 

It is a great tool to see what you can do in your business."

Gert Eilander,
CEO Multiweld & Impact Chair Entrepreneurship Organisation

Dr van de Velde’s doctoral thesis is outstanding and a worthy winner of the Adam Smith Prize for PhD Excellence.

Dr Haugh, Director Social Innovation Research Centre,
Cambridge University,

A must read.

Dirk le Roy, MD CSR Campus Europe,

This book is an absolute must read for everyone who wants to make their purpose count. To make the necessary step of 'doing good' to actually changing the world for the better.
Sandra Ballij, Founder Ctaste & Ctalents,
The Netherlands
A timely and thought-provoking book packed with insightful examples that is relevant to all business people."
Sarah Deas, Trustee, Wellbeing Economy Alliance,



In LOVE YOUR LEGACY, Dr Melanie van de Velde examines the need for businesses to have a beneficial impact on our planet and its inhabitants. The UN sees poverty, inequality, climate change and pollution as our key global challenges.

90 Percent of our global citizens believe that companies should help fix these issues. But research shows that most business leaders lack the tools and knowledge how to best do so.

Drawing on her award-winning research, Dr van de Velde unpicks where most impact strategies go wrong. She reveals five key insights into the reasons why some companies like Patagonia achieve far better results than others. 

She provides a practical guide for business leaders to create more profitable and robust impact strategies. For better and longer-lasting results, globally and locally.

To help you build a legacy you can be proud of.

Legacy_Book_ Pile_ BG_ LHS_edited.jpg
Reading the book is like having a cosy cup of tea with Mel as she shares her insights and expertise, gleaned from years of working on the front line of social and sustainable business and her academic research."
Thom Kenrick, Head of Social Strategy and Impact at NatWest Group,

Van de Velde's key insights for successful impact strategies offer a concrete roadmap to break away from extrapolating the present and choosing wisely for a more vibrant and justice world.”

Eduardo Balarezo, Adjunct Professor, Founder Lonesome George & Co,
United States

Dr van de Velde’s doctoral thesis is outstanding and a worthy winner of the Adam Smith Prize for PhD Excellence.

Dr Haugh, Director Social Innovation Research Centre,
Cambridge University,

bottom of page