About Behind the Lines

Behind The Lines was founded in 2003 by Melanie Roberts, former Managing Director of Sales Associates and a media sales and training professional for over 20 years.

Mel Roberts

I have a passion for learning and helping people and organisations to share and grow their knowledge.

I’m constantly challenged to update my thinking on business through my clients and academic work. I believe that the key to our shared future lies in life long education for everyone.

My workshops are relaxed and responsive, I deliver ideas and examples and encourage everyone to create their own best practice for their own personal world conquest.

I work with all aspects of an organisation from the structure and systems to the culture and at an individual level to ensure that change is positive and sustained.

  • Work

    Business skills and sales trainer
    Business Consultant
    Lecturer at Kingston University Business and Law

  • Background

    Media sales and advertising agency roles including Quantum and EMAP and part of the launch team of Carat Business Ltd. 

    Launched my first business, Sales Associates Ltd a recruitment and training company in 2002.

    Launched Behind the Lines training in 2010.

  • Specialist sectors

    Media, advertising technology,advertising agencies, start-ups.

  • Clients

    DWA, IDG , Arria NLG, Mmultiply, Kantar, Encore Digital and many more over the years.

  • Education

    MBA Technology Management (ongoing)
    Post Grad Certificate Business Administration

  • Likes

    Playing in the woods with my children, working with smart people, doing nothing.

  • Dislikes

    Defeatism and laziness

Expert Partners

Behind the Lines can bring in expert partners to offer specialist insights in a wide variety of areas. We regularly work with all of our partners and we share a common goal - to create real change in the businesses we work with. 

Jeff Zie

I’m a business designer and engineer with 30 years of experience in marketing, digital media, product development and C-level roles, in startups and corporates; holding strategy and management positions at Electronic Arts, Sky, Microsoft and Emap. I’ve learnt my craft by running multi-million dollar P&Ls, building and managing teams across multiple territories in rich, large corporates and poor start-up environments.

I’ve been doing this a long time – it means that I often tell my clients things that they need to hear; not what they want to hear, using a process that delivers tangible results that empowers businesses to build on the work we do together.

  • Work

    Non-Exec
    Angel investor
    Fundraising
    Business & Product Strategy
    Advisor
    Interim/Transition C-level Roles

  • Background

    Ex-Creative with an MBA. Business-unit leader, founder, P&L owner. Ex Electronic Arts, Sky, Liberty Media, Microsoft and EMAP.

  • Sectors

    From think tanks to paints and chemicals to entertainment to AI to charities. And a few in-between.

  • Clients

    Akzo Nobel, RAND Corporation, Sony Pictures.

  • Education

    Doctorate, Metaphysics
    MBA

  • Likes

    Art, Food, Endurance sports, classic cars and motorcycles.

  • Dislikes

    Fakery and hype

Olivia Gadd

I believe that business exists for the benefit of humans, not the other way around. So, I work to help people consider their organisation holistically, and to develop a strategy that is balanced and sustainable. Many people are starting to rethink their models of leadership, culture and behaviour and I am enjoying supporting that process.

Working with individuals and teams, I help people find their own solutions. I use people’s own experience, alongside interactive exercises, and academic and scientific models to develop their thinking.

  • Work

    Non-exec director and trustee
    Leadership and management development
    Business and strategy consultant
    Executive coach

  • Background

    A creative with a commercial edge; or a business leader with a bent for innovation. Global senior executive for Arup and Grant Thornton. Director of rapid scale-up creative agency. Leadership and development passion.

  • Specialist Sectors

    Professional services, B2B, design and marketing.

  • Education

    MBA
    Accredited PR practitioner
    Marketing diploma/chartered
    Qualified executive coach

  • Likes

    Good food, good wine, good company. Not necessarily in that order.

  • Dislikes

    Unkindness and making assumptions.

Giulia Iannucci

I am a brand strategist and digital marketing consultant with over 17 years of experience gained across the EU, Australia, Asia and the UK.

Founder of KnowThyBrand, I help my clients position their brand as the cornerstone of their company, and guides them in creating professional and compelling digital marketing campaigns.

  • Work

    Brand strategy and positioning
    Digital marketing strategy and implementation
    Website development
    School Council Chair and Sport Club Advisor
    University Lecturer

  • Background

    A unique expertise and genuine passion for branding and all things marketing. A love for teaching and sharing knowledge, I am also a HEA associate fellow. I lived in several countries, which also helped me develop cross-cultural competence.

  • Sectors

    I have helped businesses from start-ups to Fortune 500 in different B2B and B2C sectors

  • Clients

    GSK, PRL Ireland, WellData, Pulley Ascent, Developing Global Leaders, RF arbitration

  • Likes

    Travelling, exploring, swimming, walking, good food and good beers

  • Dislikes

    Selfishness

Ahmet Ahmet

I am leader working in both the UK theatre sector and education. Beginning my career as an actor 19 years ago and performing in the West End and world tours. In 2013 I trained as a theatre educator. Now I work as a Research Lecturer, educating training theatre creatives both practically and academically, whilst also working as an Outreach Director within the UK’s theatre workforce development strategy.  

 
My many years as a theatre educator as enabled me to develop an insightful pedagogical practice, coupled with strategic leadership. An exciting area of expertise is developing the practice of Oracy - the art of speaking, exploring the potential of ones voice and finding our power as orators.
  • Work

    Theatre lecturer
    Theatre outreach director
    PhD researcher
    Producer
    Fundraiser
    Project leader

  • Background

    I began my career working in theatre and TV in West End productions such as Mama Mia and Calamity Jane. Then transitioning into theatre direction and producing, I began training young actors. After a complete change into education and eventually becoming Head of School, I am now working as a leader at both the Royal Conservatoire at Trinity Laban and The Stage Media Company. It's been a colourful journey and the best is yet to come.

  • Sectors

    Theatre and Educational sector

  • Education

    Drama school training at Arts Ed, London, BA Hons in Theatre Practice at Middlesex University, Goldsmiths University for Post Graduate in Education and current PhD study at Central School of Speech and Drama.

  • Likes

    Theatre (obviously), cooking, dining, learning french, coffee, vintage things and music

  • Dislikes

    Ignorance and lemon deserts

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