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

    Angel investor
    Business & Product Strategy
    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

  • 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

    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.

Get in touch and discover more about what we do.

What we do


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