Success Story: Silk Road line

Success Story: Silk Road line


“Cooperation with ACT showed us our potential, gave us confidence that we will achieve all our goals with the right approach and action plan,”

Zaza Barbakadze, Director of Silk Road Line.

The history of Silk Road Line begins in 2013, when the founders of the company united around a common idea and created an international freight forwarding company. Since its foundation, the company has come a long way of development, it had to overcome many difficulties and explore new opportunities.

Like other companies, the COVID-19 pandemic has proved to be a force majeure event full of challenges for Silk Road Line, but the company's size and flexibility have allowed it to quickly adapt to remote work. Despite the difficult socio-economic and epidemiological background, 2020 turned out to be a successful year for Silk Road Line, as the company overcame seemingly insurmountable difficulties and managed to close the year with positive financial results. This became a kind of sign for management that the company has great potential and ambition, can further improve results and achieve great goals.

“Getting through the pandemic gave us the feeling that we could do even more, that we had more potential, and that’s when the idea came up to bring an external consultant into the process, a company that will help us create the basis for future development.”

Zaza Barbakadze, director of Silk Road Line.

The management clearly understood the need for changes to move to a new stage. These are the inevitable changes that the company needed to achieve a more efficient workflow and focus on long-term development. It seems that the company's management was aware of the company's potential, but to use it, the support of an external partner was required, which would create a new approach to business and support it in strategic development.

“We knew we could do more, but the path forward was unclear. We knew what we wanted to achieve, but we didn't know how to achieve it."

Amiran Gochitashvili, Head of Transport and Business Development Department

“We had good results, we were happy with what we have, but everything somehow stalled, we knew that we wanted to achieve more, we knew that we had potential, but we just did not know how to improve ".

Natia Kereselidze, Head of Sales Department.

This was the prerequisite for cooperation between ACT and Silk Road Line, the purpose of which was to strengthen and support the company to create a kind of springboard for future development. It should be noted that Silk Road Line implemented this project within the framework of the Small Business Financing and Development Group of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the Small Business Fund with the support of the Korean government. This project provides for the co-financing of consulting services for the long-term development of beneficiaries.

As part of the cooperation between ACT and Silk Road Line, a transformation team was formed, consisting of the top management of the company, as well as consultants and business analysts from ACT. As a result of the cooperation of the parties involved in the transformation team, the main work tasks and methodology were determined, which are backed up by 20 years of experience accumulated in the field of business intelligence and consulting.

As part of the collaboration with Silk Road Line, ACT's POWER3©® (THE POWER OF THREE©®)  transformational model was used, based on the balance of three business areas: vision, culture and execution. It was within this transformational model that important factors, strengths and areas for improvement were identified, as well as further steps that were vital for the development of the company.

The initial phase of the workflow included diagnosing the company using the POWER3©®    methodology, which analyzes the organization in terms of vision, culture, and performance. POWER3©  diagnostics allows you to see the existing ideas of the company regarding its further development, perceive the corporate culture created by employees, and also evaluate the effectiveness of their implementation.

“Diagnosis of the company was very important and, I think, the most correct approach, it was after that that we took further steps, determined as a result of cooperation, and not prepared according to the so-called. magic recipe that should work the same for all companies.”

Zaza Barbakadze, director of Silk Road Line.

As part of the diagnostics, in-depth interviews were conducted with the company's transformation team and the main areas of work were identified, including the coordination of the company's vision and the formation of a development strategy, strengthening teamwork, implementing a system of accounting, analytics and reporting.

As a result of the cooperation of our consultants and business analysts with the Silk Road Line team, a vision for the future of the company was agreed and a long-term development strategy was created, according to which a short-term tactical plan was formed. To develop a data-driven approach, an online reporting system was created to monitor and analyze results. Taking into account the strategy and vision of development, the existing organizational structure was revised and the necessary changes were made to help the company increase its efficiency. Since any organization is based on its team, it is necessary to strengthen the synergy and cooperation of these people, therefore, to strengthen teamwork. Team building and Team bonding events also were held.

According to the company's senior management, the ACT process was a very useful and necessary stage in the development of the Silk Road Line, in which a structured, sequentially planned process played an important role. In turn, this is combined with ACT's POWER3©®    transformational model, which has 9 well-defined components and views the company from a holistic approach. Accordingly, as part of the work with Silk Road Line, changes were made in all three business areas (vision, culture and execution) and we already have the opportunity to see the results of these changes: improved reporting and analytics systems have simplified decision making, monitoring processes and results, employee evaluation.

“We spoke the same language, whether I am effective or not, whether my results are fruitful or not, we all evaluate it the same way, all this is dictated by the measurement indicators.”

Zaza Barbakadze, director of Silk Road Line.

“We evaluated each other at the level of perception, and now we can speak with numbers and insights, reporting and data analytics have helped us a lot to use a rational approach, not an emotional one,”

Amiran Gochitashvili, Head of Transport and Business Development Department

• The company expanded its practice of forecasting changes, forecasting risks and managing them.

“Until now we have worked reactively, if something has changed or not, we have put all our resources into it, but now we do not let the situation escalate, which helps us with a proactive approach.”

Natia Kereselidze, Head of Sales Department.

• The company has created new positions for employees who perform support functions in the organization, and also expanded the sales and logistics departments. Currently, the number of employees has increased from 12 to 20.

• The company's revenue has doubled in Q4 2021 and the first two quarters of 2022 and they say they plan to achieve even better results by the end of the year.

“We have achieved results that we never thought we would achieve, we analyzed how much we can do,” 

Natia Kereselidze, Head of Sales.

• As part of the consulting project, facilitation master classes were held with a team of leaders, who were given the opportunity to reflect and self-reflection with team members, and as a result of cooperation, the team was awarded the status of a “Star Team”, which further contributed to the growth of teamwork in the company.

“I really liked the workshop style workflow, it was built and professionally implemented in such a way that at the end of the working day we already had tangible results, as a result of one day of concentrated work we got a clearer result than as a result of many meetings held before Togo". 

Amiran Gochitashvili, Head of Transport and Business Development Department.

• Friendly relations between employees in the company are still a topical issue, but there was also a high importance of collegiality in the internal organizational culture, in which people, along with emotional factors, rely on performance indicators and data-based decisions.

“We used to have a family environment, everything was done on the basis of personal relationships, now we have a well-defined system of work and a structure where everyone knows what their responsibilities are.” 

Zaza Barbakadze, director of Silk Road Line.

• Also following this successful start, the company moved to a new, more adapted and future-oriented office, which provides a pleasant working environment for employees.

Briefly summing up the results of the joint work of ACT and Silk Road Line, we can say that at this stage the company has a clear vision of its future development, which is supported by employees integrated into an authentic organizational culture and manifests in the highly effective results they achieve. It is also worth noting that, according to the company's top management, this is only the initial stage of large-scale development, and the company has even greater potential.

“We were constantly talking about the past, about where our history began and what we had achieved, and we had a kind of self-satisfied feeling. However, after our cooperation, at corporate meetings and in the course of daily conversations, it is felt that instead of the past, we are talking about the future, what are our plans, what we should achieve, what we can do,” 

Amiran Gochitashvili, Head of Transport and Business Development Department.

At the heart of this inner faith and ambition is a major change in the mindset about the growth of the company. Now the company's focus has turned to the pursuit of development, which is a continuous and spiral process that requires a constant change in the status quo. And in this process, we at the ACT team believe that the Silk Road Line actually has good potential to achieve even greater goals.