Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Washington, D.C., USA

Not every black swan is a catastrophe. Unexpected windfalls can have an enormous positive effect on an organization. This article details how a federal organization saw its project portfolio budget increase tenfold. As a result, it had to reassess its project management process. In addition, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act affected how this organization could spend and allocate its funds. The article also explores the steps the organization made to allocate its funds to meet these legislation requirements. This black swan also led to sizeable risk; therefore, a centralized project-reporting process was devised. To operated in these conditions, you have to move forward in unison, make sure that everyone understand what you are doing, and maximize the ability of your people. Black swan events can catch project professionals unaware. However, strong leadership and a focused team can mitigate risk.
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