Judy Smith, the woman who inspired the TV drama Scandal, sets out 11 rules for handling any crisis:

  1. Trust your gut
  2. Know the facts
  3. Don’t assume you know it all
  4. Remember – the truth always comes out
  5. Pause – Read the climate
  6. Patience – know where you want to end up
  7. Know when to hold and when to fold
  8. Don’t overreact
  9. You will know when to walk away
  10. Things usually get worst before they get better
  11. Expect the unexpected.

I would add to the list: start as you intend to go on.

In Empire of Deception: From Chicago to Nova Scotia,¬†Dean Jobb quotes Leo Koretz (the Bernie Madoff of the 1920s): “I got deeper in the hole. You understand how it goes; one false step leads to another, until it is impossible to turn back. You must go on or face exposure.”