Even the most experienced and successful law firms are sometimes faced with surprising and devastating events. Maybe you have just discovered that an employee has been stealing large sums of money from the firm. Perhaps a client has decided to sue the law firm and has threatened going to the press with an outrageous scandal. Maybe there is a real scandal that threatens the longstanding reputation of the firm that you have built.

As a firm’s managing partner, this might be the first time you have had to deal with a crisis of this magnitude and it is probably consuming your every thought. How will you ever get through this without losing face or worse, losing the company? Plus, you can’t ignore your other client and management responsibilities while managing the crisis.

When you have a major crisis on your hands, you have react quickly and there is no room for error. At times like these, it is well worth it to hire an outside professional – someone who can clearly assess the situation without the fear and emotion that you are no doubt experiencing.

When asked to step in to manage a firm’s crisis, ACI, for example, has found that being an outside party gives us certain abilities to deal with the situation that the people most closely involved just can’t manage at that particular moment. We have assisted firms in managing the resulting media attention, dealt with firing employees, written severence agreements and organized and facilitated post-crisis clean-up.

Whatever crisis your firm is facing, whether it is financial, personell or client-related, you need to quickly create a plan of action and work with the right people to implement it. The crisis will soon be past and you will be back to doing what you do best, representing your clients! What we have seen though, is that you can not ignore the crisis. It can snowball out of control without a professional management strategy