What Would Judy Do?: Defiance

By Judy A. Smith | Dec 4th, 2012

In this week’s episode quite a lot is going on but the unifying theme for most of it is, “letting go”. We see characters who realize they must let go to move on. Most noticeably we see this with the President and Olivia. They each harbor a desperate hope that they can still be together but they feel there’s too much at stake to let that happen.  Although they attempt to conduct business as if nothing has happened, they haven’t truly committed to it and as a result are tormented and emotionally in limbo. Not until each assumes the other has moved on do they in turn “let go” and abandon hope.  It is time to rebuild. This is the message to the wealthy businessman’s wife when Olivia tells her to find something she enjoys. While both the businessman and his son have to relinquish preconceived ideas about the other in order move on. Even Senator Schumann who wants desperately to hold onto his job must realize it’s too late and to follow Olivia’s advice if he hopes for any chance of rebuilding his life.

In most scandals it is difficult for the individuals in trouble to accept facing the music and to realize that their image, reputation, and in all likelihood their jobs will be lost. In some cases the fear of this occurring will lead to denial. Yet unless action is taken and a strategy developed the situation will become worse and the consequences usually greater. What one shouldn’t forget is in this country the capacity of the public to forgive. Personally, I believe in redemption and I believe everyone deserves a second chance but that does not mean it won’t be painful. Yet with apologetic sincerity, and a proper plan there is reason for hope. But the first step in this is to truly “let go” of what was in order to rebuild.

Judy A. Smith is the founder and President of Smith and Company, a leading strategic and crisis communications firm with offices in Washington D.C. and Los Angeles as well as a Co-Executive Producer of ABC's Scandal. You can follow her on Twitter (@JudySmith_) or "Like" her on Facebook, and you can get more information about managing personal and professional crisis situations by visiting her site, judysmith.com.