7 Tools in White Collar Crime Cases

Hi, Justin here, and I am super excited to provide this book summary of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s “Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life.” This book is not just a recount of Schwarzenegger’s remarkable journey from a small village in Austria to becoming a global icon in bodybuilding, Hollywood, and politics; it’s also a profound source of practical wisdom that can be particularly beneficial for anyone navigating the complexities of a white collar crime investigation.

The narrative begins by painting a vivid picture of Schwarzenegger’s early life in post-war Austria, laying the foundation for the resilience and vision that would characterize his later endeavors. Through the lens of his “Seven Tools for Life,” Schwarzenegger offers insights that are universally applicable yet particularly resonant for those of us dealing with white collar crime cases.

The first tool, Vision, underscores the importance of having a clear goal. For someone under investigation, this could mean developing a comprehensive mitigation strategy or planning for future career steps after prison. Schwarzenegger’s focus on envisioning success teaches us the power of having a roadmap in uncertain times.

The Power of Reps highlights the value of consistent effort in any endeavor, which for us could mean developing new skills every day, exercising, making cold calls, maintaining compliance on pre trial or probation. It’s about building habits to help us today and down the road.

In Turn Liabilities into Assets, Schwarzenegger shares how perceived weaknesses can be transformed into strengths. This is particularly poignant for those facing public and professional scrutiny; it’s about leveraging every part of one’s story, including the challenges, as platforms for demonstrating growth and responsibility.

Break the Rules encourages innovative thinking to navigate through or around obstacles. For someone entangled in a white collar investigation, this might mean embracing unconventional thinking in overcoming a conviction: talk about it, share lessons learned–do not run from it.

Ignore the Naysayers is about maintaining focus and self-belief despite external skepticism or criticism—a common occurrence I heard every day in prison. Schwarzenegger reminds us of the importance of staying true to one’s strategy and values, even when facing doubt from others.

Play the Long Game involves strategic, long-term thinking, crucial for managing one’s career and personal life both during and after an investigation. This tool encourages planning beyond the immediate situation to consider long-term impacts. In other words, I knew some projects would take years to come together. I also knew I had to get started.

Lastly, Give Back discusses the importance of contributing positively to the community, even during tough times. For those under investigation, engaging in community service or other philanthropic activities can not only positively impact others but also help in personal redemption and building a supportive network.

Arnold Schwarzenegger’s “Be Useful: Seven Tools for Life” offers more than just motivational advice; it provides a strategic toolkit for anyone looking to navigate a government investigtion.

Justin Paperny