President, Personal Investing, Fidelity Investments
Kathleen Murphy keeps three catch-phrase signs in her Boston office at Fidelity Investments. There's the encouraging bon mot ("Attitude is Everything"), a semi-serious admonition ("No Whining Allowed") and a bumper sticker, visible only when Murphy lifts the anti-whining nameplate off her desk. It reads, "Well-behaved women rarely make history."
"With those three signs you can sort of sum up my philosophy," says the president of Fidelity's retail-focused personal investing unit. Staying positive, empowering people and being a risk-taker who makes a difference are guideposts that have steered Murphy through a 25-year career in financial services and benefits.
At Fidelity she oversees a unit that has $1.28 trillion in assets under management, and is a turn-to analyst for cable network business programs seeking expertise on the individual investor market. That proficiency does not just come from her background. (She is a lawyer who once served as CEO of ING U.S. Wealth Management.) Murphy also personally listens to 20 hours a month of customer service calls to Fidelity, absorbing the questions and worries on customers' minds. The insight is meant to inform the product and service offerings at Fidelity, which Murphy says will increasingly include more adviser-centric models for personal investors desiring more professional help in monitoring their portfolios' performances.