McGarvie, Blythe J.

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McGarvie, Blythe J.


Education: Northwestern University, B.A., M.B.A.


Office—Leadership for International Finance, 3025 River Oaks Rd., Williamsburg, VA 23185. E-mail—[email protected]


Leadership speaker and executive coach. Arthur Andersen and Co., certified public accountant, 1978-85; Kraft Foods Inc., Northfield, IL, director of worldwide planning, 1985-88, group controller and director of finance and administration, 1988-91; Sara Lee Corp., Chicago, IL, chief administrative officer, Pacific Rim, 1991-94; Hannaford Bros. Co., Scarborough, ME, executive vice president and chief financial officer, 1994-99; Bic Group, Clichy, France, executive vice president and chief financial officer, 1999-2002; Leadership for International Finance, Williamsburg, VA, founder and president, 2003—. Member, board of directors, Accenture, Pepsi Bottling Group, The Travelers Companies, Inc., Viacom, and Wawa Inc. Senior fellow, Kellogg Information Network.


Lyric Opera of Chicago Guild Board.


Schaffner Award, Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Northwestern University.


Fit In, Stand Out: Mastering the FISO Factor for Success in Business and Life (nonfiction), McGraw-Hill (New York, NY), 2006.


Longtime business executive Blythe J. McGarvie is founder and president of the consulting firm Leadership for International Finance, which advises corporations on how best to achieve their economic goals and improve their approach to management. She started this venture after a career that included senior positions with a variety of corporations; at one time she was one of only ten female chief financial officers with Fortune 500 companies. She lays out her concept of how to be an effective manager in Fit In, Stand Out: Mastering the FISO Factor for Success in Business and Life. Her thesis is that successful executives must be able to both integrate into a company, with all the people and procedures involved, and transform it—that is, fit in and stand out. These concepts appear to be opposed, but they are not, she says. Business leaders can learn to fit in and stand out, and balance the two, by developing what she describes as six catalytic agents: financial acuity, integrity, linkages, learning, perspective, and global citizenship. She illustrates her theories with stories from her experience and that of other corporate managers, at companies including Microsoft and General Electric.

Some reviewers thought McGarvie's book would be valuable to businesspeople and noted that her background makes her a credible source of advice. She demonstrates the "important connections" among the various factors that contribute to business success, remarked a Bookwatch contributor, who described McGarvie as a "leadership expert." Booklist critic David Siegfried found Fit In, Stand Out to be "a fundamental guide" for executives, adding that the strategy it outlines comes "from someone who has been there and done it."



Booklist, September 15, 2005, David Siegfried, review of Fit In, Stand Out: Mastering the FISO Factor for Success in Business and Life, p. 15.

CIO, October 15, 2005, Edward Prewitt, "How to Climb the Corporate Ladder," p. 26.

Bookwatch, (January, 2006), review of Fit In, Stand Out.

Fit In, Stand Out Web site, (March 5, 2007), biographical information.

Leadership for International Finance Web site, (March 5, 2007), biographical information.