Gartner Expert

Michelle Bazargan

Sr Director Analyst

Michelle Bazargan is a Sr. Director Strategy and Innovation in Gartner's CIO Research group. Ms. Bazargan works with organizations to advise on best practices and practical recommendations in strategy and innovation across talent management, process and ecosystem operating models, technology tools, leadership, culture and diversity and inclusion. Leveraging her extensive expertise in startups, product strategy and development, she focuses on human-centered innovation, shared intelligence ecosystems, courageous open mindset leadership

Previous experience

Prior to joining Gartner, Ms. Bazargan had a unique and diverse leadership background spanning startups and complex enterprise organizations, which include: Building innovation excellence practice, programs and ecosystems; developing innovation labs and environment to collaborate imagine and create innovation; driving re-investments into strategic business innovation, product strategy, development and marketing; corporate incubation and venture; diversity and inclusion; open innovation and ecosystems; innovation boot camps, fairs, shark tanks and hackathons; leading Office of CIO, and running IT as Business.

Her baseline of struggle and possibilities is different, as she escaped a revolutionary war and came to the U.S. with $500 and unable to speak a word of English. The experience built a foundation of resiliency, reinvention and purpose to help others face fears, adversity and believe in their strengths.

Passion fueled her to create a technology business from the ground up with a successful exit. She is obsessed with inspiring people to keep it real and believe in themselves, and speaks at events like Tedx on The Value of Human Connections. What lights her up is contributing to Children's Shark Tanks Innovation programs, running innovation bootcamps for schools and universities, advocating for diversity and STEM and sharing perspective on Forbes Council, Huff Post, and other platforms.

Professional background


Sr.Director Global Strategy & Product Engineering

Ultimate Software

Product Strategy and Innovation Consultant to Executive Team

JM Family - SE Toyota

Business Strategy and Technology Leadership - R&D,Innovation Labs, Office of CIO

Areas of coverage

Digital Marketing Strategy and Execution

CIO Leadership of Innovation, Disruptive Trends and Emerging Practices

Industry Product Planning

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Executive Leadership: Digital Business Transformation


B.S., in Marketing

Founders Institute

Scrum Alliance - Certified Scrum Master (CSM)

Scrum Alliance - Certified Product Owner (CPO)

Project Management Institute (PMI)

Consciousness and Psychology Certifications

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Top Issues That I Help Clients Address

1Drive business change through open innovation engines that generate continuous idea and incubation loops

2Shift investments & value from managing commodity lights on activities, to high value new horizon business innovation

3Create strong innovation ecosystems, labs, experiences and partnerships with customers, employees, & partners

4Right time customer marketing and sales engagement strategy leveraging AI, ML and Data Analytics

5Leverage actionable Diversity, Inclusion and Equality beyond pretty marketing and check boxes to drive and enable business innovation