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Directions North America 2023 Preview: Microsoft's Monique Hayward

by Jason Gumpert

Directions North America 2023, running from April 16 to 19, offers Microsoft partners working with Dynamics 365 and Power Platform new opportunities to network, learn about product direction, and hear the latest on Microsoft's channel programs and goals. As an SMB-focused event, Directions NA attendees have a reputation for asking Microsoft challenging questions about the company's Business Applications plans and how they will align with the needs of channel partners.

To learn more about what attendees can expect from Microsoft at Directions NA 2023, MSDW spoke with Monique Hayward, Microsoft's senior director and ecosystem lead for Business Applications marketing. Hayward joined the Business Applications team in 2021 and has been broadening her presence across events and initiatives in the community. She will be participating in two keynote sessions and the Women in Dynamics luncheon at the event. In an interview, she told us that Microsoft will come to Directions NA ready to discuss new product announcements, ambitious channel goals, and how partners can participate in Microsoft's newest programs and initiatives.

MSDW: What will be your message at Directions NA 2023 to partners that are new to the Business Applications space as compared with the message to veterans?

Monique Hayward: We’re enthusiastic about the programs and opportunities for our Business Applications partners.  First, let’s talk about AI and all the major announcements we made recently.  All the partners with whom I’ve spoken since have expressed excitement about the growth potential that AI holds for their businesses.  Next, we continue to invest in the Microsoft Cloud Partner Program, and I want partners to lean into the components that will help them innovate and better support their customers. I also hope that our partners who build IP are inspired by the ISV updates that are on the horizon. But overall, my message is one of our commitments to ensuring we’re providing value to our partners, who in turn, deliver their solutions to our customers.

What channel goals and incentives will you be emphasizing?

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About Jason Gumpert

As the editor of, Jason oversees all editorial content on the site and at our events, as well as providing site management and strategy. He can be reached at

Prior to co-founding, Jason was a Principal Software Consultant at Parametric Technology Corporation (PTC), where he implemented solutions, trained customers, managed software development, and spent some time in the pre-sales engineering organization. He has also held consulting positions at CSC Consulting and Monitor Group.

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