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Microsoft MVPs Reflect on Program Changes, Channel Priorities

by Dann Anthony Maurno
Assistant Editor, MSDW

Recall that when late rock idol Prince changed his name to the unpronounceable symbol, the exasperated press didn't try to pronounce it, had no keys on the keyboard to represent it, and just called him "The Artist Formerly Known as Prince." Prince had his reasons - to annoy Warner Brothers into releasing him from a usurious contract.

Microsoft too had its reasons when in October 2015 it revamped its MVP award program to better reflect its cloud-first/mobile-first direction; also to make MVP help more regionally accessible. So it migrated away from 36 areas of technical expertise to 10 new and broader categories encompassing 90 contribution areas.

And, just two weeks ago, Microsoft announced that it would sunset 12 Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) competencies in favor of cloud-first/mobile-first versions.

Are these moves part of the same corporate overhaul? Do they present opportunities to partners, or render their competencies obsolete?

MSDynamicsWorld asked those questions on our MSDW Podcast. Joining us were two Dynamics GP MVPs. They were Mariano Gomez, a senior software developer with Mekorma, and Mark Polino, director of client services with Fastpath.

Following are some excerpts from the podcast (edited for length).

MSDW: What changes have you seen in the MVP program beyond that name - "Business Solution MVP"?

Mariano GomezGomez: ...

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About Dann Anthony Maurno

Dann Anthony Maurno is a seasoned business journalist who began his career as International Marketing Manager with Lilly Software, then moved on as a freelancer to write for such prestigious clients as CFO Magazine; Compliance Week;Manufacturing Business Technology; Decision Resources, Inc.; The Economist Intelligence Unit; and corporate clients such as Iron Mountain, Microsoft and SAP. He is the co-author of Thin Air: How Wireless Technology Supports Lean Initiatives(CRC/Productivity Press, 2010).