Washington, DC will be filled with more than 15,000 Microsoft partners eager to learn what’s new and exciting for Microsoft partners and customers.
Notably there will be one VERY BIG thing happening.
A New CEO
Steve Ballmer has committed to transition out of the role he’s held for 10 years as CEO of Microsoft and to retire within 12 months of his August 2013 announcement. I predict the new CEO will be in place before WPC and this will be their coming out party.
We’ll also hear about the Four Pillars, IAMCP, and we’ll see Social Everywhere including a return of The Social Hub.
IT Megatrends – The Four Pillars
The Four Pillars are: Social, Mobile, Cloud and Big Data
The goal is to insure each of The Four Pillars will be covered in detail to address four core questions:
- What is the market opportunity?
- What is Microsoft’s value proposition?
- What is Microsoft’s competitive differentiation?
- How do partners make money?
IAMCP – Getting Involved
As in many years past there will be a significant involvement of the IAMCP chapters from around the world coming together to help insure the WPC experience is the best it can be.
If you don’t know the IAMCP you should. The IAMCP is the International Association of Microsoft Channel Partners. There is probably a local chapter near you – click here for more details.
I am one of the co-founders / re-animators of the Puget Sound (Seattle) IAMCP chapter. Come to a meeting and learn more about how your peers are getting it done. I think you’ll like what you see and will want to join.
Social Everywhere (The Social Hub)
Finally, attendees will see Social EVERYWHERE. At the 2013 event there was a big effort to step up the Social Engagement Efforts. There were talks by quite a few subject matter experts, myself included, on the how’s & why’s to setup a social engagement model for yourself and for your business.
In 2014 expect to see more expert talks and even more engagement efforts to help partners build their social strategy. The goal is to help partners Drive Social Impact.
At a minimum stop by The Social Hub and get your picture taken. Either with a group of friends (new or old) and/or your picture for your social profiles.
What WPC is Really About
Sure. It’s a very big event and a sizable expense for Microsoft and I give huge props and kudos to Microsoft for spending a lot of time, money and effort to host the WPC. I also give thanks to the teams at Microsoft that spend a lot of time planning a year (or more) in advance to insure the event delivers.
Full Disclosure: I am one of those people. I work with the Microsoft WPC team, the IAMCP and a dedicated group of partners to try and make sure First Time Attendees (aka FTA’s) and longtime veterans alike have a great WPC experience.
But the overall goal is really … It’s not all about Microsoft.
It’s about Partner Engagement, Customer Success and yes … Profitability.
For Microsoft to be successful. Partners need to be successful. I predict the next WPC will roll out a lot of changes in the Microsoft model for going to market, for working with partners and for creating customer success.
The New CEO will have the stage and the opportunity to explain and share their vision for what may just be the most significant shift 40 years at Microsoft. I’m pretty sure we will hear how Microsoft will transform the way it sells, supports and services partners.
This will be the New CEO’s chance to put a stake in the sand and let partners know where and how Microsoft intends to work with them. Will there be big changes? My senses say … YES!
Hearing from the new CEO alone is probably a big enough reason to attend the WPC next July in DC. If you and your company are significantly invested in the Microsoft Partner Ecosystem you will want to hear about the changes first hand.
Of course, there will be a lot of other things announced, mentioned and shared about Microsoft, Partners and Customers at the 2014 WPC event. With the imminent arrival of a New CEO, the investment from the IAMCP community and the focus on Social to drive impact I think July 2014 is going to be the best Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference ever.
Will You Be There?
If yes, I’ll see you in DC. Look me up. I’ll be at the Microsoft Social Hub, at the IAMCP booth and going to sessions and, of course, attending parties in the evenings. Look me up before you go so we can plan time to meet. My contact details are below. See you in DC.
If you are ready to sign up click here or on the image below. If you just want to check out what’s happening click on the link and read all about it. If you are ready to sign up there is an early bird discount available.
If you want to read a few posts I wrote for the 2013 WPC event see these links. One of my favorite things at the 2013 WPC event was helping FTA’s get a lay of the land for what WPC is all about. See the last post below about The Scarlet Lanyard.
- The Four F’s of WPC
- The Value of a Social Business Strategy
- The Five R’s of Good Partnering
- WPC and The Scarlet Lanyard
Image Credit: Gadget4all
Jeff Shuey is a veteran in the Enterprise Content Management industry. Over the past 20 years he has worked with customers and partners to design, develop and deploy solutions around the world. Jeff is currently the Director of Strategic Alliances at Winshuttle. He has worked for Microsoft, FileNet, K2, Captaris, Open Text, Kofax and Kodak. He speaks and blogs about ECM and the Intersection between Social, Mobile and Cloud Computing.