It’s time to think about Partner of the Year Awards! This is one of the events I most look forward to each year. This is your opportunity to nominate yourself or your company for awards that can showcase your solutions built on Microsoft technologies to benefit our mutual customers. Have you considered entering?

Benefits of Partner of the Year Awards
Receiving a Partner of the Year Award positions your company for new business opportunities, generates positive press coverage, and can lead to even greater market recognition.
The winners will be celebrated at this year’s Worldwide Partner Conference – July 13-17 in Washington D.C.. Award winners are also invited to an exclusive celebration during the conference. Last year, we interviewed our Presales Technical Specialist of the Year and posted the video on YouTube.
What are the Awards categories?
There are 44 awards for which you can enter, as well as more than 100 Country Partner of the Year awards. I specifically want to call attention to the Sales Excellence category, which includes Sales Specialist and Presales Technical Specialist of the Year awards.
  • The Sales Specialist of the Year Award recognizes an individual sales professional (e.g., Account Managers, Account Executives, Field Sales Reps, Telesales Reps, and Solution Sales Reps) who demonstrates exceptional Microsoft solution knowledge and sales expertise. A winning sales professional demonstrates proficiency in solution selling and a commitment to continuous improvements in customer satisfaction. Their sales prowess is evident in their ability to target and generate business and revenue growth with new and existing customers. Nominate sales professionals in your organization who consistently exceed sales expectations as the result of their solution-selling capabilities.
  • The Presales Specialist of the Year Award is an award that recognizes an individual presales technical professional (e.g., Presales Engineer, Product Specialist, or Technical Specialist) who demonstrates exceptional Microsoft technical solution knowledge and sales expertise in key workloads. A winning presales technical professional helps close deals by conducting a business value conversation from a technical perspective. They are able to explain the process of upgrading from Microsoft Product X to Product Y, demonstrate the differentiation of a Microsoft solution vis-à-vis a competitor, and complete a value demo and gain support for a Proof of Concept. Nominate presales technical professionals in your organization who consistently exceed sales expectations as the result of their presales technical selling capabilities.
How to enter

The Partner of the Year Awards nomination tool is open now until April 11, 2014, at 11:59 P.M. Pacific Time.

First, I recommend that you familiarize yourself with the complete Microsoft 2014 Partner of the Year Award guidelines. By preparing all of your answers and supporting documents now, it definitely makes it easier to upload your final entry. On the Awards info page you’ll also find an FAQ, guidance from the judges about how to create a winning awards nomination, and words of wisdom on creating a great entry. Finally, I encourage you to closely read through the 2014 official rules for the program prior to submitting your entry.
Best of luck! And while you’re at it, make sure to register to attend WPC 2014!