People change careers for a variety reasons: career goals and values change; new interests are discovered; financial burdens increase; or priorities shift. If you’re considering a career change, here are some steps to help you move toward a new and satisfying career.

Evaluate your current job satisfaction
Take time to assess your current situation: What do you like or dislike? Does it align with your values and skills?  Review past successes, previous roles, volunteer work, projects and jobs to identify your preferred activities.

Research career alternatives
You can research a new field of interest by reaching out to personal contacts and networking with others in that industry. LinkedIn is a great resource to connect with professionals. Job shadowing a professional in your field of interest is a great way to gain hands-on experience. You can also look for volunteer and freelance opportunities.

Upgrade your skills
Search for classes to develop new skills to pave the way for a career change or to sharpen your current skills. Contact professional groups in your field of interest to find out what skills are in demand. Does your current company offer training? These kinds of opportunities can prepare you for a career change without having to return to school.

Move within your company
It’s important that you weigh all the alternatives before making a career change. There may be other roles with your current employer that utilize your knowledge and skills and would give you the change that you are looking for. Speak to your HR department or manager about potential opportunities.