How can I persuade my boss to let staff have time off to watch a major live sporting event?

There are a number of ways to allow workers to watch live sport with minimal impact on the employer’s business:

  • Ask to change starting or finishing times to allow you to watch the matches.
  • Ask for time off during the working day to watch the event (this is known as a 'split-shift'), with the time being made up at either the start or the end of the normal working schedule.
  • Ask to be able to use annual leave or flexitime where you have it.

In all these cases, stress how this can be managed without disrupting your employer's business. Simply making modest changes to working time should mean that it's still easy to hit any important deadlines.

It's also a good idea to tackle the issue early. If your boss is going to make accommodation for staff in some way, it would be easiest, not to mention fairest, if this is discussed long enough in advance for them to make any changes or announcements when the time comes.

Negotiation is easiest on all sides when there are a number of people with the same concern. If you have a union where you work, try talking to your union rep about asking other colleagues and approaching management together to see if there are options that might suit the widest number of people.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.

What is WorkSmart?

A career coach that works for everyone.


Enjoy bite-sized activities delivered to you every week.

Lightbulb brain

Equip yourself with essential skills to be the best you yet.


Get the guidance you need to stay focused and reach your goals.

Worksmart circle