How to speak to your boss confidently about care commitments


Carers are people who provide unpaid care and support to family members and friends who have a disability, mental health condition, chronic condition, terminal illness, an alcohol or other drug issue or who are frail aged. One of the key questions many carers ask is: how do I speak to my boss about care commitments and responsibilities?

Grace Papers recognises and celebrates the 2.65 million Australians who provide care and support to a family member or friend. 

Many caregivers experience significant bias in the workplace. It shows up in pay gaps, in career development and advancement opportunities, and in accessing flexibility, especially if you’re a male. 

One of the key questions many carers ask is: how do I speak to my boss about care commitments and responsibilities? 

Fiona Duncan, Senior Communications Advisor, Department Planning Industry and Environment is a carer for her Uncle who is in aged care and she suggests getting straight to the facts with your employer: 

“You need to lay it on the table, work out what you can do and can’t do. In the case of being a carer for an elderly relative, you need to get into respite first and then get a permanent place. I spent a lot of time ringing around and having those conversations.  I can do that in my work, I’m lucky. My major tips are to lay it on the table and ask for help from your manager where you need it.”

Another tip is to log in to Grace Papers platform to create your Employee Value Proposition. Your Employee Value Proposition is a summary of what you bring to your workplace or, your work superpowers. It combines things like your values, the impact of your contributions, and your achievements. 

Your dreams, goals, values, talents, passions, and experiences all matter.

They all work together to create you – a person with huge potential and someone who has capacity to manage care and career, with the confidence to ask for a little compassion and help from your organisation or manager when you need it.