Underlings Defined

You may have heard me refer to my employees as underlings, and there’s a great reason why. Allow me to explain.

It’s simple, really. Underlings are mere employees. How did I get there from here? Well, pay close attention.

Employees are people who work for an employer. The employer is the person or company or other entity that employs the employee.


  • Get paid by the employer
  • Are told what to do by the employer
  • Are “underneath” the employer

I am the employer in this example, which puts the employees under me and my power. (This is consistent in the org chart, too — and our building, for that matter!)

As you can see, underlings are weak creatures that are unable to tend to their own needs. Thus, I am in power over the employees and they are “under” me. I simply simplify the relationship — and continually clarify their role — by referring to my employees as underlings.

Got it? Good.

W. Albert Jameson, IV

On the other hand…
How you address your team members matters. Authority does not determine how much respect is due others.

How would you like to be addressed by a leader? What way makes you feel most respected?