(to be) low on the totem pole

Idiom Definition

Idiom Definition - low on the totem pole

"(to be) low on the totem pole"

the person or thing of lowest rank or importance


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition - low on the totem pole

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1: How long have you been working as a clerk in the mail room now?

Colleague 2: Almost two years in the lowest position in the company.

Colleague 1: And when will you not be the low man on the totem pole?

Colleague 2: Either somebody has to quit or retire or be fired in order to open up a position. Then there is a chance of being promoted.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - low on the totem pole

A couple are talking ...

Wife: When are you going to get around to fixing the garbage disposal?

Husband: With a roof that is leaking, eavestrough that are falling down and a septic system in major need of attention, fixing the garbage disposal is low on the totem pole of things to do.

Wife: Well, maybe one day you can.

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(to be) low on the totem pole - Usage:


Usage Frequency Index:   60   click for frequency by country

(to be) low on the totem pole - Gerund Form:

Being lowest employee on the totem pole meant he would be the first to be fired if business slowed down.

(to be) low on the totem pole - Examples:

1)  Schmoo is really low on the totem pole. His relevance and credibility lacks.

2)  ... and the low man on the totem pole gets to wipe the splatters off the wall, or mop up the floor ...

3)  of people or organizations who wistfully refer to themselves as "low man on the totem pole". It means "I have little or no status and have to ...

4)  We all have to start somewhere no matter how low on the totem pole we start at.

5)  ... which in contrast to the system shut down, is very low on the totem pole list of priorities.

6)  Africa is clearly low on the totem pole of America's foreign policy. The continent has limited strategic importance for American ...

7)  I don't have any authentic answers, since I was too low on the totem pole, as a mere squadron commander, to be privy to the 'Big ...

8)  As is to be expected, someone, low on the totem pole, was fired or resigned but everyone feels he was the sacrificial lamb.

9)  ... all just stepping on each other trying not to be the low guy on the totem pole and get fired. 

10)  If you get the job, you'll be low man on the totem pole for quite a while. After you've been there several years, ...

11)  The low man on the totem pole, he'd drawn the crap post assignment. Guarding stiffs in the nighttime ...

12)  Color deficiency is way low on the totem pole of accessibility problems.

13)  We already struggle enough with people thinking we are low on the totem pole of life and treat us like servants enough of the time, now there ...

14)  I was the lowliest low on the totem pole up there, I was the guy getting coffee and doing that kind of ...

15)  Are slips of the tongue treated differently when anchors relatively low on the totem pole make them, compared with what happens to high-profile personalities?

16)  When I worked retail and was low man on the totem pole, I generally had to work 8-hour shifts on both Thanksgiving Day and Christmas.

17)  ... than one long, continuous state of chronic stress such as humans low on the totem pole might face. 

18)  ... and you will still be low man on the totem pole with your two bit 5 visitors per week blog sprouting conspiracy theories et al.

19)  ... or they laid me off as I was the low woman on the totem pole

20)  We as a group are very low on the totem pole if not at the bottom so we are easily exploited.