Top 40 Slang For Control – Meaning & Usage

In a world where control is often sought after, language plays a powerful role in expressing dominance and authority. From the streets to social media, slang terms for control have emerged as a way to assert one’s power in various contexts. Whether you want to stay up-to-date with the latest lingo or simply want to understand the dynamics of power and control, we’ve got you covered with our curated list of top slang for control. Get ready to dive into a world where words hold the reins and be prepared to be amazed by the creativity and versatility of language.

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1. Boss

This term refers to someone who has authority and control over others. It can be used to describe a person in a position of power or someone who is in charge of a particular situation.

  • For example, in a workplace, a manager might be referred to as the boss.
  • In a group project, someone might say, “Let’s check with the boss before making any decisions.”
  • A person might assert their authority by saying, “I’m the boss here, so listen up.”

2. Rule the roost

To “rule the roost” means to have complete control or authority over a particular situation or group of people. The phrase is often used to describe someone who is in charge and makes all the decisions.

  • For instance, in a sports team, the coach might be said to “rule the roost.”
  • In a family, a parent might be described as “ruling the roost.”
  • Someone might say, “He thinks he can rule the roost, but we’ll see.”

3. Call the shots

This phrase means to have the power and authority to make important decisions and control the outcome of a situation. It is often used to describe someone who is in charge and has the final say.

  • For example, in a business, the CEO might be said to “call the shots.”
  • In a team project, the leader might be the one who “calls the shots.”
  • A person might assert their authority by saying, “I’m the one who calls the shots here.”

4. Hold the reins

To “hold the reins” means to have control or power over a situation. The phrase is derived from the act of holding the reins of a horse, which allows the rider to guide and control the horse’s movement.

  • For instance, in a company, the CEO might be said to “hold the reins.”
  • In a relationship, one person might be described as “holding the reins.”
  • Someone might say, “I trust her to hold the reins and make the right decisions.”

5. Be in the driver’s seat

To “be in the driver’s seat” means to be in control or have the power to make decisions and determine the course of action. The phrase is often used to describe someone who is in charge and leading a situation.

  • For example, in a project, the team leader might be said to “be in the driver’s seat.”
  • In a negotiation, the person with the most power might be described as “being in the driver’s seat.”
  • A person might assert their control by saying, “I’m the one who’s in the driver’s seat here.”

6. Be the head honcho

To be the person who is in charge or the leader of a group or organization.

  • For example, “He always wants to be the head honcho and make all the decisions.”
  • In a workplace setting, someone might say, “I’m the head honcho around here, so you need to listen to me.”
  • A person discussing a social group might say, “She’s the head honcho of our friend circle and plans all the events.”

7. Be the top dog

To be the most powerful or influential person in a particular context or situation.

  • For instance, “He always wants to be the top dog and have the final say.”
  • In a sports team, a player might say, “I’m the top dog on the field and I call the shots.”
  • A person discussing a business might say, “If you want to succeed, you have to be the top dog in your industry.”

8. Be the big cheese

To be an important or influential person, often in a particular field or organization.

  • For example, “He always wants to be the big cheese and have everyone’s attention.”
  • In a social setting, someone might say, “She’s the big cheese in our group and everyone looks up to her.”
  • A person discussing a company might say, “He’s the big cheese at that company and makes all the major decisions.”

9. Be the kingpin

To be the person in control of a criminal organization, often involved in illegal activities such as drug trafficking or organized crime.

  • For instance, “He wants to be the kingpin of the city’s underworld and control all the criminal activities.”
  • In a movie about organized crime, a character might say, “He’s the kingpin of the mafia and no one dares to cross him.”
  • A person discussing criminal organizations might say, “Taking down the kingpin is crucial to dismantling the entire operation.”

10. Be the shot-caller

To be the person who makes the important decisions or has the authority to control a situation or group.

  • For example, “He always wants to be the shot-caller and have the final say in everything.”
  • In a team project, a leader might say, “I’m the shot-caller here, so listen to my instructions.”
  • A person discussing a political campaign might say, “The shot-caller behind the scenes is the one who strategizes and makes the key decisions.”

11. Be the alpha

To be the dominant or leading figure in a group or situation. This phrase is often used to describe someone who is confident, assertive, and in control.

  • For example, a motivational speaker might say, “If you want to succeed, you have to be the alpha and take control of your destiny.”
  • In a workplace setting, a manager might encourage their team by saying, “Let’s all step up and be the alpha in our respective roles.”
  • A friend might give advice by saying, “Don’t let others push you around. Be the alpha and stand up for yourself.”

12. Be the boss lady

To assert authority and control in a confident and commanding manner, especially as a woman. This phrase is often used to empower and encourage women to take leadership roles.

  • For instance, a female entrepreneur might say, “I started my own business and now I’m the boss lady.”
  • In a team meeting, a woman might say, “I’ll take the lead on this project. I’m the boss lady here.”
  • A motivational speaker might inspire women by saying, “Don’t be afraid to be the boss lady in your own life and career.”

13. Be the captain of the ship

To assume leadership and responsibility for a situation or group. This phrase compares being in control to being a captain who steers and guides a ship.

  • For example, in a crisis, someone might say, “We need someone to step up and be the captain of the ship.”
  • In a team project, a leader might say, “I’ll be the captain of the ship and make sure we stay on track.”
  • A parent might give advice to their child by saying, “You’re in charge of your own life. Be the captain of your own ship.”

14. Be in the driver’s chair

To be in control and have the power to make decisions and direct the course of events. This phrase uses the metaphor of being in the driver’s seat of a vehicle.

  • For instance, in a meeting, someone might say, “I’ll be in the driver’s chair for this project and make sure everything runs smoothly.”
  • In a group setting, a person might say, “Let’s all take turns being in the driver’s chair and sharing our ideas.”
  • A coach might motivate their team by saying, “Each of you has the ability to be in the driver’s chair of your own success.”

15. Be the captain

To assume the role of a leader or authority figure in a situation. This phrase refers to being the captain of a team or group, responsible for making decisions and guiding others.

  • For example, in a sports team, a player might say, “I’ll be the captain and lead us to victory.”
  • In a group project, someone might say, “Let’s choose a captain who can make the final decisions.”
  • A mentor might encourage their mentee by saying, “You have the potential to be the captain of your own life. Take charge and lead with confidence.”

16. Be the top influencer

To “be the top influencer” means to have the greatest ability to shape or control the opinions, actions, or decisions of others. This term is often used in the context of social media, where individuals who have a large following are considered influential.

  • For example, a marketing expert might say, “To increase brand awareness, you need to be the top influencer in your industry.”
  • A social media user might aspire to “be the top influencer” by gaining a large number of followers and engaging with them regularly.
  • In a discussion about leadership, someone might say, “To be an effective leader, you must be the top influencer in your team.”

17. Be the top manipulator

To “be the top manipulator” means to have the greatest ability to control or influence others through deceptive or underhanded tactics. This term is often used in a negative context, as manipulation is generally seen as unethical.

  • For instance, in a discussion about politics, someone might accuse a politician of trying to “be the top manipulator” by using misleading information to sway public opinion.
  • In a relationship, one person might warn another about a manipulative partner by saying, “Watch out for them, they always try to be the top manipulator.”
  • A character in a movie might strive to “be the top manipulator” by orchestrating a complex scheme to achieve their goals.
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18. Be the top strategist

To “be the top strategist” means to have the highest level of skill or ability in developing and implementing strategic plans. This term is often used in business or military contexts, where strategic thinking and planning are crucial for success.

  • For example, a CEO might strive to “be the top strategist” in their industry by anticipating market trends and making strategic decisions accordingly.
  • In a game of chess, a player might aim to “be the top strategist” by thinking several moves ahead and outmaneuvering their opponent.
  • A military general might be considered “the top strategist” if they consistently come up with innovative and effective battle plans.

19. Captain

The term “captain” refers to the person who has the highest level of authority or control over a group or organization. It is often used in sports teams or military settings to designate the leader.

  • For instance, in a soccer team, the captain is usually the player who leads the team on and off the field and represents them in official matters.
  • In the military, a captain is an officer who is in command of a company or a similar-sized unit.
  • Figuratively, someone might say, “I’m the captain of my own destiny” to express their belief in their ability to control their own life.

The term “head honcho” is a slang term that refers to the person who has the highest level of authority or control in a group or organization. It is often used in a casual or lighthearted manner.

  • For example, in a workplace, the head honcho is typically the CEO or the person in charge of the company.
  • In a group of friends, someone might jokingly say, “I’m the head honcho around here” to assert their dominance or leadership.
  • In a criminal organization, the head honcho is the person who is at the top of the hierarchy and gives orders to others.
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21. Big cheese

This term refers to someone who holds a position of power or authority, often in a business or organization. It can also be used to describe someone who is influential or important.

  • For example, “The big cheese of the company made a major decision today.”
  • In a discussion about politics, someone might say, “The big cheese in Washington is calling the shots.”
  • A person might describe a successful entrepreneur as “the big cheese in the industry.”

22. Top dog

This phrase is used to describe someone who is in a position of authority or holds a position of power. It can also refer to someone who is the best or most successful in a particular field.

  • For instance, “The top dog in the company is always making important decisions.”
  • In a sports context, one might say, “He’s the top dog on the team and leads by example.”
  • A person might say, “In the world of fashion, she’s the top dog and sets the trends.”

23. Kingpin

This term refers to someone who is the leader or main figure in a particular field or organization. It is often used to describe individuals who have a significant amount of control or influence.

  • For example, “The kingpin of the drug cartel was finally arrested.”
  • In a discussion about crime, someone might say, “He’s the kingpin behind all the illegal activities.”
  • A person might describe a successful business tycoon as “the kingpin of the industry.”

24. Mastermind

This term refers to someone who is the brains behind a particular plan or operation. It is often used to describe individuals who have a high level of intelligence or strategic thinking.

  • For instance, “He’s the mastermind behind the elaborate heist.”
  • In a discussion about a successful business venture, one might say, “She’s the mastermind behind the company’s growth.”
  • A person might describe a skilled hacker as “the mastermind behind the cyber attack.”

25. Puppet master

This phrase is used to describe someone who manipulates or controls others, often without their knowledge or consent. It implies that the person is pulling the strings and influencing the actions of others.

  • For example, “He’s the puppet master who orchestrates all the political decisions.”
  • In a discussion about a conspiracy theory, someone might say, “There’s a puppet master behind all the events.”
  • A person might describe a powerful individual as “the puppet master who controls everything.”

26. Commander

A person who has authority and control over a group or organization. “Commander” is often used to refer to someone who has a high rank in the military or a person who is in charge of a specific operation or mission.

  • For example, during a military operation, a soldier might say, “The commander gave us clear instructions on how to proceed.”
  • In a discussion about effective leadership, someone might mention, “A good commander knows how to motivate and inspire their team.”
  • Another might comment, “The commander made a strategic decision that led to our victory.”

27. Chief

A person who holds a high position of authority and control. “Chief” is a term often used to refer to someone who is the highest-ranking or most senior member of a group or organization.

  • For instance, in a company, the CEO might be referred to as the “chief” executive officer.
  • In a police department, the highest-ranking officer might be called the “chief” of police.
  • A person discussing tribal leadership might say, “The chief is responsible for making important decisions for the community.”

28. Ruler

A person who has power and control over others. “Ruler” is a term often used metaphorically to describe someone who exercises authority and dominance in a particular domain or situation.

  • For example, in a discussion about a totalitarian government, someone might say, “The ruler suppresses dissent and controls every aspect of people’s lives.”
  • In a debate about corporate influence, one might argue, “The rulers of big corporations have too much control over our political system.”
  • Another might comment, “In a democracy, the people should be the ultimate rulers, not a select few.”

29. Overlord

A person who has absolute power and control over a territory or group of people. “Overlord” is a term often used to describe someone who exercises complete authority and dominance.

  • For instance, in a discussion about a fictional dystopian society, someone might say, “The overlord rules with an iron fist and suppresses any form of dissent.”
  • In a video game, a character might refer to a powerful villain as the “overlord” of a certain area.
  • A person discussing historical dictators might mention, “Throughout history, there have been many ruthless overlords who sought to control every aspect of their subjects’ lives.”

30. Bigwig

A person who holds a high position of authority and influence. “Bigwig” is a colloquial term often used to refer to someone who is powerful, influential, or high-ranking.

  • For example, in a discussion about politics, someone might say, “The bigwigs in Washington make all the important decisions.”
  • In a corporate setting, a person might comment, “The bigwigs in the boardroom don’t understand the challenges faced by the employees.”
  • Another might mention, “The bigwig CEO is known for his extravagant lifestyle and lavish parties.”

31. Top brass

This term refers to the individuals in positions of authority or power within an organization or group. It is often used to describe those who have control or influence over others.

  • For example, “The top brass of the company made the final decision.”
  • In a military context, someone might say, “The top brass are responsible for making strategic decisions.”
  • A person discussing a government agency might mention, “The top brass at the FBI are leading the investigation.”

32. Big shot

This slang term is used to describe someone who has a lot of power, influence, or control over others. It often refers to individuals who are successful or highly regarded in their field.

  • For instance, “He’s a big shot in the music industry.”
  • In a business setting, someone might say, “The big shots in the company are meeting to discuss the new project.”
  • A person discussing politics might mention, “The big shots in Washington are making all the decisions.”

33. Big kahuna

This slang term is often used to refer to the person who has the most control or authority in a particular situation or group. It is similar to the term “big shot” and is typically used in a lighthearted or informal manner.

  • For example, “He’s the big kahuna around here.”
  • In a sports context, someone might say, “The coach is the big kahuna of the team.”
  • A person discussing a family gathering might mention, “Uncle Joe is the big kahuna when it comes to planning the holiday party.”

34. Big fish

This slang term is used to describe someone who holds a position of power, influence, or control. It often refers to individuals who have a significant impact on a situation or group.

  • For instance, “He’s a big fish in the tech industry.”
  • In a criminal context, someone might say, “The big fish in the organization was finally arrested.”
  • A person discussing politics might mention, “The big fish in Congress are pushing for new legislation.”

35. Top hat

This slang term is used to refer to the person who is in charge or has the most control over a situation or group. It is often used in a playful or sarcastic manner.

  • For example, “Who’s the top hat around here?”
  • In a school setting, someone might say, “The principal is the top hat of the school.”
  • A person discussing a project at work might mention, “The top hat of the team is leading the way.”

36. Big wheel

This term refers to a person who is in a position of power or control. It suggests that the individual has significant influence or authority within a particular context or organization.

  • For example, in a corporate setting, someone might say, “The CEO is the big wheel of this company.”
  • In a discussion about politics, one might mention, “The big wheels in Washington are always making the important decisions.”
  • A person describing a group project might say, “She’s the big wheel on this team, and we all follow her lead.”

37. Top gun

This slang term refers to someone who is considered the best or most skilled in a particular field or activity. It often implies a sense of authority or control based on superior knowledge or ability.

  • For instance, in a sports context, someone might say, “He’s the top gun on the basketball team.”
  • In a discussion about a competitive video game, one might mention, “She’s the top gun in the online gaming community.”
  • A person describing a skilled surgeon might say, “He’s the top gun in the operating room.”

38. Have the upper hand

This phrase means to have control or an advantage in a particular situation. It suggests that one person or group has more power, influence, or resources than the other.

  • For example, in a negotiation, someone might say, “I have the upper hand because I know their bottom line.”
  • In a game of chess, one player might declare, “I have the upper hand with my strong position.”
  • A person discussing a conflict might say, “It’s important to strategize and gain the upper hand before making a move.”

39. Be in power

This phrase means to be in a position of control or authority. It suggests that an individual or group has the ability to make decisions, enforce rules, or influence others.

  • For instance, in a government context, someone might say, “The ruling party is currently in power.”
  • In a discussion about a company, one might mention, “The CEO is in power and sets the direction for the organization.”
  • A person describing a dictator might say, “He seized power and ruled with an iron fist.”

40. Be in authority

This phrase means to be in a position of power or control. It suggests that an individual has the ability to make decisions, give orders, or enforce rules.

  • For example, in a classroom, someone might say, “The teacher is in authority and sets the rules.”
  • In a discussion about a military operation, one might mention, “The general is in authority and gives the commands.”
  • A person describing a police officer might say, “They are in authority and have the power to enforce the law.”