• In the UK "gaffer," "guv'nor" or "guv" & "his lordship" are among the repeatable ones. In 16th century English a "gaffer" was a man who was the head of any organised group of labourers, like a foreman or supervisor today. "Guv'nor" & "guv" are derived from governor. "His lordship" usually refers to a boss who definitely thinks he's above the workers and is used in a sarcastic way.
    • Professor Yaffle
      As for unrepeatable ones, I once worked with a crew on a construction site who all had white hard hats. To identify our hats we all wrote the first letter of our name on the front of our hats. We put a C on the boss's hat, (his name began with an S, as did a team member). He asked "does C stand for captain?" The reply was "No..."
    • Professor Yaffle
      Another boss I worked for was sometimes referred to as "Mr Wentworth," which Python fans will recognise from the "Trouble at Mill" sketch.
  • "The man," "jeffe," "chief," "big wig," "head honcho," "kahuna," "fearless leader," etc. Most carry a negative connotation, except "chief."
    • Professor Yaffle
      I've known "chief" be used negatively, usually in a "big-chief ******" way!
    • Linda Joy
      Chief was very common in the Navy. Probably because they were a Chief, Senior Chief, or Master Chief.
    • bostjan64
      @Prof Yaffle, interesting, I wasn't aware that "chief" was generally negative in the UK. Here in the USA it's generally used more warmly, or more respectfully. @Linda Joy, A Master Chief told many tales, often name-dropping famous people he knows. A skeptical ensign calls him out one day about his seemingly tall tales. The Master Chief says "Ok, name any person - anyone, and I'll introduce you." The Ensign thinks long and hard and decides to challenge the Master Chief to introduce him to the pope. So, off they fly to Rome. Security around the pope is extremely tight and the Swiss Guard won't let anyone near the building. The Ensign gets separated from the Master Chief in a crowd of tourists. Eventually, as the pope comes out to address the crowd from his room, the Ensign hears one of the tourists, pointing up to the pope's balcony, "Hey, who is that standing next to the Master Chief?!"
  • big cheese, head honcho

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