cog in the wheel

(redirected from small cog in a large wheel)

cog in the wheel

Someone or something that is functionally necessary but of small significance or importance within a larger operation or organization. I'm tired of working in this thankless IT support job. I don't want to be just a cog in the wheel anymore!
See also: cog, wheel

cog in the wheel

Also, cog in the machine. One who holds a minor but necessary post in a large organization, as in Frank knew he was just a cog in the wheel of this giant corporation. This term alludes to the role of the mechanical cog, one of the teeth on a wheel or gear that, by engaging other teeth, transmits or receives motion. Used figuratively since about 1930, it sometimes is put as small cog in a large wheel, emphasizing a person's lack of importance.
See also: cog, wheel
References in periodicals archive ?
I agree with Chris that low taxation and regulation would be a great help to our entrepreneurs but without the local Business Links, surely, we would end up as just a very small cog in a large wheel.
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