kick somebody upstairs

kick (one) upstairs

To promote one to a higher role or position in a company that has little actual responsibility or authority. They kicked John upstairs to an assistant manager position so he would stop griping about his pay.
See also: kick, upstairs

ˌkick somebody upˈstairs

(informal) move somebody to a job that seems to be more important but which actually has less power or influence: They couldn’t sack him, so they kicked him upstairs onto the board of directors, where he could do less damage.
See also: kick, somebody, upstairs