Prior to taking the stage, NBC played a teaser of the show, in which Steve jokes about that infamous memo he sent to his Chicago staff warning them not to come in contact with him unless personally invited to do so.
When one reporter asked if he would write a similar memo to his new L.A. staff, Steve replied: “I learned two things from that email: No. 1 I can’t write, and No. 2 I should never write,” he joked.
Harvey said he wrote the memo a year before it was leaked by a staffer who “got pissed” when they were not offered a job on the new show.
“I was OK until I saw it on CNN and then I knew I was in a lot of trouble,” Harvey said.
“It’s not a big deal to me,” he insisted, saying, “I’m not a mean-spirited guy. I’m a congenial guy.”
He likened the memo to coming home to a house full of kids and telling them, “you just need a moment.”
“I thought it was cute. You all did not.”
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In May, Harvey said he wrote the memo because he “didn’t want to be in this prison” of his office anymore.
In the memo, he told his staff: “Do not wait in any hallway to speak to me. I hate being ambushed. Please make an appointment. I promise you I will not entertain you in the hallway and do not attempt to walk with me.”
He also warned staffers not to “open my dressing room door.”
“IF YOU OPEN MY DOOR, EXPECT TO BE REMOVED.”
Harvey also noted that his “security team will stop everyone from standing at my door who have the intent to see or speak to me.”
The memo came up again while discussing the name of his new program, simply titled “Steve.”
When one TV critic pointed out that the title may confuse those already watching another daytime television host of the same name, Steve Wilkos, Harvey said, “I’m the black dude with the bald head.”
He then joked: “I’m going to say nothing because all the jokes running through me are going to be worse than that damned memo.”