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Revealed: Law Firm Investigated CBS News Boss Neeraj Khemlani Whose 'Combustible Temper' Led to HR Complaints Before His Sudden Exit

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Source: cbs;mega

Aug. 14 2023, Published 7:15 p.m. ET

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CBS brought in an outside law firm to investigate former president Neeraj Khemlani's work conduct following complaints from women, RadarOnline.com has learned amid news of his sudden exit after a two-year run in his post.

Khemlani announced he was stepping down as president and co-head of news this weekend, informing staff via an internal email that he will remain at CBS in another capacity after signing a multi-year deal to develop content, including documentaries, series and books.

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Prior to his departure, Kauff, McGuire & Margolis, which is a labor law specialist, was recruited to look into his behavior, The Ankler reported on Sunday.

It's unknown whether the findings played any role in his exit. "If he were found to have violated any HR policies he would not be continuing to have an ongoing relationship with CBS," one tipster told the publication.

Insiders said that Khemlani had been under immense pressure from network CEO George Cheeks for the news division to hit certain budget numbers which led to some ruffled feathers behind the scenes, according to the New York Post.

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CBS Evening News anchor Norah O'Donnell notably went up to bat against Khemlani during contract negotiations in 2022, having taken a steep pay cut amid restructuring at the network.

Khemlani was claimed to have a "combustible temper" that depleted morale among staffers, who said he had been "rude" and "micromanaging."

The review into the former CBS brass was focused on how he spoke to women and employees of color.

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Weeks ago, he was accused of allegedly unleashing a "rude" and "disrespectful" tirade aimed at Chief Financial Officer Stacey Benson and a female executive VP during a meeting in April about long-term budget planning.

"They had a breakdown after the meeting," a source shared about the womens' reactions. "They were shaken."

RadarOnline.com has reached out to CBS for comment.

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Khemlani has yet to address reports about the review over his "hard-knuckle" management style, but he appears to be looking forward to his upcoming venture while his successor has yet to be named.

"It's an opportunity that will allow me to write, report and develop stories that I've long wanted to pursue," he wrote in the internal email.

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Khemlani's departure from CBS comes after fellow news network CNN weathered their own shakeup after ousting chief executive Chris Licht.

"This is a company with high standards for behavior across the board that addresses complaints promptly. While we can't comment on speculative employee matters, we can point to the strong momentum at CBS News," a rep for the network said.

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