The Brand/Ross guide to Communicating at Work

Written by Matt Somers on . Posted in Thoughts from that Coaching Bloke

Since the whole world seems to having its say on this unsavoury incident, I thought I’d chuck in my view too.

Firstly, I’m in the camp that says what they did was plain wrong. I haven’t heard the now infamous answer machine messages, but I’ve read the transcript and I think it’s horrible. It just isn’t funny.

In the aftermath, I think Brand emerges with slightly more credit by having the decency to fall on his sword. Can’t imagine him struggling for work though; it’s probably increased his value to MTV et al quite considerably. Meanwhile Ross has managed to hang on but is losing an estimated £1.4m in pay. I don’t have a view one way or another whether he’s worth his pay, but I would expect somebody in receipt of that amount of money to exercise better judgement.

I was surprised to learn that the show was not live and that a fairly junior producer had decided to broadcast the segment. I wonder whether a coaching style conversation with his boss might have enabled slightly better thinking and an appreciation of the likely outcome to have developed.

Having said all of this I think the reaction by certain sections of the printed media has been quite hysterical and out of all proportion. The economy is a mess and war still rages in Africa and beyond. Let’s return to the real issues.


Matt Somers is the UK’s leading trainer of managers as coaches. His coaching skills training programmes, books, articles and seminars have helped thousands of managers achieve outstanding results through their people.

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