Former Ellen DeGeneres Staff Member Accuses Her of Tormenting Workers

Rumors have been swirling about Ellen DeGeneres since reports of a toxic work environment on her show surfaced — and now a former DeGeneres staff member is claiming that the talk show host ran a tight ship at her home. DeGeneres, the insider said, “was the worst person that I’ve ever met in my life.”

Ellen DeGeneres | FOX via Getty Images

‘Ellen DeGeneres Show’ faced toxic workplace allegations

DeGeneres came under fire when reports of a toxic work environment at The Ellen DeGeneres Show surfaced, leading to an ongoing internal workplace misconduct investigation and the firing of three producers.

The talk show returns on Sept. 21 and DeGeneres shared in a statement that she will be addressing the matter.

“I can’t wait to get back to work and back to our studio. And, yes, we’re gonna talk about it,” DeGeneres explained in her statement.

Tiffany Haddish will appear as a guest on the premiere, with Kerry Washington, Alec Baldwin, and Chrissy Teigen slated as guests for the show’s first week.

Insider revealed DeGeneres’ nitpicky ways at home

One of DeGeneres’ former staff members opened up to Daily Mail about the kind of household DeGeneres runs, believing it supports the claims that there’s a toxic work environment at her show.

The source painted an unkind picture of DeGeneres as an employer, claiming she would “lay traps” for the cleaning staff — leaning matchsticks behind cupboard doors and cushions to test whether they were cleaning as thoroughly as she wanted.

“My belief is that someone’s real personality comes out at home,” her former employee said. “So after everything that has been said about her at work, you can imagine how terrible Ellen is going to be at home when her guard is down.”

They continued, “Sometimes she would yell at us but it was more about the incredibly condescending tone she would use. She treated you like you were nothing. She was going to torture you and you were just going to sit there and listen to it because you were being paid.”

The employee also claimed that “Ellen was the worst person that I’ve ever met in my life,” saying, “She takes pleasure in firing people.”


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Ellen DeGeneres’ household was ‘like a boot camp,’ former staffer claims

The former staff member said they spent several months working at one of DeGeneres’ homes. Their initial impression of the talk show host was more positive until they began working for her.

“Ellen was a hero of mine. I thought she was an amazing person,” the insider noted. “But before I took the position, people were warning me not to take it.”

They continued, “I was told that she had a very high turnover and that I should stay under the radar as much as possible, avoid as much direct contact with Ellen as possible. Working there was described as being more like a boot camp.”

They went on to describe how DeGeneres would confront staff with any “violations,” such as a maid forgetting to put trash in the recycling.

The talk show host was very particular about her household, the insider shared. “Ellen is terribly obsessive compulsive and if anything is out of order in her environment she gets upset. There might be 20 to 30 things every day. We are talking about the finest, finest details here — a salt shaker out of place or a light switch left on.”

The former staff member was fired and said that “there were numerous people that she fired, rehired, then fired a second time. I heard about a manager who started on a particularly bad day and was fired in the first two hours.”

A rep for DeGeneres told Page Six these claims are false, explaining, “This was one person [whose] employment [Daily Mail] said they could not fully verify, but they went ahead with the story anyway. Many of the claims in the story are things that had been out in media previously by other ‘sources’ and in talking to people who work for Ellen are absolutely not true.”