April 13th, 2011
02:17 PM ET
Although her purpose for being there was to talk about her new book, "The Best Advice I Ever Got," of course Lauer had to ask her about the rumors that she's ready to depart "CBS Evening News" when her contract ends this summer.
The speculation has been building that Couric might have her sights set on a syndicated talk show - possibly even with Lauer himself, the New York Times suggested - but Couric repeatedly told her former co-worker that she still doesn't know what she's going to do, although she is excited about the future.
"I love doing my job at the CBS Evening News, I really do," Couric said. "I really haven’t [made a decision]. I’m in the middle of figuring out where would be the best place for me; what would be the best job for me."
In fact, she said, the right place could still be with CBS. “I’ll call you as soon as I know," Couric joked.
Not that she's enjoying the persistent guesses on her next move.
"I don’t love this part of it, but I also don’t want to feel pressured by outside forces to make a decision quickly," she explained to Lauer. "I want to be methodical and smart about it. You’re the most methodical person I know, and you really think things through, and I want to take a page from your book on that."
So when will Couric put an end to the speculation? A few weeks - "maybe by November." (Again, with the jokes.)
But in the end, that's actually what Couric finds appealing about the idea of syndication. There's "the creative freedom to pick subjects, to really dig deep, to really have a smart, intelligent conversation," Couric said. "It might be nice to have a little more wiggle room for me to show my personality."
Whatever Couric's next move may be, the 54-year-old says she can look back on the past five years with nary a regret. "I love doing the 'Evening News,' it’s such a privilege and honor to be in that position, and it’s such a responsibility as well."
True, "I faced a lot of criticism early on," she admitted, but what she learned is that "you really have to be true to yourself, focus on your work and not be influenced by outside naysayers, or in some cases, supporters. You just have to focus on the job at hand. As my dad always told me, do the best you can every single day, so that’s what I try to do."
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