02/13/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

It's Bad , It's Bad -- And That's Good !

You're doomed and so am I. We are really reeling. The money just is not coming in like it used to. Damn.

These are the times when you got to stop whining and do something. And I'm sorry to say you are going to have to change habits -- that's the good news. The bad is it may hurt.

I, like you, am shredding expenses left and right during the near-post-Bush FAIL economy. Everything goes. If you don't want to be on your boss's list, here are some thoughts from someone who knows what "standing out" in the workplace means.

Click on something else if you will, but I'm not kidding about this list. Put it on your fridge at home then. Thank me later (see footnote).

1. Learn how to manage up. Tell people whom you work for what you need to do your job the best it can be. This is not time to state: "I don't know!" You can find out. If it meant a Martini, you know you would.

2. Do you need anything now? I doubt it. People at my office -- I run a 14-person agency -- know better than to ask for things during this tough time. Do without. Stop wanting so much until the bad times pass (2009?) Your boss is.

3. Show up a little early. I mean -- wait, let me rephrase that: Show up a lot early. Not to show off, but to get more done.

4. Can you dress? It sounds snobby but wearing your Sunday Best Clothing -- even in a rock & roll workplace, goes a long way. Get a mirror. It's deductible ( ).

5. Stop with the donuts; don't bring fatty foods that are meant to make people smile. No one cares for that crap anymore. What colleagues around you want: support and some help. Go "at-a-boy" to everyone. Even those who are not working for you!

6. Finally -- and don't shake your head, sigh, or roll your eyes: come to work prepared. I don't care if you had a good breakfast and it's all good in the tummy. There's nothing like the one who does some homework and learns something before he shows up. Each day... That is to say, go out and find out a little bit more than just what the client/partner/customer or your boss told you. Yep that's what Barnes & Noble is for. And the coffee is fine.

7. Did I say that was it? No, there's always a TV movie soon after the "finale." I got one more! Remember to smile. I mean that. Everyone is out there crap-crapping all over what is felt to be the worst of times. If you are the one with the attitude that says "I got no attitude, I'm so glad to be here," guess who is winner? If you order now...!

It Is You.

I'm the guy behind "2011: Trendspotting" (more at