How does a company preserve the casual style of a start-up while growing fast enough to land on the Inc. 500 three years in a row, engineering a successful initial public offering, and bringing in a fresh crop of professional managers, including a new CEO and chief financial officer? Simple.

Take a tip from Salem Sportswear, of Hudson, N.H. Post a sign in the reception area that says, NO TIES BEYOND THIS POINT. Anyone foolhardy enough to ignore the warning is fined $2. That includes visitors. The proceeds are donated to charity, which makes this just about the only tax-deductible fine in America.

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