I ran across a very good book titled The Fiefdom Syndrome, which discusses the cause and effect of fiefdoms.

“The fiefdom syndrome stems from the inclination of managers and employees to become fixated on their own activities, their own careers, their own territory or turf to the detriment of those around them.

People who create fiefdoms can become dangerously insular, losing perspective on what is happening in the world outside their own control. They also lose their ability to act consistently on behalf of the greater good, or in a way that enhances the effectiveness of the larger organization. They often resist new situations and change.

People who create fiefdoms tend to hoard resources. They are determined to do things their own way, often duplicating or complicating what should be streamlined throughout the company, leading to runaway costs, increased bureaucracy and slower response times.

Organizations infected with fiefdoms tend to kill off or stifle individual creativity, leading to what I call the ‘freeze factor’: when organizations become frozen or stuck in place, letting competitors pass them by.”