Guarding turf at the office in a high trust environment might lead to lower ratings in team contribution by coworkers, according to a new Canadian study.The study, published earlier this month in the journal Personnel Psychology, suggested that it may be better to give up ownership over projects and ideas than risk your reputation."Previous research holds that it' s good for employees to take ownership at work as a way to enhance leadership, pride and commitment," said Sandra Robinson,a professor from University of British Columbia' s Sauder School of Business and co-authors the study."However, our study shows that ownership can lead to territorial behaviour that has a significant downside in some workplaces."In the study, a sample of working adults reported on their psychological ownership and territorial behavior toward an important object at work, such as locking documents to restrict input or withholding ideas to limit their theft.After that, a coworker of each was asked to provide evaluations on the level of trust in the work environment and rated the focal individual's contributions to the team.The results showed that in workplaces where trust is low, territorial behaviour tends to flourish and territorial people are less likely to be judged negatively by their coworkers.It also showed that a high trust environment reduces the territorial behavior associated with psychological ownership, but when territorial behavior does occur, coworkers rate the territorial employee's contributions to the team significantly lower."Workers really need to assess the atmosphere of the workplace before they start staking their ground," said Robinson. "If they start claiming turf in an office where a sense of trust pervades they could quickly find themselves on the outs.