One of the challenges for the individual contributor is that they have a boss, in short the boss is the customer. Like all customers they may decide to not do business with you anymore.
It could be because you’re not fitting their needs, they don’t’ want to spend the money, or something external happened that modified your relationship your customer. Therein lies the problem, if you’re one customer decides to not do business with you anymore the loss is complete.
Much of the misbehavior and corporations comes from this simple fact. They realize they are the customer and you need them much more than they need you.