An English friend of mine, named General Strong, was in India during the Sepoy Mutiny. He used to tell many stories about it. One day, in the course of conversation, I asked him how it was that the sepoys who had enough of guns, ammunition, and provisions at their disposal, and were also trained veterans, came to suffer such a defeat.
He replied that the leaders among them, instead of advancing forward, only kept shouting from a safe position in the rear, ‘Fight on, brave lads’, and so forth; but unless the commanding officer goes ahead and faces death, the rank and file will never fight with heart. It is the same in every branch. ‘A captain must sacrifice his head,’ they say. If you can lay down your life for a cause, then only you can be a leader. But we all want to be leaders without making the necessary sacrifice. And the result is zero—nobody listens to us!
Source: The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda/Volume 7/Translation of writings/Memoirs of European Travel I