From: Gothenburg, Sweden
Is GENERAL really what we mean here? Does anyone here think that Brigade or even Divisional commanders should lead from the front?! Rommel was a nut case for taking the DAK for a ride at the head... There's a truckload of additional work he should have been attending to. Even armored/mechanized battalions probably shouldn't be led from the front. Company's get to that level where a guy physically leading his men might make some sense... In Guderian's time it was very difficult for a commander to get a clear and accurate picture of the fast changing mobile warfare landscape. So getting your ass up in front to see what's really going on for yourself was often of value... The better the communication lines are the more important it is for the leadership to coordinate, and less important for them to actually DO anything. Also, when a large entity needs to react quickly and accurately you need accurate information from all the elements of that entity, not just one.
Poopyhead already beat me to it (sorta). A General has his staff to carry out the day-to-day work for him. As for the Wehrmacht, it does indeed seem as they incouraged their commanders to be up at the front as much as possible. Why? Well, intel wasn't perfect and communications even worse, so how can you make sound decisions if you only have second hand information to rely on, and that information not being fresh?
Then again, there's the problem with the staff not really knowing where their commander is, as the DAK general staff frequently experienced with Rommel. But they trusted the staffs to be able to carry out their work even in a prolonged absence with no new orders. Reading the memoirs, there are quite many instances their berate their officers for not acting on their own as they were supposed to do rather than wait for their General to check back in.
Even with today's modern comms equipment and surveillance and "virtual battlefields", staring at a screen will not replace Being There. Personally I think the commanders should be up front. In the end, it's they who make the decisions and it's better if they can base that from seeing, hearing and smelling the situation than reading a teleprint.