I choose my leaders in a variety of ways, by acts of commission and of omission. I elect some people to positions of leadership and whether I voted for them or not I still should expect them to lead. Other people assume positions of leadership that directly or indirectly influence my life and its quality with no input from me whatsoever. It may even be possible for a person to be in a position of leadership without my choosing to follow their lead. Whether I follow the leader or not, I still have expectations for their leading.
I expect leaders to communicate their vision for the future. Leaders should be able to provide me with a rationale for their vision. Help me embrace the vision. Let me understand the underlying assumptions and the risk factors associated with the vision and not simply the asserted solution to the proposed problem or the opportunity.
While I am interested in specific programs and policies, I find it helpful when I understand the current and proposed context for proposed actions. Where are we trying to go and what might need to happen to get there is somehow more useful to me than simply proposing or expressing support for starting or ending services or modifying organizational structure.
I expect leaders to be honest and open with me, to treat me as an educated person capable informed opinion rather than as somebody not capable or not informed enough to reach the leader’s conclusions. If I don’t have the knowledge or capabilities to come to the desired conclusion, then educate me. If you, as a leader, are afraid of the conclusions I might reach, that I might conclude something different from you, that may say as much about you as it says about me.
If I do not immediately or eventually embrace your vision, consider why that might be. The least likely reasons may be that I lack sufficient intelligence or that I am inherently cruel or self-centered. People seem to reject the actions or general direction of leaders because they have different, even conflicting, visions for the future, sometimes based on different expectations or understandings of the facts.