If you're wondering why I support/oppose someone at RfA, here's my process in 7 Easy Steps. It seems very restrictive. "If you do this, I'll oppose you". But the reason I act this way is that Adminship is "No Big Deal". Every User, by default, is good enough to be an Admin. Essentially, you need to prove that you can't be trusted with the Tools (through any of the below criteria), otherwise I'll !vote in Support.
- WP:SNOWBALL, WP:NOTYET; I don't usually check RfA every 10 minutes, so it's unlikely that I see Snowball Closes or Not Yets before they are, y'know, closed. However, generally speaking, no editor without at least 1 Year of Service of 5,000 edits will even be considered. There are exceptions, but experience matters most.
- Bright-line violations; Of the Five Pillars, WP:IAR is my favorite. It's far more important that we act in the best interest of the encyclopedia than follow a set of "rules". However, whenever I say "Ignore all rules", I really mean "Ignore all rules, except WP:BLP, WP:NLT, and WP:COPYVIO". A misunderstanding or misapplication of any of these three will always lead to an Oppose.
- Block-log; Users who have been blocked, ever, are held to a higher standard than users with a clean block-log. Users are blocked when they misuse the Tools they have as editors, and at RfA Users are asking us for more tools, which are much more "powerful" and harder to undo when they are misused. Any block essentially "resets" the User's Service time and edit count. I would like to see an additional year of service and 5,000 edits since the block, if you will. Special care will be given when reviewing the User's edits to ensure that the issues that led to the Block have been dealt with.
- Misuse of Tools; any User that is given any additional Tools (autopatrolled, rollbacker, etc.) will be reviewed to ensure that the Tools given are being used properly. Any User who has been stripped of an additional Tool will be treated very similiarly as a User with a block, as s/he has demonstrated untrustworthiness in regards to the Tools already given.
- User Conduct; This is where things like WP:BITE, WP:NPA, and WP:DICK come into play. A User asking to be an Admin should show good understanding of how to deal with other people and explain our policies calmly. Any User that can't treat other people, registered or IP, with respect and dignity can't be trusted with the Mop. Having the "Block" button means that Admins are going to have to deal
- Content Creation; The reason we're here, all of us, is to build a better encyclopedia. I've long held (and probably will always hold) that we are judged as much by what we exclude as what we include. Back when we had an article on every insignificant character from every show with a significant enough fanbase on the internet. We were shown to be what we were, a bunch of internet nerds who finally had a forum. This has, thankfully, been dealt with to a great degree. The problem arises when we forget that we are here to build and encyclopedia, not to write one. Writers are important, they do quite a bit of the heavy-lifting. But there's so much to this project than writing. Creating and maintaining templates, finding free-use images, drafting policies, coordinating projects, fixing grammar, and making sure m-dashes and used where m-dashes belong are all important to building the encyclopedia. I do not look for DYKs, GAs, or FAs when evaluating am Admin Candidate, because writing articles is not one of The Tools that adminship brings with it. However, I do look for Content Contributions for Admins who self-identify as wanting to work in Article Deletion (CSD, PROD, and AFD). I think it is very important for someone who wants to have, and use, the "Delete" button to know the Article-writing process, to know exactly what needs to be done to bring an article up-to-snuff, and how a New User might feel if their hard work was removed.
- Experience in Admin Areas; a very, very limited exception, all the Admin areas have related areas where the non-mopped can work. If you want to determine consensus at AFD, you should participate in AFDs. If you want to block vandals, you should be reverting, warning, and reporting at AIV. If you want to issue permissions, non-admin clerking at WP:PERM is where you should start. The goal isn't simply to staff these "backstage" areas (though that is good, as well), the goal is to have a record on how an Admin candidate is likely to act when s/he has The Buttons.