@cold steel - becoming an elder is generally about how much of company man you are.
There are scriptual qualifications for an overseer and these set a reasonably high bar in terms of being an example and having freedom of speech.
In WTS land however, it goes from being about your underlying attitude and desire to be a loving shepherd but still a humble fellow worker with your brothers and sisters into how much FS you do. This is why young guys who have pioneered, done Bethel, done other WTS schools etc. fast track it to being an elder. If you are regular and keen in FS, regular at meetings, try and push yourself into the centre of the cong, answer lots, demonstrate you are keen to follow WTS rules etc. then you are "reaching out" and stand a reasonable chance of being appointed.
This still does not guarentee it however as there is still a very political element. If you have a vocal relative already on the BoE then you have a better chance. If you are percieved as a bit of a loose cannon or down on your hours then you are reducing your chances.
When brothers are considered for appointment as a MS or elder the BoE look at what the person is doing (esp FS - the record card is key here - and meetings) and discuss it. This gives ample opportunity for those who don't like the person to put the boot in basically. It's easy to look at a record card and raise concerns about the number of hours someone does, especially if they expect the congregation average + 4 hours for family study as an absolute minimum for a family man. It's easy to say the individual has been late for a few meetings and is not exemplary. It's easy to suggest that someone's answers are not deep enough. It's easy to suggest that because the brother has his own business, works in an office or has to travel on business sometimes that this might mean he is not really putting kingdom interests first. It's easy to suggest that the brother has not been in Sunday service for ages. It's easy to suggest that since the brother recently moved into a larger house/bought a new car/went on holiday twice last year then perhaps he is materialistic and showing where his heart really lies. It's easy to suggest that since the brother used an ipad at the meeting instead of carrying a ton of books then he is demonstrating a "showy display of one's means of life". The list goes on and on.
If you are chummy with enough elders however then the boot does not get put in, or if it does then it gets shouted down pretty quickly.
Once you are an elder however it's pretty hard to get removed. All of the same things that are used to prevent a recommendation are not used to reguarly measure those already serving. True, if an elder got really slack over a long period of time then something may be said but I can't recall the last deletion for anything like the reasons above.
Howere, there is a real move in the WTS to get the BoE to come down hard on any issues related to loyalty and this is the one area where
For example, it's a dead nono now to show any desire to put family relationships above the WTS. There have been several deletions that I know about in our area over the past couple of years. All for elders attending weddings of relatives (particuarly children). This is regardless of if the child is DF/DA/inactive. If they are inactive, even for years and years and get married to a non JW then it's marrying out of the lord and the new Flock book leaves little room for manouvre.
The elders are now much more afraid to operate as free thinkers, show compassion or latitude and use reasonableness. Every slightly contensious issue is handled with no common sense. People are treated harshly and then it's left up to the CO to try and sort out. Act now and ask questions later is par for the course it seems.
Anyway, that's my take on after 20 years of seeing how the body works from the outside with 15 of those thinking about tryng to get in. Call me cynical but that's what I see. Other's may say it's holy spirit that directs appointments but I'll let you judge that for yourself.