I really liked this description of what it means to preside in this article by therapist Randy Keyes from the June 2012 Ensign:
The husband’s patriarchal duty as one who presides in the home is not to rule over others but to ensure that the marriage and the family prosper. President David O. McKay (1873–1970) explained that one day every man will have a personal priesthood interview with the Savior: “First, He will request an accountability report about your relationship with your wife. Have you been actively engaged in making her happy and ensuring that her needs have been met as an individual?”
The husband is accountable for growth and happiness in his marriage, but this accountability does not give him authority over his wife. Both are in charge of the marriage. In righteous marriage councils both spouses share a set of virtues that when applied help them focus on each other.
We can study some of these virtues in Doctrine and Covenants 121:41: “No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned.”
We cannot use the priesthood to assert power and influence. Therefore, we can’t use unrighteous means to establish dominance in marriage. True power comes only when we work together in righteousness and so qualify for blessings from the Lord.