Designers need to read the story for which they're trying to think of a clever design. It would be so much easier than asking reporters what the story is about. Chances are the writer will just give a four-second synopsis, but if the designer reads the story, he or she will be able to see exactly what the reporter focused on and what details should be standing out to the reader. The entire front page will be much more collaborative, and here in the newspaper business, we like collaboration.
Some front pages to check out.