Always Be communicating
I would like to express the level of importance I believe Communication has when working as a designer, and I would like to bring your attention to a few key points.
Being proactive with communication
Video games are collaborations, unless you're some kind of deity... I don't know you might be.
However, for us "mortals" working together is imperative, which is why we must not be shy. If you believe something should be expressed, issue or idea, you should talk about it.
Expressing your thoughts clearly is all about vocabulary & visual aids.
The words you use when speaking to a programmer won't be the same when speaking to an artist.
When speaking to a programmer it might be beneficial to express what you want as an event sheet; you could create an excel sheet with each cell representing an action/event.
Artists might require a more subjective approach. Explaining a characters motivation, emotions or backstory could be very beneficial. You could even throw in a quick sketch.
Hi my name is... and i'm a...
Who are you? What do you do? How do we work together?
Three very important questions.
Not understanding what a colleague is capable of, or what they do, will make working together very hard.
Knowing what everyone is capable of could potentially be impossible, depending on team size. However, knowing what an entire team can do, how you can help them and how they can help you is necessary when trying to find the right person for the job.
People have an instinctive feel for who wants to listen and who doesn't.
If someone needs to talk to you there is usually a good reason.
So, pay attention.
Everyone has ideas and everyone has a valid opinion.
There should be no disagreements. Only passionate conversation.
You would be suprised how far a calm exchange of thoughts will get you.
These are my opinions.
This list may evolve or grow. (Who knows...)